The Anode Rod: What it Does For Your Water Heater

RTM Design • Jun 20, 2022

Corrosion is one of the foremost issues that can affect water heaters and shorten their service life. Fortunately, the ill effects of corrosion can be countered thanks to one simple component: the anode rod. At Trust 1 Services, we do more than just solve problems like water heater corrosion–we also educate our clients on how to prevent them. That’s why we’re the leading name for quality water heater repair in Quincy, MA.

Here’s a quick look at what the anode rod is and what it does for your water heater.

What is the Anode Rod?

An anode rod is a steel core wire that protects the metal lining in your water heater tank. It is inserted during the water heater installation process and usually has magnesium, zinc, aluminum, or aluminum/zinc alloy reinforcements. These components help prevent corrosion or explosion in your water heater.

How Does the Anode Rod “Save” the Water Heater?

The anode rod acts as a sort of sacrificial component that gets corroded so that your water heater won’t have to. This component is not present if you have a tankless water heater since corrosion is not an issue you have to worry about with tankless models.

How Long Does the Anode Rod Last?

The hardness or softness of your water will determine how long your anode rod will last. Magnesium anodes work best with soft water, aluminum anodes with hard water, and zinc anodes for replacing dissolved water heaters.

Generally, you should schedule professional water heater maintenance at least every two years to determine if components such as anode rods need replacement. Magnesium anode rods work well with soft water because they are the least durable. If you’re using them, you need more frequent maintenance.

How Often Should You Replace the Anode Rod?

It’s advisable to drain your water heater annually to shield it from corrosion. To check if your heater has already corroded, collect hot and cold water in separate cups and observe them for signs of rust. If you notice the corrosion early enough, you can reduce expenses by replacing the anode rod. However, if the water heater corrosion has already advanced, you need to get a professional to do a water heater replacement.

For quality plumbing, you can count on Trust 1 Services. Contact us today for water heater installation, maintenance, and repair services!

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