The Anode Rod: A Mysterious but Necessary Water Heater Component

technician tightening water line connection to a hot water heater installation

One of the most important plumbing components in your home is one that you likely don’t think about very often—your water heater. This system provides safe, hot water for cooking, cleaning, bathing, and more. Most water heaters do their jobs reliably and quietly, but when problems do crop up they can do so without you noticing. And by the time you notice something is amiss, the problem can progress to the point that your water heater will need replacement. This is why maintenance is so important. And there is one part of professional water heater maintenance that is especially vital to the functionality of your water heater—checking the anode rod. Not very many people know about this component. It prevents rust in your water heater’s tank, and to do so effectively it needs to be replaced every two to three years by professional Littleton, CO plumbers. Otherwise, your water heater can absolutely require premature replacement.

More about How Anode Rods Work

The anode rod is placed in the tank of your water heater and screwed into place. It comprises a core steel wire sheathed by a specific metal (usually aluminum, zinc, or magnesium). The exact type of metal will depend on the anode rod itself. Aluminum is usually better for homes with hard water problems, while magnesium costs less, and zinc can prevent strange odors from developing.

Through a process called electrolysis, these metals absorb the rust that’s caused by water meeting metal, therefore preventing rust from forming in the water heater itself. This keeps the system safe and helps extend its life by many years. But, there’s a catch.

That electrolysis process causes the metal of the anode rod to corrode, and once that metal is gone, the steel sides of your water heater tank can begin rusting, leading to rust infiltration in your water. Breaches and leaks caused by this rust are common in systems that aren’t properly maintained. And since the rust is so wide-spread, you typically would need to replace the whole water heater when this happens.

Getting the Anode Rod Replaced

Anode rods are fairly easy to replace. They can actually be purchased at any hardware store. However, as far as replacement and installation goes, we highly recommend trusting in a professional with the right type of training and expertise to get the job done safely.

With annual maintenance, you can trust that your water heater’s anode rod will be checked on a regular basis, so that if it does need replacement, we’ll be able to handle it right away for you, or at least alert you that you may need replacement soon so you can get it on your schedule at your earliest convenience.

Maintenance gives you the peace of mind that not only is your water heater rust-free, but working as efficiently, effectively, and as safely as possible.

Looking for reliable plumbing services? Look no further than Aurora Plumbing Company! We have someone in your neighborhood today. See what customers are saying with our Google Reviews.


Areas We Service

Call Us Now!

Call Us Now!

Call: 303-366-5828

Same Day Service Available