The water heater in your home does a lot of work. Water heaters help clean the dishes in your dishwasher, wash your linens and clothing, and make your shower more pleasant. Since your water heater is used so often, it needs to be in top condition. The anode rod is a vital part of your water heater and helps it last. If the anode rod isn’t checked periodically, it can cause trouble for your water heater.
How An Anode Rod Works
An anode rod resides in the storage tank of your water heater. It’s a long metal rod that protects the hot water tank from corrosion. Most water heater tanks are lined with a layer of thin glass to prevent rust. An anode rode acts as a second line of defense in case this layer cracks and exposes the steel wall to water. Steel oxidizes when it contacts water. An anode rod attracts the ions in the water that cause rust. That means the anode rod will degrade naturally over time, but your hot water tank will remain rust-free.
Types of Anode Rods
Anode rods are typically made from magnesium, aluminum, or a zinc alloy. The top layer of metal is forged around a steel wire. Magnesium rods tend to protect water heater tanks better, but they don’t last as long as an aluminum or zinc rod. Aluminum and zinc rods tend to be less expensive than magnesium and may be recommended for your type of water.
Prolonging Its Lifespan
An anode rod effectively prolongs the life of your hot water tank, but it lasts about three to five years. Eventually, the rod will degrade down to the steel wire at its core. It won’t attract ions any more, and if not replaced, your water tank will rust. Check the condition of your anode rod every three years. If you notice gritty or bad-smelling water, loud popping noises when your water heats up, or increasing bills, it may be time to replace your anode rod.
If you need to replace the anode rod in your water heater, get in touch with Glastonbury Burner & Boiler in Glastonbury, CT. In addition to water heater maintenance and repair, they offer a variety of expert heating and cooling services for heating oil, propane, solar, and more. Call (860) 659-4120 for more information, or visit their website to view a full list of services.