Any system that deals with even a moderate amount of water on a regular basis must have some sort of method for dealing with rust. Otherwise, the system will rust away in short order and become completely useless. So, if your water heater is older than a year or two, haven’t you ever wondered why it hasn’t had any rust problems yet? The answer is a part called the anode rod. Let’s take a look at the anode rod, and how it serves your water heater.

The Anode Rod

The anode rod is a long metal rod that is inserted into the water heater storage tank upon installation. The rod is usually made of magnesium, aluminum, or zinc, and is forged around a steel wire. As long as the rod is in contact with the water in the tank, it will start to attract the ions in the water that normally cause rust. This causes the anode rod to degrade over time, but protect the water heater tank lining from rusting out and possibly rupturing. This is largely why the part is sometimes referred to as the sacrificial anode rod.

Checking the Anode Rod

The protection the anode rod provides is very beneficial, but it isn’t permanent. Eventually, the anode rod will wear down to the point where it will no longer be able to protect the water heater from rust. At that point, the rod will need to be replaced with a new one in order to maintain the protection. Your water heater technician should automatically check and replace your anode rod for you, provided that you schedule an appointment with them at least once a year.

The Trusted Plumber installs and services water heater systems throughout Peoria, AZ. If you need water heater services of any kind, call today to schedule an appointment.

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