top of page

What Is A Water Heater Anode Rod, And How Can You Tell If It’s Gone Bad?

Have you found that your water is giving off a strong rusty or rotten egg smell? Even if your water appears fine, this is a telltale sign that you have a bad water heater anode rod. An anode rod is a crucial component in your water heater because it helps prevent rusting and corrosion, extending the life of your tank. If you don’t check its condition, your anode rod will start to deteriorate without you knowing.

Why Your Anode Rod Is Important

The anode rod in your water heater tank can be seen as the “sacrifice” part of your unit. Its main job is to protect the metal lining inside your water heater. While it is fighting explosion and corrosion, it is making sure no damage is done to the rest of the unit. This can cause you to have to replace your anode rod more frequently than you think.

Let’s take a look at the different types of anode rods:

  • Aluminum anode rods: If your home has hard water with a high pH, an aluminum rod is the choice for you. It is important to note that these fall apart into other pieces easily.

  • Zinc anode rods: This rod is good to use to replace a rod that causes your water to smell like rotten eggs. It is made out of both aluminum and zinc.

  • Magnesium anode rods: As the most economical rod, magnesium works well with soft water acting as a water softener. However, they are known to wear out faster.

  • Powered rods: This rod is the only one that uses electrical pulses to handle corrosive damage; because of this, it is known as a non-sacrificial anode rod. While they are the most powerful rod, they are also the most expensive.

Signs Your Anode Rod Needs to Be Replaced

Since your anode rod is located in your water heater, it can be hard to tell when it’s time to replace it. For more information about hot water tank repairs in Newmarket, NH, check out the water heater professionals at Cornerstone Services.

While it may not be directly visible, here are some different signs that can make you aware that something is not right with your anode rod, including:

  • Brown or rusty water

  • Loud popping noises coming from your water heater

  • Cold water coming out of your faucet while set on hot

  • Leaks coming from your water heater

  • Your water heater is more than five years old

Your anode rod protects your unit and prolongs its lifespan. However, you must change your anode rod to avoid the potential damage that could make you replace your water heater. Cornerstone Services knows a thing or two about ensuring your water heater is running efficiently with no issues. We offer plumbing services in New Hampshire that can’t be beat! Get in touch with our team today for more information.


bottom of page