Changing A Water Heater Anode Rod: 6 Steps To Follow

Changing A Water Heater Anode Rod: 6 Steps To Follow

An anode rod is a component in your water heater system that prevents corrosion by sacrificing itself or through electrons. These components are made to ensure your water heater lasts for a long time. However, they also have a lifespan; once an anode rod has deteriorated, the next step is to replace it. 

Here are a few steps to follow to change the water heater anode rod:

Disconnect Heater from the Power Supply 

Depending on the power source, there are different ways to turn off your water heater. If you are using an electric source, you can switch the circuit breaker off. Failure to turn the water heater off can burn the heating element if it comes in contact with air. If you are using a gas heater, turn the control valve to the lowest or vacation setting. Ensure it is not completely turned off and does not affect the pilot light.

Look for the Anode Rod

Next, you can find the anode rod, which is usually located on the water heater or directly connected to the outlet line for hot water. This step will become easier if you have the user manual, which contains diagrams to help you locate the anode rod.

Drain Your Water Heater

Attach a garden hose to the drain valve below your water heater, then run the hose outside. Ensure the hose is at a lower level to drain the water from the tank completely. Also, be careful with the hose while draining the water since it will be hot.

Locate a faucet closer to the heater and turn it to the hot side. This will remove pressure and enable air to enter the tank to break the vacuum and drain the water completely. However, loosen the anode if you notice pressure inside the tank, and the water will start coming out.

Remove the Anode Rod

You can remove the anode using a socket, closed-end wrench, and breaker bar. Removing the anode can be hard since it has been in the water for a long time. You can tighten the rod slightly to loosen up the thread or use a breaker bar.

Insert the New Anode Rod

Once you are done removing the anode rod and are sure you need a replacement, you can easily insert a new one. After inserting the new anode rod, turn it clockwise to tighten it, and use your socket wrench to tighten it more. While doing this, ensure the water heater is stabilized and not turning.

Open Water Supply and Turn the Power On

Open the cold-water faucet to refill the water heater tank. Next, ensure the faucet is turned to the hot position. You know it's full once the water starts coming out from the faucet; allow the water to release air from the tank. 

Also, you will notice the faucet spitting some air and water until there is no more air. Next, check for leaks on the heater and turn the power on. For gas heaters, just turn it back to the original setting. 

It is important to note that when installing an electric anode rod or any component in your water heater system, it is crucial to always follow the manufacturer's installation manual. This ensures that the installation is done correctly and safely, and helps to avoid any potential damage or accidents. So, in addition to following the six steps above, be sure to carefully read and follow the instructions provided in the manual to ensure that your water heater system works efficiently and safely.