Water heater anode rod replacement

Water heater anode rod replacement. If you are concerned about the maintenance of your Water heater, then the anode rod is one of the essential components that require your attention for replacement.

The water heater anode rod is responsible for keeping your water heater tank in a paradigmatic state as the residues and corrosion producer particles are captivated by the anode rod.

So, this protects your water heater from rusting or abrasion. But in this procedure, it gets rusted and starts losing its lifespan.

The water heater’s anode rod gives its life to secure your water heater tank. So, it would not be wrong to say it is a sacrificial anode rod.

If you want to replace the anode rod of your water heater and wondering about the proper guideline, then you can get our loyal assistance to replace your anode rod successfully.

Water heater anode rod replacement

Guidance of Replacing Water Heater Anode Rod

If you are determined about the replacement of your water heater anode rod but don’t have any idea about the cost, required equipment, or procedure you should need to follow, then let us assist you in the direction.

Various Facts About Anode Rods Cost

various facts about anode rods cost

Here, you can roughly estimate what factors may affect the cost while replacing the old anode rod with a new anode rod. So, remember the facts while making the expense accounting.

1. Service Expense

Various facts and factors affect the cost differently. Even if two people have the same water heater model and want to replace the anode rods, both may get different total expenses.

For example, the type of metal, size, place of purchasing the component, and the person you are hiring for doing the task cost you differently.

But there is an estimate that your DIY job may cost around $80 to $300 with purchasing special tools.

You can’t get the exact figures even if you are doing the task. There are different models of water heaters, and they also contain different ways of approaching the anode rod.

Hot water heater leaking from top anode

So, you have to inspect your water heater anode rod to get an idea of whether you can take a chance of replacement or not. A plumber may also cost you differently according to the complexities.

2. Anode Rods Materials

anode rods materials

While choosing the anode rods according to the metals, three metals hit the cost differently.

  • Zinc Rods

If you talk about the most expensive rods, we can say that zinc rods are the most expensive compared to others.

You may also find the rods with a combination or mixture of metals, including aluminum and zinc, occasionally made with the tin combo.

  • Magnesium Rods

The magnesium anode rod is average cost you—it is not the cheaper one and not the much expensive.

  • Aluminum Rods

The last one is the aluminum rod. These are the most inexpensive rods that could be easily affordable.

3. Size of the Anode Rod

The size of the sacrificial rod of the water heater can also affect your budget. For example, a big or long metal rod costs you more than a short one.

If it is challenging to access the rod of your water heaters, then it would be better to choose a flexible rod.

But we suggest you buy a rod according to your water heater brand or model. You can get ideas from the user manual.

Steps to Replace Water Heater Anode Rod

steps to replace water heater anode rod

After considering each detail, you may start your practical work.

In this segment, we’ll discuss the required tools and then guide you on how you can access your rod and how you can make a perfect replacement.

Required Pieces of Equipment

  • 1/2 drive socket wrench
  • 1-1/16 socket
  • Breaker bar
  • Garden hose
  • A Teflon tape

1. Find Out about The Sacrificial Anode Rod

Firstly, you must figure out the location of your water heater’s anode rod. You may probably find it on the upper side of the water heater under a plastic cap.

Or some rods are located on the side, and some water heater models contain the anode rod hooked to the hot water outlet.

Symptoms of bad water heater dip tube

As the location may differ per model, it would be best to get help from the user manual of your heater model. They may better guide you about the anode rod location through diagrams.

But if you can’t find the manual, you may refer to the official page of your heater’s brand and search for the model number to quickly access the rod.

2. Turn OFF Power

turn off power

Secondly, you must turn off the power of your water heater from the circuit breaker to avoid any harm. You must shut down the thermostat if you have a gas water heater.

But if you don’t want to ignite the pilot lamp, you may use the vacation settings to the lower. Shut off the cold water supply using the water heater valve or pump.

3. Empty The Water Tank

Get ready to spill out the water from the heater tank. If you feel that there is hot water in the tank, you can wait to let it cool.

But if you are in a hurry, you can carefully tackle the water while spilling out.

So, you have to access the drain valve at the base of the heater and then connect a standard garden hose to the drain valve. Keep the drain hose lower than the water tank to get smooth draining.

Moreover, the upper side anode rod required a half drainage tank. On the other hand, the side rod heater requires draining until you don’t access the rod port.

4. Access The Faucet

access the faucet

If you want urgent draining, you have to access the faucet, which contains the hot water supply in the neighborhood of the heater. Open the hot water valve.

5. Detach the Sacrificial Anode

You can use a breaker bar or a socket wrench to detach the rod of your water heater.

You may get better leverage with a breaker bar. Weakens the threads make your task a bit easier.

This process is a bit challenging, so you have to be patient. It would be better to have someone with you to hold the heater from moving, as we don’t want you to harm the connection of your water heater pipes.

Tankless water heater lifespan


Don’t use any abrasive chemicals to avoid impurities in the water. Please don’t hit the rod; it may harm your water tank glass lining.


  • Firstly, it is essential to make carve while pulling out the rod.
  • If you suspect the buildup of residue on the rod, it is tough to remove as it is huge. Then it indicates that it doesn’t need replacement and is still functioning.
  • You may slide a steel pipe on the wrench handle while detaching.

6. Insert The New Anode Rod

insert the new anode rod

So, it is the final step of installing a new anode rod. You require a thread sealing tape to enfold the threads of the water heater’s new anode. You may also use a joint or sealing compound.

After completing the initial preparations with your new rod, it is ready for installation. Put your anode rod into the inlet hole.

Depending on your water heater rod, you may bend your flexible rod if there is not enough space to install it unbendingly.

In contrast, if your water heater anode can be installed linearly, then you doest need to bend it. After inserting the rod, you must screw it.

At first, you may rotate it with your hand when it gets hard. Then you may use the socket wrench. While tightening the rod, don’t let the heater spin.

  • Enable the Power Supplies

Shut off the drain first. Then allow the cold water supply. Flick on the hot supply water to fill the heater tank. When the tank starts filling with water, it causes the air to go from the tank.

Don’t worry if you hear any sound; it is the faucet making the sound of flowing water with releasing air.


It would be best if you examined the leakage. Now, flick on the power from the circuit breaker. You may set the thermostat temperature as you usually do.


In this post, we have explained the details of the water heater sacrificial anode. You may replace the anode rod with accurate instructions.

You may also estimate the cost and the suitable material for the rod. If you feel difficult to access the rod, we suggest contacting a professional plumber.