The article provides an inside look at the water heater industry and anode rods in particular, which are an essential part of every water heater. Here are a few tips to help you understand more about the water heater industry and anode rods:
- Anode rods and warranties. Anode rods are designed to prevent corrosion in a tank-type water heater. Therefore, the number of anode rods installed in a particular water heater directly relates to the length of the warranty the manufacturer will provide. Most manufacturers will automatically provide a shorter warranty unless the consumer specifically asks for a longer one. And as expected, most consumers do not know enough about water heaters to ask about warranties and anodes—who would take the time unless you’re in the business? The manufacturer will install the minimum number of anode rods—just one—which means that your water heater is more likely to malfunction and you are more likely to buy a new one in a few years.
- The water heater industry can currently manufacture commercial water heaters with up to four anode rods. Though these four-rod water heaters are uncommon, the average commercial water heater has at least two.
- The life span of a single anode rod also varies widely. The average lifespan of an anode rod is ten years. However, depending on where you live, and how hard the water is in your area, some rods will last only two to four years! Some places, a single rod can last twenty or even thirty years. You can greatly expand the lifetime of your water heater if you know how hard the water is in your area and how often you will need to replace your anode rods.
- When it is time to replace the anode rod, you should call in the professionals. Anode rods can be extremely difficult to replace mostly because of access. Water heaters are often installed in a small utility closet with no overhead clearance. This requires a plumber to partially disconnect the plumbing and drain the tank in order to tip it forward to gain access to the anode rod. What a pain! Save yourself the frustration and hire a plumber.
- Tankless water heaters. Money is the main reason most consumers install a tank-type water heater. They cost less, especially for establishments such as hotels and restaurants which need more than just one. However, you might want to consider going to a tankless water heater system. Initially a tankless water heater system costs more money, but it requires less maintenance, and will save you both energy and money throughout its lifetime. The considerable savings from tankless water heaters come from the simple fact that there is no tank storing water which must be heated all day every day. A tankless water heater only heats water when needed.
Today, residences and households are slightly more likely to install a tankless system. The tankless water heater industry is gaining considerable momentum and in the next thirty to fifty years, the number of tankless water heaters will far outnumber the tank-type systems.