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Why Anodes are Your Water Heater's Best Friend

Behind every clean shower with clear water is an anode that is protecting your hot water tank from the scourge of corrosion. They are the unsung heroes of our hot water systems which is why they should be closely monitored, maintained and replaced when necessary.

The simple magic of heated water

Isn’t it strange how we have heated water? Think about it. The water you douse yourself in morning and evening, as you have your Eureka! moments, is only possible because heat is conducted through metal which in turn heats up the water. That is all well and good but common sense says that surely over time the water would rust the metal, bathing you in rusty water and quite frankly, disappointment. However, this is not the case. The rust-free water we enjoy from day to day in our showers is made possible by a minute, little rod that is placed at the top of your tank.


The name of this rod is an anode. Read on to find out more.

What is an anode?

Anodes or sacrificial anodes are highly active metals that are used to stop less active material surfaces like those in your water tank from corroding. These anodes are made from a metal alloy with greater negative electrochemical potential than the metal in your water tank which it happens to be protecting. The term sacrificial comes from the fact that the anode attracts the corrosive elements in the water to itself thus sacrificing itself and taking one for the team, and your hot shower.

The three different anodes available include:

  • Aluminium anode
  • Magnesium anodes
  • Zinc anodes

More about those unsung heroes called anodes

The anode rod fixed in your water tank consists of a steel wire core which is covered by one of the three metals mentioned before. The specific metal used will depend on the anode rod.

The name of the process responsible for sparing your water tank and sacrificing the anode rod is electrolysis. Through this process, the rod absorbs the rust that is caused by metal meeting water, ultimately saving you the burden of bathing in rusty water from the water heater. However, your anode will eventually pay the price for bearing the brunt of corrosion and will itself begin to corrode.


When this takes place, the steel insides of your water tank will begin to rust resulting in shower-ruining rust. This is exactly why one should take the time to source quality hot water system anode sand even afterwards, ensure that they are properly maintained. It is a cost saving investment that will save you the hassle of replacing your whole water heater which will prove to be costlier.

Why anodes matter?

We’ve established that sacrificial anodes not only reduce the rate at which corrosion occurs inside your water tank but they also have the potential to double the life expectancy of your tank. The role your water heating anode plays in the lifespan and functioning of your water heater is pivotal. In fact, it determines whether or not it is even operational. Furthermore, your water heater isn’t just important for your shower; it is also used around the home including your kitchen. A failing water tank will not only impact the quality of the water in your home, it will also damage metal taps and drains.

Which anode do I use?

Why you need not just any anode but a quality anode is now clear. Whether it’s for a new water heater tank or to replace existing hot water anodes, Anodes Australia has something to suit your specific needs. We supply a comprehensive range of magnesium, zinc and aluminium products. We also stock and supply rod anodes, block anodes, pencil anodes and condenser anodes.

Understanding the importance of this investment we don’t compromise on our high standards, making sure all of our products are tested to comply with Australian Standards AS2239-2003.

Anodes Australia takes great pride in its capacity to save you from having a lackluster shower by keeping your water heater working exactly as it should.

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