Gas water heater anode is gone....

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Awl --
When I installed my Kenmore gas water heater over 10 years ago, I seem to remember this big honking solid alum rod in the HW side. After replumbing it, I discovered it ain't there no more..... just a long rusty iron wire, about 1/8" diam.
I don't imagine I did the heater any favors by letting the anode disappear. The Q is: how much damage? Proly depends on how long ago it dissolved away. Any idears on how long they are supposed to last? I've never heard about replacing these on a maintenance basis.
Any idears on how important these anodes are, ito lifespan of the unit?
Is this a standard plumbing supply item? Or do I have to go back to Sears?
This anode ditty fairly restricts the pipe diameter. Considering the trouble I went to, to come as close to the heater with 1" brass, this fairly pisses me off.... live and learn.... Well, at least I have 1" to tap off of, later on. Still.....
--
EA



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On Fri, 25 Jan 2013 06:05:31 -0500, "Existential Angst"

Those anodes are actually magnesium, not aluminum. They are made to be eaten up by the electrolytic action in the water and dissimilar metals in the system. The rate they are "eaten" depends on the metals in your system as well as the acids and minerals in your water.
Your water heater is probably one of 50 million of them in the US whose rod has vanished. Most people never even know they exist. Few plumbers check them.
However, to prolong your water heater, go ahead and get a new one. You'll probably have to go to a plumbing supply store. You wont find them at the corner hardware store or Home Depot. Sears may have them, just ask.
I dont understand the part where you're mentioning "come as close to the heater with 1" brass". What's with that? And is that really 1"? Unless you have a rather large heater, it's more likely 3/4" NPT (National pipe thread).
--
I've always wondered what effect this dissolved magnesium has on our
health. Particularly people who use hot water from the tap to make
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That makes sense. Which proly means a new anode is going to break the effing bank.

Good to know. The less contact I have with HD the better. Sears is no picnic either, but it is a Kenmore heater, so I've got a better shot....

I'm anal about pressure drop. There was 1" brass that was plumbed down to 3/4 copper, which I replaced, and used 1" brass, until I reduced it down to 3/4 brass. Dopey me.... if you see how the anode is placed, I coulda come in with 1/2", with no worry about pressure....

Altho the DRI lists an "upper limit" for Mg, that simply reflects the dosage at which some people get a laxative effect. There is consderable opinion that the RDA for Mg is way too low (about 350 mg iirc), with some advocating 1,000+ mg -- in divided doses, cuz 1,000 mg in one shot will send you to the throne. One of the better laxative methods, btw.
The point being, if yer hot tea/coffee is not sending you to the throne, yer not getting too much magnesium. I supplement with 250-500 mg religiously, occasionally 750, 1,000 -- heh, but only on weekends.... LOL
Mg is quite the miracle element -- extraordinary, in fact, used in ERs (as IV) for acute asthma attacks and can be anti-asthmatic even in pill form, will immediately lower blood pressure, and being a 2+ ion, apparently competes with Ca2+ for oxalates (kidney stones), thereby virtually eliminating the risk of kidney stones. I went from *chronic* kidney stones to NEVER, after my Mg "therapy". effingamazing stuff....
Do NOT buy that ripoff magnesium called Calm.... total overpriced bullshit, 50x the price of regular MgO from Puritan's Pride et al.
Heh, mebbe I should pour some Mg tablets in the water heater.... which won't work, cuz you need elemental Mg in an anode, vites/minerals are ionic.
--
EA






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On Fri, 25 Jan 2013 07:36:59 -0500, "Existential Angst"

Less than $30
At 10 years, chances are the heater is going to crap out in another year or two anyway.

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Ummm...yeah...I just said that.
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On 01/25/2013 11:19 PM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

The gas water heater at my last house was 18 years old when I replaced the anode and drain valve as PM. The anode was obviously consumed but not down to the wire yet. I also had to replace the T&P valve as it was weak and tried to flood the basement a couple times. Didn't see any need to replace the entire thing however.
It eventually was replaced when we put the house up for sale as the age was of concern to potential buyers according to agent, however, I'm not certain that the replacement was in any way necessary for functional reasons.
nate
--
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
http://members.cox.net/njnagel
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wrote:

Older water heaters, like many other products, used to last a lot longer than the ones made today. Of course, water conditions can make a difference also.
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On Tue, 29 Jan 2013 19:25:02 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

<...>
Basements are nice but it's not always possible or affordable. Even with a walk-out basement, the builder of this house put the water heated in the garage. No idea why. There's 2000ft^2 of unfinished space in the basement. It's a long way from the garage to the master, in the morning, too!

Geisers? Wood heated?
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On Tue, 29 Jan 2013 19:25:02 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Right, destroy all those homes than cannot have a basement. You can always settle those people on reservations in the Dakotas.
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I wonder, with the automated heat systems that are now the norm, how often does the average home owner go down and snoop about in the cellar?
--
Cheers,

John B.
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Are you seriously asking this in rec.crafts.metalworking???
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On Wed, 30 Jan 2013 06:53:58 -0500, "Jim Wilkins"

along with my electronics workbench, my TV and stereo, treadmill, etc. etc.
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The problem here is that some folks think that because using basements as living spaces is common in Canada, where they are from, that it's done everywhere. Here in the northeast USA, many basements, probably the majority of them, are not finished. And even those that are, the water heater, furnace, etc are almost always in an unfinished area seperated off from the finished space. So the idea that if you put a water heater in a basement someone is likely going to see it every day is bogus.
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On Wed, 30 Jan 2013 06:11:42 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net"

Agreed, WRT the NE, though it seems that older houses tend to have a higher probability of having the basements finished. The houses tend to be smaller so people look for a way to expand their footprint cheaply.
Here in the SE, basements are uncommon to rare, depending on the terrain. Judging by my house-hunting last year, about a third of basements are finished and a third completely unfinished. The one we bought is *completely* unfinished (no insulation in the 2-1/2 above ground walls, even).

My water heater is in the garage and the heat pumps are in the attic. Go figure. ;-)

A leak in an unfinished basement (or unfinished area) will cause less damage than one in the living area. Of course if it's not caught for a week...
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On 1/30/2013 8:42 AM, snipped-for-privacy@attt.bizz wrote:

Many homes in this area have the garage in the basement and the furnace and water are next to each other and are seen whenever the home owner pulls their car into the garage. Of course the building code requires that a gas fired water heater be 18" off the floor to prevent gasoline fumes from the vehicle being ignited. ^_^
TDD
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On Wed, 30 Jan 2013 10:18:24 -0600, The Daring Dufas

Well, that's the typical "raised ranch" style. My first house was like that (well the garages were finished off by the previous owner), except that the boiler (also heated domestic water) was in a closet off the garage but sorta in the main section of the house. Too cold in NY for the boiler to be in the garage. That house had a finished basement, too.

As I noted above, oil-fired boiler was off the garage, right on the floor.
OTOH, our current house has the water heater about 2' off the floor in the garage. I always wondered why. It's a stupid place for it and they had to go to a lot of work (and waste space) to get it that far off the floor. Maybe that's the reason, but it's electric?
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On 1/30/2013 6:50 PM, snipped-for-privacy@attt.bizz wrote:

I think the electric water heaters are required to be raised off the floor too since the thermostats are not sealed and could make a spark. I always put a drain pan under a tank type water heater to catch any leaks like attic installed water heaters and air handlers with an AC evaporator coil. ^_^
TDD
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On Wed, 30 Jan 2013 19:06:50 -0600, The Daring Dufas

Could be. That's the best explanation I've heard yet, for an otherwise stupid hack. Putting it in the basement would have made a *lot* more sense, though.
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I made a platform to raise my electric water heater decades ago so I could put a bucket with a ping pong ball for the water level indicator under the drain pan outlet, and accommodate the different heights of replacement units later by changing the wooden legs instead of having to cut or extend the pipes. The replacement was shorter and fatter than the original heater and I had to splice the pipes or raise the tank anyway.
The original tank was difficult to fully drain with the spigot only a few inches above the basement floor. jsw
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On Thu, 31 Jan 2013 08:12:15 -0500, "Jim Wilkins"

little things like draining the WH) built the thing into an alcove in the garage. The alcove is cut out of the laundry from about 2' above the floor to the ceiling. That means not only does the exterior wall have a jog in it but in two dimensions (left/right and top/bottom). It's all sheetrocked and insulated, presumably. It would have been *much* easier to put it 10' lower and forget the complications building the wall. Dumb. I'd have moved it closer to the point of use (it's about 30' from the nearest use) but I wouldn't have expected that much thought.
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