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Old 04-28-2019, 12:06 PM   #1
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Default Remove Anode Rod

Hi everyone, just had a question. After camping and at home, do you drain the hot water tank by removing the anode rod, and leave it out until the next camp trip? Has anyone experienced rusty threads so bad that the hot water tank needed to be replaced.
I always drain mine and leave the anode rod out but, wondering if I should drain and re-install the rod. TIA
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Old 04-28-2019, 01:01 PM   #2
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Yes, I drain mine after every camping excursion and leave the anode rod out....and out during winter storage too.

I keep the threads from rusting by putting some food grade silicone grease on the water heater threads.

Examples: https://www.amazon.com/food-grade-si...ilicone+grease

and available at WalMart, Home Depot, Ebay, etc.
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Old 04-28-2019, 08:16 PM   #3
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Yep, leave it out when not in use. As for rust, cooking oil or silicone is a good choice. Mine had so much rusted/sediment that I had to use a pipe with cross cut threads as a tap to clear out the corrosion.
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Old 05-01-2019, 04:52 PM   #4
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I should mention I'm not overly comfortable leaving the anode rod 'hole' open in the water heater since small flying/crawling critters could decide to move into the water heater.
Therefore, I take a piece of "air conditioner filter foam" that I wad up and stuff into the anode rod opening. Keeps invaders out yet allows some air venting.

Just F.Y. I.
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Old 05-05-2019, 01:01 PM   #5
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I've been camping since 2005 and never remove the rod, except for annual inspection and maintenance. I am not sure that this is the right thing to do, but it is kind of a pain to re-install the rod, so I do it as infrequently as I can!
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Old 05-05-2019, 04:54 PM   #6
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I've found leaving the anode rod in all year long tends to cause the rod to deteriorate in one season. By removing it, the rod can last several seasons....my experience but others may have different results.
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Old 05-05-2019, 05:40 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagle View Post
I've found leaving the anode rod in all year long tends to cause the rod to deteriorate in one season. By removing it, the rod can last several seasons....my experience but others may have different results.
That and the idea of stagnant water pooled in the bottom of the water heater for six months doesn't appeal to me.
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Old 05-05-2019, 07:50 PM   #8
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Although we travel almost all year round (there are advantages to living in Southern Calif, even though it is so crowded), I think those are both good points -- leaving the rod in would probably accelerate corrosion, and the water just sits in the tank for several weeks at a time.

I will have to rethink my maintenance procedures!!
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Old 05-11-2019, 09:45 AM   #9
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I believe different types of water will effect the anode differently. Mine is 3 years old and I only take it out at the end of the season. I leave it in all summer. I still have 60 to 70 % of the original anode. Silverado
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Old 05-11-2019, 10:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
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I believe different types of water will effect the anode differently. Mine is 3 years old and I only take it out at the end of the season. I leave it in all summer. I still have 60 to 70 % of the original anode. Silverado
I fill the fresh water tank at home before leaving on a trip. It's filled with water than has been softened by the whole house water softener.

When camping, RV park water is used which also enters the hot water heater. Easy to tell if the water is soft or hard when showering.

Park water is often hard water w/lots of minerals that enters the hot water heater and has an impact on life of the anode rod...I do believe. Removing the anode rod, hence draining the water heater, upon returning home extends the anode rod life.

We always travel with water in the fresh water tank for use of the bathroom en route (detest dirty public restrooms) and water available if a situation where delayed so stay overnight where there are no hookups.
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