Annode Rod Removal - need help!!

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by dickandcol, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. dickandcol

    dickandcol New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Hi, I am trying to remove the annode rod from the top of my water heater and it does not want to move! I started with a half inch Rachet, then went to a strong bar being very careful not to pull too hard, next move is a breaker bar but my common sense said STOP Ask someone! The water heater is almost new , came with our new condo. I am trying to remove it because or a bad smell "Rotten Eggs" and pour a gallon of bleach in the tank to fush the hot water system in our new condo then replace the old rod with a new special rod . This is what the Rheem Techs suggest to do!!
    Can I break anything if I put too much pressure on the Annode Rod??
    I had a plumber tell me he use's a 3/4 inch drive to remove them and has never broken anything but his Knuckles ? Does this sound rite??
    Any Opinions will be appreciated!!!
    Thank's, Dick R
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    Impact wrench is often the answer. A four ft. breaker bar helps, but you need Mighty Joe Young to hold on the the water heater so it doesn't spin.
  3. nhmaster

    nhmaster Master Plumber

    Messages:
    3,189
    Location:
    S. Maine
    I've run across some that were so damn tight you couldn't hold the tank from spinning without damaging the piping or nipples. That's when I bought a 1/2" electric impact wrench.
  4. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I use a 1/2" electric impact wrench also...
  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,831
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    anode

    Since it is a new heater you should not damage it removing the anode, regardess of whether you use a 4' breaker bar or an impact wrench. Older heaters can have a weld break from the "vibration" of an impact wrench.
  6. Jay Mpls

    Jay Mpls Master plumber

    Messages:
    98
    Location:
    Minneapolis
    Sounds as though your place was vacant for some time.I havehad some luck with just flushing them out.Just run the water for quite a while.As stated above,an impact will do fine.
  7. dickandcol

    dickandcol New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Than You!!

    Hi, everyone. Thank's for your help! I finally removed the rod with a 1/2 " air gun. I then flushed the tank with bleach,drained and refilled with clean water then drained again, and presto!! NO SMELL in my hot water. I am ordering a special rod from Rheem, R-Tech rod . no telling how long this will last but I have my fingers crossed!! so far so good.
    Thank's again, Dick R
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