Where to get water heater anodes?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by mortimer, Jul 27, 2008.

  1. mortimer

    mortimer New Member

    Looking for some places that have flexible magnesium anodes. Google is not really helpful in this case. The Big Box stores don't seem to carry. Live in Spokane, WA. Internet will also work.

    Is an A. O. Smith FGR40 gas model. As it is 14 years old, I suspect that the original anode is gone.

    Open to either replacing the original or using a combo rod.

    Would prefer not having to drill out the existing holes for a larger diameter rod, as discussed at waterheaterrescue, due to clearance issues.

    I saw one at the This Old House web site that would suit. It is segmented like a martial arts weapon.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. jch

    jch Member

    Here they have them at Big Orange (HD). I bought one there recently.

  3. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Here is flexible aluminum:


    Oops! That is a plumbing supply store that must be on the edit list here.
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2008
  4. 14 year old heater

    getting that old mag rod out of your heater might be
    close to impossible....

    sometimes you allmost have to kill the patient to
    get out that rod.....they wont budge..

    we have given up on a quite few
    that was with one fellow
    holding the heater frim in place and the other fellow
    trying to pry the rod out with a heavy duty socket wrench
    and a cheater bar.......

    so before you go out and buy one......

    might I suggest you see if the
    old one is willing come out of that 14 year old heater
    without turning into a "man hood " contest???

    being that old, you might want to let sleeping dogs lie....
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2008
  5. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Try this google search...
    I have used the "Famous" one.

    When replacing an anode if you attempt it using a regular wrench the twisting force on the water heater is very high and may cause damage. I use an electric impact wrench to change anode rods and it works very well. At the factory they are originally installed with an impact wrench.

    As Mark posted your water heater is very old and depending on its condition sometimes it is best to let the sleeping dog lie.
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Cave Creek, Arizona

    I have not been to that site, but I cannot imagine ANYONE trying to drill a water heater so you could install a larger diameter anode rod.
  7. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    I would agree HJ, sounds like bad advice to me!
  8. mortimer

    mortimer New Member

    Thanks for the replies!
  9. Mikey

    Mikey Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek

    Central Florida
    There's also an obscure and expensive tool called a "torque amplifier" that fits on a large socket wrench and, as the name implies, amplifies the torque being applied. You might be able to borrow one from someone who owns and/or works on buses or trucks. I'm told they work well on anode rods. I've used impact wrenches, but always had visions of the glass lining breaking up when I use them.
  10. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    The torque multiplier still exerts a twisting force. There is a reaction bar that extends from it that could rest on the inlet or outlet pipe... They are used more on heavy equipment than anything else. Still might break something or, round off the nut. There is a reason why they use impact wrenches to put in anodes at the factory... Cause they figured out that it works!

    Last edited: Jul 28, 2008
  11. too much time on their hands .....with too little to do

    they just have too much time on their hands
    and they got to be absolutely nuts to try to drill out a anode nut to attempt to change it out.

    I supppose you could get lucky with an impact wrench,
    I have moved a water heater out of place before useing
    the cheater bar and heavy duty socket....

    I never promise the customer that I will get it out.

    only that I will try .......

    everybody must be slow today...............
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2008
  12. MACPLUMB 777


    Houston, Texas, United States
    Water Heater Anode Rod

    Go To
    Hotwater.com This The A.o.smith Website Go To Parts
    They Can Send You A Flexible Anode Rod That Replaces The Hot Water Nipple At Top Of Water Heater,
    Which Is Better Then Trying To Get Old Rod Out
    Remember We Are Professionals Who Do This And We Would Not Attempt That On A Old Water Heater :d
  13. thats a better idea Mc plumb

    I had not thought of that, I suppose if you had to change out an anode rod , their is no rule that you got to remove the old one... just install a new one on the hot outlet port of the heater... who cares wether you remove th old one or not

    you can get a replacement anode rod with the attached nipple about anywyere..... Bradford Whites anode rod is attached to the hot nipple

    it would work fine

    but it still is a lot of trouble..
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