anode rod replacement force

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by dikshe, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. dikshe

    dikshe New Member

    Feb 7, 2009
    I've never replaced the anode rod on my 10 yr old water heater. I replaced the dip tube - that was easy but the anode rod won't budge with a 24" breaker bar applied to it. I'm wondering if too much force could rupture the tank. for 2 weeks I've spayed penetrating oil on the threads but it's still stuck. So 2 questions:
    Can I safely apply heat with a propane touch to the threads ?
    Can I rupture the tank by applying too much force using the breaker bar ?

  2. Billy Mays

    Billy Mays New Member

    Feb 7, 2009
    Hi! Billy Mays Here!

    All you need to is heat the threads slooowly.

    Heat the threads slooowly.
    Heat the threads slooowly.
    Then take a wrench and pull on it! Use a hammer to break it free!

    Get it done and remember me!
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  4. nhmaster

    nhmaster Master Plumber

    Jul 30, 2008
    Tech. Instructor
    S. Maine
    I use a 1/2" drive impact wrench and socket. Heating it will do nothing. May in fact make it worse because it's going to expand the plug even more.
  5. Master Plumber Mark

    Master Plumber Mark Master Plumber

    Feb 6, 2005
    Sensitivity trainer.. plumber of mens souls
    indianapolis indiana - land of the free, home of
    10 year old anode rod

    its best to leave it alone....

    their are certain limitations to the amount of
    torque you should apply to one of these

    you can literally twist and move the water heater before the nut ever gives loose...
    or you will just round off the edjes of the nut...

  6. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Dec 15, 2007
    Service Plumber
    I do the same thing as NH Master...
    In fact how do you think they install them at the factory?
  7. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Nov 12, 2005
    no heat...bad idea...
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona

    You may need a 48" extension on the wrench, but after 10 years the metal around the tapping could be weakened and you could cause a leak.
  9. dikshe

    dikshe New Member

    Feb 7, 2009
    Ok - according to the serial number on my water heater it is really 13 yrs old. I successfully replaced the dip tube - and after 3 weeks of applying liquid wrench the anode nut finally broke loose. Only about an 1/8" rod maybe 15" was all that was left of the original anode rod.
    So I installed the new anode rod - it was magnesium - is this the correct type of material for my region ? I live in Westminster Colorado and my water comes from a high country stream which fills a local resevoir.
    The magnesium rod cost me $ 25 - the plumbing supply place was out of alumimun.
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