Side mounted anode rod or none at all?

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by DaneW, Apr 23, 2021.

  1. DaneW

    DaneW New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2020
    Location:
    Washington
    Welcome to crazy town. Before I start tearing everything apart in an attempt to change the anode rod that may or may not be present how should I proceed? I see from reading the manual that the original owner purchased and installed the optional top T&P valve. So now where does the anode go?
    It appears there is a plug in side where the T&P typically goes.

    I realized we have lived here 8 years and I’m over due for an anode rod change and there is a bad smell coming from the hot water.

    Is a side mounted anode a thing?
     
  2. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Many water heaters put the anode under the hot nipple on top.

    A worn out anode will not cause a smell.

    Well water? Sanitizing your well and plumbing, including WH, can help with a smell.
     
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  4. Sarg

    Sarg Enjoy Learning

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    Nov 6, 2020
    Occupation:
    Recently retired
    Location:
    NorthEast
    Need more information such as the type and maker of your heater. As Reach4 mentions ... the anode could be attached to the hot side exit.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. DaneW

    DaneW New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2020
    Location:
    Washington
    78584B17-3727-4F6D-A72F-F0362FAF8CDD.jpeg 3D414DAF-60A7-43D2-AFAD-329D36DE4214.jpeg It’s an A.O. Smith water heater.

    I was unaware there was an option for hot side exit anode.

    pics for clarification

    I can’t find any place local that lists a combo rod output on their website.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2021
  6. Sarg

    Sarg Enjoy Learning

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2020
    Occupation:
    Recently retired
    Location:
    NorthEast
    Here is a website with loads of info on water heaters & anode rods. The anodes that are combo are a difficult item to replace. Certainly do not try to remove until you have a replacement in hand ........ because chances are you will maul the 3/4 nipple beyond repair trying to get it loose. See the website given and the procedure.
    That's why I opted for a Rheem to avoid the anode not having a hex head for removal.
    I suggest doing a search on your specific heater model number to verify the anode used. ( They are generic but if you search you should be able to find the direct OEM replacement.)

    http://waterheatertimer.org/Replace-anode-rod.html
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2021
  7. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
  8. Bannerman

    Bannerman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    It maybe simpler to relocate the T&P to the side opening so as to install a conventional generic anode rod through the usual opening at the top.
     
  9. Tuttles Revenge

    Tuttles Revenge In the Trades

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Another thing to consider is your overall height to swap an anode rod on the top. Lots of installations are too tight to get a full rod in. There are segmented rods for that.. or tilting the water heater is another option.

    This might be a good chance to swap out that duct tape union on the relief pipe too.
     
  10. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Occupation:
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    Location:
    New England
    CPVC is allowed on the T&P valve discharge, but PVC is not...I can't tell which you have, but it's probably okay...double-check the label on the pipe.

    It can be really tough to get an anode rod out of a new WH, let along one that has sat for 8-years. You may need an impact wrench if it's screwed in.

    This might be a good choice for a powered anode rod as it tends to be shorter, and you might get it to fit easier, but would require power to make it work. An anode helps, but is not a guarantee that the WH will last appreciably longer...the luck of the draw on the one you bought is probably a bigger factor. They certainly help, but depending on the state of the existing one (at 8 years, it's probably toast), the damage may not make investing in a new anode cost effective, especially if you had to pay someone to install it.

    If you have to remove the supply hoses, plan to replace them just as a precaution. They tend to get harder and less ductile over time and could crack.
     
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