Atwood HWH, annode rod?

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RPARKER

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La Porte, TX
I have a 2007 Trailsport 27 QBSS travel trailer. It has a Atwood hwh, six gallon, with DSI. There is no annode rod in this hwh nor is one required. It has a plastic plug for the drain. I would like to replace this with a metal plug, one with a drain spout and annode rod attached, sold by Camping World. I was initially looking for a spare plastic plug since all things malfunction or go bad at the most inopportune times. But, the above is all I can find. Can anyone advise if this setup will harm my Atwood? Camping world says its ok, and the package says it is ok for Atwood hwh's. Anyone out there with any experience or first hand knowledge on this? thanks in advance.

R. Parker
Houston, TX
 

Will

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The principal behind the sacrificial anode is that it attracts the charged water particles which cause rust.  Those particles then corrode the anode instead of the walls and seams of the water heater, thereby extending the life of the water heater.  Unless there is something special and different about Atwood heaters (which I doubt) the addition of an anode will extend the life of your water heater.
 

Jim Dick

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Ron,

Atwood tanks are aluminum and should not need an anode rod. Suburban's are not and do need the rod. I doubt if you will find a fitting with a drain spout/anode rod combination. the rod itself is almost as thick as the opening.and firmly attached to the plug.
 

Ned

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I replaced our drain plug in our Atwood water heater with one that will take a replacement anode rod and also has a pet cock for draining (albeit very slowly).
 

3labs

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New Hampshire
Will said:
The principal behind the sacrificial anode is that it attracts the charged water particles which cause rust.  Those particles then corrode the anode instead of the walls and seams of the water heater, thereby extending the life of the water heater.  Unless there is something special and different about Atwood heaters (which I doubt) the addition of an anode will extend the life of your water heater.

Talk to atwood. I recall the the new tanks are aluminum and do not need a anode, It also may void your warranty. check with Atwood.
 

Cabbie

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Portland OR
Speaking of the annode rod; when do you replace it? Mine's at least four years old; heavly pittted over the length of the rod, still roughly it's original length, and worn away 1/8 in around the bar at the base of the threads?
 

Bob Zambenini

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Cabbie said:
Speaking of the annode rod; when do you replace it? Mine's at least four years old; heavly pittted over the length of the rod, still roughly it's original length, and worn away 1/8 in around the bar at the base of the threads?

I went to a Suburban workshop a few years ago and the guy could hardly get started and here came this question. So he said 'Let get this out of the way up front then'. He held up an annode rode slight pitted and said is this ready to be changed?' A few hands went up and he sorta exploded with some comments like you guys keep us in business selling these things. No its perfectly OK!

Then he held up another and it was half eaten away and lots of hands went up and he said NO NO NO!

The went through a couple of other iterations and got down to one that looked like a wire coat hanger and said this  is now ready for changing.
 

Jim Dick

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Ned said:
I replaced our drain plug in our Atwood water heater with one that will take a replacement anode rod and also has a pet cock for draining (albeit very slowly).

Ned,

Never saw one with an anode rod though I have seen them without. Slow is an understatement!! :) Removing the plug and opening the over pressure/temp valve will allow a very fast draining of the system and will help wash out a lot of the sludge that builds up over time. You'll never get it out using a small petcock.
 

Ned

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Removing the plug and opening the over pressure/temp valve will allow a very fast draining of the system and will help wash out a lot of the sludge that builds up over time.

That's what I do.  When we get out of Yuma, it's due for another draining.  No point in doing it here with the really hard water.
 

Jeff

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All the talk reminded me it had been six months for us. Lots of soft lime came out this morning. ;D ;D
 

Tom

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.... the new tanks are aluminum and do not need a anode

Their newer "clad tanks" are made of aluminum clad with zinc (it's unclear from their tech info if the cladding is all zinc or an aluminum/zinc alloy; Eitiher way, it's fused onto the aluminum walls of the tank during the rolling process.) The zinc acts as the sacrificial anode to protect the aluminum. Without the presence of zinc, aluminum will be the sacrificial anode and will eventually fail due to galvanic corrosion. Ask any boater with unprotected aluminum parts below the water line for any length of time.

Edit: Here's a quote from Atwood's web site:

"The interior of the tank consists of a 15% thickness of type 7072 aluminum (pure aluminum and zinc) that is fused to the core during the rolling process."
 

Tom

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Jim,

I went to the Atwood web site and clicked on Service|Information Notices. I had to log in to be able to download the PDFs.

BTW I modified my prior message and included a quote.
 
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