Gas W/H leaking around anode rod fitting

Old 08-10-05, 03:37 PM
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Gas W/H leaking around anode rod fitting

I would appreciate any help you can give. A couple of wks ago I noticed water on the floor of garage around W/Heater. It appeared to be coming from t/p relief valve but replaced that & trickle of water down side of tank continued. It doesn't look like it's coming from where the valve is screwed into the tank but instead it looks like its seeping from around the expansion foam insulation surrounding the fitting. I read somewhere that the anode rod should be changed about every three years to extend the life of the w/h so I checked the anode rod fitting on top of the tank. It has a little puddle of water around where it screws into the tank. Could this be somehow seeping through the insulation foam or is this a completely different problem? The water heater is in an uninsulated detached garage which contributes to an accelerated deterioration of the water heater along with the fact that we have very hard water and the tank is about 5 yrs old.
Would it be practical to spend the money for another anode rod at this point or should I just get a new unit? Where would I buy another anode if that's all it needs? Thanks for your help. CLeone
Old 08-10-05, 03:47 PM
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CLeone, Welcome to the DIY Forums.
Replacing an anode rod is not an easy chore. I have seen posts here where the member has put a 4 foot cheater on a wrench to get them out. I would dry up the water around the anode and check later to see if it returns. As stated, they are very tight and leaking is not normal, although possible. Good luck.
One thing that may help in the future is to drain and flush the heater twice a year. Sediment builds up on the bottom of the tank and it wastes gas trying to heat the sediment before it can heat the water. I have included a link for properly doing this.
Old 08-10-05, 07:22 PM
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If you have a puddle around the anode rod fitting then your problem is definitely with the upper part of your heater. Yes the water can leak down to the T&P valve. Make sure your hoses are not leaking In this case i would turn the water off to the heater and dry up all water. Clean out the insulation the best you can around the anode and/or water inlet/outlet connection. Now turn your water back on and watch closely. Use a flashlight to help spot where it is coming from. Many times the weldments are the cause of small pin hole leaks.

Remember most domestic water heaters are covered for parts and tanks for 6 years. Check with your manufacturer. Also check your supply pressure. If it was exceeded and this caused the leak it can void your warranty.

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