What to Do If Your Water Heater Tank Is Corroded

Is there a way to fix this problem without spending tons of money?

Tom Cartney
Sep 16, 2019 · 4 min read

We now see corrosion on our water heater tanks after about 15 years and we want to know why. We may have already come to the conclusion that the water heater is old, but is this the reason why it is corroded? Maybe, but what should we do in a case like this? Corroded water heater tanks are common within homes and there is an answer.

What is corrosion?

The combination of water, metal and oxygen. This combination starts a chemical reaction that causes corrosion to develop.

Why is Your Water Heater Tank Corroded

Water heater tanks are designed to resist corrosion. The lining of the water heater tank is of glass. The pressure relief valve on the top of the tank is built to disallow air into the tank. The sacrificial anode rod that passes through the tank, attracts corrosion to it and away from the tank. So, if all of these prevention are in place, why does the tank corrode? Your first thought probably is because the water heater tank is old. That’s one reason. After 15 years, a water heater tank has usually ran it’s life’s course and corrosion is a sign of wear and tear. Here are other reasons:

  1. The glass linen in the tank has cracked. When this happens, it allows water to make contact with the metal tank.
  2. The anode rod is corroded completely. Once this happens, the rod can no longer act as a filter of corrosion and it is no longer effective in preventing corrosion from forming on the rest of the tank.

3. The pressure valve allowed air to enter into the tank

Always ensure that you have a routine water heater check from your professional technician. Doing so can prevent these problems from happening.

What to Do if Your Water Heater Tank is Corroded

It’s simple! CALL YOUR LOCAL PLUMBER ASAP! You maybe looking for a DIY trick for combating corrosion. But when your water heater tank is corroded and it is about 15 years old, there is mainly only one thing that can be done, and that’s to completely replace your water heater tank. Your local plumber will most likely tell you this after checking your water heater. There is a possibility that the plumber can fix any one of the three problems listed above and can save you the costs of $1500 — $3,000 of installing a new water heater. An anode rod can cost you $30 and you can replace it yourself with a wrench. The pressure valve can cost just $15 and the replacement process is quite simple as well.

Corrosion will weaken your water heater tank’s metal and lessen the effectiveness of how the water heater operates. It can also cause the water tank to leak.

When you see corrosion forming on your water heater tank, you now have an idea on what the problem is and what could be done. If your water heater tank or any one of the water heater components are corroded, it can affect the water supply in which you shower with and drink.

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Tom Cartney

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