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Old 08-01-2019, 06:31 PM   #21
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Draining the fresh water and water heater after each use is a matter of choice. If I have a lot of water in my fresh water tank, then I will drain it so that I don't have to haul it home with the extra weight. If I plan on another camping trip in the next few weeks, I will leave the water in the water heater. The anode will take of the water heater. To drain water heater, you should have two T-Handle drain valves close to your water heater inside your camper. Just pull up and water will drain out. You can either open the hot water tap at your sink or open the relief valve on your water heater to aid in draining. Then again as my camper is, I have two drain lines thru the floor of the camper by the water heater with caps on them, remove caps and water drains out. Again, is a choice that is yours to make.
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Old 08-01-2019, 06:31 PM   #22
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I drained the fresh water tank after our last camping trip. Should the water heater also be drained before travel? And how would I drain it?

I drain the fresh water tank and the water heater tank when returning home fro a trip and if not going out again in more than a week.

Saves on the anode rod and prevents fresh water in the tank from getting stagnant.

NOBODY likes stagnant water for anything.
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Old 08-01-2019, 06:59 PM   #23
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Draining the fresh water and water heater after each use is a matter of choice. If I have a lot of water in my fresh water tank, then I will drain it so that I don't have to haul it home with the extra weight. If I plan on another camping trip in the next few weeks, I will leave the water in the water heater. The anode will take of the water heater. To drain water heater, you should have two T-Handle drain valves close to your water heater inside your camper. Just pull up and water will drain out. You can either open the hot water tap at your sink or open the relief valve on your water heater to aid in draining. Then again as my camper is, I have two drain lines thru the floor of the camper by the water heater with caps on them, remove caps and water drains out. Again, is a choice that is yours to make.
You are draining your water heater through the low point drains. As 5picker said in post #19 you are also allowing the calcium and deteriorated anode rod into the water lines which will plug the faucet aerator screens and toilet flush valve. All water heater tanks have a drain plug accessible from the outside panel. Atwood/Dometic water heater tanks do not have an anode rod, Suburban water heater tanks always have an anode rod.


My Suburban WH is on its 6th year on the same rod and looks just like OP's picture.
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Old 08-01-2019, 07:19 PM   #24
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Does the hot water tank have a screen filter or something inside the hot water out line? That would seem to make sense so that anode rod gunk etc doesn't get in your lines
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Old 08-01-2019, 07:41 PM   #25
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Does the hot water tank have a screen filter or something inside the hot water out line? That would seem to make sense so that anode rod gunk etc doesn't get in your lines
Nope
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Old 08-01-2019, 09:08 PM   #26
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Does the hot water tank have a screen filter or something inside the hot water out line? That would seem to make sense so that anode rod gunk etc doesn't get in your lines
It isn't the hot out that is the issue when draining via low points or when using the tank normally. The hot out is at the top of the tank.

The gunk in the tank (which settles to the bottom) back-drains from the cold in line when draining via the low point drains.
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Old 08-02-2019, 12:47 PM   #27
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Bought my 2018 HW296 in 2017 and Anode Rod already needs replacing.
Thanks to my Next door neighbor owning Camping USA in E.Bridgewater Ma a Camping supply Store, she brought one home to me. It been replaced already took me less than 10 Mins.
NO way would I replace that Anode Rod !!!
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Old 08-02-2019, 12:58 PM   #28
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That anode is almost as good as new.
6th season with current tt and never changed it yet...roughly 50% gone .
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Old 08-02-2019, 01:04 PM   #29
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Does the hot water tank have a screen filter or something inside the hot water out line? That would seem to make sense so that anode rod gunk etc doesn't get in your lines
The WH has a cold water diffuser pointing down and a hot water diffuser pointing up. Since "stuff" naturally wants to settle, it stays near the bottom and doesn't really get into the hot water line. But if you drain it using the low point drains, you'll suck the stuff off the bottom.

See pic. (Note - you're looking down into the WH at about a 15-30 degree angle.)
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Old 08-02-2019, 02:31 PM   #30
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Bought my 2018 HW296 in 2017 and Anode Rod already needs replacing.
Thanks to my Next door neighbor owning Camping USA in E.Bridgewater Ma a Camping supply Store, she brought one home to me. It been replaced already took me less than 10 Mins.
A waste of money! That rod is perfectly good. You have to understand, it is a "sacrificial" rod. It is meant to deteriorate. When all you have is a steel wire left, then it is time to replace it.
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Old 08-02-2019, 05:12 PM   #31
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A waste of money! That rod is perfectly good. You have to understand, it is a "sacrificial" rod. It is meant to deteriorate. When all you have is a steel wire left, then it is time to replace it.
Thats okay my new one was free.
I'll keep the old for another time.
My Neighbor told me her supplier sent her 500 of the Anode Rod, she said she'll never go through those by the end of the season so she it to me.
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Old 08-02-2019, 06:43 PM   #32
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Thats okay my new one was free.
I'll keep the old for another time.
My Neighbor told me her supplier sent her 500 of the Anode Rod, she said she'll never go through those by the end of the season so she it to me.
Well of course.... NOW you tell us it was FREE!
If I removed mine and had a new FREE one, I'd probably replace it too.
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Old 08-02-2019, 08:01 PM   #33
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Well of course.... NOW you tell us it was FREE!
If I removed mine and had a new FREE one, I'd probably replace it too.
Yep, would've been nice to know, from the beginning.
Then this thread would have only gone about 5 or 6 responses.
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Old 08-03-2019, 08:00 AM   #34
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Yep, would've been nice to know, from the beginning.
Then this thread would have only gone about 5 or 6 responses.
Nah ! minimum of 10...at least.
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Old 08-03-2019, 09:06 AM   #35
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I was doing some reading on my water heater. Suburban SW6D. Says it has a porcelain tank. Better for heat retention and won't corrode. That sounds good.
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Old 08-03-2019, 09:27 AM   #36
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You are draining your water heater through the low point drains. As 5picker said in post #19 you are also allowing the calcium and deteriorated anode rod into the water lines which will plug the faucet aerator screens and toilet flush valve.
In pop-ups and A-frames, the low point drains are an easier way to drain the hot water heater. In most cases, the drains are right next to the water heater, and should drain most of the junk out. The hot water heater is not flush against the trailer side, which means pulling the plug gets a lot of water inside the camper on the floor.

And there aren't a lot of distant fixtures, either. My A-frame has the inside sink, the outside shower, and a cold water line to the cassette potty. That's all there is.

I prefer to open the outside shower valves, and then use the low point drains to drain the water heater, knowing that my risks are a lot lower than the big TTs.

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Old 08-03-2019, 09:28 AM   #37
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It's a sacrificial metal. The electrolysis attacks it instead of the metal in the water heater tank.

You more than likely have one as I have never seen a water heater either in a residential house or a RV that didn't have one.
Just food for thought, I replaced mine after 10 years mainly because we wanted one with a petcock drain on it, when we get ready to leave the campsite it is easier to drain the water heater. Our water heater had a plug in it that required a wrench to remove.
I have an Atwood/Dometic and it does not have an anode rod.
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Old 08-08-2019, 06:51 PM   #38
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That anode rod pictured is nowhere near needing replacement. Usually 2 or 3 seasons at least.
But at approx $10 each you can replace every year if you like.
It isn't all used up until you have just a welding stick left.
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Originally Posted by Cowboy6201 View Post
Bought my 2018 HW296 in 2017 and Anode Rod already needs replacing.
Thanks to my Next door neighbor owning Camping USA in E.Bridgewater Ma a Camping supply Store, she brought one home to me. It been replaced already took me less than 10 Mins.
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Old 08-08-2019, 06:52 PM   #39
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They never eat away evenly. It always looks like acid did a job on it.
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You know mine is wearing out just like that. Instead of the rod evenly shrinking, it's deteriorating close to the threads. Oh well, at least they are cheap!
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Old 08-09-2019, 06:54 AM   #40
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Another suggestion, I am sure they recommend not using tefflon tape on the threads, it insulates the connection at the tank, suggest plumbers thread seal.
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