The foundation of Suburban’s RV water heaters is porcelain-lined steel. Therefore, anode rods are included with each of these water heaters to safeguard the lining.
How does it function?
Corrosion happens when ions in a metal travel from one specific location to another when exposed to an electrolyte media that permits ion movement. The metal releases electrons into a solution with dissolved salts and minerals as part of the electrolysis process, in this example water in the case of a water heater. The metal corrodes if this process is left unattended. The anode and cathode of a metal are the parts that emit and accept negative electrons, respectively, when the metal corrodes.
To stop this reaction from occurring to one metal, we may substitute a more reactive metal for it (your tank). Negative electrons from any metals that are more reactive than iron will initially enter the water if they are present. Corrosion won’t happen on the metal you’re safeguarding as a consequence. In essence, you switch out the metal you are shielding for one that is more reactive, and the more reactive metal then functions as the anode.
MAGNESIUM VS. ALUMINUM
The anode rod ultimately has to be replaced since it no longer serves its role of corroding the tank. When it comes to changing your anode rod, magnesium and aluminium are your two primary choices.
Since magnesium is the more reactive of the two, it is often thought to provide the highest level of defence. However, if the local water is very hard, a magnesium rod might become too reactive. You may have to change it pretty regularly in this situation (within a year or two). Aluminium rods are thus often used in areas with hard water. If you want to utilise an RV water softener, however, you should use magnesium rods.
Aluminum anode rods may be useful if there is sulfur-rich water present. Water with a high sulphur content has a stench akin to rotten eggs. Sulfur odours may be eliminated by aluminium rods by interacting with them.