Does Your Swimming Pool Need a Sacrificial Anode?

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Sacrificial anodes are mostly associated with vessels with metal parts that come into contact with salt water. They are metals, usually zinc, aluminium, or magnesium, which protect other metal parts from galvanic corrosion. Sacrificial anodes are usually less-noble, and this causes them to corrode faster in water and protect vital components. They are not just meant for use in boats. These metals can also be useful in your pool.

Swimming pools are water masses that have metal parts therein. Without sacrificial anodes, the metal components in the pool become susceptible to corrosion. If you have never installed an anode in your pool, read on to understand why it is important and how you can purchase it.

Why do you need a sacrificial anode?

One may argue that anode rods are only important where metals come into contact with salt water. Since most pools contain fresh water, you may assume that your metal parts are safe. However, this is not true. You regularly use salts and chemicals that contain chlorine and other compounds to keep your pool water clean and safe. These chemicals increase the salt content in the water, and salt, in turn, increases the conductivity of the water.

Your pool has different metals such as steel, aluminium, copper, and many others that act as anodes and cathodes. When the water's conductivity is increased, current is generated, and it causes the anodes to react. As a result, the metals are exposed to galvanic corrosion. When you have a sacrificial anode, it reacts and wears away, protecting the other vital metals from corrosion.

Which anode rod should you choose?

As aforementioned, aluminium, zinc, and magnesium are the common metals used as a sacrificial anode. All metals are effective, but their cost and degree of efficiency vary. Magnesium anodes are the most expensive of the three, while aluminium anodes are the cheapest.

Zinc tends to develop an oxide layer on the surface, which can prevent it from working. Therefore, you need to check on it regularly; if it is not wearing away, it has already oxidized and should be removed. As a result, magnesium and aluminium are more reliable metals for use as anodes.

Where should you install anode rods?

Sacrificial anodes can be installed in various parts of your pool to prevent metal corrosion. These include in the plumbing installation, in the skimmer baskets, on the pool ladder, and in other places. Using multiple anodes around places with metal components can help prevent localized corrosion in the pool. All you need is to ensure that you replace the anodes at least once every two or so years, as they will have worn away by then.

If your swimming pool doesn't have a sacrificial anode, get one today to protect your metal components from galvanic corrosion.