What is a sacrificial anode?

What is a sacrificial or galvanic anode and what in the world does it have to do with a swimming pool? Are you wondering this? Well, take a look at the definition according to wikipedia below.

As defined by wikipedia:

A galvanic anode is the main component of a galvanic cathodic protection (CP) system used to protect buried or submerged metal structures from corrosion.

They are made from a metal alloy with a more “active” voltage (more negative reduction potential / more positive electrochemical potential) than the metal of the structure. The difference in potential between the two metals means that the galvanic anode corrodes, so that the anode material is consumed in preference to the structure.

The loss (or sacrifice) of the anode material gives rise to the alternative name of sacrificial anode.

The definition might be a little science heavy for the lay person, but basically when you put salt in your pool it becomes a big electrolytic bath as salt water conducts (transfers) electricity much better than fresh water. Therefore, any metal in contact with the salt water will eventually get corroded by the electrolysis process. Sacrificial anodes are made of metal (usually zinc) with more negative electrochemical potential than the metals you are trying to protect so the electrons start flowing from them into water and from water into other metals.

At Bullfrog Pool Service, we highly recommend to all of our customers with salt systems to have these installed. They can save a massive amount of time, money and hassle. Give us a call if you have questions or would like us to install one of these on your pool today! Shoot us an email or comment and happy swimming!

sacrificial anode

galvanic or sacrificial anode