Breathing is not a choice

How Safe is your Evaporative Cooler Air?

It’s time to install a Zinc Sunflower Anode in your evaporative cooler pan water.

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Think Zinc product

The Sunflower Zinc Anode makes the air you breathe fresher and healthier...

...By slowly releasing zinc oxides into the cooler's water system. The Sunflower Zinc Anode prevents fungus, bacteria and algae from proliferating in the water.

Warm, stagnant water and moist pads of swamp coolers are a breeding ground for bacteria, mold, and mildew. The trapped spores from these microorganisms become airborne and inhaled when the fan is turned on. Large concentrations of these germs can overwhelm our immune system’s ability to kill the invading harmful microorganisms. They can trigger allergies, asthma attacks, headaches, nausea, dizziness, and other respiratory problems. One way to "treat" the water that lies stagnant in the pan is to install a ZINC ANODE. It will control the growth of bacteria and the corrosion in the pan and cooler parts. This prolongs the life of the pads and the pan. Bleach and tablets are a "temporary fix."

Magnesium rod anodes will not prevent the "fishy smell" or control the microorganisms. Only the Zinc Anode can do both. Is there a Zinc Anode in your "swamp cooler" at home, at work, and at school?

The Original Sunflower Anode

Does your swamp cooler need to be put on a ventilator?

The Zinc oxide crystals created by the copper cathode & Zinc Anode will attack the microorganisms including viruses, bacteria, mold, mildew and algae that lives in evaporative coolers. The ZnO crystals cut the protective membrane around the organism which is like the skin on a body, causing them to malfunction.


A Little History....

Sunflower Manufacturing was incorporated April 17, 2003, in Grand Junction, Colorado.

The technology for the Sunflower Zinc Anode was developed by Anode Systems Company of Grand Junction

The company was established by Kathy Schmoldt, a retired school teacher of 27 years. Kathy first began using, then marketing the Zinc Anode after experiencing the effects of breathing polluted air caused by evaporative coolers, better known as SWAMP COOLERS.

Hans Schmoldt, a N.A.C.E. certified Cathodic Protection Specialist, tested various shapes and alloys of zinc in evaporative coolers in the late 1980’s. Ultimately, a zinc penny strip was chosen to be the first zinc anode to be sold commercially to contractors. Early responses on its performance were our customer testimonials.

Because the Zinc Anode was not advertised, the general public was unaware of the benefits of installing this product. From that time, to the year 2000, the Zinc Anode was sold as a corrosion protection device. In 2000, the emphasis was placed on its anti-fungal property. Newspaper ads and articles were printed in the local newspapers. In 2001, TV and radio ads aired in the Grand Junction area explaining the benefits of the Zinc Anode from both a health and maintenance standpoint. Armed with this knowledge, the general public started asking for the Zinc Anodes, which prompted the Grand Junction hardware stores to begin stocking the Sunflower Zinc Anode.

Residents in the Grand Valley who use the Zinc Anode have literally taken the SWAMP out of their evaporative coolers.

The Original Sunflower Anode Features


The Original Sunflower Zinc Anode, can aide in prevention of fungus, bacteria and algae


Virtually eliminates any "Fishy" smells that originate from the cooler


Can aide in controlling mineral buildup in cooler pan

Sunflower Anode


Can extend the life of your evaporative cooler and evaporative cooler pads


Attaches to your cooler with the attached screw

Made in the USA

This product is proudly assembled in the USA

Sunflower Zinc Anode II Features


The Original Sunflower Zinc Anode, can aide in prevention of fungus, bacteria and algae


Virtually eliminates any "Fishy" smells that originate from the cooler


Can aide in controlling mineral buildup in cooler pan

Sunflower Anode


Can extend the life of your evaporative cooler and evaporative cooler pads

Easy to Use

Just lay the Sunflower 2 in the cooler pan, all done!

Made in the USA

This product is proudly assembled in the USA



The Original Sunflower Anode

Corrosion Control

  1. • Metal Coolers
  2. • Aids in Corrosion Control
  3. • Simple Screw Connection

The Sunflower Anode II


  1. • All Coolers
  2. • Anti-Fungal Properties
  3. • Just set it in your cooler pan for Zinc oxide over time

Zinc Oxide Powder


  1. • The Power of Zinc Oxide in your Cooler
  2. • Cooler Pump Safe
  3. • Pour into your cooler pan for immediate results
  4. Material Safety Data Sheet


How does the Sunflower Zinc Anode work?

The Zinc Anode is laid in the water and attached with a screw to the cooler. A weak battery between the zinc and metal is created and electrons flow from the zinc to the steel. During this electro-chemical reaction, zinc oxide is released into the water.

How does the Zinc Anode control bacteria?

Zinc oxide is an antibacterial compound that bacteria cannot digest. Zinc Oxide controls the growth of bacteria by reducing its food supply.

Is Zinc harmful?

No. Zinc Oxide is a natural anti-fungal and antibacterial ingredient used in many over-the-counter products. Dr. Scholl’s Foot Powder, Johnson’s Diaper Rash Ointment, Desitin, Zinc Lozenges, and One-A-Day Vitamins contain zinc. It is also used to protect fruit trees, grapevines, and vegetables against mildew.

Is there an anode for use in fiber-glass coolers?

Yes, please refer to: Sunflower Zinc Anode 2 on our Products page for more information. No installation, just lay it in the water pan . . . it will control the bacteria, mold, and mildew growth.

Does using bleach or tablets work the same as the Zinc Anode?

No! Bleach is a corrosive agent that causes the pan and parts of your cooler to rust. After a few hours, the bleach and chemicals "evaporate" and are not effective. These work about the same as hot tub and swimming pool chemicals. They must be added on a continuous basis.

How does the Zinc Anode control rust and corrosion?

Zinc and steel form a battery when they are connected in water. Electrons flow from the zinc to the steel because zinc is naturally more active than steel. The zinc corrodes instead of the steel.

How is the Zinc Anode installed?

The Zinc Anode is laid into the water and the wire is connected to the cabinet with a sheet metal screw.

Who is most affected by the health problems associated with evaporative coolers?

Children, the elderly, those who are taking antibiotics, patients on chemotherapy, and anyone who has a weak immune system are most affected.

Does the magnesium rod anode work the same as the Zinc Anode?

No! Magnesium does nothing to prevent the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew. Experience has shown that a magnesium rod anode does not last as long as a zinc anode.

Will changing the pads every season take care of the "bacteria problem?"

No. Bacteria multiply very rapidly and changing the pads does not stop the growth of the bacteria.

How long before the Zinc Anode is consumed?

The Zinc Anode can last up to three years or more, depending of the salinity of the water and the length of the summer season.

Is there any maintenance on the Zinc Anode?

There is no maintenance required. A "white coating" of zinc oxide on the anode can be brushed off in the spring when the cooler is put into use for another season.

Does the Zinc Anode cost more than the magnesium rod anode?

On an annual basis, the Zinc Anode is cheaper.

What if there is a "fishy smell" in the air?

You are inhaling mold spores, bacteria, and other microorganisms.

Who will install the Zinc Anode for me?

You can call Anode Systems at 970-243-4149 to have the Zinc Anode installed.

Our Team


Kathy Schmoldt


Hans Schmoldt

Corrosion Engineer

James Schmoldt

Corrosion Specialist

Abel Sanchez

Technical Support


We used to have a lot of calls about smells in the cooler air. This year, after installing 100 Sunflower anodes in the student apartments, we only had one call!

Brad Ramer

Former Colorado Mesa University Maintenance Manager

There were days when we could hardly work inside because of the fishy smell. This year, after installing the Zinc Anodes we never had a problem with the cooler air smell. They’re great!

Randy Crawford

Pyramid Printing

I endorse the Sunflower Zinc Anode because it does save money, extend cooler life, and is great for our environment. You most definitely will never find any of my personal or my rental properties without your zinc anode in the cooler. That's my Ace in the Hole.

Ed Holmes

Service Man, Bray and Co.

The Zinc Anode will extend the life of your cooler and keep your air cleaner and healthier. We will be installing this product in over 150 coolers that we service as part of our service contract plans this spring. Our customers will enjoy the cleanest and most healthy coolers in the Grand Junction area.

Bill Hayes

Owner, Service Plus

I have interviewed many couples, plumbing professionals, and maintenance men (about the Zinc Anode.) The thing that struck me the most was how much this product had helped people. I realized that this product was like no other on the market. I would advise anyone, and often do, to buy ONLY the Sunflower Zinc Anode. The benefits far outweigh the cost and no SWAMP cooler should be without one.

Jonathan James

Video Technician & Homeowner, Grand Junction

Six years ago you sold me a Sunflower Zinc Anode for my swamp cooler. My cooler was already 8 or 9 years old at the time. Even though I was taking care of it, the cooler pan was still rusting. In just the first year after installing the anode, I could see a difference. The anode kept all of the flaking and rust under control. Today, my cooler still looks the same as it did when the anode was first installed. There's been no additional deterioration.

Mark Seep

Consolidated Electric Supply

Maxine has a history of asthma attacks. Two weeks after having the anode installed, we were talking and she hadn't had to use her medication. We now know how good the anode works. We will use one from now on.

Mr. Allen

Homeowner, Palisade, CO

I am a landlord recommending the Sunflower Zinc Anode. Five years ago the coolers on the roofs were rusting badly. I went to the appliance parts store and they sold me the Zinc Anodes. They really worked. It looked like the rusting almost came to a stop.

Mr. Cizek

Landlord, Clifton, CO

We've installed 800 anodes and have not had any complaints at all about fishy smelling air in years.

Former Maintenance Supervisor, Great Homes


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