17 Best Aquarium Heaters

Looking for the best aquarium heater for your fish tank?

Well, in this guide, you will find everything about aquarium heaters.

Let’s take a closer look at the top 10 list below:

Contents show

Best Aquarium Heaters 2019

HeaterHeater TypeHeater WattageMaximum Gallons
Eheim Jager Aquarium Thermostat Heater Submersible50-Watts16-gallons
Aqueon Pro Adjustable Heater
(Editor's Choice)
Submersible100-Watts30-gallons
Hydor Submersible Glass Aquarium Heater Submersible25-Watts7-gallons
FLUVAL E 300 watt Advanced Electronic Heater Submersible300-Watts100-gallons
Cobalt Aquatics Neo-Therm Heater
(Editor's Choice)
Hanging100-Watts29-gallons
Hydor In-Line External Heater In-Line200-Watts53-gallons
ISTA In-Line External Heater AQUARIUM HEATER Submersible100-Watts30-gallons
Title HereIn-Line500-Watts120-gallons
HyggeR Adjustable Submersible Aquarium Heater Submersible200-Watts40-gallons
Finnex Hang-On Electronic Controller Aquarium Heater Hanging500-Watts120-gallons

1. Eheim Jager Aquarium Thermostat Heater

 

Eheim is a well-known brand in the European market, and the Jager 50-watt represents one of eight sizes in their submersible heater series. The unit should be mounted horizontally in order to take advantage of the automatic shut-off safety features. It can be recalibrated and features an indicator light. The housing is made from shatterproof glass.

PROS

  • This heater features an automatic low water level shut-off for protection.
  • An indicator light activates when the heater is actively working.
  • This product comes with a three-year manufacturer backed guarantee on parts.

CONS

  • This unit’s body is long, which may limit its placement within the fish tank.
  • As a German import, customer service and replacement may take longer than other brands.

2. Aqueon Pro Adjustable Heater

 

 

The Aqueon Pro Adjustable Heater is our favorite choice as it offers the best balance of price, features, and functions.

The 100-Watt Pro Adjustable is one of five heater sizes available in this line from Aqueon. The plastic materials used for the heater body are designed to prevent shattering from continuous heating and cooling. A large blue knob located on the top of the unit is able to adjust the temperature settings within one degree. The indicator light operates continuously, indicating electrical power and status.

PROS

  • The manufacturer offers a limited lifetime warranty on this heater.
  • An electronic thermometer provides accurate temperature readings within one degree.

CONS

  • The plastic used near the heating element weakens the overall durability of the device.
  • The company is based in the United States, but contact and service can be hit or miss.

3. Hydor Submersible Glass Aquarium Heater

 

The Original Theo is the smallest in this heater line from Hydor. The control knob is marked in one-degree increments and can be accurately set after some adjustments. The length of the heater body is short enough to fit into tanks as small as 2.5-gallons. Its body is shatterproof and shock resistant, and an indicator light allows users to know when the heater is on.

PROS

  • This heater can be mounted horizontally or vertically within the fish tank.
  • The seven-inch length is ideal for fish tanks less than 10-gallons in size.

CONS

  • The built-in thermometer is not as sensitive as it could be for smaller tanks.
  • The control knob is sensitive and may take multiple adjustments to set properly.

4. FLUVAL E 300 watt Advanced Electronic Heater

 

This offering from Fluval is the largest of three in this line of heaters. The LCD display can read both Celcius and Fahrenheit. It provides a temperature range between 68 and 93-degrees. While the heater can be mounted in various positions, the manufacturer suggests that it should not be installed horizontally, and it comes with a five-year warranty.

PROS

  • The LCD display is clear and easy to read when the device is mounted.
  • This heater includes two temperature sensors that provide accurate readings.
  • Its design incorporates a fish guard that helps to prevent fish from making contact.

CONS

  • The user must follow the directions carefully as the set-up is complex.
  • A horizontal installation within the tank will void the manufacturer warranty.

 

5. Cobalt Aquatics Neo-Therm Aquarium Heater

 

This product comes in a very modern and sleek design with a body that is only 1/3-inch thick. A side-dial is placed near the top of the heater and multiple lights indicate the temperature settings along the dial. Thermal protection and a shatterproof covering are backed by a three-year warranty by Cobalt Aquatics.

PROS

  • The flat design can provide more mounting options and may easier to disguise.
  • This heater can be set within 0.5-degrees for a very precise temperature.
  • The Neo-Therm comes with a three-year manufacturer warranty for this product.

CONS

  • This heater’s controls are sensitive and may require multiple attempts to set.
  • The suction cups that are provided could be improved upon.

6. Hydor In-Line External Heater

 

This external device is one of three models in Hydor’s in-line series. The manufacturer recommends that the unit should be mounted in a vertical position. It can be used with freshwater or saltwater fish tanks. The PTC technology helps to safeguard against overheating the aquarium’s water.

 

PROS

  • As an in-line heater, this product will work with a wide variety of aquariums.
  • It connects to a 5/8-inch hose that should not restrict water flow.
  • The temperature settings are precise partially due to water flowing through the heater.

CONS

  • This device must be mounted to the outflow hose and might be inconveniently located.
  • Due to its location, monitoring the device can be more difficult than with other types.

 

7. Tetra HT Submersible Aquarium Heater, 100-Watts

 

This model represents one of two devices available from Tetra. The company has a well-established name within the hobby and is known for simply designed products. It has been designed to take up minimal room within the tank and can be disguised easily. The heater has been pre-set to maintain a water temperature of 78-degrees. A set of green and red lights allow the user to know when the heater is active or passive.

PROS

  • This device can be mounted in either the horizontal or vertical positions.
  • The heater is small in size which makes it easier to hide inside of the tank.

CONS

  • The temperature range on this heater is pre-set and cannot be adjusted.
  • The lack of adjustability will require closer aquarium temperature monitoring.

 

8. ISTA In-Line External Heater AQUARIUM HEATER

 

The 500-watt model is one of six sizes offered by ISTA for the North Amerian market. The product is UL listed and has been offered with US styled house plugs for the last several years. The digital readout is easy to read with red numbers and the adaptors can connect to a 5/8-inch hose. While the temperature range is accurate within 2.5-degrees, it does come at an extremely competitive price.

PROS

  • The heater comes at a low price point for the wattage rating.
  • This Asian product now comes with American-style plugs and no longer require an adaptor.

CONS

  • This external heater must be used in the vertical position.
  • The heater comes with limited information and illustrations in the directions.

 

9. Adjustable Submersible Aquarium Heater

 

This device provides a guard that keeps most fish away from the heater’s surface while allowing adequate water flow around the heating element. The quartz glass is high quality and provides protection against shattering and explosions. The LED provides a thermometer reading for the water near the device and can be used in both freshwater and saltwater aquariums. The temperature range is between 68 and 93-degrees.

PROS

  • A protective sleeve helps to keep fish away from the heater surface.
  • The LED display offers large numbers that are easy to read.
  • This heater features a shatter-proof housing that is also explosion proof.

CONS

  • The digital numbers are extremely bright and can stand-out in the fish tank.
  • The product lacks overheating protection and may require more monitoring.

 

10. Finnex Hang-On Electronic Controller Aquarium Heater

 

This hanging heater measures over 14-inches, but is only one-inch thick. The unit is made from durable metal and heats the water column quickly, with a temperature range between 70 and 92-degrees. The manufacturer offers a model with a heater guard which can protect your fish from touching the hot surface. The analog controller is easy to operate and can be placed around the tank exterior.

PROS

  • The titanium housing can heat the water column more quickly than other materials.
  • The metal body is highly durable and should last for a long time.
  • The controller is located outside of the tank, allowing a user to stay dry.

CONS

  • The temperature range varies by up to two-degrees, providing a less-accurate reading.
  • Its metal surface retains heat for a longer period of time and is not shielded.

Mylivell Aquarium Heater Submersible Auto Thermostat Heater

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: Mylivell
  • Weight: 7.4 ounces
  • Automatically adjustable temperature
  • For Saltwater and Freshwater Tanks

Right off the bat, as soon as we opened the packaging, we noticed that this heater was quite small and lightweight.

That meant that it could easily fit in most tanks, but it did make us question its sturdiness.

Instructions were enclosed in the packaging, which was great.

But the instructions hardly did anything for us. They didn’t really help at all.

Thankfully though:

The heater was not complicated to set up at all.

We also noticed that the power cord of the heater was quite small.

We do not believe the glass covering of the heater is shatterproof, so you need to be careful when using it.

As we tried working with it, we realized that the heater quickly climbed to the set temperature.

It also automatically shuts off as soon as it reaches the set temperature.

It works perfectly for medium-sized to large tanks.

This heater is unfortunately not great for plastic tanks. Try to limit its use to glass tanks only.

Thankfully enough, this heater does not overheat either, which is often a concern with many aquarium heaters.

Overall, it serves its purpose quite well.

The manufacturer also provides us with a 12-month warranty in case something goes wrong.

It is a very affordable aquarium heater, and it offers very good value for money.

 Things i really like
  • It reaches desired temperatures quickly
  • Automatically shuts off when it reaches desired temperature
  • Afforable and good value for money
 Things i don’t like
  • Instructions are unintelligible
  • The glass covering may be troublesome

ViaAqua 300-Watt Quartz Glass Submersible Heater with Built-In Thermostat

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: ViaAqua
  • Weight: 10.9 Ounces
  • Break Resistant Quartz Glass
  • Adjustable Temperature
  • Suitable for Saltwater and Freshwater

After unpacking this aquarium thermometer, we examined it for quite a while.

We realized that some features of the heater, like the temperature knob, seemed to be a little cheap and flimsy.

Other than that, the aquarium heater appeared to be quite sturdy.

Naturally, this makes us question its durability to some extent.

This thermometer needs to be fully submerged underwater to work correctly.

You can set it to any temperature within the range.

After it reaches the given temperature, it shuts off automatically.

This is indicated by the light on the heater.

This heater is also best used for medium-sized to large tanks.

Be careful, though:

One thing we noticed about this heater was that the temperature shown by the gauge was off by nearly 6 degrees.

We had to use a separate thermometer to measure the heat of the water correctly.

This could be detrimental to many kinds of fish, but it is fairly common amongst most heaters.

This aquarium heater does come with a 12-month warranty.

It is very affordable and offers good value for money.

 Things i really like
  • Automatically switches on and off when needed
  • Has a break-resistant glass
  • It is affordable and good value for money
 Things i don’t like
  • Some features seem flimsy
  • Temperature gauge on the heater is inaccurate
  • May not be very durable in the long run

25W Betta Fish Tank Heater, Smart Thermostat Submersible Small Mini Aquarium Heater

 

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: U-pick
  • Weight:5.3 ounces
  • Suitable for plastic and glass tanks
  • Suitable for freshwater and saltwater tanks
  • Anti-scalding, anti-cracking, and anti-explosion glass case

This aquarium thermometer also seemed to be quite lightweight when we first unpacked it.

The problem with that is that it felt almost flimsy.

Naturally, this made us unsure about how long it will hold up in the long run.

When we started using it though, we noticed a couple of other things.

The heater is automatic, which means that it shuts off automatically when it reaches the temperature you have set it to.

Unfortunately, much to our dismay:

There is no light indicating whether the heater is on or off.

Of course, this could be quite misleading, and you will have to keep a close eye on the heater.

The temperature gauge in the heater was also inaccurate compared to the external temperature.

We needed to use an extra thermometer to measure the temperature of the water accurately.

This aquarium heater is best used for small to medium-sized tanks.

It does come with a one year warranty so you can always contact the manufacturer if something goes awry.

Overall this aquarium heater works well.

It is very affordable and offers excellent value for money.

 Things i really like
  • Very lightweight
  • Suitable for glass and plastic small tanks
  • It is very affordable
 Things i don’t like
  • Seems almost flimsy
  • There is no light indicating if the heater is on or off

Orlushy Submersible Aquarium Heater

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: Orlushy
  • Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Explosion-proof thickened quartz glass
  • Automatic safety shut-off and overheating protection features
  • Suitable for freshwater and saltwater tanks

When we first unpacked this aquarium heater, we were pleased to notice that it seemed quite sturdy.

We assumed that meant it was going to be durable.

The design of the heater is also quite sleek, so it looks quite fashionable in the tank .s

When we started using it, we noticed a couple of things.

This is an automatic aquarium heater, which means that it shuts off automatically when it reaches the desired temperature.

Once again:

The light that is supposed to indicate this is not reliable at all.

We noticed that the light keeps going on and off for no apparent reason, even when the temperature is not up to the mark.

There is really no explanation for this anywhere either.

The temperature gauge is also unreliable because of the outside environment.

We keep a separate thermometer to measure the temperature of the water when this heater is on.

The heating on this heater is also somewhat tricky to control at times.

This heater works best for medium-sized to large tanks.

Overall it serves its purpose and we are happy with that.

It is quite affordable as well and offers good value for money.

 Things i really like
  • It is quite sturdy
  • It offers good value for money
 Things i don’t like
  • The light on it is unreliable
  • It is often difficult to control the heating
  • The temperature gauge is inaccurate

Uniclife Submersible Aquarium Heater with Thermometer and Suction Cup Gallon

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: Uniclife
  • Weight: 8.2 ounces
  • Explosion proof thick quartz glass
  • Peel and stick thermometer
  • Adjustable temperature from 61-90 degrees Fahrenheit

When we first held this aquarium heater and played with it for a bit without switching it on, we noticed it was excellent quality.

It seemed to be really sturdy, so we hope that means it is durable as well.

It works best for smaller tanks.

When we switched it on we noticed that it has an automatic heating feature as well.

It switches off when the desired temperature is reached.

The temperature gauge is inaccurate, like most other aquarium heaters.

The sticking thermometer that comes with it is not up to mark either, and you are better off using a different thermometer to check the temperature.

Another thing we noticed was that the temperature in this aquarium heater also fluctuated a bit, so there was no even heating.

One feature was more like a double-edged sword:

 This feature was the temperature dial.

The dial is quite sturdy and difficult to move.

While we see how this is an inconvenience, there is some positivity to this dial as well.

Its sturdiness means that the temperature won’t change when the fish bump into it.

Overall this aquarium heater works very well, and we are satisfied with it.

It is also quite affordable and offers good value for money.

 

 Things i really like
  • The temperature knob is sturdy
  • It is quite sturdy
  • It seems to be durable
  • It is affordable and offers good value for money
 Things i don’t like
  • The temperature in the temperature gauge is inaccurate
  • The temperature tends to fluctuate

NICREW Submersible Aquarium Heater

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: NICREW
  • Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Temperature can be adjusted from 68-94 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Heater shuts off when not fully submerged
  • External controller

This aquarium heater is quite small.

We did notice that it was bulky in spite of the small size.

The bulkiness makes us question its appearance in the tank, but it is quite sturdy nevertheless.

It is also good quality, so we are hoping it is durable as well.

This heater comes with instructions, but for the most part, these instructions are not easy to decipher.

You don’t need the instructions though you can easily figure out the heater on your own.

When we started using this heater, we noticed that it also has automatic features.

It shuts off as soon as it reaches the required temperature.

The temperature gauge is inaccurate, so you need a different thermometer to measure the temperature of the water.

The heating is also not even in the tank as the temperature fluctuates.

It has some excellent features, though.

For example:

The display on the heater shows the current water temperature and the temperature that is set.

The heater also shuts off automatically if it is not fully submerged, preventing damage from running dry.

One problem, however, is that there are holes at the bottom of the heater.

Small fish can get harmed by the heat in these holes if they get too close.

 To get rid of this issue:

You can easily drape some netting around the hole to prevent the fish from getting to close.

This aquarium heater is best used for medium-sized to large tanks.

It is slightly expensive, but for the extra features and good quality, it offers very good value for money.

 

 Things i really like
  • You can control the water temperature externally
  • It automatically shuts off when it is not fully submerged
  • It seems to be sturdy and of good quality
  • It offers good value for money
 Things i don’t like
  • The temperature is inaccurate and tends to fluctutate
  • The instructions that come with it are not very good
  • The hole at the bottom could trap small fish

BKTC 50W Aquarium Heater 

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: BKTC
  • Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Shatter-proof, corrosion-resistant, and wear-resistant heater
  • Thermal safety for the fish is also included
  • Temperature ranges from 65 F to 95 F

On first impression, this aquarium heater seems to be quite sturdy and good quality.

We can mostly vouch for its durability as well.

It does not come with any instructions, but it is not very difficult to set up.

When we started using it, we did notice that it was automatic.

The unit shuts off when the set temperature is reached.

The light on the unit indicates this change reasonably well too.

There is no thermometer included with the heater as well.

However, the display does show the current temperature and the desired temperature.It is best used for small to medium-sized tanks.

The problem, however, is:

 It may be too large for even some of the smaller tanks.

Making it stand vertical may not be possible, so you will have to find other positions to make it work.

Overall though, this heater provides its services quite well.

It is quite affordable, and it does offer great value for money.

 Things i really like
  • Automatically shuts off when it reaches the set temperature
  • It is quite sturdy
  • Affordable and great value for money
 Things i don’t like
  • It can prove to be quite powerful for smaller tanks
  • No instructions are included

Inkbird Digital Outlet Heat Temperature Controller with Day Night Control for Brewing

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: Inkbird
  • Weight: 14.6 ounces
  • Centigrade and Fahrenheit readings
  • Alarms for temperature calibrations, over-heating, and sensor fault.
  • 50°C to 99°C range

When we opened this product, we realized that it is an aquarium heater controller and not a heater.

This means that it adds several features to your existing heater and controls it.

It works with any heater using a plug-and-play method.

It can also run multiple heaters, provided that they are in the same tank.

One point of dismay:

This aquarium heater controller is a little complicated to set up.

It could take you a while to wrap your head around all of the extra features.

And there are quite a lot of features!

However, we did have it figured out for the most part.

The accuracy of the temperature control of this controller is within one degree.

We measured it ourselves.

And it is quite a high degree of accuracy.

You can control the heater from outside the tank easily.

This heater controller is on the slightly pricey side.

Since you have to use it in conjunction with one or more heaters, it takes the price even higher.

However, because it can save your fish and make the task more convenient for you, we believe it is a good value for money.

 Things i really like
  • It is quite accurate with temperature readings
  • You can attach more than one heater to it
 Things i don’t like
  • It is complicated to set up
  • Some features are difficult to figure out
  • It is quite expensive

Uniclife HT-6050 Aquarium Heater Submersible with Thermometer

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: Uniclife
  • Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Temperature ranges from 68°F to 93°F
  • Explosion proof, thick quartz glass
  • Includes a stick-on thermometer

This aquarium heater seems to be fairly sturdy and high quality on first impression.

It does not come with any instructions to set up or use it.

The heater, like most others, automatically shuts off when it reaches the desired temperature.

The light on the unit indicates whether it is on or off.

The thermostat and gauge are both inaccurate compared to the outside environment.

So you need to keep an eye on the temperature of the water using a separate thermometer.

This aquarium heater takes around half a day to reach its set temperature, which gives the fish plenty of time to get used to the rising temperature.

It is best used for small to medium-sized tanks.

One minor setback:

This heater is not entirely waterproof.

If you are not careful with placing it and monitoring it, water can creep up inside the heater.

Naturally, this makes us question its durability as a whole.

It does need to be fully submerged to work accurately as well so you cannot keep the delicate parts dry either.

This unit does work well for the most part and does its job correctly.

Overall this aquarium heater is quite affordable and offers excellent value for money.

 Things i really like
  • Automatically shuts off when it reaches the desired temperature
  • It is quite affordable
 Things i don’t like
  • No instructions are included in the packaging
  • Incorrect thermostat and thermometer
  • The heater is not entirely waterproof

U-pick Aquarium Heater with Extra Thermometer

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: U-pick
  • Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Shatter-proof, blast-proof, and shock-resistant, thick quartz glass
  • 68°F to 94°F temperature range

This aquarium heater seems to be quite flimsy on first impression.

It is not very sturdy, so we are questioning its durability in the long run.

Its performance, however, is a different story altogether.

Like most other heaters, this one is also automatic and shuts off when the desired temperature is reached.

Surprisingly enough:

 The temperature shown on the temperature gauge is entirely accurate.

It shows the temperature within one to two degrees of the outside environment.

The temperature does fluctuate fairly often, though.

This heater reaches the set temperature quite quickly as well, so you might want to give your fish some time to get used to it.

Even though this heater is said to be suitable for medium-sized tanks, we believe that it can heat up medium tanks far too much.

This holds true for even the lowest setting.

This could make it difficult for the fish to survive if not appropriately monitored.

The heater is quite easy to use, though.

It also serves its purpose reasonably well too.

It is slightly on the pricier side, but we believe that this heater is a good value for money.

 Things i really like
  • Automatically shuts off when desired temperature is reached
  • Temperature shows in quite accurate
  • Quickly reaches desired temp
 Things i don’t like
  • The temperature in the tank tends to fluctuate
  • It can overheat the water for medium sized tanks
  • Doesn’t seem to be too sturdy

U-pick Aquarium Heater with Extra Thermometer

 

 Key Facts
  • Manufacturer: U-pick
  • Weight: 11 ounces
  • Comes with an extra thermometer for the best accuracy
  • 68°F to 94°F temperature range
  • Protective casing prevents pets from getting scalded

On the initial examination, this aquarium heater also seemed to be quite flimsy.

The lack of quality and sturdiness did make us question its durability.

This aquarium heater is an upgrade of the previous version that we mentioned.

When we began using it, we noticed that it is automatic.

The unit shuts off when the desired temperature is reached.

There is a reliable light that indicated this change as well.

Like most other heaters, this one also has an inaccurate temperature gauge.

However, they finally did combat this issue:

This heater comes with an extra thermometer.

This extra thermometer is highly accurate and helps you measure the correct temperature relevant to the outside environment.

The heater is quite easy to use and uncomplicated to work with as well.

It is best suited for medium-sized to large tanks.

Overheating is also not a notable problem with this version of the heater.

This aquarium heater serves its purpose very well, and we are satisfied with it.

It is fairly affordable, though, even if it is a little more expensive than many other heaters.

We do believe that it offers excellent value for money, though.

 Things i really like
  • It is useful for all tank sizes
  • It is quite easy to use
  • It automatically shuts off when the desired temperature is reached
  • The extra thermometer makes the temperature reading quite accurate
 Things i don’t like
  • Seems to be a little bit flimsy
  • Does not seem to be very durable

Buyer’s Guide: 20 Common Aquarium Heater Questions

Do You Really Need an Aquarium Heater?

Many people who have fish in their house don’t keep aquarium heaters.

Not everyone needs an aquarium heater if we are being honest.

But some reasons warrant that you use an aquarium thermometer.

For example, if you live in an area with a generally cold climate, your fish tank will be the same temperature as the outside environment.

Not all types of house fish can survive in such a cold climate.

Other than that, aquarium heaters are also great for winters.

Some fish like Betta need exceptionally warm surroundings to flourish.

Many other tropical fish have the same demands.

There are yet more reasons why you should have an aquarium heater in your fish tank.

Warm water will prevent your fish from getting sick.

Sometimes you will notice that your fish immediately becomes more upbeat when you switch the heater on.

Many fish will also prefer to stay close to the heater since that is where they will feel the most comfortable!

The fish that prefer warm water also releases “happy bubbles” when the environment is to their liking.

Other than all of this, aquarium heaters also help in breeding fish.

Many types of fish need a specific temperature to spawn.

Naturally, that is where your aquarium heater steps in.

This is why aquarium heaters are highly useful.

In fact, an aquarium heater is one such piece of equipment that will help separate a good fish owner to a lousy fish owner.

In case you need to be convinced further:

An aquarium heater hardly costs much, especially if it is for domestic use.

Most of these heaters have automatic features that prevent the water from overheating.

Many heaters also come with other extra features that make your fish as happy as can be.

Clearly, you won’t even have to fret about maintenance all that much.

So why not invest in it and let your fish live long and happy?

We have a list of incredible aquarium heaters, and any one of them might be useful to you.

Understanding a bit about the equipment used to heat a fish tank is important when deciding what the best aquarium heaters are for your tank.

1. What Are Aquarium Heaters Made Out Of?

Many heaters are made from glass tubing, with some being filled with sand. Other styles can be made of a combination of metals and plastics. There are also aquarium heaters that consist of metal cables covered in a rubber sheath.

2. What Types Of Aquarium Heaters Are There?

Cable Heating System: With this type of heater, a cable is placed under the substrate and is connected to a controller. Aquarium enthusiasts who keep plants in freshwater tanks use these as they help to eliminate dead spots.

Hanging Heaters: This type of device can be used for basic heating requirements. They are only partially submerged and are not as efficient as a fully submerged unit.

In-Line Heaters: These units are located outside of the fish tank. Some devices will connect to the filter hose. Other in-line heaters are positioned in the aquarium filter itself.

Submerged Heaters: Submersible heaters are placed in the aquarium. They are often attached to the tank wall by suction cups.

3. How Does A Submersible Aquarium Heater Work?

A submersible heater is a device that contains a heating element that radiates heat through the housing to heat the surrounding water. A thermometer on the device detects the water temperature and turns the heating element on and off to achieve the proper temperature. Most devices use a controller to set the desired temperature range.

4. Can You Shield Fish From Direct Contact With Heaters?

Yes, you can. Many submersible heaters come with a shield or guard. This add-on helps to prevent fish from touching the glass tube or heater body. It is also designed to allow proper water flow around the heater.

Many manufacturers highlight this safety feature on their products, and they can be purchased separately for heaters that do not have a guard.

5. Can You Use Heating Mats To Heat An Aquarium?

Some aquarium keepers have used heating mats to help to heat their tanks. The mat is placed below the tank. This type of heating is not very accurate or efficient. The aquarium glass and plastics conduct heat poorly. Also, the added layer of substrate cuts into a mats ability to heat the water column.

6. How Does An Undergravel Heater Work?

An under gravel heater uses a cable or cord to heat the water column. The cable is placed under the substrate, spaced evenly to provide the best coverage. The cable is connected to a controller that monitors water temperature and sets the desired temperature range. They are often used in planted freshwater tanks as well as aquariums capable of holding large volumes of water.

7. Can You Use A Cable Heater In A Saltwater Tank?

A cable heater should not be used in saltwater aquariums. If the cable ever needs service or requires replacement, it must be pulled from under the substrate. This will destroy saltwater plants and reefs that have been established in the tank.

8. What Style Is The Best Saltwater Aquarium Heater?

Many fish keepers feel that submersible heaters are the best type of heaters to use with saltwater tanks. They are easier to access than cable heaters are. These heaters require less maintenance and monitoring than hanging heaters. A submersible heater is more mobile and can be placed nearly anywhere within the water column.

9. What Is The Best Small Aquarium Heater?

Many submersible heaters are available for fish tanks that are 10-gallons or less in size. A major feature to look for is size. Small tanks are limited in room, and regularly sized aquarium heaters may take up too much space. Another consideration should be wattage, which determines how many gallons of water the heater can effectively warm up without being overworked.

10. How Are Aquarium Heaters Measured For Power?

All devices used to heat the water column in a fish tank are rated by their wattage. The wattage determines how much energy the heating element can generate. Higher wattage ratings will heat a fish tank more quickly. The higher rating will also heat larger volumes of water.

Manufacturers will list the wattage of the device on the product package or in its online description. They will also indicate a general range of tank size, in gallons, that the heater should be paired with.

11. Does Room Temperature Influence Heater Requirements?

Yes, it does. Cooler rooms will require that the aquarium heater operate more often and for longer periods of time. Conversely, a room with a warmer average temperature will need the aquarium heater to work less. The average room temperature is factored in when determining the wattage requirements for a fish tank.

12. Is There A Formula That Can Be Used To Determine The Wattage Needed?

Most hobbyists calculate that each gallon of water will require between 2.5 and 5-watts of power. There are many calculators and charts available online that can help determine the wattage as well. These systems take the average room temperature and subtract it from the temperature that you desire the aquarium to maintain. They will then determine the required wattage based on this difference and the tank size.

Many fish keepers, especially novices, will use the product’s listed rating. If a heater is near the limits of its power, it is always advisable to step up to the next wattage size.

13. Why Do Some Tanks Use More Than One Heater?

On larger tanks, aquarium owners will often use two smaller heaters instead of one large heater. Using multiple devices allows them to heat the water column evenly and more quickly. Also, the extra heaters can prevent the water from becoming too cool should one of the devices break down.

14. Do all fish require heated water?

Some fish are capable of surviving in cooler water, and there are species that actually require lower temperatures in order to thrive. Before purchasing a heater, you will want to determine what type of fish you plan to keep. Researching the different species will determine water temperature requirements. Many popular tropical fish species prefer water that ranges between 76 and 80-degrees Fahrenheit.

15. How Long Should A heater Be left On?

Aquarium heaters are designed to be left on continuously once they are plugged in. The unit is equipped with a thermometer that monitors the water’s temperature. When the water dips below the set range the heating element is activated. Once the water reaches the set range the element is turned off.

16. How Can You Tell When A heater Is On?

Most aquarium heaters feature lights that come on and off depending upon the heater’s current status. Some indicators make use of colored LEDs to indicate the unit’s activity. Some basic designs do not have indicators but require the user to observe the element itself to determine what state the heater is currently in.

17. Is It Dangerous To Use A High Wattage Heater On A Small Fish Tank?

It is possible to use a heater designed for larger tanks on a smaller aquarium. There is, however, a potential danger in doing so. There is a chance that the larger heater may overheat the water, which can be deadly for the fish.

18. How Do You Adjust The Temperature On An Aquarium Heater?

Most heaters will come with a knob or control box that allows the user to adjust the output of the heating element. Some units provide a simple control with no markings while others list temperature increments. There are basic models that cannot be adjusted but are set at a predetermined range.

19. What Is The Best Location For A Submersible Heater?

These devices should be placed along the back of the tank, near the water flow generated by the aquarium filter. This prevents them from blocking the view and helps to circulate the heated water evenly and quickly.

20. How Do You Monitor The Temperature In The Aquarium?

A separate thermometer is placed in the tank at a location that allows you to observe temperature readings. In larger tanks, multiple thermometers can be placed to keep tabs on the water column. These devices should be placed far enough away from the heater that it will not cause false readings.

What to Look for When Buying an Aquarium Heater?

Affordability:

When buying an aquarium heater, you need to, of course, set a budget.

Now:

Aquarium heaters don’t exactly cost a lot generally.

You can get a fairly sturdy one that lasts a while for a very reasonable price.

This is why it is in your best interests to get a good one on your first try.

Don’t get testy with cheaper brands since they can prove to be quite fickle.

Of course, there is a vast difference in price between heaters used for domestic purposes, and those used industrially.

But you’re looking for a high-quality domestic one, and you can easily find one for a couple of bucks.

Power

Aquarium heaters come in a vast range of power ratings.

On average, an aquarium heater can go from 25W to 300W easily.

Naturally, the higher the power rating, the larger the tank the heater can power.

Most aquarium heater brands have multiple options in their heaters so that they can power a wide range of tank sizes.

They offer a size chart as well, showing you how large a tank one can power.

In case you don’t know the capacity of your tank, you should measure it before you go looking for an aquarium heater.

If you buy a high wattage heater for a small tank, it will overheat the tank even at the lowest setting.

If you buy a low wattage heater for a large tank, it will never be able to heat up the tank on its own evenly.

The material of the tank it is used for

You should know that not all types of heaters are used for all kinds of tanks.

Most heaters in the market are used explicitly for glass tanks and aquariums.

If you have a plastic tank, you have limited your options of an aquarium heater by a large margin.

This is because:

The heat from the aquarium heater can distort or melt the plastic walls of the aquarium heater.

This is why you need to look for a heater that offers protection from plastic distortion.

Other than that, you can also place protection around the walls of your plastic aquarium to prevent it from losing its shape.

This goes for any tank material other than glass.

Always know if the heater you are planning to buy will work for your tank or not.

Temperature Range

Every aquarium heater available in the market has a specific temperature range.

Every fish you can keep in your house also thrives in a specific temperature range.

So make sure that the aquarium heater you buy covers that specific temperature range.

Check whether it is Submersible

Most aquarium heaters available in the market need to be fully submerged in the water to work perfectly.

Now, if you have an aquarium or a tank that is too small height-wise, the heater will not be able to work properly.

So keep in mind the height of your tank and the dimensions of the thermometer when you are buying one.

 Otherwise:

You can look for an aquarium heater that does not need to be fully submerged to work properly.

Of course, you can also lay it flat on the aquarium floor or at an angle to make it work properly.

Extra Features

Many aquarium heaters come with additional features as well.

These include extra thermometers, external controllers, adjustable knobs, etc.

You can pick out an aquarium heater based on these external features if any of them suit your needs.

 Tips on Using an Aquarium Heater

  • First and foremost, you need to keep in mind that the thermostat temperature on the heater is nearly always different from the room temperature.This temperature depends on the temperature in the outside environment.
    This is why you always need a separate thermometer to monitor the water temperature carefully, so it doesn’t go overboard.
  • Always check for dangerous openings on the heater.These openings can trap small fish and prove to be fatal to them.
    If you find any such openings, try to seal them before you place the heater in the tank.
  • Try to increase the temperature in your fish tank gradually.Your fish can run the risk of getting shocked or falling sick if you immediately increase the water’s temperature.So get them used to a small increase every day before you bring them to the desired temperature.
  • If you find that the aquarium thermometer does not fully submerge vertically in your tank, you can try placing it horizontally or at an angle.Of course, do not try this if the manufacturer has specified that the heater should stand vertically.
  • Also, keep in mind that your heater should be fully submerged in the water at all times.
    If the heater runs dry, it can get damaged.It can also get damaged if it runs when partially underwater.Some aquarium heaters have sensors that ring alarms or flashlights when this happens.
    But if your heater does not have this feature, then you should keep a keen eye on it at all times.

Related Questions

How do I Place my Aquarium Heater? You should place your aquarium heater near the flow of the water to provide more even heating throughout the aquarium.

Also, make sure you place it in a way that it does not interfere with your fish.

An average heater could run the risk of scalding your fish if they bump into it too much.

Can I use Multiple Heaters for One Tank? If you have a huge fish tank and even the highest power of a heater does not work on it, you can use two heaters.

In this situation, one heater can also provide uneven heating in the tank.

Other than that, you can also use two heaters in your fish tank if you live in a frigid climate and are owners of tropical fish.

Do I Need an Aquarium Controller? An aquarium controller is a highly beneficial option to have for your aquarium heater.

One aquarium controller can also make multiple heaters work at one time, provided they are in the same tank, of course.

It provides external control of the tank, which prevents you from fiddling with the heater underwater.

The controller also shows the accurate temperature of the water that the fish are in.

In conclusion:

Even though it is not an absolute necessity, but it could end up being highly beneficial in the long run.

How Often Should I Check my Heater? It goes without saying that you should check your heater every time you feel something is off with it.

It is always better to be safe than sorry!

Other than that, you should keep a close eye on it for the first few weeks.

Make sure your fish are adapting well to it and that it isn’t malfunctioning in any way.

Otherwise, it should be individually

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