Do Betta Fish Need A Heater? (All You Need To Know)

Bettas are hardy fish and can live in various water parameters. However, it is necessary to provide them with adequate water parameters to ensure they thrive. Therefore, water temperature is an essential thing we should take care of and provide every fish with its ideal water temperature.

Bettas prefer warm water to thrive, but do they need a heater in their tank? Do betta fish need a heater? Let us find out.

Betta fish need a heater as they are tropical freshwater fish and prefer well-heated tanks to thrive. Adding a heater will help you provide your betta fish with adequate and stable water temperature. Consider providing your betta fish with a temperature of 78-82 °F.

This article will also discuss how to make a perfect betta tank. So, let us get into it.

Is it necessary to add a heater to my betta tank?

It is very much necessary to add a heater to your betta tank.

Bettas are tropical freshwater fish and require warm water temperatures to thrive.

Adding a heater to your betta fish tank will ensure their adequate water temperature between 78-82 °F.

Also, adding a heater will eliminate the issue of unstable water temperature.

The heater in your betta fish tank will ensure stable water temperature, preventing stress in your bettas.

It is essential to provide our betta fish with their ideal water parameters.

Betta fish living in a water temperature that is not ideal for them will make them suffer from critical issues.

So, make sure to provide your betta fish with their ideal water temperature by adding a heater to their tank.

Also read: Do Betta Fish Need A Filter?

What happens when we don’t add a heater to our betta tank?

These are the two issues your betta will face in a tank without a heater:

  1. Your betta will not be able to live in the warm water temperature that they require.
  2. Your betta will come under stress due to unstable water temperature.

Now, if you live in a place where the water temperature is between 75-80, you will not require a heater.

Also, it is only possible when the water temperature remains the same during nighttime.

However, adding a heater will ensure stable water temperature, which is necessary for your betta fish. You can always consider keeping your betta fish in a well-heated tank.

Cold water will weaken your betta fish’s immune system, and their metabolism will slow down, making them vulnerable to various diseases.

Also the same goes for hotter water temperatures. 

When you keep your betta fish in hotter water than required, their metabolism will increase, making them age faster.

So, it is wise to maintain the water temperature of your betta tank by adding a heater.

Which heater is the best for my betta tank?

There are two types of heaters present in the market:

  1. Internal heater
  2. External heater

Internal heaters are the most common heaters and also the best heater type for your betta.

These are the best heater for your betta tank:

  1. Tetra HT Submersible Aquarium Heater.
  2. Fluval M50 Submersible Aquarium Heater
  3. Hygger Aquarium Heater

There are hundreds of companies available in the market that sells aquarium heater. 

You can easily get confused and end up using the wrong heater for your betta tank.

If you cannot decide which heater to add to your betta tank, go for the above three options and choose one for your betta tank.

How can I create a perfect tank for my betta fish?

When planning to make a betta tank, you should consider all these things:

  1. A good size tank.
  2. A heater
  3. A filter
  4. Plenty of hiding spots
  5. Live aquatic plants
  6. Light

A good size tank

Betta fish live in shallow places like rice paddies, marshes, and stagnant ponds in the wild, making us believe they can live in small tanks or bowls in captivity.

However, the truth is betta fish require ample space to live and swim comfortably in captivity.

A minimum size of a 5-gallon tank is advisable for one betta fish, and it is best if you provide them with a 10-gallon.

Also read: How Many Bettas In 5-Gallon Tank?

A heater

As discussed above, the heater is necessary for your betta tank.

Adding a heater will ensure your betta tank’s stable and adequate water temperature.

Betta fish are tropical freshwater fish and require a clean and well-heated tank to thrive.

A filter

A filter is most important for your betta fish tank, and not only for your betta fish; every fish living in captivity will require a filter in their tank.

A filter helps keep the water clean and protected from harmful toxins like ammonia and nitrite.

Beneficial bacteria in the filter helps break the ammonia into nitrite into nitrate. 

Bettas are very sensitive to ammonia and can suffer from life-threatening issues if even a small amount of ammonia is present in the tank.

Adding a filter with biofilter media will help you eliminate the ammonia and nitrite in the tank and maintain them both at 0 ppm.

Make sure to add a filter with low water current as bettas will not likely be able to swim against high current flow. 

The best option for your betta tank is a sponge, hang-on-the-back, and internal filter.

Hiding spots

Consider creating plenty of hiding spots in your betta tank.

Bettas require hiding spots so that they can relax there and hide whenever they feel weak or vulnerable.

Also, when you are adding other fish to their tank, hiding spots are most for both of them.

Hiding spots prevent stress in your bettas as they know they have hiding spots to hide and relax whenever needed.

Now, plenty of options exist for creating a hiding spot for your betta fish.

You can go by adding caves, sunken ships, terra cotta pots, live aquatic plants, and other hiding spots.

However, caves and live plants are the best for creating a hiding spot.

Live aquatic plants

Adding plenty of dense plants to your betta tank will help you keep the water clean as well as mimic their natural habitat.

Also, as we discussed above, plants are good hiding spots for your bettas.

You can also go by adding floating plants to your betta tank.


When adding live aquatic plants, light is necessary for the survival and growth of plants.

Consider adding artificial light to your betta tank.

Ensure not to keep the lights on for more than 8 hours daily.

You can add a timer to your lights which will help you set the timings and duration, and the lights will automatically get on and off according to that.


Bettas are tropical fish and require warm water to thrive.

Adding a heater to their tank is necessary to ensure adequate and stable water temperature.

Consider providing your betta fish with a temperature of 78-82 °F.

Adding a heater will help you provide these water temperatures to your bettas and ensure stable water temperature.

Bettas are sensitive to unstable water temperatures and can come under stress, making them weak and vulnerable to diseases.

A heater, filter, and plenty of hiding spots are necessary for your betta tank.

Reference: Maryville College, Wikipedia

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