from the blog

Types of Aquarium Heaters

Care and maintenance

September 26, 2020

Hang-on heater

One of the most important pieces of equipment you need for either a saltwater or freshwater tank is a heater. In order to keep your aquarium fish happy and healthy, you need to be able to keep the water temperature in your tank stable. Though most aquarium fish can tolerate minor fluctuations in temperature, sudden or recurrent changes in water temperature can be harmful for fish. In order to keep your tank temperature within the desired range, it is recommended that you install an aquarium heater. There are several different types of aquarium heaters to choose from – keep reading to learn more about them.

Hang-On Heaters

This type of heater is the most basic model and it consists of a glass-encased heating element that can be hung on the back of the tank. These heaters sit vertically in the tank so that heat is dispersed at all levels of the tank – the drawback, however, is that it may not distribute heat evenly from one side of the tank to the other. Most hang-on heaters allow you to control the temperature setting by twisting a knob or setting a dial. Some models also feature a small red light that comes on when the heater is working. Because they have a limited capacity to distribute heat, hang-on heaters are best for small tanks but they can be used in either freshwater or saltwater applications.

Submersible Heaters

Submersible aquarium heaters are one of the most effective types of aquarium heater because they can be submerged directly in the tank. Rather than hanging vertically off the back of the tank, submersible heaters can be installed horizontally along the back wall a few inches up from the bottom of the tank. This position ensures that the heat will be distributed across a wider area of the tank and the water near the bottom of the tank will be kept warm which is often a problem in tanks using hang-on heaters. These heaters can be used for both saltwater and freshwater tanks and they come in a variety of sizes so they can be used in almost any tank.

In-Line Heaters

An inline heater is perhaps the most efficient way to heat your tank water. This type of heater can be attached to your tank filter so that it heats the water as it is pumped in and returns warmed water to the tank. This method is much more efficient than using a heating coil to warm the water in a particular area of the tank. In-line heaters are most commonly installed in sump systems for saltwater tanks, but they can also be used in freshwater tanks of almost any size.

Aquarium Heating Tips

The ideal temperature range for an aquarium depends not only on the type of aquarium but also on the type of fish you plan to stock. The general range acceptable for aquariums is between 76° and 80°F. Keep in mind that some species prefer cooler temperatures and some prefer warmer temperatures – it is always a good idea to research the type of fish you plan to keep before you buy them so you can cater to the conditions in your tank to meet the need of the fish.

Water movement is also a key element in maintaining a stable aquarium water temperature. If you are using a hang-on heater, it is important that the water in your tank is properly circulated so the temperature is even in all parts of the tank. Ensuring proper water movement will also help to keep the parameters of your tank water within the proper ranges which will benefit your fish as well. Another important factor in keeping your fish healthy is maintaining high water quality. To do so, consider installing an EcoBio-Stone in your tank. EcoBio-Block products are designed to boost the biological filtration in your tank by adding live beneficial bacteria. After introducing one of these products into your tank, the beneficial bacteria will rapidly multiply, working to remove toxins and to maintain the nitrogen cycle.