|Photo Originally uploaded by Olya|
Hydor MINI HEATER Aquarium Heater 7.5 Watts for Tanks 2-5 gal is a small mini heating pad type of device that you can add to a Betta bowl or small aquarium. The good things: Its small, and doesn't take up much room in the aquarium. It's completely submersible, and can even be hidden under the gravel or rocks at the bottom of the bowl. It has a low price tag at under $10.00. The bad things: There is no thermostat, making it impossible to control the temperature. The heater is supposed to be factory preset to 78 degrees farenheit If it gets too hot, you must simply unplug the heater and take it out of the tank. You will have to monitor the situation in your fish tank closely with this mini heater. Bottom line: I don't recommend this heater after trying it out in a tank that is 5 gallons.
Hydor also makes this model: HYDOR 15W MINI SUBMERS HEATER which I would avoid as well. The higher wattage just means that your fish will boil faster. No thermostat on this model either, which means, no way to control the temperature in your tank.
Elite A730 Mini Thermostatic Heater 25 Watt 6in is not submersible, making it very important that you maintain your water line in your aquarium so the heater does not crack. It does have a thermostat, but keep in mind, water level will be very important with this heater meaning more maintenance. I also noticed this model has a very short power cord, making it inconvenient if your tank or bowl is located more than 3 feet away from a power outlet. It keeps the tank consistently warm, and has a pretty good price tag, but watch out if you need a lower water level for some reason, like in a breeding tank.
|Photo uploaded by Daniella Vereeken|
The Shatterproof Mini Heater 10Watt From Marine Land is another product that is supposed to be factory preset to 78 degrees. In my quest to find the best mini heaters, I found that this one actually pushed my 5 gallon Betta tank over 95 degrees. Luckily I had moved the inhabitant to another tank while I tested these heaters so no damage was done. I would avoid the Marine Land mini heater line. It might do well in a 10 gallon tank, but with no way to stop the heating, and no thermostat, it would even be a stretch there too.
My picks for the two best heaters for small bowls and tanks: Hydor THEO Submersible Aquarium Heater 50W UL and Hagen Mini Submersible Heater 25 WattWatt. Both are small enough to fit into even a 1.5 gallon aquarium or flat sided bowl. They are unobtrusive, and easy to hide behind plants or other decor. They both have thermostats and I found that both held my tanks at a consistent 78 degrees Fahrenheit. Also they are both fully submersible, making it easy to use them for breeding tanks. Both are reasonably priced at under $20.00, so you won't go broke keeping your Betta warm. Follow the manufacturers instructions and adjust your thermostat and you won't be sorry you purchased either of these mini heaters.
Remember, a happy Betta fish is a warm Betta fish.