5 Best Turtle Tank Heaters: Unbreakable Submersible And Inline Heaters

What is the best turtle tank heater?

Different turtle breeds have different water temperature requirements. For example, the most popular pet turtle is the Red-Eared Slider. It requires a water temperature of 75-86°F.

Depending on where you live, and the variety of turtle you have, you’ll either need to warm your tank up or make sure your tank is kept in a cooler part of the house to keep the temperature down.

Turtle Tank Heaters

Aqueon Pro Adjustable Heater

  • 150 watt heater for small turtle tanks
  • Shatterproof and nearly indestructible
  • Auto Shut-Off when over-heats, resets when it cools down
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  • 150 and 300 watt heaters for up to 100 gals
  • For use with Red-Eared Sliders, African Sidenecks, Musk, Painted Turtles
  • Suction cup mounting and automatic shut-off
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Finnex Electronic Controller Aquarium Heater

  • 100 watt heaters for 10 - 20 gal tanks up to 500 watts for 120 gal
  • Titanium tube good for turtles
  • Temperature control and accurate readings
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The cheapest, easiest to use and the most common style of turtle tank heater is known as a submersible tank heater. These heaters sit completely in the tank and usually have a thermometer with them.

The most important thing when buying a submersible heater for your turtle tank is that you do not buy a glass heater. Turtles can easily break glass submersible heaters with their shells. This could easily result in the death of your turtle through electrocution.

Another style is inline tank heaters. This is an external heater that draws water out from the tank to heat it. These are generally more complicated and expensive.

We’ll be looking at 4 submersibles and one inline heater. We’ll only be recommending heaters that have been tried and tested with turtles already.

1. Aqueon Pro Water Heater For Turtles

best heater for turtle tank

This 150-watt Aqueon heater is the perfect turtle tank heater and our top pick.

It is for tanks up to 55 gallons. If you have a smaller tank you are able to choose smaller-sized and lower watt heaters from the same listing.

The biggest benefit of this heater is that is not made of glass.

Your turtle’s shell is not going to bump it, break it, and electrocute itself with a heater like this. It is “shatterproof and nearly indestructible” as the listing states. Essential for use as a turtle heater.

Features of this heater include:

  • Strong, durable, non-corrosive shell
  • Even heat transfer
  • Electronic thermostats for accurate temperatures
  • LED light power indicator (red when heating, green when temp. reached)
  • Can be used in fresh or saltwater
  • Can be placed horizontally, vertically, or diagonally
  • SUPER affordable

This heater has been rated and reviewed almost 1500 times on Amazon and has an excellent reputation.

The company selling it, Aqueon, are also known for their great service, support, and products.

2. Zoo Med Turtle Water Heater

This Zoo Med heater for turtle tanks is specially designed for use with turtles.

It features a preset thermostat that can keep up to 30 gallons of water heated to 78 Degrees (see 300w 50 gal model here). It’s perfect for red-eared sliders but double-check the water temp your turtle breed requires.

This heater also has a digital temperature display, is fully submersible, and is mounted to the side of your tank with a suction cup. The heating element is protected by hard plastic to prevent your turtle’s hard shell from breaking it.

3. Finnex Turtle Water Heater

what heater for turtle tank

Next up is the Finnex aquarium heater, made from titanium, and sure to stand up to a turtles hard shell.

However, it doesn’t look quite as nice as the previous tank heater!

This heater also comes in a range of different watts. The one I’ve linked to is best for up to 55 gallons, but you can shift between different sizes within the listing.

Features of this heater include:

  • hard titanium shell
  • heats to +/- 1-2 degrees of the set temperature
  • corrosion-resistant
  • good for either salt or freshwater tanks
  • fast heating
  • LED indicator light
  • install vertically, horizontally, or diagonally

This heater is also well worth your consideration if you would prefer the metal casing to plastic.

4. HITOP Turtle Tank Heater

turtle water heaters

The HITOP turtle water heaters are a higher quality submersible heater than cheaper brands.

This is not made of glass, but rather of PTC element, an oxide ceramic. It can’t break like glass aquarium heaters and has a longer service life expectancy.

It’s perfect for turtles being much safer than regular aquarium heaters

They have 200, 300, and 500w models depending on the size of your tank.

These are also adjustable submersible heaters that can be used with a range of turtle breeds other than red-eared sliders.

  • 200w heater is best for 50-100 gallon aquariums
  • 300w heater is best for 60-120 gallon aquariums
  • 500w turtle tank heater best for 120 gal+ tanks

5. Hydor Turtle Heater

best turtle tank heater

As the name states, the Hydor tank heater is an external water heater.

Now, this type of heater is much more complicated than a submersible, so it’s best you watch the following video to get a good idea as to how it works.

The water is drawn through the machine and pumped back in at your set temperature. There is quite the set up with tubing, etc. but it is a high-quality heater that your turtle will not be able to mess around with.

Turtle Water Heating

Let us know in the comments below which heater you like best. Have you tried any of these turtle heaters listed here?

Along with a good basking platform and appropriate heating lamps, a turtle tank water heater is one of the most important accessories you need.

Make sure you choose a reliable model with plenty of top reviews to avoid any turtle health problems.

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