Do Betta Fish Need Water Conditioner?

Do Betta Fish Need Water Conditioner?

my betta fish tank

Not all water are the same. It is imperative that you have the proper water chemistry in order to make sure that you have a healthy Betta Fish in your tank.

Some important facts about the water chemistry before answer the questions what kind of water that is most suitable for your Betta Fish.

Water Chemistry

Water pH

The ideal pH for the Betta Fish is around 7.0 which is “Neutral”. Most tap water here in the US or Canada ranges between 6.5 to 7.5 which is safe for a Betta Fish. pH levels are a measure on the acidity and alkalinity of the water.

pH ranges from 0 which is very acidic and 14 which is alkaline. Fishes thrives around ph 7.0, but Betta Fishes can still survive if it is slightly acidic. You have to keep the pH level consistent to have a healthy Betta Fish by 25% regular water changes weekly adding fresh tap water.

You can also simply top up tap water when some the Betta Fish Tank water evaporates.

pH test strips maybe important if you have several Betta Fish tanks that you are maintaining. But of course water chemistry is more than just pH tests.

Good news is that your Betta Fish can adapt a wide pH range. It should be important to use the same water source which the Betta Fish is acclimated to it.

Ideal Water Parameters For Betta Fish

What are the ideal water parameters for a life sustaining Betta Fish?

pH 7 7.5 8.0 8.5
Nitrite 0.5 1.0
Nitrate 20 40 80
GH 30 60 120
KH 40 80 120 180
Ammonia 0.025

What is Nitrite?

Where do the Nitrate come from? It comes from Betta Fish waste, uneaten food and plants in the fish tank. When the Betta Fish releases ammonia waste, the bacteria will convert it into Nitrite which is dangerous. That’s why it is important to have an efficient filtration system in your Betta Tank to make sure that it breaks down into harmless components.

What is Nitrate?

This is not overly dangerous to your Betta Fish Tank. This is produced when the bacteria convert the Nitrite on the fish waste or uneaten food. It is great news if you have plants or algae which consumes Nitrate as food. If you do not have regular water changes in your aquarium then there will be an excessive Nitrate build up which may harm your Betta Fish in case your Betta Fish Tank do not have live plants.

What is GH?

It simply means it is water hardness. It is the measure of salts dissolved in your Betta Fish Tank. It is the measurements of magnesium and calcium in your Betta Fish tank. Some aquarists say that if there is not much GH then the water is soft. If there are too much GH then it is hard water. Good thing the table above shows that your Betta Fish can accept a wide range of GH from 30 to 120.

What is KH?

This is the measurement of carbonate and bicarbonate ions that acts as buffer in the Betta Fish Tank to maintain pH levels. Betta Fish tank levels that is the most suitable from 40 to 240 ranges.

What is Ammonia?

This is a very important water parameter that should always be monitored. If you feed the fish too much and left uneaten it will produce ammonia. If there is too much fish and plant waste then the ammonia levels will be too high and will be too toxic to the fish and may result into death.

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If there are too much Ammonia then there will be several observations on your previous Betta Fish:

  • Loss of Appetite
  • Inflamed Gills
  • Always at the bottom of the tank
  • Lethargic
  • Inflammed Fins

A simple solution again is to have 25% consistent regular water changes. It is also important that you just feed the right amount that the Betta Fish can eat in 2 minutes to avoid uneaten food that may contribute to Ammonia. Too much Ammonia is dangerous and detrimental to your Betta Fish.

Boil Tap Water For Betta Fish?

Why Betta Fish Should Not be put in water that has been boiled and cooled?

You cannot use boiled tap water for your Betta Fish Tank. You may think that boiling water removes the all the harmful chemicals and also kill parasites and bacteria. The deadly Amoeba is sometimes found in contaminated tap water, lakes, rivers and swimming pools that are not chlorinated properly.

It is a good thing that the tap water here in Canada and USA is generally safe and without the nasty Amoeba and other harmful parasites and bacteria.

Boiling water will actually make toxic chemicals hard metals and chloramine more concentrated in the tap water since they do not evaporate. It is not advisable to use a boiled tap water for your Betta Fish.

How To Test Tap Water for Betta Fish?

Here is a very short video to see if the Tap Water is suitable for Betta Fish.

Can You use Tap water for Betta Fish?

tap water

Yes absolutely. The tap water is absolutely good for Betta Fish. The quick way to treat the tap water by using a water conditioner and you can use it right away.

The chemicals contained in regular tap water is safe for us to drink but it will kill your Betta Fish. Tap water is perfectly fine to be used on your Betta Fish once the chlorine, chloramines and other heavy metals are removed. Tap water contains minerals and variety of nutrients for Betta Fish.

Maintain the water temperature between 76 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit, since the Betta Fish are tropical. It would be also an essential for your Betta Fish Tank to have a water heater that can regulate the temperature.

my 2 years old aquarium pH color chart pH test kit pH test kit

Free Method on using aged water

On the other hand, the tap water is free and you just have to let it sit it for 24 hours.

Aged water chemistry is stabilized which can be used for Betta Fish Tank.

Another way is to put the tap water on a large bucket of water and just aerating the water with a powerhead or air pump on the bucket, this will dissolve the chlorine and other gases.

The water that came from the city municipal is pressurized and treated with chlorine and other chemicals.

Distilled Water For Betta Fish?

distilled water

You cannot use distilled water since it is has been striped off on all the chemicals, minerals and nutrients. Betta Fish cannot live without minerals and nutrients rich water.

If you use purified water or distilled water the Betta Fish may live initially but in the long run it will eventually die. The Betta Fish will be very dull looking and will not have the life sustaining energy that is needed to eat and grow.

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If you think that pure water is clean and you add the proper minerals and nutrients, it is not worth your time and effort.

Distilled water is also too expensive and too acidic.

Adding minerals to Distilled water can also be a very good and excellent for a Betta Fish Tank. The distilled water is very clean without any impurities and harmful chemicals and buying a suitable vitamin and mineral supplement especially formulated for Betta Fish Tank.

Well Water For Betta Fish?

well water

If you live in the countryside or rural that do not have access to Municipal water then you might think that maybe the well water is safe? The well water is absolutely not suitable for your Betta Fish simply because the well water contains a lot of pesticides, fertilizers and higher concentrations of heavy metals such as iron and copper.

If there is a local aquarium store in your vicinity then bringing the water sample to test to verify that you can safely use the well water in your area to be used for Betta Fish Tank.

If there are no options to obtain tap water in your area then be sure to test the well water first and then treat it with a water conditioner to order to neutralize the chlorine and heavy metals.

if there is no aquarium pet store in your area then you may have to buy a water test kit to make sure that the well water is suitable.

Spring Water For Betta Fish?

spring water

This is the best option for Betta Fish Water Tank. The setback is that it is expensive in the long run and you just have to keep buying spring water to maintain your fish tank. Spring water is safe because it does not contain the chlorine which the tap water coming from the municipal city pipes.

You just have to make sure that the pH levels is within the acceptable range of: 7 to 8.5

Showing you the proper pH level on a Water Test Kit

Here is a short video on showing you the proper pH level on a water test kit which incidentally I got this on sale at a local pet store.

Different manufacturers of spring water available at your local store has varying levels of pH. So make sure that you just buy the same brand in case you opt for spring water.

Spring water contains the nutrients and minerals that can be able to sustain your Betta Fish. There are no need to add water conditioner if you are using the spring water.

You have to keep in mind that the temperature has to be consistent with the water in your Betta Fish Tank. It would be wise to keep the extra spring water in the same location with your Betta Fish Tank.

It would be great to initially set up the Betta Fish Tank and then just top up using free aged tap water.

Betta Fish Water Temperature

Maintaining your Betta Fish temperature in range of: 76 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit since the Betta Fish in the wild lives in tropical water temperature. It is best that you obtain a Betta Fish Tank water heater to maintain the proper range.

When you are adding the above mentioned water, you have to make sure that the temperature is the same with the Betta Fish Tank.

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Drastic change in temperature will result into Betta shock.

Betta shock will happen if there is a sudden extreme water temperature changes.

In case if you want to change the water in your Betta Fish Tank then you have to do it gradually over time.

How to switch water in your Betta Fish Tank?

You can do it in a month when switching water.


1. Take out 25% Old water and add 25% New type of water

2. Take out 50% Old water and add 50% New type of water

3. Take out 75% Old water and add 25% New type of water

4. Change all the water to New type of water

Important point is to make sure that the water temperature of the new water must be the same with the old water. Be sure that the water source must be kept consistent because the pH level for a Spring water and the Tap water may be different.

For example:

  • Smart Water 6.97
  • Poland Spring 6.31
  • Penta Water 6.7
  • Nestle Pure Life Bottled water pH is 7.3
  • Vancouver, BC Canada tap water is 7.5
  • New York tap water is 7.2
  • Florida tap water is 6.0
  • Oregon tap water is 7.4 to 8.1
  • California tap water is 6.5

If the pH level is too high then adding too much water conditioner can burn your Betta Fish Fins. pH down is acidic which is very harmful for Betta Fish. So using Florida or California tap water is not suitable for Betta Fish.

Betta Fish Water Additives

Aquarium Salt

In order preventing parasites and fungus, it may be helpful to add at least 1 teaspoon of salt per 10 gallons to 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons. Be sure that it is aquarium salt not table salt.


Aquarisol is also added to the water preventing ich and velvet. This is also good to make sure that your water is fungus free. Add about 1 drop per gallon when treating your water.

It really all depends on what kind of water that you will be using before adding these into your Betta Fish Tank.


Not all water are created equal. The water that you will be using varies for the different types of water that I have mentioned above. Ensuring proper water parameters and also using only 1 kind of water source for consistency.

There are some things to consider for perfect water:

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