Skip to Content

Should You Boil Tap Water For Betta Fish?

As the popularity of fish keeping continues to increase, especially the popularity of keeping betta fish as pets we have been overloaded with questions about caring for betta fish from the community.

These questions typically cover a wide range of different topics but the majority of the time, they are based around how to offer the absolute best care for your pet betta fish and it is always great to see responsible fish keepers asking these questions.

One of the more common questions that we have noticed being asked by people brand new to fish keeping who are thinking of getting their very first betta fish is if they should boil tap water for their betta fish or not.

It is pretty common knowledge that our tap water has added chemicals to it for various reasons and the majority of those chemicals are not safe for your fish to live in so we definitely understand why so many beginner fish keepers are wanting to double check about keeping their betta fish in tap water.

Now, just to confirm, this can be done and keeping your betta fish in correctly prepared tap water is probably the most common water to keep betta fish in by far.

The problem is, as with many things when it comes to fish keeping, the advice that you can find on social media about how to correctly prepare tap water for a betta fish is incorrect so we wanted to publish our own article going over the topic in much more detail.

Should You Boil Tap Water For Betta Fish?

There is generally no need to boil tap water for a betta fish as most areas have clean tap water free from parasites and bacteria.

The problem with tap water for betta fish is the chlorine and chloramines that are added to it and boiling the water will not remove these so there is no need to boil the water but a tap water conditioner should be used.

If you do live in an area where bacteria, parasites or even fungi spores can be in your tap water then you should definitely boil it though.

The vast majority of our readers are from Europe and North America though where this is not a real cause for concern.

Although the chlorine and chloramines in tap water in these locations are perfectly safe for humans, they can cause a number of problems with fish, especially sensitive fish like bettas if you keep them in water direct from the tap.

This is where the various tap water conditioner products on the market come in to play.

There really are a number of excellent tap water conditions on the market these days but they all need to be used in a slightly different way so always follow the instructions on the label of the specific tap water conditioner that you choose to go with for your own betta fish.

Is Boiled Tap Water Safe For Betta Fish?

Boiled tap water is safe for betta fish in the sense that it will remove any bacterial, parasites or fungi spores from the water but this is usually not an issue with tap water.

Boiling tap water does not remove chlorine or chloramines from the water and with most areas having these added to their tap water, only boiling the tap water will not make it safe for your pet betta fish and a tap water conditioner product will be required.

We are fully aware of the countless posts on social media from people saying that boiled tap water is safe for betta fish to live in but this is not correct.

Betta fish are far more sensitive than most people initially realise and they really do need to be kept within some very specific water parameters to offer bettas a long and healthy life with chlorine and chloramines directly going against this.

You are able to pick up a cheap tap water conditioner to remove the chloramines and chlorine from your tap water though to quickly, easily, and cheaply make the tap water safe for your pet betta fish to live in.

We would never recommend that you add a betta fish to tap water prior to treating it with a conditioning product as the chemicals in the tap water can take their toll on your betta fish quickly.

How Long Does Tap Water Need To Sit Before Adding Betta Fish?

Tap water should always be treat with a tap water conditioner product prior to putting your betta fish into the water.

Different tape water conditioners have a different treatment time so the time required for the tap water to sit before you add your pet betta fish will change depending on the product.

These time frames can range from a couple of hours to over a day depending on the specific tap water conditioner that you use.

We have seen some people try to use bottled water for their fish tanks as a way to get around this issue but it is usually a total waste of time, effort, and money.

Depending on the specific type of bottled water that you use for your fish tank, you may still have to use a tap water conditioner product on it due to bottled mineral water containing trace minerals in it that can potentially harm your betta fish if you put it in their tank.

Due to tap water working out to be so much cheaper, we just recommend that our readers pick up a tap water conditioner product, add it to their tap water as required to cheap it and then wait the recommended period of time as stated on the label of the tap water conditioner they use.

Then add this water to the tank of your betta fish but keep in mind that you may have to also bag the water and add it to your betta’s tank for temperature matching to prevent temperature shock in your betta when adding a large amount of new water.


That brings our article going over boiling tap water for betta fish to an end. We hope that we have been able to help you realise that there is a risk to your betta fish if you put it directly into tap water that has not been conditioned correctly. Thankfully, there are plenty of suitable, cheap products on the market that can quickly and easily condition tap water to make it safe for use in your pet betta fish’s aquarium.