Skip to Content

Should You Use An Aquarium Chiller For Your Axolotl?

The popularity of axolotls is increasing again with there having been a large number of new people to keeping axolotls enter the space recently with many of them reaching out to ask various questions about how they are able to care for their pet axolotl and keep it as happy as possible.

We have already published a number of articles going over the various questions that we see from our readers about keeping a pet axolotl but we do plan to keep answering the more commonly asked questions moving forward.

One question that there seems to be a large amount of confusion over is about if you need an aquarium chiller for your pet axolotl.

There have been a number of discussions on social media about using an aquarium chiller for your pet axolotl with much of the information on both sides of the discussion ending up being incorrect so we wanted to publish our own article on the topic.

We hope that we are going to be able to help our readers realize when they should be looking to get an aquarium chiller for their axolotl and when there is often no need for one.

Our table of contents below should keep it as easy as possible for you to skip to specific sections of the article to save you time too but if you are a new axolotl keeper then we would highly recommend that you read the full article.

Do Axolotls Need Water Chiller?

Axolotls usually need a steady water temperature of between 60-64° F (16-18° C) with there only being minor wiggle room on each side of that where your axolotl can comfortably live for short periods of time so in water areas, many people do need to get an aquarium chiller for their axolotl.

In colder areas, most people will use an aquarium heater to increase their water temperature to be within the range that your pet axolotl requires though.

This can be problematic for many people who see that axolotls are from Mexico and then think that they need warm water but axolotls actually live in surprisingly cool pools considering they are from Mexico.

This is often discovered too late for many people though with some people already having purchased their axolotl before they realize that in their local area, they will actually need an aquarium chiller that can sometimes cost hundreds of dollars.

Axolotls are very sensitive animals too when it comes to their water temperature and although they may be able to take a slight deviation from the recommended water temperature of between 60-64° F (16-18° C), it can’t be much and it can last for long.

And by that, we mean anything more than a plus or minus 2°C or 5°F change for more than a couple of house can and often does cause problems with your axolotl.

How Cold Do Aquarium Chillers For Axolotls Get?

The better aquarium chillers that are usually recommended for use in warm areas for axolotl owners tend to be able to keep a steady temperature of between 60-64° F (16-18° C) with ease but these often cost hundreds of dollars.

There are cheaper aquarium chillers on the market that some people do use but the warmer your local area, the harder the chiller will have to work and the less reliable the cheaper aquarium chillers become.

You also have to realize that there are a large number of problems that can occur with the cheaper aquarium chillers if the temperature fluctuations in your local area are rapid.

In extreme situations, even the more expensive aquarium chillers may struggle to regulate the temperature of your tanks if your local temperature rapidly increases too though.

At least the more expensive chillers tend to stabilize and maintain the target water temperature much quicker than the cheaper chillers though.

This is why we usually recommend that you avoid the cheaper aquarium chiller products on the market, especially the ones for less than $100.

A general rule of thumb that you can follow is that for every 10 gallons in your aquarium, you will usually need to be spending around $125 on your aquarium chiller.

As the majority of our ready have a 30 or 40 gallon aquarium, you will usually be looking at over $400 for your aquarium chiller as a minimum.

Are There Any Aquarium Chiller Alternatives For Axolotls?

There are no reliable aquarium chiller alternatives available for your axolotl’s aquarium that is able to regulate the water temperature reliably and consistently for an extended period of time.

This is why we usually don’t recommend axolotls as a pet for people in very hot areas unless they have the budget available for a suitable aquarium chiller to keep their water temperature within the recommended ranges.

We have seen some people suggest some methods to try and keep your aquarium temperature as cool as possible for your pet axolotl on social media but they are all based on theory rather than science and offer little to no real assurance for the safety of your pet axolotl.

We know that axolotls are a really popular pet right now but for some people, the reality is that the area where you live is simply too hot for you to keep one unless you have around $500 for your aquarium and aquarium chiller.

This is definitely out of budget for many of our readers so if you are in an area where your water temperature will end up above 60-64° F (16-18° C) throughout the day then we would suggest you just keep saving until you get can a suitable aquarium chiller for your pet or that you look to get a different pet.

Both are able to work but depending on your income and how much you can save each month, it may take over a year before you can budget for the required tank chiller.


That brings our article going over if you need an aquarium chiller for an axolotl. We hope that we have been able to help clear things up for you as much of the advice we see people posting on social media is incorrect and can end up putting axolotls at risk. In some hot areas that result in your water temperate going over 60-64° F (16-18° C), you definitely need an aquarium chiller, in most other areas, they are generally not required.