What thermometer is best to use in your aquarium? Neale Monks advises...


Is any type of thermometer more accurate than another?

Neale says: Aquarium thermometers are not famed for being highly accurate and if you use three different types, you’ll often get three different temperatures!

Certainly, the stick-on liquid crystal ones are probably the least reliable. After all, the way you read off the values by looking at colour changes is clumsy. Between a lack of precision and the difficulty to read them, they may not have much going for them, but they are cheap and easy to use.

For casual aquarists, being able to check the temperature of the tank quickly is more useful than having an accurate, more difficult to use thermometer that would probably be ignored most of the time. The more traditional red alcohol glass type are better and should be accurate to within a degree or two, which is normally fine for most types of fishkeeping.

Electronic digital thermometers are usually regarded as the most accurate, if made properly and used correctly, but they are, of course, more expensive. If you’re keeping very delicate fish they will have their place, especially the ones with built-in alarms that warn you if the temperature has gone beyond a certain range. I’ve got a chilled tank within which I keep baby trout, and knowing the precise temperature and being warned if the temperature rises above a certain point is very useful.

Neale Monks – Neale is the man for your technical queries. He loves brackish fish, too.


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