How to Dechlorinate Water for Hermit Crabs

By Elle Di Jensen

hermit crab image by alwayspp from

Water is important for all life on Earth. We'd all die without it. So will your hermit crab. Hermit crabs not only drink water, they breathe with it, they keep a stash of it in their little shells, and they employ it for molting. Filling a dish from your kitchen tap won't do. Tap water contains chlorine, which is lethal for hermit crabs. It blisters their gills and can result in suffocation. Dechlorinating water for your hermit crab takes only a few seconds and is well worth the minimal effort to keep him healthy.

Step 1

Fill the gallon jug with water from your kitchen tap.

Step 2

Drip the amount of drops recommended on the dechlorination treatment packaging into the water in the jug. Typically this will be 10 drops per gallon of water, but different treatment brands may vary.

Step 3

Screw the cap of the jug securely into place, then shake the jug to mix the treatment drops with the water.

Items you will need

  • Plastic gallon jug
  • Tap water
  • Dechlorination water treatment drops


  • Read the instructions on the water treatment packaging before starting the dechlorination process to ensure you get the right treatment to water ratio.
  • Dechlorinated water should be ready to use immediately after you've treated it, but some people choose to let it sit for 24 hours before placing it into their hermit crabs' habitats.
  • You can purchase gallon jugs of spring water or filtered water at the pet supply or grocery store. These types of water are already safe for your hermit crab; you can use them immediately without treatment.
  • Hermit crabs need a supply of ocean saltwater in addition to fresh, dechlorinated water. You can mix aquarium salt with dechlorinated water or purchased filtered or spring water to make a supply of safe, healthy saltwater for your hermit crab.
  • Dechlorinating water for hermit crabs is the same as dechlorinating water for anything else, though hermit-crab-specific dechlorinators do exist at retail.

Photo Credits


Elle Di Jensen has been a writer and editor since 1990. She began working in the fitness industry in 1987, and her experience includes editing and publishing a workout manual. She has an extended family of pets, including special needs animals. Jensen attended Idaho and Boise State Universities. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications.

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