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  • [Temp-General] Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

    I have a wooden, front opening enclosure with a heat lamp setup suspended from a hole in the ceiling. I have decided that the 125 watt bulb is too high, plus I'm afraid of Kitty (my snake) burning herself on the bulb itself. This is my first front opening enclosure- in the past I've only used aquariums and placed the heat lamp above the screen, thus, separating it from the snake. There is also, however, a side wall mounted socket for a bulb as well that I used to have a super-low wattage small bulb simply for ambient light (burned out). I assume that USED to be a ceiling mounted lighting socket, as I think this cage was originally designed to be stood vertically. (the enclosure is 4'x2'x2')

    ANYHOW- I'm going to the pet store tomorrow for a rat, so I figured I'd get some advice as to what would be the BEST way to heat this type of enclosure given its material, size, and what's available from the bulb sockets. It's a new enclosure and I don't have any thermometers on the tank yet (ill grab em tomorrow).

    So, between heating pads, heating "rocks" (which I've never been inclined to use), heat lamps, ceramic heaters, day/night bulbs, etc, what is probably my best route to go that won't be overly expensive and won't endanger the snake? Side note...i'd love to implement some kind of colored light source, particularly blue or purple...but that i can easily do without, I just thought it'd look nifty. Below are pics to show you exactly how my tank is set up. Any advice would be great.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

    The best method for heating greatly depends on the temp and humidity of the room you're keeping them in. Based on the size of you cage, I'd say a radiant heat panel attached to a good thermostat should do the job nicely.
    Originally posted by CStoner View Post
    So, between heating pads, heating "rocks" (which I've never been inclined to use)
    As well you should not! That is how snakes get burned.


    -Sean in NoCal
    “Americanism means the virtues of courage, honor, justice, truth, sincerity, and hardihood – the virtues that made America.”
    -Teddy Roosevelt.

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    • #3
      Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

      The room is just my living room, but I live in Milwaukee and keep my home fairly cool, except in summer when it's hot and humid (in which case the air temp is fine and don't need any heating) so for about half the year my place is 60 or below meaning, other than summer she'll need a supplemental heat source.

      the panel you're talking about, does that simply get placed on the wooden "floor" of the tank and then get covered with substrate (cypress mulch in my case)? and how much $ on average are we talking about?

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      • #4
        Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

        Radiant heat panels get screwed in or bolted to the top of the enclosure and radiate heat to the floor. I just purchased on for my first set up and it has been working superb. They are pricey at first, but with a lifespan on 50 years on some of the brands you will not have to worry about changing bulbs all the time.

        They get hot to the touch but will not burn your animal if they touch it. I can place my hand on mine for a couple of seconds before I feel uncomfortable. Since the snake can't lay on it you would have nothing to worry about. I paid $115 for a 75 Watt Pro Products heat panel. They are said to be some of the best out there. However, there is another brand from Reptile Basics (RBI) that is cheaper and supposedly works well. Both are good products from my understanding.

        My room also stays in the 60's in the winter, and sometimes in the summer if I use AC. So far the panel is keeping a 90 degree hotspot just fine, but since the cage is long, my cool side is a little too cool so I will be adding a Kane Heat Mat to keep it around 78. It is absolutely necessary to use a good thermostat with these. I don't know of any cheaper ones, but I saved my money for a Herpstat by Spyder Robotics. Im sure others have other methods that are just as efficient but cheaper.

        Attached Files

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        • #5
          Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

          Originally posted by Elizabeth94 View Post
          They get hot to the touch but will not burn your animal if they touch it
          Which is why it should always be attached to a good thermostat. Put the probe on the panel and set the thermostat to 90 degrees. Problem solved.


          -Sean in NoCal
          “Americanism means the virtues of courage, honor, justice, truth, sincerity, and hardihood – the virtues that made America.”
          -Teddy Roosevelt.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

            Originally posted by Pandorasdad View Post
            Which is why it should always be attached to a good thermostat. Put the probe on the panel and set the thermostat to 90 degrees. Problem solved.
            Agreed. That is why I said a thermostat is absolutely necessary.

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            • #7
              Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

              I'm on a bit of a budget at the moment so I had to go with a reptile heat pad (the kind that sticks to the underside) and a night-friendly heat lamp, and two inexpensive thermometers (one on each side of the tank). When I have some more liquid funds I'll replace the heat pad with the kind of radiant heat panel you mentioned. Thank you guys for the advice.

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              • #8
                Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

                I don't think placing the probe directly on the panel is necessary. I personally do not do that. Mine are about 1 inch from the substrate.

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                • #9
                  Re: Best Heating setup given my enclosure?

                  Originally posted by DaChief View Post
                  I don't think placing the probe directly on the panel is necessary.
                  I do and I'll tell you why. The panel can get WAY hotter than the area you're intending to warm. To maintain a basking area of 90 degrees, an RHP may get to 110-115 degrees. If your boa can't reach the RHP, it's a non issue. If it can, I'd control the temp of the RHP.


                  -Sean in NoCal
                  “Americanism means the virtues of courage, honor, justice, truth, sincerity, and hardihood – the virtues that made America.”
                  -Teddy Roosevelt.

                  Comment

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