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Old 03-04-2013, 11:28 PM
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Default Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

I'm setting up a 36x18x24 SI viv. The area it will go is ranging from 64-70F. I think I need to bump that up 3 to 8 degrees in range. It will have a hydroton/clay ball bottom with some open water areas. Would it be better to sink an aquarium heater in the hydroton (in water), go with a low wattage heat lamp on the glass top with a thermostat, or tape a heat pad to the outside?

The care sheet says the water should be cooler for the tads, but I'm not sure what temp. So I'm not sure in an aquarium heater is the best choice, but hopefully someone here can help. Thanks
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Old 03-05-2013, 01:46 AM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

For my reticulata I put a strip of flexwatt heat tape under their tank. I set 2 fluorescent strip lights on the top of the tank as well. The room is typically 65-72F and my tank temps range from low 70's to mid 80's. The heat tape is on 24/7 and the lights go out at night providing a night temp drop. I wouldn't put a heat lamp on glass. It would probably be ok but years back I shattered a tank doing that. Don't care to test it again.
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:27 AM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

Quote:
Originally Posted by daggekko View Post
For my reticulata I put a strip of flexwatt heat tape under their tank. I set 2 fluorescent strip lights on the top of the tank as well. The room is typically 65-72F and my tank temps range from low 70's to mid 80's. The heat tape is on 24/7 and the lights go out at night providing a night temp drop. I wouldn't put a heat lamp on glass. It would probably be ok but years back I shattered a tank doing that. Don't care to test it again.
I by no means have any experience but I use flexwatt all the time for my reptiles. So if you don't want to heat the water up by placing it on the bottom you could also tape it to the sides and it generally will heat threw reasonably well. You definitely will want it on a thermostat though, their is a new brand out can't recall what it's called but it doesn't get as hot as flexwatt. One other thing that might work to just heat the substrate is heat cable. It is suppose to be waterproof, I haven't worked with it ever but have heard that a few times so something else for you to look into.
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:29 AM
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Is there any way to heat the room? Thats generally the easiest and safest way to raise temps without risking any breakage or over heating.

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Old 03-05-2013, 07:50 AM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

Are those the low temps? If so I would call it good. Lighting would probably heat it during the day.

Of your options, I would put a heater in the water personally.

Last edited by senditdonkey; 03-05-2013 at 07:53 AM.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:07 PM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

I'll run a trial with the lights, but they don't put out much heat. My best option is an aquarium heater, but I was hoping for a warmer canopy. I'll set it for around 75. I am guessing that wont be too hot for tads. I bought a heat cable today just to get some experience with it. I'll mount it on the back outside of the tank. I'll need a thermostat for that though. Don't need one for an aquarium heater.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

Quote:
Originally Posted by daggekko View Post
For my reticulata I put a strip of flexwatt heat tape under their tank. I set 2 fluorescent strip lights on the top of the tank as well. The room is typically 65-72F and my tank temps range from low 70's to mid 80's. The heat tape is on 24/7 and the lights go out at night providing a night temp drop. I wouldn't put a heat lamp on glass. It would probably be ok but years back I shattered a tank doing that. Don't care to test it again.
Are you insulating the glass from the direct heat of the heat tape? I was under the impression you wanted to keep your external heat source away from your water reservoir as you can crack glass due to the heat difference on each side of the glass..
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:35 PM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

The main goal was not to heat the water as I want to give the frogs a chance to deposit the tads and I don't know what temp will be too warm for the tadpoles. Otherwise the aquarium heater would be perfect, submerged in the hydroton drainage layer. The idea was to have the heat go from the top down instead of the bottom up so the floor was the cooler portion of the viv.
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Old 03-05-2013, 09:31 PM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

My viv only has an inch and a half fiberglass screen top along the top front with glass for the rest of the lid. It maintains a temp of 68 in the morning before lights on. With 2 cfl 6500k bulbs, it reaches 75 degrees. I wouldn't worry about heating until you've finished the build and compared temps for a good number of days at various times of the day. My home thermostat is set to 66 constantly.

And FYI I keep a 2.1 trio of SIs. Amazing frog to keep.
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Old 05-27-2013, 07:07 PM
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Don't heat the water since you want a hotter canopy just run heat tape near the top of the tank on the back, thermostat is a must. Covering the back of the tape with insulation would make it more efficient. I used to do similar setups when I kept arboreal snakes.
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Old 06-10-2013, 03:27 PM
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Default Re: Best way to heat an SI tricolor viv?

Ok, slight change of plan. I saw an Exo-style tank that is 38"long x 18"deep x 38" high. So I bought it and by the time I got the tank ready, the SIs weren't available. Oddly enough, a large group of Varedo Imitators were. I have them on order to arrive in August. Now, the heating principle is the same (since this will be my solution for when the SIs are available).

The main issue is the house can drop to high 50's in winter (hey it's Alberta) and that is what I needed to compensate for...so here is what I am hoping is the final solution:

3x 12"x38" strips of heat tape on the outside back wall of the vivarium. The heat tape will be plugged into a herpastat.

I am going to be doing a gorilla glue background. I don't think that should be an issue as far as safety of achieving the level of heat I need (70-80 F). The heat will have to radiate through the GG background, but I think it should be fine. Having never used heat tape, I can't be 100% sure.
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