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Old 01-31-2020, 01:19 PM
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Default Warming up a viv

I am just starting a 75 gallon tank. No frogs in this enclosure yet. Trying to figure out a way to heat it. The enclosure is in my basement and It is getting pretty cold down there. I have been monitoring for a week or so now and With the lights on my tank gets to about 66 degrees, but at night its dropping as low as 59 on the coldest nights. 61 Seems to be the average at night.

What would be the best way to heat this tank up? I dont have the option of heating the room, a space heater only raises the room slightly - its a large room..
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Old 01-31-2020, 01:39 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

Any Herp keeping needs decent and appropriate ambient temps.

Hot rocks, heat pads and localized heating reliance will almost always result in a fail and animal death. It's just not adequate.

If all you have is a cold (or hot) room, then I would advise you to wait until you have a more suitable place for the enclosure.
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Old 01-31-2020, 03:19 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philsuma View Post
Any Herp keeping needs decent and appropriate ambient temps.

Hot rocks, heat pads and localized heating reliance will almost always result in a fail and animal death. It's just not adequate.

If all you have is a cold (or hot) room, then I would advise you to wait until you have a more suitable place for the enclosure.
This realy is the best advice you will get @stripedass.
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Old 01-31-2020, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

A heavy curtain like a painter drop cloth can section off a room to hold in heat (my friend does this in his semi-finished basement with an oil-filled heater). Maybe this is an option for you.

Localized heating is definitely not a great idea, but with such a large tank, I wonder if it would be possible to include a higher than normal water table and heat it with a pair of submersible heaters like the reef-tankers do. If that worked to warm the whole enclosure, it would be as fail-safe as you're going to get.
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Old 01-31-2020, 06:08 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

With a solid 10+ degrees disparity the above is dangerous "wondering".

A small encl, in a cabinet requiring a bit of seasonal temperature finesse, but a big project in a big basement. I would listen to Philsuma.
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Old 01-31-2020, 06:34 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

I'm no expert but I don't think one night at 59 degrees will harm your frogs. When I lived in Puerto Rico the coldest nights got down to 63 degrees.

That said its not a good long term temperature. I think if you had a heating system and it failed and you were able to notice it and fix it the same or next day you would be fine.

I struggled similarly with how to heat my tanks since the room they were in was a cool room. My 18x18x24 tanks took 50W of heat cables on the out side of the tank (bottom and side) to raise the tank 5 - 10 degrees. If my thermostat fails the tanks will drop to around 65. If my thermostat fails on my tanks probably won't go above 80F.

My 12x12x18 tank has a 20W low voltage wire in the 1 1/2" deep sump and that seems to be about right.
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Old 01-31-2020, 07:09 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

An openly constructed basement (as they usually are) with alot of concrete, its like trying to keep a vivarium outside.

if such an area is all thats available the work that needs done is making the basement a more insulated space, or a room in a room with some conservatory thermal bounceback.
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Old 01-31-2020, 07:52 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

I moved everything to a tent!

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Old 02-01-2020, 02:55 AM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

I'm still a newbie and had the same concerns when I started, I've only had my frogs a few months and they are thriving, my house gets to about 59 over night. My enclosure is 18x18x24 so almost half the size of the 75g. I use a 150w ceramic heater about 2' above the tank, so it gets a spread of heat not direct; I also have a 50w cable heater under the tank. I run them on a temp controller and it has kept the tank in the low 70s within a couple of degrees variance. What I would do on a 75 is use 2 heaters above and 2 below and 2 temp controllers one for each side; that way it would provide a more even heat distribution. My house also gets warm in the summer and I built a thermo=electric chiller hood to keep things cool. It's connected to a temp/humidity controller, a mister trips on if the cooling drops the humidity too low. Most people here seem to be very resistant to controlling the temp of the enclosure using other methods other than controlling the temp of the room.
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Old 02-02-2020, 07:23 AM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

The reason why a hospitable ambient is acknowledged by people experienced in setting up herp rooms and enclosures is because the temperature applications can often be accentuations using milder wattages, or marginalized configurations. This is especially true of amphibians and quite a few reptiles as well, that dont require strong radiant basking zones.

That way your charges arent vulnerable to severe consequences of a mechanical fail or electrical mishap, as even ceramic heat emitters can and do stop operating. As well as fixtures.

Never get complacent with gear.

Thats one reason.

Last edited by Kmc; 02-02-2020 at 07:26 AM.
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Old 02-02-2020, 08:52 AM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

Another reason, my personal favorite reason, is how temperature gradients behave and blend. No jumpy zones or unpredictable pockets.

But to each his own.
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Old 02-03-2020, 03:29 AM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

If I had not had experience with keeping salt water aquariums for 30 years and heard alot of similar "can't dos", I would have gotten discouraged and scraped the whole idea. Everyone can not control the room as simply as you think. The temp under the canopy of the rain forest has many temp gradients, it's not a perfect 75 all day and all night. While equipment may fail, so can your house heating and cooling, or lose electricity all together.
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Old 02-03-2020, 06:07 AM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

I mean no offense but your response is so filled with predictability its almost a word for word familiar statement.

Temperature mapping for vivaria and animal rooms is often glossed over, yet approached systematically in many industries, and other genres. I think before you argue about something its good to explore the details first.
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Old 02-03-2020, 09:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by konton View Post
I moved everything to a tent!

If that is the only location you can house your terraria then this would definitely be an option to explore
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Old 02-03-2020, 10:14 AM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

I personally use a heating pad on the side of the viv. The pad gets the viv to 22 degrees Celsius. So far the frogs are active. While heating the room you house the frogs in is the optimal solution, I don't get why you couldn't use a heat pad connected to a thermostat. Even more so if your vivarium isn't enormous.
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Old 02-03-2020, 02:08 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

I also use them, I think we are going in an Either/Or direction which often happens in discussions like this.

Heat gear behavior is topically influenced by ambient and insulate factors.
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Old 02-03-2020, 02:29 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

Meaning the actual temp effects In The Viv.

Having a heated plane of glass isnt useful if it doesn't create warmed air in the environment, even if it be a localized halo of increase.

I have used a strategy of 2 pads, in cornered application in some vivs that exploited this principle to an ideal.

But a very cold and openly constructed Point Zero, limits heat sources reach and retainment behaviors.
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Old 02-03-2020, 03:41 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kmc View Post
Meaning the actual temp effects In The Viv.



Having a heated plane of glass isnt useful if it doesn't create warmed air in the environment, even if it be a localized halo of increase.



I have used a strategy of 2 pads, in cornered application in some vivs that exploited this principle to an ideal.



But a very cold and openly constructed Point Zero, limits heat sources reach and retainment behaviors.
Agreed on every point. Especially the use of two pads to properly create the right type of heat in the viv.
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Old 02-03-2020, 04:36 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

It's funny the whole "heat the room" response is the programmed response, once someone ask this question; that is probably not an option they can do. If you have tried and failed other options, those would be good to share. When I needed help in this area, I got s couple of helpful responses; but mostly I was just shut down. My set up has been going all winter, with 2 thermometers is different areas, the temps consistently register between 70-72 on both, while my house has dropped as low as 59. My frogs have more than doubled in size, are active and bold.
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Old 02-03-2020, 04:59 PM
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Funny but you were fishing for a validation to what you were going to do anyway like so many people these days. Some of us have been doing this for a long time and still continue to post the most helpful things we can.
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Old 02-06-2020, 10:27 PM
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Default Re: Warming up a viv

If you own the house I suggest you carve out a dedicated herp room down there (I have done this in my last 2 homes - soooo worth the time and money). If you rent, a tent is an OK short-term work-around, but if you think you'll be there more than one winter, you could also consider something more substantial with removable insulated walls. Commercial real estate takes this route - they just remodel for every new tenant. There's very little to it, seriously.

I consider a year-round cool basement the very best place to stick a herp room. You can easily deal with cool, especially if you take care with insulation and moisture management. Power outages are an annoyance but not an existential threat.

A space that would get dangerously hot in the event of a power outage (not if but when...) is a dumb, dumb, dumb place to house animals. Over my life I have seen 100% mortality in others' collections several times. No survivors. Bad times.

Good luck OP!
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