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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok it has come time to vacate my bedroom as I have run out of room for my frogs. I am in the process of planning a room or section of my basement to be dedicated to the frogs, but can not make up my mind on a few things.

1. To close off a small section and insulate the heck out of it.
2. To just try to heat the larger section with lights and a large space heater.


Currently my basement runs about 64 degrees which is about 6 degrees lower than I would want the low to be. Now I have more than a couple of options, but have to watch that I don't block my crawl space. I could make a room that is about 24ft by 6ft with enough room to get to the crawl space and etc.

Ok here is a rough not to scale pic of my basement:
Gray to the left is crawl space, and to the right is already finished room.
Idea 1: Green section closed off with door and ceiling.
Idea 2: Green and Yellow closed of with door and ceiling.
Idea 3: neither closed off and no ceiling.

Any ideas? I had wanted to avoid more framing, but the more I think about it I might not have a choice.

 

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Heating a small room would be much easier, and if you had a frog escape it is a smaller area to look in. You will most likely have to do some framing. I don't see a way around it. The small space heaters work quite well, mine has a built in thermostat that is fairly accurate, and with a fan circulating the air in my frog room there are no cold spots.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm worried about the size of the room, and if I would make the larger option closing off the ceiling would be almost impossible as that is where all the duct work runs for the house. Even the back part could require moving part of my gas line. The other issue could also be heat at that point as it would be a confined space. I was also thinking of some type of curtains over the crawl space and the yellow section. Then I would put simple styrofoam insulation over the outside walls.
 

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64F = Brighter Lighting Options
 

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Basement Project

Kyle a low of 64 is only a few degrees from where you would need to be. The lights on the tanks would provide heat during the day and maybe you would not drop down to that temp. My basement in Ohio was rarely over 72 and I bred 100's of frogs over an 8 year period. I did keep one of those warm oil heaters that look like a hydronic register on low during the winter months by the door going outside (it was a walkout basement), it is a soft heat and did a good job.
 
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Why not put in a drop ceiling or is it already to low?

I'm kind of doing the same thing but it is also going to be my bedroom. I bought an in wall heater (haven't mounted it yet) that is kind of like a space heater $70.00 at Lowes. I plan on using it as an extra heater to increase temps hopefully I get that done soon and let you know how it worked. Just remember ceilings and carpeting will help keep some of the heat in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I agree i'm ok with a 68 night time low even my current room drops to that, but I'm a bit worried if I get space heater it might run all the time and cost me a ton. I was looking at the same time the larger radiator oil filled ones. I think if I put up some styrofoam on the outside walls and maybe a bit on the ceiling (may not be needed). Just have to track down some blue and the pink will not cut it. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I can do a drop in the back section, but not the yellow as it would be very low. The ducts and a number of other things run there.

hexen84 said:
Why not put in a drop ceiling or is it already to low?

I'm kind of doing the same thing but it is also going to be my bedroom. I bought an in wall heater (haven't mounted it yet) that is kind of like a space heater $70.00 at Lowes. I plan on using it as an extra heater to increase temps hopefully I get that done soon and let you know how it worked. Just remember ceilings and carpeting will help keep some of the heat in.
 

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A couple of things come to mind. One is that a suspended ceiling is cheap and easy to install. It could solve the problem of lowering the space you have to heat while still letting you access ductwork etc. Also, once you insulate your room and put a bunch of frog tanks with lights over them, your minimum temperatures will likely be warmer than 64F. Lastly, I keep the lower level of our house where the frogs are at 68F. If this space was dedicated only to frogs, I would actually set the thermostat a little lower. I have CF lighting on all my tanks so they warm up quickly when the lights come on. Even at 68F room temp, I still struggle to keep some of the daytime high temps in a couple of tanks low enough for breeding. Of course if the temps in your vivs are already where you want them, then you already know the optimal room temp to shoot for.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yes they are cheap, but to do the remaining part of the basement would require me to change heights 2-3 times due to ducts and support beams. Now the green section I could put in a drop at about 7-7.5 feet with no major issues, but would it be pointless to just do a small section. Now if I could make a curtain for the back section and then insulate the ceiling there I would how much that would help. I could get some cheap fabric for that at a cheap price.

bbrock said:
A couple of things come to mind. One is that a suspended ceiling is cheap and easy to install. It could solve the problem of lowering the space you have to heat while still letting you access ductwork etc. Also, once you insulate your room and put a bunch of frog tanks with lights over them, your minimum temperatures will likely be warmer than 64F. Lastly, I keep the lower level of our house where the frogs are at 68F. If this space was dedicated only to frogs, I would actually set the thermostat a little lower. I have CF lighting on all my tanks so they warm up quickly when the lights come on. Even at 68F room temp, I still struggle to keep some of the daytime high temps in a couple of tanks low enough for breeding. Of course if the temps in your vivs are already where you want them, then you already know the optimal room temp to shoot for.
 

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If you really cared about your frogs, you would move to the basement and let your frogs have your room. But since you are selfish and heartless...

Would heating the tanks be cheaper? What about that heat tape that snake breeders use (I'm not sure how different the stuff is from the heat tape they sell to make sure your pipes don't freeze). I believe zoo med came out with a heat wire (you can get like 20 feet of it for one outlet). Or you could use those undertank heaters.

Do you have a misting system? I don't know how much of a difference this would make, but what if you heated your misting water up to like 75 or 80?
 

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pastorjosh said:
If you really cared about your frogs, you would move to the basement and let your frogs have your room. But since you are selfish and heartless...
LMAO...that is too funny...fortunately we have not crossed this bridge...my fiance has been very understanding with frog vivs populating the kitchen, living room and dining room :lol: (did I mention that she is very cool 8) ). Anyway, the basement is full of snakes, geckos, tortoises and chameleons so I'm not sure where I would put the frogs downstairs...I guess the kids could lose their play area :oops:

Good luck with the basement project!

Bill
 

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pastorjosh said:
If you really cared about your frogs, you would move to the basement and let your frogs have your room. But since you are selfish and heartless...

Would heating the tanks be cheaper? What about that heat tape that snake breeders use (I'm not sure how different the stuff is from the heat tape they sell to make sure your pipes don't freeze). I believe zoo med came out with a heat wire (you can get like 20 feet of it for one outlet). Or you could use those undertank heaters.

Do you have a misting system? I don't know how much of a difference this would make, but what if you heated your misting water up to like 75 or 80?
I don't know about heating a roomful of vivs...usually I'm more concerned with keeping the temp down...and wish I had a basement.
Anyways I talked to a guy that has a lot of aquariums in his basement, that made a switch from heating the tanks individually, to heating the room with a space heater...he said it literally cut his electric bill in half.

One thing about heating just the tanks...with the outside air being that much cooler than the warm, humid air inside the tanks, you'd have a lot more condensation on the glass than if you were to heat the whole room.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Heat tape may get a bit much for the number of tanks I may have. Now I do plan to heat the misting water, but that is a bit down the road. I do like the give them the house idea, but I have already given them half of my bedroom, and am now out of room.

pastorjosh said:
If you really cared about your frogs, you would move to the basement and let your frogs have your room. But since you are selfish and heartless...

Would heating the tanks be cheaper? What about that heat tape that snake breeders use (I'm not sure how different the stuff is from the heat tape they sell to make sure your pipes don't freeze). I believe zoo med came out with a heat wire (you can get like 20 feet of it for one outlet). Or you could use those undertank heaters.

Do you have a misting system? I don't know how much of a difference this would make, but what if you heated your misting water up to like 75 or 80?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I hear that, my wife has also been great about it, even tolerates the imitators calling all night, but I think I will have a big heat issue on my hand come summer so I need to get them moved.

elmoisfive said:
pastorjosh said:
If you really cared about your frogs, you would move to the basement and let your frogs have your room. But since you are selfish and heartless...
LMAO...that is too funny...fortunately we have not crossed this bridge...my fiance has been very understanding with frog vivs populating the kitchen, living room and dining room :lol: (did I mention that she is very cool 8) ). Anyway, the basement is full of snakes, geckos, tortoises and chameleons so I'm not sure where I would put the frogs downstairs...I guess the kids could lose their play area :oops:

Good luck with the basement project!

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I think a space heater will do the trick also, just a matter of getting it all cleaned up and I think I will at least insulate the outside walls. Still want to try my curtain idea just to keep as much heat as possible downstairs. I opened the furnace vent down there and it is keeping it at 67 now, so I really only need a degree or 2 so with a large space heater and a small fan I should be good to go and not go broke.

Dancing frogs said:
pastorjosh said:
If you really cared about your frogs, you would move to the basement and let your frogs have your room. But since you are selfish and heartless...

Would heating the tanks be cheaper? What about that heat tape that snake breeders use (I'm not sure how different the stuff is from the heat tape they sell to make sure your pipes don't freeze). I believe zoo med came out with a heat wire (you can get like 20 feet of it for one outlet). Or you could use those undertank heaters.

Do you have a misting system? I don't know how much of a difference this would make, but what if you heated your misting water up to like 75 or 80?
I don't know about heating a roomful of vivs...usually I'm more concerned with keeping the temp down...and wish I had a basement.
Anyways I talked to a guy that has a lot of aquariums in his basement, that made a switch from heating the tanks individually, to heating the room with a space heater...he said it literally cut his electric bill in half.

One thing about heating just the tanks...with the outside air being that much cooler than the warm, humid air inside the tanks, you'd have a lot more condensation on the glass than if you were to heat the whole room.
 

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Kyle, definitely go with heating the room. I am in Buffalo and it gets cold here, especially in a basement. I used to have my collection in one and it was great because the temperatures were so cool that lighting was never a problem. My new house doesn't have a basement and keeping the temps down is a pain. I have a room air conditioner and that is far more expensive than the little oil filled radiator heater I used for the basement (these are really economical).

A couple of other things to be mindful of:

- If you are near a sump, your floor is probably slightly slanted, which could cause problems over time with racks that are not sturdy.
- if you have any day geckos, sealing off the ceiling is a good idea


Thanks,
AAA
 

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aattea said:
- if you have any day geckos, sealing off the ceiling is a good idea


Thanks,
AAA
I was going to post earlier, that if I was going to construct a room for frogs, I'd build my racks as a permanant fixture, so no escaped frogs can get underneath...ever have a frog escape...and watch them dissapear under a large piece of furniture?
Similarly is this why the ceiling should be sealed?
 

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Yes. Day geckos can survive pretty well outside the tanks, which is good considering how hard they are to catch ... especially with pipes to climb and ways to get into the walls. They can pretty much go full speed in any horizontal or vertical direction and my little frog room was no place for a sweep net or high speed chase!

As for escaping frogs, darts are usually doomed (dehydration and spiders). The best recommendation I have is to keep all racks raised a bit to get beneath them and to create a ground level "oasis" - somewhere to fend off dehydration. I have not seen this work with darts, but I have recovered reed frogs in the funnels of bromeliads growing in the frog room.
 
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