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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As summer is coming soon, I am concerned. I have had problems with heat in the last 2 years particularly. My herp room has 1 wall that is completely glass. I have no Central Air in my home. Temps in my home easily reach into the 80's. At the moment my Tincs have a screen top wrapped very securely with "Saran" wrap. It has 0 ventilation other than when I feed and mist. The plants, and more importantly, the frogs have thrived always like this. This will be the first year for them to experiance extreme highs outside of them being tads in the rearing tank that I had located on my cement slab floor. My oldest Tinc morphed very late August, and assuredly saw some HOT days. But Fall came fast.

What are some suggestions on keeping it within reason with temps?

Thanks so much!!!

JBear
 

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As a glass guy my first suggestion would be to replace your glass with a high quality, energy efficient LOW E glass. A good one will block HUGE amounts of heat. Not cheap though. There are also external blinds that will block heat before it ever gets to your windows.
My next suggestion would be a small window mounted air conditioner. For better temperature control you can route it through a RANCO electronic temperature controller. A small window mounted air conditioner can be found new for around $100 to $150. I've seen used ones on Craigslist for as little as $25.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
As a glass guy my first suggestion would be to replace your glass with a high quality, energy efficient LOW E glass. A good one will block HUGE amounts of heat. Not cheap though. There are also external blinds that will block heat before it ever gets to your windows.
My next suggestion would be a small window mounted air conditioner. For better temperature control you can route it through a RANCO electronic temperature controller. A small window mounted air conditioner can be found new for around $100 to $150. I've seen used ones on Craigslist for as little as $25.
The Glass wall is a sliding door. No opition for window mounted Air control. I was thinking about removing the Vivs, and putting them in my living room... We have an Air Conditoner there... But my Kids/Cat/Dog... So many stresses and worries...

Thanks for the reply!

JBear
 

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As a glass guy my first suggestion would be to replace your glass with a high quality, energy efficient LOW E glass. A good one will block HUGE amounts of heat. Not cheap though. There are also external blinds that will block heat before it ever gets to your windows.
My next suggestion would be a small window mounted air conditioner. For better temperature control you can route it through a RANCO electronic temperature controller. A small window mounted air conditioner can be found new for around $100 to $150. I've seen used ones on Craigslist for as little as $25.
If you go the route of the window/portable A/C - make sure you get one with the auto restart feature in case of a power failure. Some models don't have this and will not restart even after power is restored, which can be catastrophic for obvious reasons...

You may also want to look into some of the glass films that are available. Some are supposed to reflect 90%+ of the radiant heat from the sun. It was fairly inexpensive to do a couple windows - but not sure how it would add up for a whole wall...
 

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If you go the route of the window/portable A/C - make sure you get one with the auto restart feature in case of a power failure. Some models don't have this and will not restart even after power is restored, which can be catastrophic for obvious reasons...

You may also want to look into some of the glass films that are available. Some are supposed to reflect 90%+ of the radiant heat from the sun. It was fairly inexpensive to do a couple windows - but not sure how it would add up for a whole wall...
Be careful where you put a glass "film". They should not be used on double pane, insulated glass units. While the manufacturer of the film says that they are safe, they are not. They will cause premature seal failure and even heat cracking of the glass. When put on a double pane, they basically turn the window into a solar collector. They high heat within the pane causes the seal failure and breakage. Every glass and window manufacturer everywhere will instantly void a warranty if a film is applied. I am a glazier by trade for the last 20 years. I can't tell you how many times I've had to tell someone that the film they put on a year or two ago is what is responsible for the thousands of dollars worth of leaking, foggy glass they have on the sunny side of the house.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Be careful where you put a glass "film". They should not be used on double pane, insulated glass units. While the manufacturer of the film says that they are safe, they are not. They will cause premature seal failure and even heat cracking of the glass. When put on a double pane, they basically turn the window into a solar collector. They high heat within the pane causes the seal failure and breakage. Every glass and window manufacturer everywhere will instantly void a warranty if a film is applied. I am a glazier by trade for the last 20 years. I can't tell you how many times I've had to tell someone that the film they put on a year or two ago is what is responsible for the thousands of dollars worth of leaking, foggy glass they have on the sunny side of the house.
Thank You For That!

JBear
 

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i have neighbors with a hole cut into the side of the house for a permanent window AC unit. not pretty but i guess its an option if no window is avail.

as far as the living room. i have 5 dogs all loud, they shake the tanks just being in the room. I also have 2 cats. TV, phone, barking etc and my frogs in this environment are much more bold than the ones i have in my frog room.

as far as them experiencing the extreme temps, I wouldnt let that happen. i start to panic if my tanks reach 82, you know many frogs seize and die at 85 degrees. because of this i am considering buying a generator asap. ive got too much time and money tied up in these critters to watch them cook or freeze in a power outage. i was just thinking about this yesterday. usually our power will go out for a couple hours at a time but a few yrs ago Isabell hit and we lost power for 11 days. i had no frogs then but if i had they surely would have all died.
 

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I just bought an AP12000S - EdgeStar Extreme Cool 12,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner and must say that I'm quite impressed with what it can do for my "frogfice."

I have an additional 4 tanks heading into this summer and that has translated into an extra 2 deg heat increase. 8 tanks total and a liquid cooled pc, when turned on, keep my room about 4 - 6 deg warmer than the rest of the house depending on the time of day. It doesn't help that this room faces due west into the TX sun.

Had the opportunity to test the AC unit last week when we were in the mid / upper 80's. I can literally now dial in the desired temp of the tanks through the temp setting on the unit. In my case there is a 1 - 2 deg diff between set temp on the AC unit and the temp in my tanks. This means that I can now set my house back to 78 - last summer I had to keep it at 76 and that barely kept my tanks below 81 from mid afternoon into the evening - was a constant struggle turning lights off / on, venting, misting...

Here's a mini review - again I've only used the thing for 4 days so far but we're going to hit the 90's this weekend:

Unit is simple to set up, although the included window kit is cheap and not very secure. I will fashion my own.

You must vent to the outside. The included vent tube looks like drier tubing but is much sturdier. If you don't have a window exactly where you need one this vent can be an eye sore - I lucked out. The exhaust vent gets quite warm. Going through a wall is an option albeit a pain in the ass. If you live in a neighborhood with an HOA this is one way to get around a window unit.

The unit is supposed to vent mositure externally, although I have noticed water in the reservoir - not sure how much though.

Three modes - cooling, dehumidifying, fan / heat (heat supposedly works by taking off the vent)

Unit has a timer you can set for hour incrememts. I know I am good temp wise until around noon - I'll be setting mine to kick on then.

The thing is noisy, background noisy... there's a constant fan drone. When the compressor kicks on the noise will increase.

Three fan speeds available but there doesn't seem to be a significant difference between each - I can keep it on low and it seems to do just fine.

Once powered up and running the fan will stay on - the compressor will cycle on as needed.

The unit will keep it's settings in the event of a power failure.

No up and down directional vents on this guy, only side to side - doesn't seem to affect anything.

Power cost - way too early to tell, but if you're passionate about your frogs then you won't mind spending the extra money.

Can't think of anything else right now. So far I'm a happy camper, time will tell. Your results may vary depending on size of room, number of tanks, insulation, etc. Buy more BTU than is recommended. If it helps any my room is 12x13, and 12k BTU seems perfect

Here's a good link to look at this particular unit - I actually found mine on Ebay around $50 cheaper w/free shipping. If anybody would like the seller's name or any other questions answered feel free to pm me.

AP12000S-1 EdgeStar Portable Air Conditioner - 12,000 BTU Capacity
 

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yeah i was thinking the portable floor model a/c unit too. do you have any exterior wall or porion of a wall in the room that is not glass? possible to cut a small hole to vent the unit? run it through the attic?
 

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Be careful where you put a glass "film". They should not be used on double pane, insulated glass units. While the manufacturer of the film says that they are safe, they are not. They will cause premature seal failure and even heat cracking of the glass. When put on a double pane, they basically turn the window into a solar collector. They high heat within the pane causes the seal failure and breakage. Every glass and window manufacturer everywhere will instantly void a warranty if a film is applied. I am a glazier by trade for the last 20 years. I can't tell you how many times I've had to tell someone that the film they put on a year or two ago is what is responsible for the thousands of dollars worth of leaking, foggy glass they have on the sunny side of the house.
Wow... They didn't have THAT on the label when I bought the film! Thanks for the info.
 

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What about one of these units from one of the sponsors on the board?
Digital Aquatics

Some people here must have these now. I'd be interested in some feedback from them.
As far as I know (and this is basing off of my experience with their Reefkeeper, which looks to be very similar to the herp one) they don't independently control temperatures or anything else- they automatically turn on another device which does the job. So, for example, in a reef tank for temp control, it would turn on the heater or turn on the fan. Either way, you need to buy a device that can still bring down the temperature... and the OP's problem is not that he can't keep the temps stable, it's that he cannot even bring them down at all.
If you haven't already, raise the lights up a few inches so not as much heat from the lights is going down into the tank, and if they still are hot, blow a fan across the top of the vivs to blow away the light's heat. Other than that, sorry I can't help anymore.
Bryan
 

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Wow... They didn't have THAT on the label when I bought the film! Thanks for the info.
Yeah, it's hard to believe they can get away with it. It can be used just fine on older, single pane windows. Problem with dual pane is that you have to put it on the inside pane, as in inside the house. The sun penetrates the outer, clear pane just fine. But then when it hits the tint on the inner pane, it bounces. When sunlight bounces, it changes wavelength. The altered wavelength will not penetrate glass as easily so it stays trapped in your glass unit. Basically the same way your car gets so hot in the sun.
Again, it is fine for use in single pane units, just not for dual pane.
 

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Fortunately I have my frogs in my basement which is about 70 in the dead heat of summer. And in the winter time it's a little warmer about 75 because of the wood burner lol it makes it nice to not have to worry about the heat.
 

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I'm lucky. Small temp controlled apartment is always in the 70s. Even still, I'd prefer it low seventies but right now it's mid 70s. Not bad, but I have all my tanks on a rack. Basically just the proximity to each other brings temps up not to mention lighting. I don't use many thermometers as it will just drive me nuts seeing temps at 79 when I want them at 72-75. Nothing I can do because my house needs to be relatively warm for newborn baby. Also, in the summer I just turn on the AC so everyone is comfortable. Probably the hottest any tanks get is 81 degrees. I know some people have worse issues with temps. I could easily set my temps to run 72 degrees all year round if it wasn't for everyone in the house messing with the temps. My roommates and fiance all know to keep temps in mid 70s though. Especially considering my roommate is into African Cichlids so he also watches temps.

If it gets too hot in room I blow a fan on rack as that's enough to somewhat control heat building up under lights. Definitely makes a difference. Only frogs I really worry about are my terribilis as they're sensitive to temps that get up there. Other frogs are fine as long as humidity is high. It gets hot in the rain forest, as well as cold. 70-80 seems like more of an ideal than a reality of what the frogs can live comfortably in. Though, that doesn't take into consideration that in the wild, on a 90 degree day, a dart frog might find a cooler micro climate in the trunk of a tree to escape the heat for the day. In our tanks, this isn't quite as easy.

I'm looking into mounting small flat fans on the back of my rack to at least increase airflow back there and cool down the rack. Might not help all that much but we'll see.

This summer will be a challenge but I have it better than most. Small apartment, accurate thermostat. Also, power lines for our apartment building are under ground so we have never lost power.

D
 
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