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Favorite Heating Panel?

Discussion in 'Heating' started by annaj328, Apr 20, 2011.

  1. annaj328

    annaj328 Elite Member

    sooo im almost done building a 4x2x2 cage for my jcp and i need to buy a heat pannel. which brand is the best and what size do you guys think i would need in a house that sticks around 70?

    i've never had a heating pannel so i dont really know what to look for but i know that its what i want for this cage. im shopping around i would just like some guidance from some people with personal experience.

    thanks guys!
     
  2. annaj328

    annaj328 Elite Member

    soo im thinking rbi but im waffling between the 40 and the 80 watt. the site says that a 4x2 tank taller than 12 in a room cooler than 74 degrees i might need the 80 watt....but since there will be branches and what not in the cage im assuming that the hight thing wont be a problem and maji should be able to get as close as she wants...but my house is less than 74 degress...idk im not sure im talking to you guys or myself at this point. any one used heat panels from reptile basics before?

    thanks for helping or thanks for listening to me ramble!
     
  3. Flint

    Flint Elite Member

    I have Helix panels right now. And they work, but they only have 4 sizes and I've heard some bad things about them. For my new cages I'm going with Pro Products heat panels. I've already emailed the owner with all the specifications of all my cages (it was a 731 word email lol) and he replied with a very detailed explanation of insulation I should cinsider, the heat dynamics involved, and the exact heat panels I would need. They had a huge array of sizes and wattages and heat output, I think I will be very happy with them. And for the sizes and wattages, the price was rather comparable to the Helix panels. Heat panels are of course going to be much more expensive than lights and CHE's, but the assurance that nothing will short out, no fires will be started, and that my snake cannot possibly get hurt or burned, is priceless.
     
  4. jamesw

    jamesw Elite Member

    Call Pro Products. They are very helpful and have the best product.
     
  5. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    When in doubt, go with a bit higher wattage than you think that you will need.
    With it on a thermostat you can control it.
    Its easier to turn one that gets too warm down than to have to buy another because the one you have is insufficient.
     
  6. annaj328

    annaj328 Elite Member

    ok i have looked into pro heat and they were very helpfull and emailed me back very quickly. the problem i have with their pannel is it looks like it can be climbed on and its slightly more expensive. i think im going to go ahead and get the 80 watt from reptile basics because of the price and it cannot be climbed on by my snake.

    so my next question, haha, is there a thermostat out there that is reliable but not like 100 dollars? also, where would i put the probe? my snake will have branches for climbing so it will be hotter on the branches then the ground but if i put the probe on the branch, she will knock it down or sit on it which will allow the panel to possibly over heat the tank...since my house doesnt vary that much in temp wouldnt a dimmer make more sense and then i can monitor the temps myself w/ my new toy? [laser guided temp gun :)] just thinking out loud...thanks guys!
     
  7. Flint

    Flint Elite Member

    How do you mean climbed on? There's nothing you can put in a cage that a snake won't be able to touch if it wants too. That's the point of the heat panel, the snake can't get burned.

    I've been using the Helix Pulse Proportional Thermostat, and I'm never buying another one lol. Way too expensive, to change temps you just hold the only button it has and wait for it to cycle to the number you want, and the display only shows one thing. Also the heat panels work fine with a regular on/off thermostat, they don't need the pulse proportional thing. For the 7 cages I'm building, I'm just using the Zoo Med Reptitemp 500R. I used one for about a year when my BRB was in a 30gal tank and it worked perfectly. It's just a little dial and no digital read-out, but you don't need it. Set it up and turn the thermostat up high and let it run for a while. Check the temp periodically with your temp gun (I LOVE MY TEMP GUN lol) and when your basking spot is where you want it, turn the dial down until the little green power indicator light turns off. That will set it right at that temp and you may then forget about it and not worry! Obviously you still want to check temps everyday, but that thermostat never failed me. It's only $32.95 at lllreptile.com. I just bought 5 of em.. lol

    Edit: As for probe placement, so long as it's somewhere near the heat panels you can make it work. If you have to place it somewhere farther away, you will end up turning the thermostat up higher. If it's closer, the therostat will need to be set lower. You're basically placing the probe somewhere in the thermal gradient. So long as you check your temps with the temp gun at the right spots and they are the desired temps, the thermostat will control the heat panel the same way. Just bear in mind of course, if you move the probe, you will need to re-establish the correct thermostat setting.
     
  8. annaj328

    annaj328 Elite Member

    great advice about the thermostat, thanks. by climbed on i mean that the pro heat has a lip and the reptile basics panel has no lip and i know she cant get burned but im paranoid :) so i prefer that she not be able to get up there on the actual panel at all! plus i like the price better haha.

    but still, where to put the probe....
     
  9. Flint

    Flint Elite Member

    Lol yeah I completely understand the paranoia :p

    The Helix panels are actually bigger on the heat side that the side you attach to the roof of the cage, along with a huge lip. So a snake could just sit up there. And Jacket has wedged himself in that space many a time when I'm trying to fish him out of his cage lol.

    Just to make it simple, I always put the probe at the basking spot. So it gets the most heat from the source. So maybe kind of tie it around the branch closest to the panel? Perhaps do it right at the wall where the branch is attached, so it's less likely the snake will get behind the wire and pull it down. You could tape it to the wall and underside of the branch, so all that sticks out is the little probe head from the side of the branch. So there's no wire for the snake to mess with. Oooh or even route the wire through a PVC "branch" and drill a hole for the probe to stick out? Lol I'm just spouting ideas now. But I may have to do that.. lol
     
  10. annaj328

    annaj328 Elite Member

    thanks for all the help guys, today i ordered the 80 watt heat pannel from reptile basics! compared to proproducts, im getting more wattage for less money, and no lip! i also ordered the zoomed reptitherm and i cant wait to get the cage all set up! will post pictures when im done, its been a fun project.
     
  11. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Do you mean Reptitemp? The reptitherm is an UTH.
     
  12. annaj328

    annaj328 Elite Member

    umm sure? haha its definitely a thermostat not a heater, i must have miss spoke
     

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