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Winterizing Glass Tanks Worries

Discussion in 'Heating' started by monkeytechahoo, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. monkeytechahoo

    monkeytechahoo Elite Member

    This will be our first winter with the reps and I'm a little worried about their tanks not holding heat too well. The weekend was cool enough to have the windows open, but no too low temps overnight. Didn't watch tv all day/night Sunday, played Halo Reach with family. *lol* Then Monday morning I woke up to 58f and the kids & I were runnin to tanks checkin & huggin reps while gettin the heat up, in & out, for them. (Boga the beardie was NOT happy with a 5am wake up, first true full black beard we've seen from him *lol*) Here's the list of who's in what. All tanks are glass with screen tops.

    70breeder for bearded dragon with slate tile bottom
    basking lamp in use
    ceramic heater is available (I was told by pet store we needed a lamp & ceramic heat in use together, then learned quickly not so)
    split screen top (you can slide open one side with other side closed)

    55breeder for leopard gecko with slate tile bottom
    UTH in use
    screen top one piece, life off top
    red lights helping with extra heat if needed (not yet needed)

    40breeder for ball python with aspen bedding
    UTH in use
    screen top one piece, slides forward & off, locks in front
    red light helping with extra heat if needed (not yet needed)

    I'm getting ceramic heaters for the leo and python, payday is Friday, and am thinking it would be a good idea to have some plywood cut for the tops of the tanks and have holes for the heaters. I've read this is a good thing to do in a lot of heating threads. Wish me luck on pulling the "female with no male to help her cut the wood can you the hardware store guy do it for me" routine. *LOL*

    My real concern is the glass sides of the tanks. Should I get some of that insulation foam board cut to fit the outside of the tanks and just tape it on 3 sides to help retain heat? I was talking to a hardware guy about insulation and the tanks and he showed me the board and wondered if that would help.

    Wooden enclosures are in our future, I just didn't expect this sudden temp drop this early in the year. I'm really not likin Texas weather, the South was MUCH easier to live in. *lol*

    Thanks for advice and ideas.
  2. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    Hi, now you know the main problem with all-glass fish tanks; they are VERY bad at holding in the heat! Yes, by all means, cover the back and sides with the foam, thin plywood also works well, even cardboard for a quick, temporary fix. But keep an eye on the temps, obviously they will rise by a good ammount.
    Good luck!
  3. missabrat

    missabrat Elite Member

    the foam board works for me, and we freeze during the winter here in NY!! I cut it to fit the back and sides, leaving the front open to view, this year thought I think I am covering the front and just leaving a small section open for viewing. I use duct tape to hold everything together and on the tank. We also put a "aquarium" backing around the tank so the reptiles don't get overloaded with plain white walls LOL
  4. monkeytechahoo

    monkeytechahoo Elite Member

    Yes, I know, but hubby was supposed to be here and have the permanent vivs built by now. *lil womanly whine that usually doesn't work too good* Course he now works in Al thanks to a sorry job market here, so this week had me scrambling, earlier cooler temps than expected, till he can make it back and have permanent correct vivs made.

    Thanks for lettin me know the insulation boards works. I'll get on it right away. :)
  5. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    I get the 4 x 8 foot sheets of foam insulation from Home Depot. Holds in the heat very well. Add a wood top and you have no worries.
  6. Rob

    Rob Elite Member

    I would keep all the tanks in one corner or along one wall. For me this is all thats needed. I do have wood tops though.
  7. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    Are all of your tanks in one room? If you can get them all in one room, it might help, and along one wall is a great idea (so long as it isn't an outside wall, if you can help it.) If the room is small, you might consider getting a heat bulb (They are large, but they do put out heat) for the room itself - to replace the ceiling lamp. Wal*Mart sells them for bathrooms. It might add a little heat to the room too. Small ceramic space heaters will also heat a room. A CHE will help with individual tanks.

    Use the foamboard, and if you can, don't forget to get some underneath the tank too. The stuff is very easy to cut with a kitchen knife.
  8. monkeytechahoo

    monkeytechahoo Elite Member

    I was wondering about under the tanks too Dragoness, thanks for tellin me it was usable there too. The python's tank is on a metal open stand so that had me thinkin. Others have closed wood stands.

    The 3 of 4 tanks are all in the same room, just opposite sides. It's the MB, my son's room, or the family hang out/game room. The LR is like that special room us 70's kids had that no one went in except on special occasions. *lol* Ours just doesn't get used because this rental house is horrible in winter to heat in some rooms. Huge 16 x 18 room, but that kid has LOTS of stuff in it. *lol* I'm hoping to be out of this house and into another in a month or two.

    Tiny's tank was on an outer wall by a window, but I moved it a while back, knowing come winter, it's not good to have an animal by the window. Pepper, leo gecko, is in my daughter's room and sits on an inner wall. Other leo and the beardie are on inner walls with Tiny.

    I can use a bathroom heat bulb (those you see in the hotel bathroom?) in a ceiling light, like ceiling fan light, fixture?!??! If so, I send a kiss to you Dragoness, I HATE my room cold, it's tiny little room, and if I can use that for myself for more heat, 80 on up and I'm comphy, everyone else whines it's hot. *lol*

    I found this too

    so I think I'll be set here soon. Thanks so much!
  9. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    While the insulation will make it easier to control the heat in the enclosure, if the room doesn't get REALLY cold its not all that much of an issue. My reptile room gets down to mid to upper 60's in winter and I have never had an issue maintaining temperature with my existing heaters.

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