Grow light

EppsDynasty

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So for the winter I am turning a bedroom into a turtle/tortoise room. We have male & female Razorback turtles, Hermanns tortoises, as well as our Jo Jo (desert tort rescue). This room will need heat and uv light. Question… During the day couldn’t I use a grow light 400 or 600 watt for both heat and uv? This would be a Metal Halide grow light. Metal Halide to recreate spring and summer sun.
If I used a T5 light I then would also need to heat the room, why not all in one. Of course I would use a heater during the dark period (night).
 

jaizei

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The metal halide grow light isnt made to produce uvb in the right wavelengths, and is prob designed to block any uvb it produces for safety anyways.

T5 bulbs don't get as hot as incandescent, but with the ballast, they produce a decent amount of heat. A couple T5 fixtures might be enough for ambient heat depending on how cold the room gets.
 

Tom

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So for the winter I am turning a bedroom into a turtle/tortoise room. We have male & female Razorback turtles, Hermanns tortoises, as well as our Jo Jo (desert tort rescue). This room will need heat and uv light. Question… During the day couldn’t I use a grow light 400 or 600 watt for both heat and uv? This would be a Metal Halide grow light. Metal Halide to recreate spring and summer sun.
If I used a T5 light I then would also need to heat the room, why not all in one. Of course I would use a heater during the dark period (night).
It appears that you do not want to brumate any of these? If that is the case, then the best way to do this would be to heat the entire room. Essentially, you will now have a "reptile" room". I heat mine with a radiant oil heater set on a a separate reptile thermostat that is rated to handle the wattage. The thermostats that come on the heaters allow huge temperature swings that I don't want, but they can be used as a secondary safety to prevent over heating in the event a thermostat fails and sticks on. I use one full size radiant heater set on the low (600 watt) setting in my 12x20 foot room. During the rare winter cold spells with nights in the high 20s and days in the 50s, I will run two of these heaters on opposite sides of the room, each on its own thermostat. For most of the year, the room stays warm enough with no heat at all and just the individual reptile lights in each enclosure keep it toasty all day.

Then, you can use the correct lighting and basking for each individual enclosure. Here is the breakdown on that, but adjust as needed for your situation. Ambient heat will be covered for the whole room, so you can skip #2.
Here is a breakdown of the four heating and lighting essentials:
  1. Basking bulb. I use 65 watt incandescent floods from the hardware store. Some people will need bigger, or smaller wattage bulbs. Let your thermometer be your guide. I run them on a timer for about 12 hours and adjust the height to get the correct basking temp under them. I also like to use a flat rock of some sort directly under the bulb. You need to check the temp with a thermometer directly under the bulb and get it to around 95-100F (36-37C).
  2. Ambient heat maintenance. I use ceramic heating elements or radiant heat panels set on thermostats to maintain ambient above 80 degrees day and night for tropical species. In most cases you'd only need day heat for a temperate species like Testudo or DT, as long as your house stays above 60F (15-16C) at night. Some people in colder climates or with larger enclosures will need multiple CHEs or RHPs to spread out enough heat.
  3. Ambient light. I use LEDs for this purpose. Something in the 5000-6500K color range will look the best. Most bulbs at the store are in the 2500K range and they look yellowish. Strip or screw-in LED bulb types are both fine.
  4. UV. If you can get your tortoise outside for an hour 2 or 3 times a week, you won't need indoor UV. In colder climates, get one of the newer HO type fluorescent tubes. Which type will depend on mounting height. 5.0 bulbs make almost no UV. I like the 12% HO bulbs from Arcadia. You need a meter to check this: https://www.solarmeter.com/model65.html A good UV bulb only needs to run for 2-3 hours mid day. You need the basking bulb and the ambient lighting to be on at least 12 hours a day.
 

EppsDynasty

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Thank you @Tom for answering all the questions I had. The goal was to try and not use the radiant heater during the day. This Reptile Room would be in our "Front" house, which is unoccupied currently. What I was trying to do was only heat this room. No shortcuts, it's better that way for the animals. The Solar meter site page didn't work but I did look up the device model 6.5 for reptiles. This will be a must buy, it only makes sense to make sure they are getting what they need in the way of UV.
 
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