Heating a garage for tortoises in Arkansas

LRTortoises

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I bring in 3 leopards and 6 redfoots for the winter (about 5 months) into a two car garage that I don't have to put cars in. So I have lots of space. i cover the floor with Cypress Mulch at least 6 inches deep and in some places 2 ft deep for egg laying. I got arcadia lights on a timer for sun.

My question is heating. This is a cinder block garage. I have Natural gas available in it. Last year I used electric oil heaters but during tehcoldest months coudl only heat a small area that I covered with plastic. I am thinking of going with a gas wall heater and heating the whole garage.

Any suggestions on Radiant or covection?

Radiant heater at Homedepot

Convention at Home depot

Supposedly radiant heats objects while Convection heats the air. I am leaning towards radiant as that mimics the sun best. So it should heat my tortoises who can then choose how close to stand away from it.

It seems to be a lot more economical and efficient that my eletric oil heater?
 

Tom

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I'd use the gas heater to maintain ambient and then heat one section with radiant heat to make a warmer spot near the UV during the day.

Insulation is critical. Without it, you will be waisting a tremendous amount of energy.
 

Yvonne G

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and along with what Tom said, I'd cover the floor with plywood then rubber horse stall mats to make sure the cold cement floor doesn't reach the tortoises.
 

LRTortoises

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I'd use the gas heater to maintain ambient and then heat one section with radiant heat to make a warmer spot near the UV during the day.

Insulation is critical. Without it, you will be waisting a tremendous amount of energy.


Yeah the garage doors are heavily insualted and I replaced the windows this month as the ones the were in it were very old and horrible. The walls are cinderblocks inside with stucco exterior. Last year with the electric oil heater the only time it got under 75 was in our coldest weels and so I built a quick shelter out of radiant hard insulation to make sure they had a warm area.
 

LRTortoises

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and along with what Tom said, I'd cover the floor with plywood then rubber horse stall mats to make sure the cold cement floor doesn't reach the tortoises.
For that the Cypress mulch acted as an insulator. But the rubber floor mat under that is a great idea also thanks.
 

LRTortoises

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I should also say this is their night house most of the time. Every day that it gets over 70 I bring them back out which is alot of October and even some of November and then March.
 
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