Heating for indoor night hide

Lyn W

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I have just bought this insulated dog kennel for my leopard to use as his nightbox in his room.
Internal dimensions: 28" W x 18"D x 17" H
I have also lined it with foil covered bubble wrap as extra insulation.
upload_2019-11-11_6-44-5.jpeg
At the moment he has a che and my central heating radiator to provide his night heat, but in an effort to reduce my heating bills I want to contain his heat so that I can turn the heating off at night.
So what would be my best options for heating a night box this size?
I'm considering a RHP run through a termostat at his level on the wall, possibly with tubular heating mounted on the ceiling. (I don't think there's enough room for the oil filled radiators many use)


ECOT Tubular Heater with Thermostat

The Dimplex ECOT 1FT thermostatic tubular heater is ideal for applications which require safe, low-wattage background heating for localised frost protection or as window de-misters.

  • Low 40W evenly distributed heat output
  • Discreet mounting brackets for walls or floors
  • Reversible left or right hand cable entry
  • Thermostatic control
  • Auto-reset thermal overload cut-out for safety
You can buy covers for this if it needs to be mounted lower.
Any thoughts or other ideas would be appreciated to make this as safe as possible.
 

Blackdog1714

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A Radiant Heat Panel with a thermostat would be better like a Reptile Basics Radiant Heat Panel, 40 watt or higher. It gives a wider more even heat. Personally I have never used the tube type so do not understand how it heats. The RHP I use maintains an even output and has no highes an lows. THat heater seems to have a heated element in a sealed tube. So a backup thermostat would be recommend to prevent over heating
 

ZEROPILOT

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Maybe I've missed something.
But, how about incorporating a door flap to help out the CHE?.
I use simple automobile floor mats trimmed to fit and then attached on top of the door opening with staples.
My tortoises have always figured how to get into and out of the houses with the flaps. There was no learning curve. And the flaps really hold in the warmth.
South Florida is not Wales.
My tortoises are not indoors.
However, since it's just a few bucks and works so well for me, I thought I'd mention it.
@Tom would be who I'd ask about the type of heater.
(I just blew up the photo...Does the dog house already have flaps?)
 

Lyn W

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Maybe I've missed something.
But, how about incorporating a door flap to help out the CHE?.
I use simple automobile floor mats trimmed to fit and then attached on top of the door opening with staples.
My tortoises have always figured how to get into and out of the houses with the flaps. There was no learning curve. And the flaps really hold in the warmth.
South Florida is not Wales.
My tortoises are not indoors.
However, since it's just a few bucks and works so well for me, I thought I'd mention it.
@Tom would be who I'd ask about the type of heater.
(I just blew up the photo...Does the dog house already have flaps?)
Hi Ed yes it does come with plastic flaps but the overlap on them isn't great so I was going to add an extra layer or replace them with something better anyway - thanks for the idea.
I wasn't sure about using the che inside a box that size although it would be on a thermostat.
I suppose I could use the che (instead of the tube heating) as well as the RHP (both on thermostats)

The whole idea is to contain his heat, so that I can turn off my heating at night.
 

Maro2Bear

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I've had the best results using a Kane heat mat under and a radiant heat panel overhead, both on one thermostat. I made a thread showing this, but the pics are gone because tinypic shut down.
Pretty much exactly what Ive done as well. Kane heat pad on bottom, 120w RHP overhead, all tied to a LL Reptile thermostat.

Like Ed...I too use simple automobile floor mats trimmed to fit and then attached on top of the door opening.
 

Lyn W

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I've had the best results using a Kane heat mat under and a radiant heat panel overhead, both on one thermostat. I made a thread showing this, but the pics are gone because tinypic shut down.
I've seen the pics of your night boxes Tom and was looking for the pics to use as a guide but as you say they are now unavailable.
How high above the tort would the RHP be effective? I thought they would work like any radiator and heat the air but I've been told that they wouldn't and need to be low on the side wall for the tort to benefit.
Kane mats aren't available in the UK and although Maro2Bear found a UK company that supply Stanfield mats they are too big. I have also looked at the Farm Innovation heated chicken mats available on Amazon UK which were a perfect size but the problem there is the difference in US/UK voltage, so I would also need a transformer. I'd feel happier with something UK ready but they don't seem popular with chicken keepers over here.
My best option may be one of these (Petnap Flexiguard Cat/Dog heat pad) I emailed the company to see if they thought it would be suitable for a tortoise but not had a reply. They are supposed to be used with a cloth cover which isn't ideal because it could be nibbled.

The hide is just waiting for the heating now and I can't wait to see Lola using it (hopefully!)
 

Tom

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I've seen the pics of your night boxes Tom and was looking for the pics to use as a guide but as you say they are now unavailable.
How high above the tort would the RHP be effective? I thought they would work like any radiator and heat the air but I've been told that they wouldn't and need to be low on the side wall for the tort to benefit.
Kane mats aren't available in the UK and although Maro2Bear found a UK company that supply Stanfield mats they are too big. I have also looked at the Farm Innovation heated chicken mats available on Amazon UK which were a perfect size but the problem there is the difference in US/UK voltage, so I would also need a transformer. I'd feel happier with something UK ready but they don't seem popular with chicken keepers over here.
My best option may be one of these (Petnap Flexiguard Cat/Dog heat pad) I emailed the company to see if they thought it would be suitable for a tortoise but not had a reply. They are supposed to be used with a cloth cover which isn't ideal because it could be nibbled.

The hide is just waiting for the heating now and I can't wait to see Lola using it (hopefully!)
I wouldn't use any heat mat other than a Kane or Stansfield because they haven't been tested on tortoises. The risk of burns is very high on this sort of product with reptiles and tortoises. Height for the RHP depends on wattage and ambient. Only your thermometer can answer that question. I run my 40 and 80 watt panels in outdoor night boxes at about 10-15 inches above the tortoises. They are effective and also do a good job of keeping an insulated box warmer in general.
 

Lyn W

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I wouldn't use any heat mat other than a Kane or Stansfield because they haven't been tested on tortoises. The risk of burns is very high on this sort of product with reptiles and tortoises. Height for the RHP depends on wattage and ambient. Only your thermometer can answer that question. I run my 40 and 80 watt panels in outdoor night boxes at about 10-15 inches above the tortoises. They are effective and also do a good job of keeping an insulated box warmer in general.
Thanks Tom yes I'm worried about the risk of burns too.
Maybe 2 RHPs would work - a higher wattage above and lower wattage mounted on the side - I'm told they wouldn't burn a tort on contact.
 

Tom

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Thanks Tom yes I'm worried about the risk of burns too.
Maybe 2 RHPs would work - a higher wattage above and lower wattage mounted on the side - I'm told they wouldn't burn a tort on contact.
I don't like to side mount them. I'm afraid of too much heat that close to the tortoise and I'm afraid of them rubbing on it and wrecking the "lens" too.
 

Maro2Bear

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Lyn W

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We have a limited range of RHPs available in UK and I think although I may be mistaken that they are 75W max.....will check that though.
I have also found these variations on a CHE - a Microclimate Advanced heating system only available in 500W
https://www.microclimate.co.uk/downloads/AHS.pdf
I have been in touch with the company and they say it will safe to use in my night box if it's indoors.
Anyone used or have any thoughts on these?


 

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