Humidity, Hides, ?s For Mark and others

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Balboa

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OK, so I noticed a strange thing about humidity and temperature, and it was almost like they were mutually exclusive, it really takes great efforts to get both up. (part of my great skepticism about cited achievements of others at times). I'm a newb to tort keeping, and had never paid much attention to the science of humidity.

After some research I learned that the relative humidity we measure is a percent of what the air can hold at that temp.

a 20 degree F increase in temps roughly doubles the holding capacity of the air.

water vapor is lighter than air, so the higher the humidity of a given air pocket relative to drier, same temp surrounding air, the more likely it is to rise.

With constant losses then, it can take alot of heat to maintain both high temps and high humidity. (Since a 20 degree increase in air temp will also require twice the water vapor just to maintain relative humidity.) My Brains too tired to really figure out the math, but I'm thinking that's like quadrupling the power requirement of simply raising temps alone.

It makes me wonder how often folks may check an enclosure, see the humidity is down, do a quick spritz, say "there all better", and walk away, and never notice the following temp drop that the evaporation of the water fascilitated was the actual cause of the raised humidity and as temps recover, the enclosure goes back to being parched.

The only real point of all this, is that I've noticed with my humid hides, actual temps inside are friggin cold. Now that I understand the relationships of humidity and temp better, this makes sense. What I'm wondering is if this is the true goal. Do I want 85-90 degrees in a hide with 85-90 humidity, as I had assumed we wanted (by nature of placing the hide at the hot end), or is the 75 degrees and 90 humidity that I actually get the goal?

Thanks to anyone that made it through that :)
 

Emorales

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As a pilot I know exactly what you are talking about. My goal is as high a humidity as I can get which seams to be 90% @ 99.2 degrees Ferenheight although I would prefer higher temps it is difficult to get that high a humidity with higher temps. You are correct that as the humidity increases you get a temp drop as a result of evaporative cooling. I check temp constantly and humidity every other day with a very expensive humidor hygrometer and it is very difficult to keep both high temp and high humidity. The goal depends on the species that you keep I believe.
 

Madkins007

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LOL! You've spotted the Great Flaw in overhead heating and humidity systems- it all rises. It is even worse if the room itself is at all cool or dry.

The flip side is that heat and humidity generated from below will rise as well- but it rises past the tortoise, so it gets the benefit.

Our goal is that the temp and humidity we suggest be at the tortoise's level.

In all honesty, I think that the best way to get the temps and humidity we want in most homes in cooler, drier climates would be to build a relatively large, well-insulated 'box' that did not rest on the room's floor and then heat/humidify it like it was a room in our house with at least some of the heat and humidity entering low or even through the floor. It would also need a good air control system to keep the air inside fresh and circulated.
 

Balboa

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Emorales: I bet you do get it, as a pilot you even have to deal with an additional variable, pressure, that is less of an issue here at ground level, but changing weather systems will effect enclosure humididty as well.

Mark: Thanks for the input, and yup I know you get it, hence your heating cables :). I was afraid that what i'm managing to get with these hides was inadequate, even though its exactly what most folks do.

Trouble is none of the heating systems are "supposed" to be buried in substrate, though I know you've had good results it makes me nervous, hehe.

I've contemplated using in-floor type electric heating. Its actually designed to attach to plywood to heat home interiors. Somewhat costly though, and probably over-kill wattage wise.
 

Yvonne G

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I use a mylar heat mat. Its original use is supposed to help seeds germinate quicker. You place it on the shelf of your green house then set your seed tray on it. But I place it on the table, then put the plastic tub of babies on it. It only fits under one end. You can scrape some substrate away if it doesn't get warm enough, or add some if it gets too warm. But the strip is mfg'd so it doesn't get too hot. And its made to sit under a damp tray, so its pretty safe.
 

Balboa

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hmm looks like I'll be doing what my head told me to do from the beginning, but I got myself scared off of. Heat from underneath.

I think I like the propagation heater idea, thanks Yvonne. I've heard of that one before, and I believe its about the same thing as what Mark sourced from Big Apple, though I might be wrong on that.
 

Tom

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I heat an entire reptile room. The humidity is irrelevant. Above 80 the heater shuts off, below 80 the heater kicks on. When I see the humidity getting a little low, I splash a gallon or two of water around the room and on the floor. If the temp drops from evaporation, the heater kicks on. The air in there always feels "thick". It can be 80 in the room and when you step out of the room into 95 degree weather it feels cooler.

On the other hand, I've been wanting to try some belly heat instead of overhead lamps too, just to see how it works.
 

Madkins007

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Greenhouse or gardening cables work nicely in more limited areas. I used the Flex-O-Watts in my big place. I did have a problem with one that melted and scorched for reasons I don't know- may have been because a planter got moved on top of it and I did not notice.
 
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