uvb set up fail.. help!

soph.h

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Hi all..
possibly a silly question here but I cannot figure out how my set up should be. I've been reading through other threads about the lighting set up needed, and someone kindly pointed it out on an instagram post I made, and I've realised my UVB tube light is incorrect.
The previous owner gave it to me with the tort.. arcadia desert 10% UVB lamp 15w (18")
The lamp is currently attached to the side of the enclosure which I now understand can be dangerous for their eyesight.
Is the bulb actually correct and what height should it actually be from Colin? I'm looking at the arcadia set ups and cannot find one that corresponds with the bulb I have, although I have found a reflector hood... is this the same thing as the ones that come in the kits?

Sorry if this is a daft question- I should definitely have checked all of this a lot sooner. Trying my best to get everything right for him!!

Many thanks,
 

ZEROPILOT

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If we're just talking about UVB...
That 18" is most likely a T8 tube. Correct?
T8 don't produce a whole lot of UVB. Through a screen it's even 50% less or more.
Now factor in that someone gave it to you used, we need to also factor in that those T8 tubes only do what they do for 8 months more or less anyway.
So, your T8 is a dud. It was pretty much useless when it was new.
We used these in the hobby for decades. And they can work. They just need to be replaced very regularly and they must be very close to the tortoise and not made to pass through a screen.
Your best bet is to upgrade to a type T5 HO UVB. These provide much more reliable, more powerful levels of UVB and the tubes can be moved periodically to extend their lives. As in lowered closer to the animal as the level dissipates.
I use ZOOMED tubes and fixtures.
ARCADIA is probably superior to that.
Also, you're going to need a 6.5 UVB meter like the one that Josh's Frogs sells to set up your UVB light at the perfect height.
Anything else will just be a guess.
 

ZenHerper

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...
The lamp is currently attached to the side of the enclosure which I now understand can be dangerous for their eyesight.
...
Follow @ZEROPILOT 's advice about bulb and fixture type.

The fixture should be hung so that the light shines directly down onto the substrate. Not across from the side wall.

The sun shines down and tortoises evolved large ridges above their eyes that protect the corneas from excessive radiation (and bothersome light glare). A bulb that hangs on a wall and shines directly into the eyes can damage the corneas (and the animal's sight over time). Also light bulb in the eyes - bleh.
 

ZEROPILOT

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Follow @ZEROPILOT 's advice about bulb and fixture type.

The fixture should be hung so that the light shines directly down onto the substrate. Not across from the side wall.

The sun shines down and tortoises evolved large ridges above their eyes that protect the corneas from excessive radiation (and bothersome light glare). A bulb that hangs on a wall and shines directly into the eyes can damage the corneas (and the animal's sight over time). Also light bulb in the eyes - bleh.
I missed the part about the side mounted light. Thanks.
 

soph.h

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Thanks for the help! Yes I believe it is a T8.

I'm looking at the Zoo Med website right now... would you say tube lights are the best bet? I know coil bulbs are a big no, but there are some heat+uvb compact bulbs. Would be handy as there's only on fixture that way, although if they're not great then I will stick with tube light. And I will get hold of a solar meter as soon as possible..! Thanks again
 

ZEROPILOT

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Thanks for the help! Yes I believe it is a T8.

I'm looking at the Zoo Med website right now... would you say tube lights are the best bet? I know coil bulbs are a big no, but there are some heat+uvb compact bulbs. Would be handy as there's only on fixture that way, although if they're not great then I will stick with tube light. And I will get hold of a solar meter as soon as possible..! Thanks again
I do not reccomend those "all in one" bulbs. They do nothing very reliably, cause shell desiccation and cost the same as those T5 HO UVB tubes.
They DO seem handy. I myself have some in a box in a closet that I purchased and used briefly.
Please take my advice and don't waste your money on one of those Mercury Vapor Bulbs.
 

Lyn W

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Post pics of the enclosure to get advice on positioning.
Arcadia T5 HO kits are less than £50 at the Online Reptile Shop website.
They come in different lengths/watts to suit your enclosure size; check the caresheet to see which % you need for your species.
 

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