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AwesomeO81 12-31-2017 03:09 PM

Heating Question(s)
 
Hi. New member here. I'll drop into the intro forum when I have some more time. Forgive me if this is answered elsewhere, but from my searches, I can't find anything specific to my question. I don't have any big trips planned for at least the first half of 2018, so I think I'm gonna finally stop reading about corn snakes and get one. I'm a bit stuck on one supply that I'm gonna need. I see the consensus seems to be a heat mat under the tank. I have a 40 gallon breeder that I bought at the dollar a gallon sale at Petco about 5 years ago. To keep 1/3-just under 1/2 of the tank at around 85 degrees in that size tank, what wattage should I get? The options are 4w, 8w, 16w, or 24w. I am in central VA so our seasons are typical of the northeast. Winters get very cold at times and summers have a few heatwaves in the high 90s. Our house is always heated and cooled accordingly, so inside temps would never be an issue. I suppose I can get an 8w to start and do some temperature testing and exchanging, but I figured I'd ask and maybe save me a trip to the pet store.

My other question about the heat mat is regarding the timing. Is it something that would need to be on all the time or just during the day on a timer?

I'm sure other smaller questions will come up, but I've done a lot of research on this, and I can't seem to find a clear explanation of this.

Thanks.

Patmart 12-31-2017 03:27 PM

Hi happy new year to you
I have 2 corns had my first last December 2016 he is a Amal corn he was nine weeks old
He is just over 1 year old
And Iíve got a Carolina she is the same age to George
Iíve got 3 foot by 18Ē
Iíve got heat lamp and a heat mat
The heat mat only comes on a night when I turn the heat lamp down
I know in the USA they use heat mats more than we do in the UK
some on this forum will be Abel to help you better than I can
Pat
Good luck with your snake


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Karl_Mcknight 12-31-2017 04:38 PM

you won't be able to actually "Heat the Tank" or even part of it. What you actually do is heat the "Bottom of the Tank" where the snake actually lives. (Who cares what the temp is up at the top or on the sides, right?) The snake crawls on the bottom of the tank, so you try to keep 1/2 of that bottom heated to about 85 degrees, and just leave the other half room temp. That way the snake has a choice and can be warm or cool, whatever it wants. You should provide at least one hiding place on both the warm and cool side (more than 1 is even better), and take your temperature readings from inside those hiding places, because odds are, that's where the snake will be most of the time.

As for your original question, what size mat should you have - for a 40 gallon breeder tank like you stated you have, you're going to want a fairly large pad. I have a 30 gallon myself, and I am using 2 pads actually (because it can get really cold where I live). I have a 16w on the warm side, and just a little 4w on the cool side. Both are on thermostats. The 16w stays at 85 degrees inside the warm hide all the time, and the smaller 4w is under the cool hide and it only comes on if the temp drops below 71 degrees. If the temp stays warmer than 71, then it doesn't even kick in. My heat pads are "On" all the time. But with the thermostats in play, they kick on and off as needed, just like the heat in your house. Snakes are reptiles and they need heat. If the temps get too cool they will become sluggish, go into a form of hibernation, won't digest their food properly, and may not eat.

You should "ALWAYS" use thermostats with any heat source. Never just plug in a heat pad, assume it's ok and walk away. Some of those heat pads can hit over 130 degrees and will burn or even cook your snake if left unregulated. Heat lamps require thermostats too (all heat just as you have a thermostat in your home). Heat lamps can also burn the animal and should not be allowed to contact the animal. Most of us choose not to heat with lamps.

Scrappyeddie77 12-31-2017 10:30 PM

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/201...45ea9f2c9d.jpg
You can find something like this to help get your temps right


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Em.Mo.Clark 01-01-2018 07:29 PM

So, I have both a heating mat and a heat lamp. My heating mat is on the outside wall of the warm side of the tank and stays on 24/7, and the heat lamp is over the warm side of the tank and gets turned on when I wake up and turned off when I go to bed. Easy as that. I'm not sure about wattage for the heating mat. As for the wattage on the bulb for the lamp, if you get an adjustable lamp stand, you can afford to get a pretty hot bulb and just raise it enough from the tank until you see from your thermometer that the warm side is staying at the desired temperature.


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AwesomeO81 01-02-2018 01:35 PM

Thanks for the replies. I actually bought my corn yesterday. I got an albino. Pics are on my phone, so I don't have any on the computer I am using right now, but it's colors are that of uncooked bacon. Will post later tonight. I got a heat mat and thermostat and put it on the underside of the right side of the cage. I put the warm hide right over it and have the thermostat set to 85. The temp in the house is usually at least 70. I used a small empty snackcake box as it's cool side hide. I'll probably put some felt on it to cover up the boxart. I used aspen shavings as the substrate. All seems to be going well. It's in a 40 gallon breeder and is very active. Was a little skittish at first when I opened the container it came home in. It may have bitten me as soon as I took the lid off. Felt like nothing, so who knows, but after that initial strike, it crawled right up my arm to get transferred.

Karl_Mcknight 01-02-2018 06:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AwesomeO81 (Post 1731021)
.............. I got a heat mat and thermostat and put it on the underside of the right side of the cage. I put the warm hide right over it and have the thermostat set to 85............

Now 1 more thing...
Keep an eye on the temps actually inside the warm hide. Just because the thermostat is set at 85 doesn't mean that's what the actual temp will be. There are a lot of factors. Cheap thermostats don't work as well as expensive ones, where is your probe located, the heat has to come through the glass, and into the hide...etc....

I actually have to set my thermostat to about 90 (in the summer time) and 92 (right now) just to have it actually 85 degrees inside the warm hide.

I use one of those "Point and Shoot Digital Infrared Thermometers" to take temp readings inside the hide boxes and at various locations in the cage.

I had to fiddle with the thermostat for a while to get an acceptable reading out of it, but now everything is fine.

Your's is likely to be the same unless you just got lucky and hit a winning combination right off the bat.

daddio207 01-06-2018 04:33 PM

If you did research proper heating of a corn snake's cage on this forum you would have found some heated (no pun intended) discussions.
Literally this subject has been debated to the point that no one listens to scientific proof anymore and only to the crowd mentality now. SAD
The truth and fact of the matter is a thermostat or rheostat is not required when used with the proper size UTH and set up. It also can be detrimental to the health of a CORN SNAKE that is kept in a tank. I capitalize "corn snake" to emphasize this does NOT apply to many other snakes especially ball pythons and boas.

Now the crowd will tell you why I'm wrong instead of asking why I think I am right....
AAAAaaaaaannd GO ! :crazy02:

Dragonling 01-07-2018 12:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by daddio207 (Post 1731068)
The truth and fact of the matter is a thermostat or rheostat is not required when used with the proper size UTH and set up. It also can be detrimental to the health of a CORN SNAKE that is kept in a tank. I capitalize "corn snake" to emphasize this does NOT apply to many other snakes especially ball pythons and boas.

I've used my fair share of unregulated heat mats. It's not something I recommend for the average novice without some level of guidance most of the time, but I've walked customers through buying the proper mat for their setup dependant on substrate used and tank versus tub, etc. I'm curious why you consider stats detrimental for corns specifically.

daddio207 01-08-2018 04:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dragonling (Post 1731070)
I've used my fair share of unregulated heat mats. It's not something I recommend for the average novice without some level of guidance most of the time, but I've walked customers through buying the proper mat for their setup dependant on substrate used and tank versus tub, etc. I'm curious why you consider stats detrimental for corns specifically.


By adding a way to control the temp of a UTH you are adding an item that when it fails it fails in the OFF position. Since stats are unnecessary with corn snakes specifically, why add something that could cost the life of the animal if it fails.


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