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 How do heat mats compare?

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Genghis2009
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PostSubject: How do heat mats compare?   1/18/2010, 8:48 am

Hi all, just some quick advice regarding heat mats please. Basically I'm creating a new setup and decided for temp control to give an Eco terra rainforest heatwave a go - however I'm finding this doesn't give off much heat and struggles to bump "warm end" temp beyond 23-23.5 degrees C. The mat itself just doesn't feel very warm.

Simple question really. What brands/model of heat mats can I use that will do a decent job of bumping up the temp? (as opposed to this exo terra thing which is doing next to nothing!). Should mention that it's a humid/forest enclosure and yes the room itself is on the cool side.

*NB: Forgot to mention originally that this is for an emp enclosure so I presume this is the correct forum*


Last edited by Genghis2009 on 1/18/2010, 1:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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binksyboy3
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/18/2010, 1:16 pm

I was told to know exo terra as exo - terrible. They re make other brands goods, sell them at a cheaper price but they are not as good quality.

I have one "thermo mat" by "Heat"

and two "Habistat heat mat" by "Euro rep". They all give me about 27 celcius and work great.
Some people don't like to use heat mats and prefer lamps but my preference is mats because they haven't gone wrong for me yet. Smile
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Genghis2009
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/18/2010, 1:33 pm

Thanks for the feedback, I've ordered a habistat replacement which will hopefully do the job. Smile

Really quite at this so called "heatwave" - as I speak the warm end of the enclosure stands at a decidedly unimpressive 22.6C, the centre of the mat is lukewarm and the rest is doing nothing and naturally of course the substrate at that end feels no warmer than the opposite. I'm sure this is probably of some use for different needs but for a primary heatsource it would do as well to stand there and blow inside the viv Rolling Eyes


Last edited by Mr. Mordax on 1/19/2010, 11:20 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Language . . . asterisks count)
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T7Lazarus13
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/18/2010, 6:44 pm

Well you should have taken the desert heat mat from exoterra, they pack a more appreciable heat than the rainforest one (witch can almost only be used for creating a ''hotter' spot in a vivarium already at a right temperature). that said im no expert so if the price dont bother you much go with binksyboy recomendation.
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Niekro
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 4:54 am

My exo-terra sucks too, thinking of getting the above recommended habistat heat pad. What wattage should I get?

edit : I found an 11" by 11" Habistat 12 watts ...I have a 10 gallon tank, it would be a good fit
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binksyboy3
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 12:39 pm

Niekro wrote:
I found an 11" by 11" Habistat 12 watts ...I have a 10 gallon tank, it would be a good fit

I don't know how big tanks are in gallons because obviously they can vary depending on which way the dimensions go. What are the dimensions?
Almost any mat should be fine anyway just as long as they are not tiny in comparison to the tank. Smile
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gromgroms
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 1:59 pm

i use a heatmat... and it was useless for my emps
put it on my flat rock's cage since he doesnt need heat as much, but he still does, but he'll live with that till i start getting paid well enough to get him a bulb
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binksyboy3
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 4:10 pm

What brand is it? Size?
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The-Scorp-Whisperer
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 4:13 pm

what you could do to bump the heat up a bit is put some polystyrene behind the heat mat and that should do, either that or bubble wrap or an old towel stufffed behind the heat mat, thats what i do and it works perfectly for me, keeps hte tanks at a perfect 30C and can go up to 35 on a hot day, saves a lot mroe bother than buying new bulbs, heat mats etc
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Genghis2009
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 5:26 pm

Quite interesting to hear the experiences of others regarding the heat mats - appears to be some mixed results. Can't help but wonder if these are open to so many variables such as overall room temp, use of insulation such as polystyrene, substrate used etc etc.

As an interesting side note I was looking on the Hagen website (which manufactures the exo-terra range) and stumbled across some further info in the FAQ section regarding their heatmats:

We have two types of heat waves for two different temperate zones.

Both types do not turn off once plugged in.
They are not equipped with a thermostat.

The Heat Wave Heat Mat MUST be adhered to GLASS.

Generally, there not need be a thermostat because the low wattages will not produce an adequate amount of heat to result in an overheating condition. However, the heater must be used in accordance with the directions, the bottom of the aquarium/terrarium must be elevated (by using the rubber feet included) off of the supporting surface. The reasons for this are two fold. One, by not allowing the heat to escape from under the tank the heat could eventually build up to the point where the bottom glass plate of the terrarium could crack and second the support surface could also become damaged.

The first type of heat wave is called "Rainforest".
In this temperate zone you will find moderately hot and very humid conditions. When this type of heater or this particular watt per square inch**, is used with this zones typical ground cover i.e... Bark, leaves, moist soil. Basically a loose type floor or bedding the heat wave will raise the floor temperature above the heat wave to around 85F when your ambient room temperature is 72F

The Second type of heat wave is called "Desert".
In this temperate zone you will find very hot and very dry conditions. When this type of heater or this particular watt per square inch**, is used with this zones typical ground cover i.e... Sands, rock. basically a very dense bedding the heat wave will raise the floor temperature above the heat wave to around 100F again, when your ambient room temperature is 72F

Higher or lower ambient temperatures or room temperatures will of course influence the temperature of the terrarium temperature. (We should have mentioned in the instructions that the terrarium should not be placed in direct sunlight or to turn off all heat sources when in direct sun light)

We always suggest close monitoring of the terrariums temperatures with an Exo-Terra thermometer.


Interestingly enough the literature with the product and via the exo-terra website makes no reference to the relevance of room temperature or indeed the level of performance which should be expected from the mat itself Rolling Eyes - this may be self-evident to those with experience but to NOOBS (like me) it is perhaps less than obvious. To be honest I tried a higher room temp and it made no difference to mat performance, still barely warming the glass (to confirm also I have insulated the back with bubblewrap and feel no heat coming through here).

It may just be the luck of the draw in getting a faulty product. The habistat mat arrives tomorrow anyway, I shall judge then if there is any visible difference - worst case scenario is the crickets can have their own (all be it crappy) exo-terra heatmat to save throwing it in the bin Smile
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gromgroms
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 6:28 pm

mines a reptitherm
keeps the little flat rock's cage around 70-75 at 65 in the room though, so as above posters have said, the colder the actual room, the bigger effect they have
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Niekro
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/19/2010, 9:01 pm

binksyboy3 wrote:
Niekro wrote:
I found an 11" by 11" Habistat 12 watts ...I have a 10 gallon tank, it would be a good fit

I don't know how big tanks are in gallons because obviously they can vary depending on which way the dimensions go. What are the dimensions?
Almost any mat should be fine anyway just as long as they are not tiny in comparison to the tank. Smile


20" by 10" the temp is 25 celsius (77 farhen)...is that warm enough? Thanks. Very Happy
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binksyboy3
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PostSubject: Re: How do heat mats compare?   1/20/2010, 2:44 am

yep, they like to be between 25 - 30 celcius. My mats once warmed up after a day they stay on 28 constantly so thats pretty much perfect Smile

That sized heat mat should be fine - i use one of those. But if you're still not 100% sure, then go one size up. But they all give out the same temps - just designed to be larger or smaller for different sized tanks. So they should all reach 25-30 celcius where the heat mat is placed.
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