Can you attach two heat sources to a single thermostat?

Discussion in 'DIY Zone' started by Lvl48, May 24, 2020.

  1. Lvl48

    Lvl48 New Member

    May 24, 2020
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    Hey guys, I'm completely new to keeping snakes and am looking at making my first enclosure.
    Right now I'm torn between hiring an electrician to wire it up for me or just using premade components that don't need further wiring.

    I'm making my enclosure out of a 5ft long cabinet for a BHP, and I was wondering if I get a Microclimate B1ME thermostat can I attach the ceramic AND the infra red fitting to it using a plug splitter? Will it dim both heat sources or only one? Will it be overloaded? Do I only need to attach the ceramic to the thermostat and just use a timer on the infra red like I will on the UV bar?

    Every time I learn something new about reptile keeping I am only filled with more questions...
  2. nuttylizardguy

    nuttylizardguy Suspended Banned

    Nov 1, 2018
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    If the double adapter is what connects both heat sources to the thermostat , both will be dimmed proportionally to their individual resistances.

    Some very basic physics
    and then Kirchhoff's Laws apply to work out current going from the double adapter to the two heat sources ( in parallel electrically ).
    More basic physics , this is a handy easy to use GUI that will help you calculate how much current each heat source will receive

    Now a general comment , acceptable heat sources for diurnal ( day active ) reptiles are ceramic heat emitter , radiant heating panels , heatpads ( insulated , ie buried in sand, placed under glass or a ceramic tile ) , MVBs, Halogens floods, Incandescent floods, neodymium spots.

    For nocturnal ( night active ) reptiles are ceramic heat emitter , radiant heating panels (if they emit no VISIBLE light), heatpads ( insulated , ie buried in sand, placed under glass or a ceramic tile ) , and moon glow heat globes.

    Red coloured infra red globes are not adviseable because they make it hard for a reptile to find it's food and if used at night for diurnal reptiles the glow will disturb their sleep.

    I don't keep pythons , so I'll let someone who has the experience with them (even the species you mention) to add more specific guidance or even point you at a good care sheet.
    Last edited: May 25, 2020
    reptileandsodaz likes this.
  3. Sdaji

    Sdaji APS Veteran APS Veteran

    Jun 28, 2004
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    Excuse nuttylizardguy's ramblings, he has a few loose screws.

    It sounds like you're getting sucked into a lot of newbie gimmicks and making your enclosure far too complicated.

    For a Black-headed (or any python) you don't need UV, it provides no benefit and some problems. Ceramics are pointless, as are infrared bulbs, they're just expensive heating sold to newbies who don't know any better so that the shops can make a profit. Your snake needs a heat gradient and if you want the enclosure to look pretty you can install visible lighting for your own viewing pleasure. Floor heat is cheaper to run, easier, more reliable and most importantly to me, it's the easiest way to provide the right type of heat for your snake to use, and a gradient to give it what it wants. Infrareds are just silly, ceramics are much the same. Think about the way the snake's environment works; when heat comes from the sky it comes from the sun, which puts out light. You can by a spotlight for about $4, or a ceramic or infrared which doesn't emit light (no natural heat source pumps heat down from the sky without light) for multiples of the price. At night, these snakes get their heat from the warm ground, not the sky, so floor heat makes sense (and is cheaper as well as better). If you just want the enclosure to be as effective as possible, just use floor heat. If you want to encourage the snake to bask and use more of the enclosure, use a spotlight (just a cheap one from the hardware or lighting store) and most importantly, floor heat (a heat mat or heat cord. Newbies usually prefer heat mats, more experienced keepers usually go for heat cords because they're more versatile and customisable).

    As for your original question, yes, if you want to you can use those two heat sources on a single dimming thermostat. It's a weird thing to do and you'd be using silly gear which is not ideal for the snake or your budget, but it's possible.

    Keep in mind that a heat mat or cord can be legally wired to a thermostat without an electrician being required.

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