CHE not emitting heat into tank?

Discussion in 'General Reptile Discussion' started by rainmonitors, Oct 19, 2019.

  1. rainmonitors

    rainmonitors Not so new Member

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    hey guys. i've recently set up a 4x2x2 bioactive tank for my bluey, and it's going mostly fantastic so far. the humidity is good, substrate is deep, plants are thriving. i originally planned to use a 150w ceramic heat emitter in an exo terra wire CHE holder, but it never gave me temps above 30c (30cm away from basking rock/hot spot).

    because of this, i switched to a 150w reptile one daylight lamp in an exo terra glow lamp fixture. the thermo and that did very well in getting high basking temps (37c air above basking, 45-ish basking surface temp), but the beam is tight and the heat doesn't radiate outside of that basking rock, so there isn't really a warm side.

    i previously had really good experiences with CHEs heating a different tank, but it just seems like the heat is going out of the side of the CHE (and into the room), instead of projecting down into the enclosure.

    what can i do to make the CHE project heat into the tank? should i continue to use the daylight bulb instead? the bluey isn't in the tank yet

    links to products, if needed:
    exo terra wire light: http://www.exo-terra.com/en/products/wire_light.php
    exo terra CHE: http://www.exo-terra.com/en/products/ceramic_heater.php
    exo terra glow light: http://www.exo-terra.com/en/products/glow_light.php
    reptile one daylight lamp: https://reptileone.com.au/products/heating/46560
    reptile one enclosure, new style: https://reptileone.com.au/products/housing/46166bk

    IMG_1291.JPG IMG_1289.JPG
     
  2. dragonlover1

    dragonlover1 Subscriber Subscriber

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    The way you have set up that CHE is totally wasted. All the heat is going straight up.If you really need extra heat you should have a reflector above it or mount it inside the enclosure, but I'm not sure you need extra heat for a bluey anyway,They don't need as much heat as a bearded dragon
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
  3. Herptology

    Herptology Well-Known Member

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    As dl1 said, you should have mounted the che on the inside with a cage around it as it’s all just radiating out to
    The sides and doing literally nothing

    Also 150w is a bit dangerous, without a thermostat, the thing starts to burn/melt it’s paint off and causes fumes you only need 100w max
     
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  4. Sdaji

    Sdaji Almost Legendary

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    Even in Melbourne, wild Blue-tongued Lizards have access to 50+ degree basking spots for a lot of the year, sometimes even in winter. They can handle cold temperatures but they do need access to warm temperatures too. They may not need as much as they naturally get, but never/rarely allowing them to get above the high 20s is not likely to result in anything you'd want.

    I must admit, this actually made me laugh. There is obviously some misleading information going around or a lack of good advice about how to use equipment. To be honest, CHEs really don't have any legitimate application for reptile keeping; they may sometimes serve a purpose but I literally can't think of any situation where there isn't a better, cheaper alternative.

    If you really must use a heat source outside the enclosure like that (it's a very, very inefficient way to provide heat), it must be radiant and focussed as herpetology said. Basically, a spotlight is your only option, but you'll do much better if you mount it inside the enclosure. You have a fully ventilated lid so you're always going to struggle to maintain ambient heat, so radiant heat (from a spotlight) and floor heat (from a heat mat/heat cord under the vivarium) are your options.

    Incidentally, while UV isn't needed for skinks so it doesn't matter anyway, what little UV is being produced by your UV light is largely being blocked by your ceiling screen. Again, if you want it to reach something in the enclosure it needs to be in the enclosure.
     
  5. rainmonitors

    rainmonitors Not so new Member

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    yeah i thought all the heat was just going outside the enclosure. i don't have access to any tools to mount inside, unfortunately. and no knowledge of how to use such tools!
    and don't worry! i have a dimming thermostat and also a 60W CHE i was trialling with this.
    so yeah, i'll stick with the spotlight, no worries! i can't cover some of the mesh up to raise ambient temps though, because the humidity will rise too high.

    that isn't my UVB setup! that's just a fluro daylight for plant growth. my UVB mount is arriving tomorrow and it's being mounted inside on the hot side with cable ties.
    --- Automatic Post Merged, Oct 20, 2019, Original Post Date: Oct 20, 2019 ---
    it also sucks that exo terra sells the wire lights for CHEs, but they don't actually work since the heat just escapes. luckily mine came with my 2nd hand enclosure, but what a waste of money for the OG owners.
     
  6. dragonlover1

    dragonlover1 Subscriber Subscriber

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    whether you realize it or not,your flouro daylight is emitting UV, otherwise your plants wouldn't grow.Also you can cover some of the mesh lid to retain heat, you just have to experiment to find the right amount of cover needed;but it will need to be adjusted according to season
     
  7. Sdaji

    Sdaji Almost Legendary

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    Plants don't need UV to grow. Glass filters UV. People routinely grow plants in glasshouses. People routinely grow indoor plants. Photosynthesis utilises visible red and/or blue light, not UV. People seem to love making up myths about things needing UV!

    OP: You're probably going to emd up having bad results and/or giving up on the bioactive setup. If you're careful or lucky they can work for things like frogs or rainforest reptiles, but you're working against nature trying to make it work with a diurnal skink (especially if it's a Western Blue-tongued Skink, which is an arid zone species. You really want a spotlight for them.
     
  8. rainmonitors

    rainmonitors Not so new Member

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    I am entirely devoted to this project and worked very hard to get it to where it is, however I am very prepared for it to fail in many different ways. But even then, I won't be giving up! I'm way too determined/stubborn and I am absolutely fascinated by bioactivity!
     
  9. Sdaji

    Sdaji Almost Legendary

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    If you must persist with bioactive setups it would be easiest for you and less cruel to your animals to start out using bioactive setups with something like frogs which will do well in the environment and using an enclosure for the lizards which has conditions they will not be suffering in. Once you've nailed that you might want to consider the very difficult challenge of what you're trying to do now. I always admire someone taking on a challenge but it's a bit sad to see it being done at the expense of decent animal welfare.
     
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  10. Blighty

    Blighty Not so new Member

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    Sdaji is right. Trying to go full bioactive with a ground dwelling arid zone species is not in the best interest of the animal (assuming you are going for the typical youtube-esque setups you tend to see). Your CUC (clean up crew) are liable to be Springtails, Isopods/Pillbugs and Millipedes. These little guys tend to want high humidity and lots of moisture - Those little rolly-polly pillbugs breathe out of gills of all things. Your skink wants a dry environment, else it will definitely suffer. Arid bioactive setups are possible, but require a very special setup and to be honest I am not sure how easy it would be to get CUC for one over here.

    I sort-of kinda attempted a quasi-bioactive for a Morelia. I planted it, chucked a grow-light in and did supply CUC. However, you get to a point that you need to weigh up the reptile's needs vs CUC needs. I of course chose to keep the environment suitable for the snake rather than the insects/crustaceans. This means humidity is not really high enough for the CUC to thrive, so it never really becomes "bioactive," especially as I only lightly water once a week on average. Really, this just became a planted enclosure that happens to have worms and the odd insect. I still end up spot cleaning and replacing soil here and there. The snake has been in there since February with no ill effects, indeed the temperament improved massively once in the enclosure (more due to better hiding spots and cover I would wager over anything else) though again this is not a CUC-friendly enclosure.

    By the time you weigh up the time and costs of putting pond liner in the bottom to stop enclosure rot, clay ball drainage layers, mesh + supports to stop the soil falling into drainage, the soil itself, plants, lights and so on - Just to come to the conclusion that the majority of our captive species just don't really suit high humidity bioactives you really need to ask if it is worth it.

    At least my flat LED grow light has a surface temp of 33-34*C. The SWCP prefers basking on that instead of his actual spotlight.
     
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