Heat mat question

Discussion in 'Australian Snakes' started by becwatson14, Apr 30, 2014.

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  1. becwatson14

    becwatson14 Not so new Member

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    Hi guys I'm still learning a little bit, I know the heat mat goes under half the tub so the snake can get away if too hot, but do you have to have something between the tub and what it's kept on?

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  2. Senator358

    Senator358 Well-Known Member

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    You don't have to but I use a tile if I use a heat mat just for a little security.

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  3. Tigerlily

    Tigerlily Active Member

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    I think it depends on the wattage and size of the tub, I just read (on this site I think) someone mention they'd seen a mat melt the plastic of the tub:shock:... I use a 10watt mat which gives off a lot more heat than I'd expected; I put a terracotta tile between it and my tub and it's working really well for me :) If you don't already, try putting the thermometer/thermostat probe on the floor to see how hot it's actually getting and you can make adjustments accordingly...

    I'm sure the other members will be able to give more experienced advice! :)
     
  4. becwatson14

    becwatson14 Not so new Member

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    I have heard some people put it between 2 tiles. I don't have tiles? I have tiles on the floor of the house, but it will be sitting on top of my partners snakes enclosure which is wood. Is there specific tiles to use ? Can u use anything else?

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  5. Senator358

    Senator358 Well-Known Member

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    Go to bunnings and get some cheap tiles or if you have a sheet of glass that would work to.

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  6. AvidRepSupplies

    AvidRepSupplies New Member

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    All mats are designed to get to a certain temp and hold it.
    That temp varies from manufacturer to manufacturer.
    The better mats which are the black ones in clear plastic are much more reliable and at most get to 42 degrees (depending on your ambient temps).

    We recommend that any heating equipment be used in conjunction with a thermostat to be used as a safety device to cut the power if the mat malfunctions.

    We do advise keepers to steer clear of the green heat mats. These have been the most common ones to malfunction.
     
  7. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

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    I would have the heat mat between two tiles but make sure there is a little air gap between them so the mat gets air flow as designed and there is less chance of a malfunction. A lot of malfunctions are because the mat is sitting between two surfaces with no gap and it will not dissipate the heat and damage it causing it to melt down and possibly catch fire. Of course as mentioned a thermostat is an even bigger insurance against this but also not 100% guaranteed as I have had a thermostat (dimming) get stuck on. I also prefer to only heat 1/3 of the tub , this is only what I do and know works for me although others may do things differently.
     
  8. becwatson14

    becwatson14 Not so new Member

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    How do u make a gap when it's between 2 tiles ? And the one I was looking at is a green 5w one

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  9. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

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    You place something small in each corner and I have heard bad things about the green bag looking ones but have no actual experience with them so can't comment.
     
  10. ThatGuy

    ThatGuy Not so new Member

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    couple of coke bottle caps, wine corks cut in half in each corner, some pencils anything that will allow a few mm of air flow without lifting it too far to radiate heat will work. You have a license of imagination in that respect :D (as long as whatever you use won't soften or melt at temps under 50oC)
     
  11. solar 17

    solar 17 Guest

    You see plenty of ppl on this site wedge/jam/compress these heat mats between tiles and under fish tanks and other non expandible surfaces and then complain bitterly when they fail well l am not saying they are bullet proof but someone tell me what happens basically when the element in them heats up and tries to expand and cant (doh). l have been using heat mats for years (diff. brands) and not had one fail....what l do is put a frame around the heat mat of 10 mm square dowel (timber) with virtually no gaps (to avoid heat loss) and sit your enclosure on top of this set-up, some of my heat mats must be 8-10 years old and still working fine, l also find that this set-up softens the heat area avoiding the cracking of glass in particular. solar 17 ~B~
     
  12. Bart70

    Bart70 Well-Known Member

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    I believe the ones that look like a thin layer of black 'element' encased in laminate are actually printed carbon and contain no metal - expansion is minimal.

    I have several made like yours with a timber frame.....but the pad is 'sandwiched' between a ceramic tile on the top surface and fibrous cement sheet underneath with the frame around it and thermostat probe installed. No restriction for any (minimal) expansion on the horizontal plane, non-combustible material either side of the mat (in case it shorts or overheats) and a good heat conductor above it in the ceramic tile which the tub sits on top of. They are thermostatically controlled however so don't continuously pour out full heat all day every day.

    I can't see any reason why your frame arrangement would not work tho....
     
  13. 00Scales00

    00Scales00 Guest

    I like the timber edging idea.. I would think that maybe if it's got a tile on top of it or wedged between two that not much heat would through to the enclosure. But as said, it would probably depend on the wattage/size of the heat mat.
     
  14. Bart70

    Bart70 Well-Known Member

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    Quite the contrary....the tile acts like a heatsink and helps draw the heat from the mat, and transfer it to the tub if the tub is sitting on the tile without the risks associated with placing the tub directly on the mat. I have no trouble getting 40C+ measured on the external tile surface - hence why I use a thermostat with these as they do get too hot without them.

    Also to keep in mind is that the wattage of the mats does not always mean the mat itself gets hotter - most mats double in physical size as their wattage doubles - meaning large ones have the same heating capacity per square inch as small ones. It just allows you to heat a larger area. I get roughly the same temps (unregulated) from a 7 watt, 14 watt, and 28 watt heat mat - the large wattages just mean the temp covers a larger area.
     
  15. 00Scales00

    00Scales00 Guest

    Ah I see... That makes sense. I just have mine directly under the glass enclosure but it's on a thermostat so it controls quite good. Stays at 31 degrees.
     
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