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  1. #1
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    Heat tape big enough?

    I've seen an old thread with this question. What witdh tape do should be used on a rack.

    A few experts(Deborah being one) said she uses 3inch heat tape no matter the size of the tub. Even uses under a 41qt.


    How does a three inch heat strip provide a big enough basking spot for an adult. Considering a large adult ball python in a coil must be at least a foot wide.

  2. #2
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    I don't use racks, but I've used heat tape (Flexwatt) for literally decades. What matters is how much warmth you need- ie. not just how big the tubs are, or how big the snakes are, but also how cold your room is going to get. You want & need more width (& watts) if your ambient room temperature is on the cool side. Either way, thermostat control is needed too, of course, but if your room is chilly, that 3" can only do so much. If I remember right, Deborah keeps her snake room (s) fairly warm, so 3" heat tape might do just fine, but your place might be different. See?
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
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    IrishBalls (04-29-2021)

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    Re: Heat tape big enough?

    Thank you

    My room is always above 70f.. An always ranges between 70 and 80.

    I was under the impression that for the most part heat tape only heats what it comes into contact with or very close to that. My thinking was maybe 3 inch tape would heat around 5 inch witdh and then some ambient temp increase as heat rises.

    I definitely didn't think that if say my room was 80f ambient and I use some 3 inch that it would create a spot big enough for an adult ball coiled.

    Just surprised me 😲

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    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: Heat tape big enough?

    Quote Originally Posted by IrishBalls View Post
    Thank you

    My room is always above 70f.. An always ranges between 70 and 80.

    I was under the impression that for the most part heat tape only heats what it comes into contact with or very close to that. My thinking was maybe 3 inch tape would heat around 5 inch witdh and then some ambient temp increase as heat rises.

    I definitely didn't think that if say my room was 80f ambient and I use some 3 inch that it would create a spot big enough for an adult ball coiled.

    Just surprised me ��
    70*-80* pretty much describes my house (winter to summer, home HVAC t-stat settings) which is great for me & what I keep- mostly colubrids, & only one snake (spotted python) that needs warmth more similar to a BP. So I'd say that you'd need wider heat tape for BPs. (But for safety, you never heat the whole "floor" either- preferably never more than half at the most. Most of my snakes have about 1/6th of the floor heated.)

    Heat rises, no matter whether it's heat tape or any other kind of heating device, but heat tape is thin & low wattage, so it's not strong enough to overcome a lot of cold or a lot of air space. Just keep that in mind. You'll need to test things out for your purposes, as it's much different from mine. I use heat tape under glass tanks to create tummy warmth for my snakes- it works great, but it's not intended to heat all the air in the glass tanks above it, though a proportionally-greater amount of heat tape PLUS overhead heat does a credible job of warming my spotted python's home. If you do some insulation, that makes a big difference too. Every home, every room, every snake enclosure is different, & requires tweaking to suit the occupant.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 04-29-2021 at 10:03 PM.
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    If you're adding it to the bottom of the tub I use 1/3 the length of the tub, it provides a good hotspot and warms up the area near it and if it overheats it isn't too dangerous.

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