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is a little "special"
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been using a dimmer for Stanley's UTH, but apparently the temps in my house aren't very stable and the temperature in Stan's viv is fluctuating way too much. Stella has the Zoomed brand thermostat, and it works well but I'm not too fond of the dial on it and the extremely chunky probe. But if it is better than the other two, I'd buy another.
So, which one is the best?

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000NZZG3S/ref=gno_cart_title_2

http://www.amazon.com/Zilla-Tempera...2?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1329156420&sr=1-2-catcorr

And this is the one that Stella has:
http://www.amazon.com/Zoo-Med-Repti...3?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1329156420&sr=1-3-catcorr

I need a better way to heat my roaches too. Right now I just have a human heat pad under it, but I'm pretty sure it's a fire hazard to have one running 24/7! I keep it on top of a metal utility shelf, so I was thinking of taping heat cable to the bars, and setting the bin on top of it. I'd regulate the heat with the extra dimmer. Does this sound OK, or are there any other suggestions?

Thanks!
 

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I have 3 of the first thermostats, the Hydrofarm one, that I use for my Leo tanks. I like them. Fully digital and very easy to set and all that. I haven't had any issues with them and would probably buy more if I ever needed another thermostat. They work well especially for the price. Although I've never tried the other two brands you posted so I can't really compare them.
 

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I've recently heard of an issue with the Hydrofarm thermostat--if you ever have a power outage, or unplug, it check it. It may sometimes fail and not retain its temperature settings--it has failed in the 'on position.

I personally recommend a Herpstat thermostat (made by Spyder robotics), or Big Apple Herp's name brand thermostat. Both are very reliable, and the Herpstat is one of the best out there.
 

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Luckily my Hydrofarms have been working well so far. The oldest one I think I've had for maybe around 2 years now and it's still fine. I've unplugged them numerous times and have been lucky that mine always seem to retain the temp settings even after being unplugged for awhile. It's not hard at all to check and reset them though if you have too.

With the lower end thermostats, if you're worried about them malfunctioning I recommend you get an extra thermometer to put on the hot end of the tank. Don't just go by the probe on the thermostat alone. That way if the thermostat does fail and the tank starts to overheat or cool down too much, you'll be able to tell.
 

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It's a very good idea to have a backup in case of a thermostat failure.

Some thermostats (such as the Herpstat) also have high and low temperature alarms that will alert you in case of a heating device failure. Better thermostats are designed to always fail in the 'off' position, for safety.

When it comes to thermostats, more expensive isn't always better, either. Johnson and Ranco thermostats are fairly inexpensive, but have a good track record, as does the Big Apple Herp thermostat. There's a general distrust of ZooMed devices, but no major issues reported. Among the more expensive proportional thermostats, Helix and Herpstat are the front runners, while the new Vivarium Ecosystems thermostats have a lot of chipset issues being reported.
 

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is a little "special"
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I do have a digital thermometer that monitors the temps at all times. But I've heard a lot of good things about the Hydrofarm one on other sites too, so I am leaning towards that one. I wanted to stay in the $30 range.

What are the Johnson and Ranco ones?
 

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The Johnson controls can be found here: http://www.proexotics.com/store/product.php?productid=16258

And the Ranco here: http://www.reptilebasics.com/ranco-etc-111000-pre-wired

I've advised people for years now, the thermostat is the most important piece of equipment you will buy--get the best quality you can afford. You can make a cage out of a storage bin for under $10, and you can pick up a heat cord for $12, but shell out for the good thermostat.

I gave the warning on the Hydrofarm thermostat because someone on a ball python forum had their power strip switched off accidentally, and they simply turned it back on--the next morning, they found all their heat pads running at max output, with 100F+ hot spot temps. Fortunately, no animals were harmed. Most people with this thermostat have had no problems, but so far, at least one person has, so keep an eye on it, and have a backup. A high temperature alarm would be a very good idea.
 
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