My name's Fleabag and I will help guide you through setting up your crabitat for proper heating! I don't understand what a crabitat is but they make nice heated litter boxes!
I was helping my owners set up a 55 gallon tank or litter box a few weeks ago and thought I would share what I learned. The same guidelines will apply for any tank size. The size of heating pads and insulation will change but the general set up will stay the same.
First up we have the empty 55 gallon tank.
My owners purchased an 11 x 47 and 11 x 11 Ultratherms from Reptile Basics. One will be used for the back and one side of the tank.
Fleabag Tip: You will want to get the largest size heater possible! The heater needs to cover as much of the rear of the tank as possible! The heater needs cover from the top of the substrate to the upper rim of the tank to heat properly. If you are using a ZooMed heating pad do not follow the tank size as noted on the package. It will not give off enough heat to warm the tank. Think of it as heating a room with a candle instead of a fireplace!
Fleabag Note: Also some people prefer to cover the entire back top to bottom. Covering the entire back may lead to dry substrate around the heater/s. If you do this method you will need to keep an eye on how the moisture of the substrate.
The first step it to add the rear Ultratherm to the back of the tank. My people use a small vertical strips of duct tape on the center top of the Ultrathem to the center of the tank. Then added several more strips working outward.
Once the Ultratherm is where you want it you can begin taping it all around the edges using more Duct Tape. With larger heating pads it's easier to use smaller strips of tape instead of long pieces. Start in the top center of the tank, then alternate taping the stips from one side of the top then the other until the entire top is taped.
Once the top of the heater is taped repeat the same process for the bottom. Then finish by taping each side of the heater.
When finished it should look similar to this.
Next up my people added insulation to the rear of the tank over the heater. They used 9/16 thick Poly Pro insulation board. They did not take me to buy it, but they did say something about a home improvement stores and costing around $10 for a 4 x 8 sheet.
My owners cut the insulation board to cover the entire back of the tank. They used the same steps to tape the insulation as the heating pad.
Fleabag Tip: add duct tape to the edges of the insulation board so little pieces do not flake off!
Once the insulation is taped on it should look like this.
This may be all the heat you need depending on where you live. Since owners live where it gets cold in the winter they add an additional heater and insulation to one side of the tank. The same measurements apply. Top of substrate to the upper rim. Cover as much of the side as possible. In the summer they unplug this heater.
My owners also use glass lids on all their tanks/ heated litter boxes and keep them all between 80- 87 degrees with house temperatures between 68-72 degrees following these steps.
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