Most Economical Infrared Heater for Home Use, and Ceramic Heat Emitters for Reptiles
Low-Cost Portable Electric Infrared Cermanic Heater for the Home
For personal comfort, setting the thermostat higher heats the entire home or perhaps an entire room when all you wanted is something to keep you comfortable in just one smaller room. Increasing the ambient temperature of the entire dwelling is not cost effective. A portable infrared space-heater is likely the solution.
Maybe you are a hobbyist and work from a modest workshop in the basement, and require just that little extra bit of radiant warmth to remain comfortable. A portable fan-driven ceramic heater is a very cost-effective way to have focused, on-the-spot heat where you are.
Pelonis company makes some of the finest and most recognizable lines of personal and portable ceramic disc heater and oil-filled space heater on the market.
A ceramic disc heater is a small box that generates heat by passing electrical current through a series of wires that are embedded in a ceramic housing. Metallic baffles made from aluminum are heated, and a air-fan blows room air across these and heat it forced out. These small ceramic disc heaters are inexpensive, usually costing between $30.00 and $100.00 depending upon manufacturer, make and model.
Portable Ceramic Infrared Heater
By supplementarily heating just the occupied room, a medium-sized ceramic disc heater can be enough of a heat source to heat a small room or office. This allows you to keep the thermostat of the dwelling set to a nominally-lower temperature for a reduction in electric costs.
Infrared Heating Elements ("Bulbs") Often Used by Reptile Keepers
This type of infrared heating element, a metallic wire embedded in a ceramic core, was first invented by the Elstein-Werk Company of Germany. This device was a screw-in type similar to the common light bulb. These types of heaters emit heat without the use of a air-flow to circulate the heat. A radiant reflector dish would be used to help focus the infrared heat outward.
These devices, infrared screw-in bulbs, are commonly used by herpetologists, zoologists and reptile-keepers. Reptiles require ambient warmth to maintain correct body functions. While 'heated rocks' are often sold to the customer, these are inferior in that reptiles (especially as they grow larger) cannot adequately sense the amount, quality and quantity of heat through their bellies. They require heat from above, a radiant sources such as a light bulb.
A light bulb while marginally effective will over time mess with a reptile's circadian rhythm due to the emission of visible light during the required sleep period. This can create stress for the reptile which manifests itself with overt aggression, disruptions in eating patterns and behavior and in the long-term, create issues with growth and mineral-absorption problems.
Some reptile owners switched to regular lights bulbs that are coated in red, a color invisible to reptiles. While this supplied the necessary warmth and omitted the deleterious visible light problems, a standard light bulb is prone to failure. A 'blown bulb' can leave a reptile without the necessary supplemental warmth.
The Ceramic Infrared Heating Screw-in Bulb for the Pet Reptile/Amphibian Care
A ceramic heating bulb of the type discussed here is the solution. Emitting the quality radiant heat that reptiles require, these also emit no visible light and are dependable. With their flat-topped heating coil and standard screw-in base, ceramic heating bulbs behave just like an ordinary light bulbs except they emit just infrared heat, and last many times longer than an incandescient light and/or heat-emitting bulb.
With necessary precautions to prevent injurious burns and scalds to the reptile, these ceramic heat emitters are the ideal solution to supplemental heating required by the cold-blooded captive pet reptiles.
Some clever reptile owners even set-up a rheostat and/or thermometer coupler device to regulate the maximum temperatures and durations attained.
When the target surface (where the reptile would normally bask) or general ambient temperature reaches a certain threshold limit, the rheostat would either completely shut-off the ceramic heating element or dial-back the voltage to reduce the output for temperature regulation.
(Author raised green iguanas, agamas and Australian Bearded Dragons for over 10 years)