Cold terrarium (for speacies like hoehnelii or bradypodion)

Mawtyplant

Chameleon Enthusiast
Hi! I’m looking for a solution about the night drop for particular speacies.. thinking about using Peltier effect or something like that and I’m curious about if someone try to build a terrarium who can chill down during the night? Thanks!
 

CamoChameleonsHuman

Chameleon Enthusiast
The night drop is the only thing keeping me from montane species. I could easily achieve those levels at night in my basement in the winter but would never be able to do this in summertime in this part of Colorado.
 

KRGEE21

Avid Member
I wonder if putting a bunch of ice in the cool mist humidifier would work. I usually just leave the window open at night and it's enough to get temps down below 60 in the room.
I'll try it on a couple of warmer nights and see if it has any effect.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
The night drop is the only thing keeping me from montane species. I could easily achieve those levels at night in my basement in the winter but would never be able to do this in summertime in this part of Colorado.
Not all montanes need such a drastic drop, Parsons seem to do pretty well in the warm summer weather. Though I'm curious to hear solutions for this as well for other species or people in warm climates all year. Maybe some sort of cold water system?
 

JacksJill

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have put gel ice packs on the cage top during the warmer months when we don't get into the 60˚F range here.
 
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Lunatuck

Established Member
I’m very curious as to how people accomplish this. I’m sure I could take an A/C apart to get it done, but its a big expense for a small area.
 

JoshD49

Chameleon Enthusiast
Instead of the ice you could put the peltier in the water of the humidifier. Well one side anyway. Most mini fridges use peltier.

Another way would be to buy the a/c systems that sit on the floor and close the vent in that room. Most of the roller A/C can set a temperature. This is if you have a dedicated room of course.
 

Mawtyplant

Chameleon Enthusiast
Interested to hear your results.
comming
Instead of the ice you could put the peltier in the water of the humidifier. Well one side anyway. Most mini fridges use peltier.

Another way would be to buy the a/c systems that sit on the floor and close the vent in that room. Most of the roller A/C can set a temperature. This is if you have a dedicated room of course.
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Instead of the ice you could put the peltier in the water of the humidifier. Well one side anyway. Most mini fridges use peltier.

Another way would be to buy the a/c systems that sit on the floor and close the vent in that room. Most of the roller A/C can set a temperature. This is if you have a dedicated room of course.
that actually a good idea! Ok i will work on both, Peltier to cool the terrarium and the water with isolating surrounding the terrarium maybe styrofoam on 3 side with a fan for the airflow your thoughts?
 

Lunatuck

Established Member
If you are using a peltier, then a heatsink with long fins could cool water relatively easily, but I wonder about having cooling connected to humidification. What if you find youself in a scenario where the chameleon needs it colder, but less humid?

My minds eye still sees some sort of radiator/compressor unit. But the DIY parts are going to be over $150.
 

JoshD49

Chameleon Enthusiast
If you are using a peltier, then a heatsink with long fins could cool water relatively easily, but I wonder about having cooling connected to humidification. What if you find youself in a scenario where the chameleon needs it colder, but less humid?

My minds eye still sees some sort of radiator/compressor unit. But the DIY parts are going to be over $150.
The roller A/C units are more then that depending on the room size you have. I think they would be your best bet. They work well though and I use it to cool my garage when I am working out there. haha
 

bobcochran

Chameleon Enthusiast
If you are using a peltier, then a heatsink with long fins could cool water relatively easily, but I wonder about having cooling connected to humidification. What if you find youself in a scenario where the chameleon needs it colder, but less humid?

My minds eye still sees some sort of radiator/compressor unit. But the DIY parts are going to be over $150.
Every species I've worked with, no matter montane or not, has benefited with high humidity at night.
 

JoshD49

Chameleon Enthusiast
@bobcochran I think they mean if it will be running 24/7. I know the night time will need the high humidity but I think the day needs to dry out a bit correct?
 

Zevil

Avid Member
My average ambient temperature is 84.2. I know someone here who kept a Jackson here and used an air conditioner with the lowest setting in a small room and windows shut for night time temperature but his electricity bill is pretty high.
 

Lunatuck

Established Member
I'm still intrigued by this. In thinking about it, I'm applying what I know from other hobbies. I've had friends DIY peltier coolers onto DSLR cameras to cool the sensors. I've also had friends use ice water reservoirs with water pumped into a CCD watercooled setup. These are very good applications for peltiers because the sensor/heatsink interface is very small. But, if you are planning on cooling an open area, most of the difficulty is taking that small cooling area and expanding it. You are really trying to cool the air.

With a peltier sitting in a bath, the air/water interface is where the cooling takes place. If the water is cold, and you have a fan blowing on it, you are cooling via heat transfer, but I don't think the evaporative effect is substantial. Basically, a peltier cooler is no more effective (and likely less)then a block of ice. They are extremely inefficient for cooling air compared to a compressor/radiator. So, unless you are also planning on putting the entire enclosure inside a cooler, I don't think a pelitier cooler will make any noticable difference. Basically, you need to do A/C math. Cu Ft and BTU's.

I still get the feeling a compressor based system would be the best. That way, you can point the cold air towards the cage. There is a reason we don't see a lot of peltier A/C's on the market.
 

teen

Member
Pointing cold air at the cage would be the worst thing you can do imo. Also there is no presence of cold, its the absence of heat so in my book, an exhaust fan out the window should cool down most smaller rooms adequately to get a good 5 degree temp drop. Bump that up to 10 degree drop if the rest of the house is air conditioned, then factor in temps going down at night time anyway. I think youd spend a fortune air conditioning one room for a chameleon but, to each his own...
 

Lunatuck

Established Member
Pointing cold air at the cage would be the worst thing you can do imo. Also there is no presence of cold, its the absence of heat so in my book, an exhaust fan out the window should cool down most smaller rooms adequately to get a good 5 degree temp drop. Bump that up to 10 degree drop if the rest of the house is air conditioned, then factor in temps going down at night time anyway. I think youd spend a fortune air conditioning one room for a chameleon but, to each his own...
The delta T depends on ambient. I don’t see how an exaust fan cools anything below ambient. If its colder outside, then the fan needs to be pointed inside to cool.

I’m thinking a delta T of -10F would be required for this to be effective.

I believe you will spend more on an inefficient peltier cooler then an A/C unit. Thats just electricity costs.
 

teen

Member
The delta T depends on ambient. I don’t see how an exaust fan cools anything below ambient. If its colder outside, then the fan needs to be pointed inside to cool.

I’m thinking a delta T of -10F would be required for this to be effective.

I believe you will spend more on an inefficient peltier cooler then an A/C unit. Thats just electricity costs.
Youre right that you wont be cooling below ambient but think about it this way. The room with a heat lamp (or multiple heat lamps in my case) is hotter than the rest of the house or ambient if youd like to call it that. An exhaust fan forces the hot air out essentially creating a vacuum effect in which the cooler ambient air of the house is now taking the place of that hot air. This is why i choose to say a 5 degree drop. Very reasonable amount. If you have conditioned air, its probably closer to the 10 degree drop i mentioned, possibly more. My cages are also misted for a brief duration shortly before lights out, which helps with cooling. Lights off obviously goin to contribute to a temp drop. Air flow is key and unless you live in the desert, i cant see the need to air condition a room for a chameleon. Maybe they wont get a dramatic temp drop in the summer months but i dont think its detrimental. Day time temps getting too hot would be more concerning to me.
 
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