Fluorescent Bulb

I would say it should have a hood if mounted if the light is outside of the cage. It helps concentrate the light so that it can get through. Putting foil, shiny side out can help to. That black mesh will absorb the light. Just like your parents probaly told you, "white reflects heat (a.k.a. light), and black absorbs it. If it is inside the cage there is less concern. The plants will absorb the UV instead of the mesh. The chameleon would still have that gap between the light and the plants to get the dose of UVB they needs and retreat under the growth to escape and cool down. I have mine on the outside I found it to hard to make a cage that could support a light inside. With high humidity, spraying all the time and trying to mantain a proper convection type air flow I have found it almost impossible with my building skills to accomplish this.
For that size you might try a place that sells aquariums. It would probaly be a 30" hood lenght overall. I have one over my turtles aquarium that same size it was like $20-30.
I am a strong believer in finding cheaper than pet trade substitutes for commonly needed items. Because of this, I use home depot double light strips. In one, I put the reptisun 5.0 and in the other, I put a plain "sunlight" bulb from home depot for the extra light. Cost? Around $15.00 for a 24".

Heika, I thought all the ones at home depot don't have hoods or relectors on them.. cause I looked on the website and didn't see one with a hood.
They do have one brand of 24" shop light with a reflector (not sure what you mean by hood?), because I managed to snag one. They are far and few between, though. They seem to be only available now and then.. I saw some for sale at Home Depot about two weeks ago, but was in a hurry and didn't get any. When I went back today, they were gone.

The rest of mine are plain home depot 24" double ballast light strips. I use a $2.00 sheet of flashing and some aluminum tape to make a reflector. They look fine.. on one of mine, I put a strip of wood on the front to make it look "prettier". For those ones, you have to wire in your plug. The benefit is the price.. the light strips are under $10.00 and the stuff to put them together is well under $5.00. I can snap some pictures if you would like.

Considering that 24" pet trade hoods start at around $30.00 and work up, and that they almost never have a double ballast for two lights, I like this option. Plus, I want to be able to move the basking light away from my UVB light, so those combo hoods are out. Does anyone like those?

What does anyone else use for this size? If I had a bunch of cages sitting side by side, I would go with 4' shop lights, but I don't.

I can't remember where i saw this but i am looking right after i type this, but it was saying one of the light bulbs could shatter if some mist droplets touched it. Is this true i will post the link here once i find it.
pfal26 said:
I can't remember where i saw this but i am looking right after i type this, but it was saying one of the light bulbs could shatter if some mist droplets touched it. Is this true i will post the link here once i find it.
Thats heat bulbs. They literally explode, and are potentially dangerous. Another reson why the bulb need to be OUTSIDE of cages of reptiles that require high humidity and misting.

It is cause be the cooler water touching the hot glass of the bulb, and instantaneously cracking the light, letting the gas that is inside expell the shards with force.
The instant UV light hits the reflector it is no longer usable to your chameleon. If you are concerned about illuminating your cage, then a reflector may help, but it is by no means a neccesity and will not aid your chameleon in any way.
Kyle.. can you explain this further? According to this article, reflectors greatly increase the amount of UVB that makes it into the cage. Where are you pulling the information that it is no longer useful once it has been reflected?

From extensive testing and my experience as a streetlight technician. Since we use HID lighting like Mercury Vapor, High Pressure Sodium and Metal Halide, the Public Service Commision mandates that we test all installments for UV radiation. You'd be suprised at how quickly UV drops off, especially when the light passes through material. Reflectors are almost always laminated, which kills the UV.

Reflectors may increase the amount of light in the cages, but the amount of UV would be neglidgable. Also, UVB is only part of the picture... UVA is just as important although most keepers seem to only worry about UVB. UVA travels even shorter than UVB.

So like I said, a reflector isn't a bad idea at all. I use reflectors on some of my setups. But there is no reason to spend big money on a stainless steel stamped reflector when a simple white fishtank housing will work just fine.
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