Hey guys. Got another question. I did a quick search of the Newbie forum and got no joy, so I'll throw it up here so you knowledgeable bunch can pick over it. =P
Okay, so I have a problem with the heat gradient in my Leo viv. I recently put temp probes into the hides, and have discovered that the temp in the cool hide is a rather worrying 90ºF/32ºC during the day. The Leopard Gecko Manual and various care sheets recommend that the cool side be 80ºF/26ºC at the warmest during the day, so clearly I'm doing something wrong here, but I can't seem to figure out what. But in my opinion, it's to do with the in-tank lighting.
I've currently got a 60watt R80 Diffused Reflector bulb going in there, mainly because that's the bulb type that was provided with the setup by Reptile Cymru, and I assume they know what they're doing (pitfall of many a noob, I know ¬_¬). But the problem, I think, is that this big-aft bulb is overheating the vivarium.
Summer last year was a nightmare, because I had to scramble to find ways to actively cool the vivarium down during daylight hours, because it was readily heating up to almost 120ºF/48ºC in there with the sun beating down on the roof (my room and viv are in the attic). I really don't want to have to subject myself or my geckos to that nonsense again this year.
People say, "Oh, just turn the bulb off," but they're Leos and they need an idea of the light cycle to tailor their sleeping habits, so I don't want to confuse and stress them by arbitrarily cutting off their light source like that.
So my question is this: Would it negatively-affect my geckos if I put a smaller/less-powerful bulb in there? Do they really need the 60watt Reflector, or can I justify using a much-less powerful bulb that produces less heat? The point of having a reflector is that it produces heat in the first place, I know, but what if it produces too much heat?
If they don't need all that in there, how low should I go in the wattage? A 40watt reflector seems more reasonable than a 60watt to me, but I don't know what kinds of temperatures that will produce - still too much? Not enough?
Thanks in-advance for the advice, guys. ^_^