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Old 07-01-2010, 09:53 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Post An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

I have been reading this forum for a while now, trying to learn everything I can about hedgies before I make the move to get one of my own. The one thing that I have been worried about is keeping the cage cool in the summer. Even with two air conditioners on full blast, my apartment only cools down to about 80 degrees, which obviously isn't cool enough. I have very tall ceilings. I noticed others have had similar problems, and no solid solution has yet to be found. I had an Idea that I had wanted to run by you guys...

The is this chip called a peltier unit. It is a 2 in square that gets very cold on one side and very hot on the other. The chip I was thinking about can get to as low as -5 degrees F, while the top gets to around 120 degrees F. It gets to these temperatures within a minute. These chips are usually used in mini fridges and coolers.

I know you may be thinking that it may be too cold for them, but I would place the unit on top of a piece of aluminum on the top of the cage, (I have a tall cage.) I was also thinking that I could run strips of aluminum, also touching the peltier, down the sides of the cage in order to control the colds movement even more.

Of course, this will all be plugged into a thermostat to turn it off once it gets too cold. I am assuming that this setup should be able to easily cool the temperature of a cage.

I think this may be a better way to monitor heat for hedgies, and I believe would work better than icepacks, although, more expensive. (probably somewhere in the $75 range.)
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:07 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

Why don't you get a ceramic tile and place it inside the cage? That works just fine for a lot of people on the forum... and it would cost a lot less than what you have planned there.
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:19 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

I had thought about this, but we don't run the ACs all day. Sometimes it can get up to 85 degrees or even higher before we turn it on I think.

I will have to monitor the thermostat more closely over the next couple of days to see how high the temperature gets inside.

How much lower are the temperature of the tiles compared to the rest of the cage?
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

Actually, if you leave the a/c on all day, and the temperature remains at a steady 80F, that is fine.
Air conditioned air feels much colder than heated air. So that 80F a/c air would feel more like 76-78F. Which can be a bit warm, but it's nothing near as bad as what you're imagining it to be. And each individual hedgehog have their own preference on how warm/cool they like. So you may find that you have to get the hedgehog, before adjusting your home to fit his/her needs.

Putting a tile down in the cage, is the same idea of dogs laying on hardwood or tile flooring when they get hot. Hard floors are always somewhat cooler, and allows the animal to "splat" on it and get some relief from the heat, without getting too cold.
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Old 07-01-2010, 01:29 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

Hmmmm. I guess I will just have to wait and see then. I hope my future hedgie will be fine with it. I guess I will just get a tile and keep him in the AC for now, and hopefully he wont get too hot.

I think the whole idea I had would have worked, but if you guys say that I can get away with the borderline temperatures, that's good enough for me.
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Old 07-02-2010, 08:41 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

While I agree probably just the AC would be fine, I think your idea is really interesting and it'd be neat to see how it worked. If you do decide to try it (though I don't want you to blow $75 to try something you might not keep) please share with us!



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Old 07-02-2010, 10:44 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

I've had no problems with the room being around 80'F during the day with my guys, this is with the AC monitoring the temp. At night I'll kick it down so the room slowly drops back down into the 76'F range which seems to be their preference zone, aka when they come out and start being active for the night. And of course remember the draft factor from the ACs, no matter what I do mine seem to get one, but I've prevented at least 95% of the draft by putting a towel over one side of the cage, which was there to start with to block out the majority of light from my tv.

And if cost is a concern, remember most ACs now a days have that 'Energy Saver' mode, which will keep it from running constantly. Mine at least clicks on and cools, shuts off for a few and clicks back on and off again (without the compressor running).

I've also read on here you can also put a few ice cubes in their water to help them out.
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Old 07-03-2010, 07:43 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

I don't think ice cubes in the water would be a good idea. It's not going to do much for cooling the cage down, and cool water is better than cold, for drinking.



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Old 07-04-2010, 11:46 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: An idea for cooling a Hedgie cage

Well I am a few months off of getting my own hedgie, but if he seems too hot and I have to build one I will definitely let you guys know!
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