Normal for dimming thermostat to pulse like a strobe light?

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MeanCrayons

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Original Poster
Installed a new Exoterra 600w dimming thermostat yesterday. I imagined it would pulse a little bit, but it seems more like a strobe light effect and it happens every few minutes. Is this normal? Can't imagine Larry enjoys basking in a rave environment.

Video of strobe/pulse
 

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Badwolfe

Hatchling Member
Dimming thermostats shouldn't pulse - they work by altering the voltage to the heating element you use. Can't actually watch your vid because its using a codec I haven't got.

If its new I'd suggest you take it back and exchange it. If not you might want to consider replacing it because it sounds like its developed a fault.

Just out of interest what type of bulb are you using?
 

MeanCrayons

Member
Original Poster
Dimming thermostats shouldn't pulse - they work by altering the voltage to the heating element you use. Can't actually watch your vid because its using a codec I haven't got.

If its new I'd suggest you take it back and exchange it. If not you might want to consider replacing it because it sounds like its developed a fault.

Just out of interest what type of bulb are you using?
The thermostat is brand new. Wouldn't the dimming create a slight pulse though? I agree it shouldn't do what it's doing, but I imagine there would be a very slight pulse though. Could it possibly be my PAR38 floodlights? They are well within the wattage obviously, but I can't recall if they were dimmable now that I think about it. Would that be a potential suspect?
 

Badwolfe

Hatchling Member
yep certain bulbs dont work well with dimmable thermo's, for example halogens should never be used.

As to your pulsing question the answer is there should be no pulsing at all. My thermostat actually shows the % of power it is feeding to my DHP - it never pulses power. They gradually slide the power supplied up and down and never do on off burst like a pulse proportional thermo will
 

MeanCrayons

Member
Original Poster
yep certain bulbs dont work well with dimmable thermo's, for example halogens should never be used.

As to your pulsing question the answer is there should be no pulsing at all. My thermostat actually shows the % of power it is feeding to my DHP - it never pulses power. They gradually slide the power supplied up and down and never do on off burst like a pulse proportional thermo will
Well they are definitely halogen floodlights. What would you recommend I replace both bulbs with to be equivalent to their power? They are 92w I believe. Should I just grab 2x 100w reptisun basking bulbs?
 

Badwolfe

Hatchling Member
Well they are definitely halogen floodlights. What would you recommend I replace both bulbs with to be equivalent to their power? They are 92w I believe. Should I just grab 2x 100w reptisun basking bulbs?
Yep you need to replace the Halogens. You can swap em out for either Reptisuns or Arcadia bulbs. Start with the 100w and see how they go. You can always juggle the wattages using different bulbs if needed. You also have the option of using DHP's
 

SPandS

Juvie Member
Does your thermostat also do pulse? I didn't know anything about the exo terra dimmable thermostat so I did a quick search and saw they have one that's dimmable and pulse in one. I use dimmable domes so I have to manually adjust them as the seasons change but I only use halogen bulbs for day time heat, not sure why you were told you can't use them. The bulb you use may not be dimmable but halogens can definitely been dimmed.
 

MeanCrayons

Member
Original Poster
Yep you need to replace the Halogens. You can swap em out for either Reptisuns or Arcadia bulbs. Start with the 100w and see how they go. You can always juggle the wattages using different bulbs if needed. You also have the option of using DHP's
Ok I’ll go get those now and try them out. What are DHPs?
 

MeanCrayons

Member
Original Poster
Does your thermostat also do pulse? I didn't know anything about the exo terra dimmable thermostat so I did a quick search and saw they have one that's dimmable and pulse in one. I use dimmable domes so I have to manually adjust them as the seasons change but I only use halogen bulbs for day time heat, not sure why you were told you can't use them. The bulb you use may not be dimmable but halogens can definitely been dimmed.
Dimming and on/off are the only options when setting up the day and night temperatures. And yeah, I can’t recall if the floods I bought were dimmable or not so replacing the bulbs and seeing if that works will be the quickest solution.
 

CooperDragon

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
The thermostats will cause occasional on/off behavior if the temps get too far out of the set range, but the light shouldn't be flickering quickly like that. Its best to get the temps set as closely as you can by adjusting wattage and/or height first, then let the thermostat automate the fine tuning. It should be a nice steady bright light for the vast majority of the time. I've had mixed results with different bulbs on dimming. My GE PAR38 halogens handle dimming very well. I've found that the ZooMed repti basking spot bulbs made a buzzing sound which is annoying. I've also had good luck with BR40 incandescent bulbs. You may need to try a few different options out to find what works best in your setup since everyone tends to see slightly different results depending on the environment.
 

MeanCrayons

Member
Original Poster
The thermostats will cause occasional on/off behavior if the temps get too far out of the set range, but the light shouldn't be flickering quickly like that. Its best to get the temps set as closely as you can by adjusting wattage and/or height first, then let the thermostat automate the fine tuning. It should be a nice steady bright light for the vast majority of the time. I've had mixed results with different bulbs on dimming. My GE PAR38 halogens handle dimming very well. I've found that the ZooMed repti basking spot bulbs made a buzzing sound which is annoying. I've also had good luck with BR40 incandescent bulbs. You may need to try a few different options out to find what works best in your setup since everyone tends to see slightly different results depending on the environment.
Yeah so my original GE PAR38 floodlights we’re not dimmable and I believe that was the problem. I tried Acadia dimmable PAR38 floodlights but one of them made a crazy hissing/humming sound and it drove me crazy after 10 minutes. I ended up using 2x Zoomed basking bulbs and they work perfectly.
 

CooperDragon

BD.org Sicko
Staff member
Moderator
Great. As long as they are doing the trick without the annoying buzzing and providing good temps, stock up on those so you have some spares on hand. =)
 
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