Most, if not all pet snakes will need some source of heat like a snake heating pad. Snakes are reptiles, meaning they are cold blooded.
Cold blooded animals don’t produce their own heat like mammals do. Consequently, they need heat from other sources. When it comes to snakes, under tank snake heating pads will suffice for most species.
Since pet snakes are in captivity, you’ll need to do some research on what your species of snake needs when it comes to heat.
In most cases, you will find what you’re looking for in this in depth review of snake heating pad options.
That said, it’s still important to research the best heat source for the snake you own. This is because some species require very special heating for their habitat.
On top of that, some species need a daily light cycle and would be better off with a lamp as a heat source.
Below, we will cover everything you need to know about heating your snakes terrarium with a heating pad. Plus, we will cover our most recommended heating pads. Lastly, you’ll learn about several best practices when it comes to providing a heat source for your pet snake.
**Note that it is highly recommended you buy a thermostat, temperature gauge, and/or controller with any heat source. That will ensure your reptiles safety and prevent overheating**
iPower makes a variety of heating pads for reptiles, snakes, and vivariums. This is the first of two iPower options on this list, and it’s one of the best under tank snake heating pad options for your snake.
One of the best parts about this snake heating pad is that it comes with a thermometer gauge as a package. Consequently, it makes for the perfect heating source combo for your slithery pal.
A thermometer is a key component to your snake’s enclosure, so you can tell if your pet has a proper basking area to warm up in. Further, if you choose one of the other options on this list, we recommend buying a thermostat separately. Overall, this is our most highly recommended option when it comes to a heating source for your pet snake. Plus, it will work fine with most popular snake species.
This model measures in at 10 inches wide by 20.5 inches long.
Pros: – Comes with reptile cage thermometer included in package – Good for larger terrariums – Water proof, makes for high safety and easy cleaning
Cons: – Only comes in one size on Amazon with thermostat package – Not great if you already have a thermometer for your terrarium
Another iPower. We told you, this is quite the popular option when it comes to snake heating pad choices.
Most of the features of this model are the same as the latter.
The biggest difference if this model is size. While the previously reviewed snake heating pad measured 10×20.5, this one is much smaller. It measures in at 4 inches wide by 7 inches long.
See? This iPower reptile heating pad for underneath the tank is a stellar option for a smaller terrarium. Plus, you’re getting the quality of a great heating pad at a more than fair price.
One of the bigger fall backs of this model is that it is rather small, so you’re going to be limited to a 1-10 gallon tank max. Unless of course you plan to by 2-3 of these heating pads for a larger tank.
The good news is that iPower makes several sizes of their heating pad product. And, they’re all available on Amazon. Simply click the button below to see for yourself.
Here are the pros and cons of this under tank reptile heat source:
Pros: – Small, great for 1-10 gallon or below snake tanks – Excellent price for great value – Waterproof. Makes for easy cleaning and ensures safety – Has adhesive 3M paper for easy attachment and slip reduction
Cons: – Likely too small for larger, 20-30+ snake terrariums – Doesn’t come equipped with a tank thermometer
While this isn’t technically a snake heating pad, it is the biggest option that we could find.
The VIVOSUN seedling heat mat serves essentially the same purpose of a snake heating pad. Except this is meant for seed germination, not keeping snakes warm.
That said, it gets the job done. Plus, this heating pad gives you a lot more versatility if you need to heat a larger terrarium.
Like the others on this list, the VIVOSUN heating pad is waterproof and has a high and distributed heat system. It’s designed to never overheat, even if left on for 24+ hours at a time.
Overall, it may not be branded for reptiles and snakes, but it will work just fine as an alternatives to iPower or Fluker branded products.
Pros: – Larger size so it fits bigger terrariums. Great if you have a 20-30+ gallon snake tank. – Built with quality, even though it’s not specified for snake tank heating – Durable, waterproof design allows for easy cleaning and long lasting product
Cons: – Technically, this is made for seed germination. That said, it works just fine as a snake heating pad. Recommended use with a thermostat – Doesn’t come equipped with a thermostat, must buy separately
Zoo Med is a common reptile brand you’ll find in most pet stores.
They happen to make Repti Therm Under Tank Heater, which makes for a fairly decent snake heating pad.
This pad comes in a variety of different sizes, and is comparable to iPower.
That said, when it comes to iPower vs this Zoo Med heating pad, we’d go with the iPower.
Either option will work fine, though. One of the biggest differences between the two brands is size. The size options vary every so slightly, so if you need a very specific snake heating pad size, rest assured you have options.
Pros: – Decent heating pad at a good price. – Great if you need to explore different reptile heating pad size options
Cons – Has been known to get too hot. Monitoring/controlling temp with a separate gauge should help – Theromstat non included, but highly recommended
Flukers is another well known brand for reptile pet products.
This reptile heating pad is a solid choice, and we decided to include it in our list because of the brand recognition. If you go to any major pet store, chances are they will carry Fluker brand products.
Consequently, you’ll know you get a quality product from a brand you can trust.
This snake heating mat option comes in a variety of sizes — from small (6×11) all the way up to jumbo (29×11).
If you’re having trouble finding a the right heating mat size, it’s definitely worth looking into one of these options by Fluker.
Pros – Trusted, well known reptile product brand – Comes in a variety of different sizes, some you won’t find with other brands – Waterproof and durable
Cons – Slightly more expensive than alternatives, but not by much – Doesn’t come paired with a theromstat
The Seefactor heating mat is another heating mat meant for seed germination. That said, it can also be used for reptile enclosures.
This snake heating mat made our list for a number of reasons.
First, it has all the bells and whistles of a great heating mat. The temperature can be adjusted, unlike other heating pads on this list. Consequently, you can adjust how hot you want the mat to get as to not damage your pet snake.
Additionally, this is one of the more durable heating pads on the list. After all, it is MET certified, which basically means it is built to withstand all basic minimum safety measures.
Pros: – MET certified for optimal safety and quality – Temperature can be toggled with gauge – Waterproof, durable, and resistant to fires/melting
Cons: – Slightly more expensive than other alternatives on the list – Does not come with thermostat
Most common, beginner pet snakes will be able to use a heating pad. Before buying a heating pad, you should make sure your snake doesn’t require any type of light cycle.
Here’s a list of other aspects to consider when heating your reptiles terrarium:
Most species like an Ambient and Basking space in their terrarium. That means you’ll need to heat one side of the terrarium and keep the other slightly cooler
Make sure the terrarium doesn’t get too hot or too cold. You can prevent over/under heating by purchasing a simple thermostat for snake cages
Avoid direct heat to your snake. Make sure the heating pad is buffered between something like a turf mat to prevent overheating or burning.
Other FAQs when it comes to heating your snake’s terrarium
Is it OK to use a heated rock for a heat source?
NO! Avoid heated rock or any other heat source that your pet snake could directly touch.
Heat sources like this tend to get way hotter, and can potentially burn or harm your pet snake.
All heat sources to your snake or reptiles enclosure should have some kind of buffer
Does my snake need a heat lamp or light source?
Most common pet snakes like Corn Snakes and California Kings do not need a full spectrum lighting to create calcium.
That said, there are some species like Hognose Snakes DO need full spectrum lighting. Thus, extra precautions should be taken when purchasing a pet snake.
You need to make sure you’re providing the right type of heat and light if necessary. A lot of snakes are hardy, but some do need some extra TLC and are high maintenance.
Should I turn off my snake’s heating pad at night?
This depends, too.
Most heating pads should be turned off periodically. Additionally, some species don’t require 24/7 heat sources, so you can turn them off at night.
In general, it’s good to unplug the heating pad once a day to ensure it gets a chance to cool down.
This will also prevent overheating. Unplugging it for an hour a day should ensure that your heating pad is in good shape.
Do snake heating pads affect humidity?
No, typically not. Light sources typically dry out a snake’s terrarium. In which case you’ll have to explore adding an additional humidity source to your terrarium.
Since snake heating pads don’t emit light, you don’t have to worry about your snake’s cage becoming too arid.
With all this in mind, it’s important to make sure your snake enclosure has the proper humidity level.
Just like with heat, different species prefer different levels of humidity. This factor has a lot of variables, particularly with where you live. If you live in Arizona, you’ll probably have to explore humidifier options for your snake. On the other hand, if you live in Florida or Virginia, you won’t have to worry so much.