Bearded Dragon Resource Everything You Need to Know About Bearded Dragons

What Do I Need for Bearded Dragon Heating?

There are quite a few bearded dragon heating options on the market today. These are just some that you might find worth looking into.

These aren’t the only options that are available to you. There are products similar to what’s on this page made by other companies, as well. I really like the products made by Zoomed, Exoterra, and ESU, though. That’s why I use them for example here.

Basking Light Fixtures

All of these basking light fixtures come with porcelain sockets. I highly recommend a fixture that uses porcelain, so it can withstand the high heat it is exposed to.

You can also buy clamp lights from a hardware store. If you are going to use a higher wattage bulb, though, I really recommend one of these. I’m not sure if you can get a reflector lamp, from a hardware store, with a porcelain socket or not. I’ll have to look closer next time I’m in one.

I use track lighting fixtures in my cages. These have porcelain sockets as well. They are only rated for a 75-watt or lower bulb, though. Which is okay I only use one 75-watt bulb per cage. I also have them on a dimmer switch, so I can regulate the temperature if I have to.

Basking Lights

Using a heat producing light is essential for a dragon. These lights provide a tight spot light to create a high heat basking area. Bearded dragons are sun-loving animals and benefit from the use of lights for their heat source.

I use one 75-watt Zoomed basking light in each one of my cages. This provides enough warmth and also gives the cage a good heat gradient. In the winter I add a regular clear 60-watt bulb for more heat.

I have never used Exo-Terra basking lights, but from what I have seen they appear just as good as any other light out there. I do use some of Exo-Terra’s other products and really like them.

Zoomed’s halogen lights look really interesting as well. I have never used these but they seem really nice from what I have read of them. They are said to show better colors on the animals and last up to a year.

You can also use regular clear light bulbs in a reflector lamp to save some money. I like to use reptile basking lights because of the tight beam of light and heat. Even though, I’m not against using clear light bulbs.

UV-B Heat Lights

These provide heat and UV-B rays in one unit. I have never used these and don’t have much of review for them.
The smallest size you can get is a 100-watt bulb. If you use one of these, be careful not to overheat your dragon. I have heard that these were made for bigger cages.

UV heat bulbs are said to give off more UV-B rays than florescent tubes. I also hear reports that they really provide good benefits for the animals. Remember to be careful using with a smaller sized cage, though.

These are also said to provide more UV-B rays than a florescent tube. Also, I have read of these providing great benefits for reptiles who need higher UV-B levels. Remember though to be careful using these in smaller cages.

Heat Emitters

These are some heat emmitters that are on the market. These will work well as a secondary heat source. I say secondary, because a basking light should be your primary heat source.

I have been able to get good temperatures and heat gradient by just using basking lights. If you do need a secondary heat source, these will work well. Remember to provide a heat gradient with a cool side ranging in temperature of 75° F to 85° F. You’ll dragon will need a place to escape the heat, if they want to.

Under Tank Heaters and Heat Cables

These are other good sources of secondary heat. You probably aren’t going to need one of these, but they are always an option if you do. Make sure you use these devices according to the manufacturers directions, and perform routine checks to make sure they are working properly.

Heat Mats

Reptile heat mats are kind of like under the tank heaters, but they are designed to go inside the cage. They can be placed either under the substrate or along the back wall.

These are a good additional heat source for any cage that an under the tank heater can’t be used with. If you can’t keep a good temperature in your cage, this will help.

These also warm up the substrate as well as heating the air in the cage. If you use a heat mat, you’ll want to check it periodically to make sure that there is an even heat over the whole heat mat.

Bearded dragons will burrow down into their cage substrate. If there is a hot spot on the mat, your dragon will get burned. Most reptile heat mats that I’ve seen on the market are fairly safe, though.

A reptile heat mat can become costly, especially for one that is big enough for an adult bearded dragon cage. However, they are a good way to provide secondary heat. When paired with a thermostat you won’t have to worry about keeping a constant temperature in your cage.

I have also heard of people using heating pads as well. I’m not sure, however, how well these work or if they could harm your dragon or not.

I have never tried one myself. This is just an option that might be available to you. Before you use one, be sure to check for more information.

If you need a secondary heat source and can’t use an under the tank heater, a reptile heat mat is a good option. Though a little costly, they are well worth their price. These might be a little harder to find. I haven’t seen to many at local pet shops, but you can find them at specialty reptile stores and also online.


These are a couple of things that I really like, though, they aren’t neccessary. If you are using or plan on using an aquarium to house your dragon, these will help you regulate temperatures. These stands will allow you to keep the basking light from being directly on top of the aquarium.


These are just some of your bearded dragon heating options. There other bearded dragon heating options out there on the market that you might want to check into, as well.

There are always new products being developed . Check back often as I keep an eye out for them and write about them here.

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