I know this is a somewhat old thread but I had to share my experience so people know the truth. I just had a small strip of heat tape malfunction and cook a $1500 mature female hognose. I was checking water dishes as I do every other day and when I opened her tub she was just lying there, mouth agape, lifeless. I immediately ran for my temp gun and her tub seemed a we bit hot on the surface of her hotspot, but when I pulled her tub out to test the actual tape, there was a tennis ball sized hole burned in her tub, bedding falling everywhere and the temp in that one spot was reading over 225 degrees. Ofcourse I had it on a thermostat so I was just in shock, so I tested every other tub and snake, all was fine, even the tub on the same rack next to the burned tub was perfectly normal. It’s simply malfunctioned. The probe to the thermostat was taped maybe 6 inches from the burn site. Absolutely devastating.
So yea, after talking to a couple of my high end breeder friends about it, they’d all heard of similar cases happening, some even still used the heat tape but some swear by the heat cable to prevent this exact scenario from happening. I was lucky itll was only one snake, my friend knows of someone who 90% of their collection was cooked not bc of bad thermostats, but malfunctioning heat tape.
So I’m doing as much research on heat cable as I can bc I’m more than likely making the switch.