Oh gosh...am I really weighing in on this?
I believe to each their own. For anyone using heating pads, just be aware that care homes (at least the one that my Grandmother is in) will NOT allow heating pads because they are a fire risk. They also aren't allowed to have a lava lap.
I did get my grandma's heating pads, but am too afraid to use them...lol.
On the other hand, I use heat lamps...I've used heat lamps for over 30 years. I've got one going right now. I will continue to use them.
(of course now that I've said this Murphy's law will kick my butt and burn my coop down.)
I'm actually more afraid of the wiring in the century old house I'm sitting in than my heat lamps.
But again...to each their own. Use what works best for YOU! Everything comes with a risk.
(and I refuse to be afraid to live life)
I just wanted to share that information.
I have used heat lamps for years. They work great and I can use any size bulb I need. I know they can cause a fire but I always always attach them so they will not come loose. If used outside they are secured with screws and wire to keep them in place. Inside I attach them to a sliding screen used for house windows. I lay a small board or curtain rod over the brooder and lay the lamp over that so it don't fall in and attach the pincher part between the screen. I don't have a pic on this puter anymore or I would show you. When i use the play pen I run a long curtain rod thru the pincher part and attach the rod to the play pen to the right height I need. If the chicks need ore heat they will get under the lamp if they don't they will get further away. I also use different size bulbs for the heat I need. Normally in the house I use a 60 watt bulb. Outside in 40 degree temps and less i use the red 250 bulb.
For new chicks I also cover the top of the brooder with towels to help keep heat in. I lay a pizza pan over the heat lamp so it don't catch the towel on fire.