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250 watt red bulb too much???

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by rhuxol, Apr 13, 2011.

  1. rhuxol

    rhuxol In the Brooder

    Apr 6, 2011
    I read to get a 250 watt red bulb, so that's what we got. But we only have 3 chicks and they are never under it, in fact they tend to stay on the opposite side. I do have a thermometer in there and have been keeping it at 90-95 since it's their first week, then I thought maybe the 250 bulb is for large brooders with many chicks? Is the heat just to powerful for them? Even though it says 90-95 maybe the direct heat is too toasty. Any advice appreciated!!

  2. suzeqf

    suzeqf Songster

    Mar 17, 2011
    depends on if you have them in the house or outside if they are in the house they are prob to hot. mine are in the shop and i ck the temp on top of the brooder and then on the floor of the brooder and adj my light accordingly and if it's the top temp is close to what they need i just turn on the 100 watt bulb
  3. IndigoJaguar

    IndigoJaguar Songster

    Mar 5, 2011
    I've read to watch the chicks behavior as the key indicator. The 90 to 95 is just a guideline to help you, I think. If they are staying far away, I would say it is too hot. How warm is the room they are in? I had twelve chicks and used a 125 watt the whole time. That seemed to keep them very comfy.
    Another thought is you could raise your bulb up higher.
  4. valentinebaby

    valentinebaby Songster

    Mar 23, 2009
    Sherman-Denison, TX
    I use a 250 red bulb as well, but start out with it raised up a bit. Chicks know when they are too cold or too hot. If they are in the corners as far as they can get from the light, then they are too hot. Raise it up a bit and see if they start moving around. Good luck!
  5. carrlr

    carrlr Songster

    Mar 31, 2010
    Southern Illinois
    I've successfully use a 250W Red bulb. My set-up is a 100 gallon oval tank used as a brooder. The light is at one end so the chicks can get away from the heat, when they want. I start with it adjusted so the temp is at 90-95 degrees and raise the bulb each week so the temp drops approximately 5 degrees per week. When the chicks are old enough and the outside temperature is stable enough, I shut the light off.
  6. it depends on how close you have it to them. I have 6 three day olds and am using a 100 watt regular light bulb in the metal heat lamp cone. i have it 8 inches off of the towl in the box. temp reads 90-95 as well. BUT they do have room in the box to get away from the heat. I put their food and water in the cooler areas. they know what temp. they are comfortable at and will move in and out of it as desired. If they are all backing away from the heat they are to hot. If they move in to it and are huddled one on top of each other they are cold. if they lay around under it sprawled out like a fur rug next to each other they are happy, content and loving life.

    I have read that it is very important to have the extra area where they can get away from the heat lamp. My 6 are in a 2 by 3 cardboard box. the heat lamp covers about 1/3rd of the box, 1/3 get the light, but very little heat, and 1/2 gets the light, but no heat.

    Mine are in the house as well. 95 is to hot for mine, they seem comfortable at 85 - 90 right now.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2011
  7. OkChickens

    OkChickens Orpingtons Are Us

    Dec 1, 2010
    Owasso, Oklahoma
    I have 2 250 watt lights in my brooder. My brooder is 4x10 and I have about 65-70 chicks in there right now. From 1-2 weeks old they are a little crowded but about 40 will be going to the sale on saturday along with some ducklings. I usually have 1 Red 250 watt bulb on and the smaller ones venture over there but it gets up to the 70's and 80's during the day and I have turned both lights off if it gets really warm. They are in my shop in 2 watermelon bins put together. Just make sure they always have food and water available! They should be fine!


  8. thatbloke

    thatbloke In the Brooder

    Jan 4, 2011
    Boulder Creek
    I installed one of those inline dimmers on mine, that way I can control it easily without having to lower or raise it, plus it saves electricity as it usually only runs at 50%
  9. chickencrazyinHT

    chickencrazyinHT In the Brooder

    Sep 19, 2010
    When we started out with chicks, we found that a 250 watt bulb was way too hot for them if you keep them indoors unless your brooder is very large. We use a big storage tub and a 100 watt bulb was plenty for them. If you have them outdoors or somewhere that is not a controlled temperature then a 250 watt would be fine. In our tub, the 250 watt bulb was reading over a hundred deg. in a matter of 15 minutes. When our chicks are a couple weeks old we even go down to a 60 watt and then a 40 watt before we move them to the coop.
  10. Mommysongbird

    Mommysongbird Songster

    Mar 17, 2011
    Small Town, Virginia
    We had the 250 W bulb but had to switch to a 100 W standard bulb because it was just too much heat. But now the temp has dropped outside and that made the temp drop inside my house as well. Our chicks (10 of them) are in a 50 gallon Rubbermaid tote. This morning I got up and the temp in the brooder was 87*. They seemed fine.

    I had this 'thing' that I made a few years ago out of PVC pipe (was suppose to be a puppet theater for my son) but I rigged it where I can pull our lamp up and down, here is a pic


    I just tied a dog leash (through the hold loop) to the top bar and then wrapped it around the bottom one. I have also threaded the clip end of the leash through the loop on the light fixture and used the clip as a pulley.

    I may have to switch back to the 250 W bulb if the temps keep dropping in the house. Or at least get a 150W bulb.

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