Anyone figure out how to use nipple waterers in the winter without them freezing?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by jimmywalt, Aug 25, 2013.

  1. jimmywalt

    jimmywalt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 24, 2013
    I'm thinking ahead to winter and how I will water my 5 chickens in their 4'x4'x4' coop this winter. We live in Michigan where night time temps can get into the teens.

    I really don't need anything elaborate since we just have 5 chickens. I would like something that they can't poop in.

    I have the standard couple-gallon waterer that I was thinking I could use the cookie tin with 40 watt light bulb under which has been posted here a few times, but I don't want something that will get poop in, so I'm shying away from this option. Below is some pictures of the cookie tin heater that I made a few months ago.

    My chickens currently drink out of the pvc-nipple system tied to a 5 gallon bucket and it works great. I only add water ever few weeks, but this won't work in the winter because it will freeze. Attached are some pictures of this waterer.

    I'm leaning toward some 64 oz bottles with nipples attached in the tops. I have a couple of these already made and they work, but I just can't come up with a way to keep them warm so that they don't freeze in the winter. Attached are some pics of these too.

    I like the nipple watering system because the water remain clean...... I just need to get some ideas how to accomplish this in winter temps.

    Suggestions???????????

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  2. wyododge

    wyododge Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can view our system on my page. 5 gallon bucket with a bird bath heater works perfect. Had no issues at -30F. There will be a little ball of ice on the metal post, but once 'tickled' it will fall off and water will flow normally. We set up an auxiliary storage tank with a pump to avoid carying water down to the barn (24 birds). For five birds, a gallon milk jug will work just fine.
     
  3. jmagill

    jmagill Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have been using nipples in a 2 gallon bucket and an aquarium heater for 4 years now. Uses very little electricity and only needs to be filled every few days. I use a Hydor 75 watt heater but I get down to - 20 and lower quite often. You could probably get away with a 25 watt heater.
     
  4. celticgarden

    celticgarden Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've bookmarked this to make for the coming winter. 2 five gallon buckets, heat tape and some poultry nipples. Last Winter I used an open water container and a bird bath heater which worked fine but of course the water gets dirty quickly and needs changing frequently.

    http://www.avianaquamiser.com/posts/Heated_bucket_chicken_waterer/
     
  5. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    I use a bucket deicer with a built in thermostat in a 5-gallon. Mine is 250W but there are lower wattage versions if you live in a mild climate. They only come on occasionally to keep the water around 40F so it's not like running a heat lamp 24/7. BTW, I just tilted the lid a bit to get the cord through and with the crack open toward a corner and so high up, it stays clean.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2013
  6. jimmywalt

    jimmywalt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd love to see a picture. Could you please post? I'm wondering what your 2 gallon bucket looks like with the nipples. I'm hoping the "hang" this inside the coop (which is very small - 4'x4'x4')
     
  7. jimmywalt

    jimmywalt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Boy, I would love to see what this looks like as well. Could you post make/model # and/or pictures?
     
  8. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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