Anyone have plans for a shut off float for a waterer?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by muddler6, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. muddler6

    muddler6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2007
    Jefferson County, PA
    I have been trying to work out a cheap float for a watering system I want to build. My plan is a section of gutter, downspout into a large bucket or small barrel with a trough inside of the coop. They have one at TSC, but I don't want to spend the $10.00 for it. Anyone with plans, or better yet pictures? Or should I just spend the 10 bucks?
  2. rooster-red

    rooster-red Here comes the Rooster

    Jun 10, 2007
    Douglasville GA
    Honestly, I think you'll spend more than $10 in hardware to rig something up.
  3. rebelcowboysnb

    rebelcowboysnb Confederate Money Farm

    You could use aquarium air hose as your in line. Make it run strate down the side of the waterer an bend across the bottom. Glue it the back of the waterer but not the bottom. Mound a fishing float to the end of the hose where the float pulls the hose up an folds it in half as the water level gos up.

    Or you could just use the float valve out of the back of a toilet.
  4. consdrs

    consdrs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 4, 2008
    Vancouver, WA
    Well after a long, wet, snowy, COLD winter (so far). and having to haul water out to the coop... no cost is to great to hook something "automatic" up!! we have an automatic animal trough waterer. but it was only 10 bucks and made of plastic and with the weather in the teens on some nights we unhooked it till its warmer out so it won't break.

  5. Dr.Doorlock

    Dr.Doorlock Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 21, 2008
    Garland, Texas
    Every toilet has one. It's called a "Ball Cock", but the new ones don't use a ball. Look in the toilet repair section at Lowes and get a Korky ballcock for about $9. Drill a hole in the bucket bottom and bolt it up. Then get a 1/2" IPS to 7/8" toilet flex line. Add a hose thread adapter and you are "hooked-up"

    Email me with questions.

  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    You can rig something yourself with a toilet float mechanism. It would be a LOT more compact, and probably not very much more expensive, to just buy the purpose-made thing and be done with it.

    Be aware, though, that a) it won't work reliably during the wintertime, because the feed line will freeze up and even if you have heat tape on the feed line (which is IMO pointlessly risky considering the frequency with which heat tapes cause fires) you still have a good chance of a thin skim of ice forming around the shutoff mechanism and locking things up. It is *possible* to construct relatively frostproof auto waterer systems, for large livestock anyhow, but it is never *cheap*.

    Also, I don't know whether you've used livestock auto waterer systems before but you need to realize they will ALL overflow sometimes. Really truly. The better ones will only overflow occasionally; others may flood the coop with depressing regularity. At the very least, you want it located somewhere that offers floodwater an easy 'out' rather than having it soak all your bedding and get your coop structure so wet it starts to rot.

    Good luck,

  7. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    And please know how *envious* we are of those of you who can actually put a creative mechanism like this into practice as we freeze our nuggies off up north! [​IMG]
  8. muddler6

    muddler6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2007
    Jefferson County, PA
    Thanks everyone, I may try the toilet mechanism method if I can pick one up cheap. I was also looking at the mechanics of the one in TSC, very simple, just a matter of getting it just right and a tight seal on it. And this would not be a winter thing as it is in the teens most nights here now, if not colder. Cabin fever is getting to me and I need to keep my mind going on these things. As for the overflow issue, I already plan to have an overflow tube piped in and in the corner of the coop that already has a good bit of large and small gravel burried under the dirty so the chickens don't pick all of it up (yet).
  9. nightshade

    nightshade Chillin' With My Peeps

    They are $12 in our area but you are certainly going to spend more then that making one.
  10. BirdBrain

    BirdBrain Prefers Frozen Tail Feathers

    May 7, 2007
    I think the learning pages have a link to an auto waterer.

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