BriteTap nipple waterer

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by beyandle, Aug 28, 2014.

  1. beyandle

    beyandle Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 27, 2014
    Berthoud, CO
    I just wanted to share my experience with this system, since I found very few reviews on it when I was researching it. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this system. We have 8 pullets and bought two BriteTaps- one 5 gallon cooler set up in their run and a 2 gallon set up in the coop.

    PROS:

    -INSULATED! Keeps water super cool in the heat of the summer, unlike any other system I could find- including homemade nipple waterers.
    -I only have to refill water once or twice a week now instead of daily.
    -Keeps water clean and fresh.
    -It stays dry, very minimal leaking (once you get it to the correct height- the ladies get messy with it if you have it set up too low).
    -You don't have to figure out how to rig up your own PVC or bucket nipple system, you just assemble this as instructed, super easy.
    -It can sit flat, unlike homemade bucket nipple waterers, so refilling is a lot easier.


    CONS:

    -The price is slightly high, but we just purchased the nipple part from the supplier and then bought coolers at Home Depot, which saved us about $50.


    We have not used this through the winter yet, but am anxious to see how well the cooler insulates in winter. We may need to add a heater. Will update when the times comes, as that was another point I found no reviews on.

    Hope this is helpful to some. I highly recommend trying this system over a bell waterer or homemade system. You will fall in love immediately.


    [​IMG]
     
    Linda V and mamadawn like this.
  2. mamadawn

    mamadawn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 19, 2013
    Utah
    I'm also using the BriteTap system. I have two, 2.5 gal units... Where do you live? I'm in Utah. I'm gearing up to start winterizing as we are already getting cold here at night... I know my waterer will freeze solid if I do nothing. I'm looking at a bucket heater or birdbath heater or aquarium heater inside the cooler threaded through the vent hole.
    I haven't come up with a good solution to keep the front reservoir and nipples from freezing. I really don't want to haul water at 5:00am and throughout the day :(
    My set-up is such that I have my water and feed in the run not the coop. Any ideas?
     
    Linda V likes this.
  3. beyandle

    beyandle Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 27, 2014
    Berthoud, CO
    We are in Colorado- and just this week, it has started to get cold at night. Utah probably gets a little colder I would think, than it does here. We are on the front range, so we rarely hit subzero, but it lingers in the single digits sometimes. This is our first year with chickens, so I don't really have any advice based in experience. But I can tell you our plan, haha. I have done some research, and talked with neighbors etc... Here is a link to a site where I have read about using the Brite Tap in the winter.

    http://blog.chickenwaterer.com/2012/11/chicken-waterers-winter-freezing.html

    We have a waterer in our coop and in our run. My first approach is going to be to put tepid water in the coolers each morning (approx 70 degrees)- it is supposed to be able to stay liquid for approx 12 hours at subzero temps in the insulated cooler. I will also probably bring the one from the run into the garage at night and leave the one in the coop. I would like to experiment with what temp the one in the coop can withstand overnight before freezing. We keep cases of bottled water in our garage, and even in the most bitter of winters, they barely even start to ice up. So I'm thinking a Brite Tap in the coop would be just fine... If you have a big enough coop, you could just toss the waterer in the coop at night and bring it back to the run in the mornings? I have also thought of using an aquarium heater in the cooler, but I'm not sure we'll need it. It might be useful if you are leaving yours outside overnight though.

    As far as keeping the clear exterior box and nipples themselves from freezing... I still have some research to do. This is obviously going to be the biggest obstacle. I have read about people using some sort of insulated tape, etc- but that seems like it could get messy and ugly upon removal in the summer. I am thinking of having my husband buy some foam sheet insulation and creating a little box to fit over the clear box... Just a thought. I have also heard of people floating golf balls in bell waterers, as the movement keeps the water from freezing- maybe putting a marble in the clear box would be enough? As you can see, I have many ideas, but until tested, who knows what will work... And if all else fails, I will probably do what other people do who use nipple waterers... Retire the nipple system in the winter and use a bell waterer with a heater.

    The last resource I have to explore is the Brite Tap company. I have actually contacted them twice with questions and they are super easy to work with and are very responsive. I can update this post after I talk to them and let you know what they say. Also, let me know if you find a good fix!
     
    Linda V likes this.
  4. mamadawn

    mamadawn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 19, 2013
    Utah
    Sorry I've been away for awhile- We do get sub 0 a lot. We had a 200 gal drum freeze solid in our shed. I did email the BriteTap folks and they could only suggest what they already have in print- so having read that, with these temps my only option seems to bring it in at night and check the waterer on and off during the day. During the day won't be a problem as I will need to check on the girls and for eggs so they don't freeze. We will be having a light come on at 5am to create enough laying hours. I know the girls are going to want a drink first thing in the morning. Im just keeping it real to say- I just can't see me getting up, bundle-up and braving the weather that early... I don't want to put the BriteTap in the coop as the coop is only 4x4 and the BriteTap drips a lot! I use sand litter and don't want to create a wet/ freeze and moisture problem. Looking forward to any info you come across :)
     
  5. amynrichie

    amynrichie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 29, 2013
    Nebraska Panhandle
    I have a brite tap, too. It's been really nice! We went with brite tap rather than some of the others, because we did not really have the time or energy for another building/DIY project this year. EVERY weekend was booked solid! We attached it to the end of a large chest type cooler that we don't use anymore. It was EASY! Sometimes "easy" trumps "cheap!"

    I've put a lot of thought into winterizing. I wil be moving the water station indoors as there really is no spot out of the wind to put it. I think getting it out of the wind is a crucial part of preventing freezing. I have almost decided on this:

    http://www.amazon.com/Hydor-50w-Hyd.../ref=lh_ni_t?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER

    I will "snake" the cable down into the clear box part of the brite tap,(if it fits through the hole.) Then, plug it into a thermocube outlet:

    http://www.amazon.com/Farm-Innovato...TF8&qid=1414530309&sr=8-1&keywords=thermocube


    That way, the heater is only running when it needs to be. I thought about regular aquarium heaters, but they won't go clear into the brite tap. I'm hoping the cable will fit! If it won't, I may have to also use a submersible pump with a bit of airline tubing in the brite tap to circulate the water so warm water is pumped into the brite tap.

    Just my $0.02!


    EDIT: I decided my plan above was just not working out for me. Today I made one of these:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...r-very-easy-heated-waterer-for-under-20-bucks

    It was easier, cheaper, and less likely to fail. I will definitely keep the brite tap in use on non-frozen days.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2014
  6. beyandle

    beyandle Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 27, 2014
    Berthoud, CO
    Our outdoor waterer froze for the first time last night... One in coop was fine. Our approach is going to be to remove the waterer from outside and keep the one in the coop. If/when that one freezes- my husband had the idea of boxing it in and putting a light bulb in the box over the clear box (since that will freeze first). Will post pics when he's finished. It will essentially be a box with lid so we can open to refill and two holes drilled in bottom where nipples come out. Then we'll string a bulb inside. Also, of note- keep checking Brite Tap website... Heard that they are working on creating an insulated cover for nipple portion. Mama dawn, if your system is dripping, there's something wrong with it- I called Brite Tap when ours was leaking and they sent us extra parts. No more leaking. I'd look into that, as putting your water in the coop is going to keep it a LOT warmer.
     
  7. beyandle

    beyandle Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 27, 2014
    Berthoud, CO
    We finally decided we've experimented enough with the Brite Tap. Giving it up for the winter... We have had temps in the teens for two days now and the BriteTap nipples freeze within an hour of being out there. The water reservoir takes a lot longer to freeze, but there's just no solution that we can see to keep the nipples themselves from freezing. Bummer. Going back to bell waterers and dragging it out there in the freezing cold twice a day. If you happen to come across a solution, PLEASE let me know! We've got another four days (at least) in this storm- dropping into single digits tomorrow. Geeze. Just hoping we don't have too many of these storms. Good luck with yours, and let me know how it goes!
     
  8. amynrichie

    amynrichie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 29, 2013
    Nebraska Panhandle
  9. amynrichie

    amynrichie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 29, 2013
    Nebraska Panhandle
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  10. MaineChix

    MaineChix Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 7, 2014
    Maine
    Bummer guys! I'm a new chicken parent to 8 this year and have been using the Britetap waterer so far and LOVE it. Super easy, keeps the girls in fresh, clean water for a few days at a go and along with the automatic door, lets us occasionally get away for a few days at a time ... But, temps are dropping here in Maine and even though the waterer is inside the coop, the nipples froze up today. I was able to jiggle them a bit and unfreeze them but since it's only November and will most definitely be getting colder this winter, that's not really a long-term solution. I was hoping that there was a quick fix to winterize the Britetap :(

    Guess I'll be getting handy and building a new winter waterer :) Amynrichie, I'd love to hear how it goes without the pump - am thinking that I'll try first without and add it later if needed.
     

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