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Calibration - Incubator hygrometer WAY OFF!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by JillZ, Mar 14, 2016.

  1. JillZ

    JillZ Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 3, 2016
    Hi. I'm hoping someone can help with this.

    After having a very difficult hatch (3/24) with a new Farm Innovators model, I used the advice here and calibrated my accurite digital hygrometer/thermometer, as well as a submersible glass bulb for temp - calibrated by the ice method. The accurite was off by 4 degrees (reading low) after the salt test and the separate thermometer was reading 2 degrees high.
    I now am calibrating both of those to the new incubator's digital hygrometer/thermometer. These are my findings:

    The glass thermometer( factoring for -2deg) and the incubator thermometer are pretty much spot on. The Accurite temp is close, however it took 3 hours to read that temp.
    The problem is the hygrometer.
    The Accurite hygrometer (factoring the +4) and the incubator hygrometer differ by 16 degrees.

    Can this even be possible? What the heck?

    If so, it is no wonder that my last hatch was so pitiful. The incubator hygrometer is reading 16 degrees low, which would mean that at lockdown, when I had it all the way up to peak of 75, it was actually at 91 pct humidity. Basically soaking wet. UGH. And throughout the first 17 days, when I thought my humidity was 40-55 (too high, I know), it was actually 56-71 pct.

    I just want to verify with you that are experienced in calibration that this is first, possible, and second, that I have taken accurate steps to correct the readings.

    Thank you in advance for your help.
     
  2. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    When I checked my accurite hygrometer the salt test told me it was between 10 and 20% off. I split the difference and monitored my air cells so I had nothing to worry about. High humidity during hatch, unless there's condensation, I don't worry about, but during the first 17 days, I'm super anal with. The accurite therms also take long to register or change with the changing of the temps.
     
  3. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    It could be that people with incubators that have built in thermometer and humidity gauge that work never post about it. I'm inclined to think nobody should ever trust them or use them for an actual gauge. Where ever one purchases an inexpensive small dual unit to fit in the incubator doesn't matter as it can easily be calibrated. I have a combo temp/hygrometer used for cigar boxes. Mos get an Accurite from Walmart. They both fit in the incubator and both can be salt tested. Done deal, no more guess work. I preform a salt test prior to each hatching season. The battery power will effect it's reading so a good idea to test each season. As for calibrating the thermometer used to use ice water then made my life easy by trusting an oral digital thermometer. They are the most accurate and trustworthy instrument for very little money- everyone should already have one in the medicine cabinet. My temp/hygro reads to full degree so only use it as indicator everything is running well. I set the incubator and check it there after every now and then with oral thermometer. They fit right down a vent hole. Digital orals can be used to measure high and low temp swings then average that for real reading. Works like a charm, high will be 30 seconds after the heating element turns off and low will be 30 seconds after element turns on. Just turn oral thermometer on and off while it's still in the vent hole to get quick readings as the temp is lowering.
     
  4. JillZ

    JillZ Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 3, 2016
    Thank you for the tips. I DID candle, but never marked the air cells. Most were chocolate and olive eggs and really difficult to see in, other than to see the dark chick itself. Am going to find the oral thermometer now. It's somewhere around here. What about checking the weight then on a scale to be able to measure growth if I can't see in well when candling?

    It's so crazy to buy an incubator and it be off by so much. What's even the point of having one if it can't be accurately calibrated or adjusted? Might just be better, as an older farmer told me the other day, to mist them with warm water once a day with a spray bottle! He said he has hatched thousands in his life that way. Never even Had a hygrometer.
     
  5. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    Weighing is a good alternative to candling. Yes.
     
  6. JillZ

    JillZ Out Of The Brooder

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    Okay, and it's supposed to be 10% ish? days 7, 14?
     
  7. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    A total of about 13% over the full incubation, so you can average it by week so, a little over 4% a week?
     
  8. JillZ

    JillZ Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks so much!
     
  9. AmyLynn2374

    AmyLynn2374 Humidity Queen

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    You're welcome.
     

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