Cleaning Incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Mom 2em All, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. Mom 2em All

    Mom 2em All Songster

    Apr 20, 2008
    Southeast Michigan
    Can anyone point me to directions for properly cleaning out the styrofoam incubators? Miss Prissy OR Speckled Hen once had a step by step idiot-proof way to do so. I did a search but that came back with eleven pages of threads to comb through-some of them just mentioning the word incubator some the word cleaning, etc.

    I got the hatching itch early this year, and am expecting eggs this weekend. I just went out to the shed and got the incubator and I am rather horrified and ashamed at what it looks like. Seems to have collected dust and some water/moisture- the outside looks much much worse than inside. My turner thankfully looks very good. My thermometer/hygrometer not so good. That can be wiped off and sprayed with Lysol, however.

    Thank you in advance.
  2. MagsC

    MagsC Queen Of Clueless

    Jul 27, 2008
    A mild dish soap/bleach solution is what I use....if its nice, I let it dry in the sun. Hopefully you can find the step to step instructions.[​IMG]
  3. Serrin

    Serrin Songster

    Well now, isn't that interesting? You and I must have hit on the same idea at the same time Mom...though I don't have any eggs arriving soon. [​IMG]

    I too have one of those nifty old Styrofoam incubators. I pulled mine out for the first time since buying it about three years ago at auction. LOTS of dust!

    I'm not familiar with the thread of which you speak, but I can tell you what I did.

    I first disassembled it of it's constituent parts and took the whole affair to the bathtub. We have one of those nice detachable shower heads on the long hose and that makes it perfect for cleaning larger bulky items that are too big to clean in the kitchen sink.

    All I did was use a mild dish soap solution and a soft cloth to scrub the whole thing down (all except the electrical parts of course [​IMG] ) I then rinsed the living daylights out of everything with plenty of clear hot water. As hot as I could get it coming out of the tap. I figured that way, anything bad that might still be lurking on the surfaces should be pretty well wiped out!

    I let everything drip dry in the shower for a few minutes and then wiped down all of the parts with a clean dry towel. All things considered, I think I did just fine. The real test will come in the successful hatching of a dozen or so eggs!

    Anyone have eggs they want to donate to the cause? [​IMG]
  4. Surehatch

    Surehatch Songster

    Nov 16, 2009
    Maintaining a good hygiene by keeping your incubator clean is very important to ensure good incubation results. Very often pathogens and bacteria can be the cause of eggs failing to hatch. By cleaning the incubator with soap you will succeed in cleaning the surface, although very often this is not good enough to kill bacteria. I therefore suggest using a light formulation of bleach and water when cleaning the incubator. The bleach will be more effective in killing harmful germs and bacteria that might be in your incubator. There are some other more specialized products for cleaning incubators as well, products like ViruKill. These are more expensive for home use, therefore I would suggest going for the bleach option. Remember to let the incubator dry in the sun before you start using it again. Hope this advice helps!
    1 person likes this.
  5. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    I usually make some bleach water and wash everything with it. Rinse it well, and dry with paper towels/air dry.
  6. Madcap621

    Madcap621 Songster

    Oct 30, 2009
    Middle Tennessee
    As it happens, I just finished reading the instructions packed with an LG Styrofoam bator [​IMG] It says: "After all chicks have been removed from the incubator, rinse the bottom with antibacterial soap. Do not scrub, as this will cause damage to the incubator."

    My egg turner can be washed in the dish washer, so I plan to include the wire screen. I will also mist my bators with a 1 TBSP chlorine bleach to 1 quart water solution [the strength used to clean labs] and set in the sun to dry.
  7. kathyinmo

    kathyinmo Nothing In Moderation

    Do you have Oxine? That is what I use when cleaning mine. I use it instead of bleach. I think bleach and sunshine are good, as well.

    Good luck with your hatch! [​IMG]
  8. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Kathy, where do you get oxine?
  9. kathyinmo

    kathyinmo Nothing In Moderation


    I bought it online, at Revial Animal Health. I checked prices, and it was cheapest there. I bought 4 gallons, to save money and did not have to pay shipping! So, it was $19.99 a gallon, if you buy 4 of them. $25. if you only get one, plus shipping. You dilute it alot, and it will last forever!

    Interesting to note ... I work for the state, and they now use it in the hospital and health care facilities. After I bought it, they offered it to employees, for $16. a gallon!

    This is what it says:
    Oxine AH is tested and proven effective against a broad spectrum of bacteria, fungi & viruses including E. Coli, Salmonella, Avian Influenza, Canine Parvovirus, Rhino virus and many more. May be used at low concentrations due to its ultra high activity level. Can also be used on handling and restraining equipment, forks, shovels and scrapers used for litter and manure removal. Can be used for fogging or spraying.

    It also says Citric Acid, an activator, must be added before dilution. I was told not to use it though ... don't know the details on that. I bought it, but have not used it (citric acid). I know there are sites that tell about its many uses; not just for cleaning and sanitizing. You can use it for inhalation therapy, as well.

    I use it when washing all the feeders and waterers, as well. I wash them all in dish soapy water, and then I rinse in Oxine water. Some people put a drop or so in the chicken's water, as well. I don't because I prefer fresh water, or occassionally will add organic apple cider vinegar to it.

    Hope this helps! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2010
  10. Lowbrowfun

    Lowbrowfun In the Brooder

    Jan 5, 2013
    Perry, Florida
    I know that this is an older thread but I thought that I would put my 2-cents worth in. The oxide was a good direction, but it was over-thinking and passed by a simple solution. I use Dawn dish soap, which I know is animal friendly..rinse very well...let it dry.....then use a spray of hydogen peroxide which you can pick up at any grocery or drug store. It is usually is sold as a 3% solution which works great as a sanitizer, and it breaks down to water and oxygen within a few minutes.

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