1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

Coop floor...what is best?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by shannybell, Oct 9, 2012.

  1. shannybell

    shannybell Chirping

    Jul 9, 2012
    Wilsonville, AL
    We are building our "dream coop" and husband is ready to get started pretty quickly since I have the plans all drawn out for him. I haven't decided on the floor yet. We were just going to go with the deep litter over dirt, using poop board under roost area, but after going through many coop-building threads on here, I see so many linoleum floors in new coops. We could easily floor it and put vinyl down IF we do it now instead of leaving it dirt like we were going to do, I would just need to know pretty soon.

    What are the pros and cons to deep litter/wood shavings over dirt and over linoleum? Any advice, opinions, hints or tips would be greatly appreciated! Don't want to have any regrets!!

    If it matters, I am referring to the coop only. I will have a separate small feed room that will be floored and the chickens will also have an attached play yard that will not be floored. Thanks!

  2. RiddleMe

    RiddleMe Songster

    Feb 8, 2011
    Central Oregon
    I can sympathize with where you are at, this was the question that held up my coop build for almost a month, every time I thought I had made a decision I would rethink and change it. I finally built my coop with a wood floor, then painted the floor with kilz primer and two coats of porch paint. Also painted the walls with kilz and two coats of bathroom paint. I use the DLM, clean out once a year, and haven't had any issues. Cleans up really easily and I actually get regular comments during the year from my non chicken friends about how they can't believe how "clean" the coop smells, ie no stink. So far, no regrets, and I like the fact that if I ever decide to get rid of the chickens (not likely), their coop can be used as a storage shed. Not to add confusion, but just this spring I also converted a dirt floor structure to a second coop, again using the DLM, and haven't had any issues with that one either wrt smell. It had previously housed my horse so has good drainage in the area, a sand base, etc. So really, for the chickens, I don't think you can go wrong with either floor, although I know there are some strong opinions either way.

    Editing to add - I personally chose not to use linoleum, I didn't like the idea that damage could be occurring underneath due to an inadequate seal, etc, and I wouldn't know about it until it was too late. That's why I just went with paint. There are also some really cool roof/foundation sealants out now that can be "painted" on raw wood and basically rubberize it. I would have loved to use those, but found out about them after I had painted and it has to be raw wood to adhere properly.
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
  3. mickey328

    mickey328 Songster

    May 4, 2012
    Northern Colorado
    We used plywood for our floor...it was a repurposed sign...3/4 ". We put the painted side in since it was already waterproofed and is fairly slick. Any wet poo hitting it scrapes off very nicely and it's easy to hose down.
  4. Izzymoon

    Izzymoon Songster

    Apr 19, 2012
    My Coop
    I use linolieun and just scatter a thin layer of PDZ down with no shavings. More PDZ in the spots I know they roost. Scrape it off with a cat litter scoop and sprinkle some more PDZ. I may add shavings in the winter, depends..
  5. Spikes Chooks

    Spikes Chooks Songster

    Sep 10, 2012
    Sydney, Australia
    The floor of our coop is raised and we used recycled floorboards in the frame to make the floor, then covered those with exterior ply to level it and then a cheap remnant of linoleum. On top of that I put sugar cane mulch to mop up bits of poop and add some warmth as I got them in our winter months. Sugar cane mulch is a bit like straw, and a common cheap material here in Australia. Directly under their roost, I have a droppings board which I just scrape off into the compost each morning.

    I'm very pleased with it. Once a week I take out all the sugar cane mulch and wash down the linoleum. It's quick and easy.

    Good luck with all your decisions!
  6. RedStarLady1207

    RedStarLady1207 In the Brooder

    Jun 4, 2012
    Maryland, USA
    I built my plywood platform for the winter to get the birds off the ground. I used a combination primer and sealant stain top and bottom. On top of that I laid out those snap together waterproof mats they sell for the gym or toddler play room and laid those down over the plywood. Then I rolled out some rubber on top of that. I use mini-flake litter and straw on top of all that.

    I really like these mats. They are about 1 inch thick and waterproof. So far, easy to clean. We'll see how they hold up over time and through the winter. The above is my run and open area under my coop.

    Up in the roost and nest box area I have rubber cut out to size and rubber stair treds under the roost bar and the nest pads that come out to clean off. I use only mini-flake litter in the upper part of the coop where they sleep and lay eggs (no straw). It is about 4 to 6 inches thick.

    Link to the mats (bought at Lowe's). Mine are grey but they also had bright colors. I used 3 packages of 4 mats. I think it is good for the chickens for cushion for their feet and insulation on top of the plywood. They are totally waterproof but mostly they don't get wet and I have absorbent mini-flake bedding on top.

  7. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Crowing

    Oct 24, 2009
    I only have a few chickens and the coop movable with a wire floor. All the poop falls through the wires onto the ground. After a few weeks I move the coop and run and shovel up all the pre composted chicken poop and use it to feed my garden shrubs.

    The wire floor means the chickens never get poop on their feet and then tramp it around on the roosts and nest boxes. The spaces in the wire are very narrow so there is no chance of the birds getting feet stuck in between the grid.

  8. shannybell

    shannybell Chirping

    Jul 9, 2012
    Wilsonville, AL
    Wow, thanks for all the great info! Our coop is going to be a walk-in coop where my kids will be milling around, playing with the chickens and collecting eggs on a daily basis, so I believe the DLM will be the best option for that aspect of it as well. I love love love the idea of flooring with the future of possible storage IF we ever don't have chickens...can't see that happening! Thanks again!!
  9. karakn

    karakn Hatching

    Oct 10, 2012
    What is DLM?
  10. makemineirish

    makemineirish In the Brooder

    Oct 1, 2012
    Austin, TX
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2012

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by