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Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by barrelchick, Dec 17, 2010.
Can you safely put a ceramic heater in your coop instead of a heat lamp?
Need more info. Anything is possible...
I am using a red heat lamp which keeps the automatic door open because of the light. I was wondering what kind of heat source I could use that would keep them warm and not have any light involved so the door would serve its purpose. Was not sure if a ceramic heater would work. I have one in my horse trailer to keep the pipes from freezing but it blows air and since my coop is 4x4x6 I was cautioned this may take up the oxygen and I was concerned about it being safe in the coop.
my coop is 4x4x6
There's no real reason to heat a coop that size.
If it's dry and draft-free, the birds don't need extra heat.
If you're trying to keep water from freezing, use a small bulb enclosed UNDER the waterer rather than trying to heat the whole space
I was cautioned this may take up the oxygen
Unless there is flame involved, heaters don't "take up oxygen".
Yeah I think there is really no reason to heat one of those itty bitty little coop's. It will cause more problems than it will solve, not to mention not safe at all.
The ceramic heaters I am familiar with have a ceramic heating element that heats up through resistance. There is a lot of dust, dry litter and feathers/down wafting around inside a coop that will settle on that element. When the heater is on for a fairly lengthy period of time, that debris can heat to combustible levels making it a very good place for the coop fire to start. In short, you won't need to heat the coop so don't. You're heating the coop for yourself, not the chickens as they are hearty enough to get through cold weather without it. A small water heater will be enough to keep the waterer from freezing--either a commercially produced one or one you can, if you're clever, make out of a light bulb. As with any electrical/heating device be very careful how it is set up, what it is touching and make sure it is grounded.
A bunch of BYCers use the ceramic heat emitters sold for reptile vivariums. I do not recall seeing any reports of combustion type problems when they are used sensibly. Some people seem to have them not last very long.
Usually though you are better off just doing something to the *water* to keep it liquid, and making sure the coop is vented into somewhere relatively sheltered (if you partly plastic-wrap your run on a small coop like that, it is good to vent the coop to that side rather than the 'outside' sides) and chickens will generally be ok unless you live somewhere exceptionally Arctic or have poorly-chosen breeds.
Good luck, have fun,
Yes, keeping them warm maybe more for me. I have a heated water bowl for them so water freezing is not a problem. Thanks for all the advise. A ceramic portable heater is a definite no-no so I won't go that option was just curious.
You dont even need heatlamps and such.Give them cracked corn for the winter.
Chickens will give off 5btu's of heat when fed cracked corn.It helps them thru the winter. 5btu's is plenty of heat from a shook.
My coop is 4x8 and about 7 foot high. The 4x8 is there floor space with 16" square x 2" thick stone pavers from menards. The part they sleep in is 4 foot x 30" x maybe 50"high. I have a heat emiter I bought at petsmart for about 30 dollars . It is 150 watts. I put it in a aluminnum domed fixture with a ceramic bulb screw thing. It is rated at 300 watts.Menards sells these. This emiter is all metal. I put it about 2 feet back from the roost and at the ceiling. Covered it with 1/2" hardware cloth. the cord and hanger is fastened with conduit screw clamps.
It is doing a good job in the chicago area. I have storm windows on the screened area of the coop with plastic closable duct vents. The vents are open. The nest box sticks out of the house with a little roof
and you get your eggs from a flap down door. The poo has not frozen on the floor or in the house. The eggs have not frozen. I do have a heated waterer on a little wood platform on the stone pads.
This is my first chicken winter and everything is working great so far.
The emitter is positioned so there is no exteme heat and the chickens and I can just warm the inside there sleeping and laying area.