Frost in Chicken Coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by MarcyR1011, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. MarcyR1011

    MarcyR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 29, 2015
    Hemlock Michigan
    My coop is still getting a little frost in it. We just added larger vents 8X12 at the top of both the front and the back of the coop, but when I went out there this morning I still saw some frost on the roof and sides. I don't want to leave the door between the coop and run open at night because of critters. Not sure what else I should do. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you!
  2. Bridebeliever

    Bridebeliever Chillin' With My Peeps

    You already know that good ventilation is the key. That's good! [​IMG] I know that members that struggle with this will lower their roosting bars. Remember this warm moist air is rising. How are the chickens handling the frost? Any frostbite that you have noticed?

    [​IMG] Make sure you head over to the Learning Center and doing some reading there. Loads of great help in that area of the site!

    Here's a great article to read:
  3. MarcyR1011

    MarcyR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 29, 2015
    Hemlock Michigan
    I never thought of lowering the roosting bars... I'll have to try that! So far I haven't noticed any frost bite on any of them. I've leaned so much this past year! I was going to put a heat light in there when it got down to 9 degrees. I'm glad I researched this better so knew not to. Thank you for the tip! :)
  4. Bridebeliever

    Bridebeliever Chillin' With My Peeps

    You're welcome! Yes, you did the right thing by not adding the heat lamp!
  5. ChickenMammX4

    ChickenMammX4 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2015
    SW Ohio
    I'm presuming you're seeing frost on the inside (roof & sides). Is there a window you can crack?

    Last night and tonight will be the lowest temps so far this winter (around 8F), the hens seem fine, not minding the cold at all. I don't heat the coop and they've been out in the run to dust bath and peck around for scratch. Their water is out in the run as well. I worry more about the eggs freezing than the chickens.
  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    My coop door has a fairly large hardware cloth covered window, and that helps too. If that fails to fix the dampness, enlarge the other vents. Also, check the bedding and replace any wet bedding, as in around the waterer. Mary
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016
  7. WthrLady

    WthrLady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 24, 2014
    WestOak, Nebraska
    I have one whole wall that is nothing but a giant window cut out covered in hardware cloth. Our temperature Saturday night was -6'F (NOT the wind-chill - that was -27). The hens were fine. Can you add more ventilation on a protected side ?
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Pics of coop would help.
    How many birds in how big a coop(feet by feet)?
  9. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    I personally don't keep water in the coop. It spills and heated water this time of year puts out a lot of moisture. The birds are provided an area with two sides protected from wind so are outside every day. In this way I never need to have food or water in the coop.

    With a vent on each side of gable there isn't a lot of air being forced out if the coop was built well. Tight corners and overall good construction is actually a downfall as it doesn't allow good airflow coming into the coop. The air flowing out is limited by airflow in. If you've a gable coop then adding a few inlets on one of the low roof ends would provide intake that will run along the roof line mixing with the hotter, wetter air in coop and pushing out the gable vents. The roost can be around 18 inches lower than these intake holes or even on the opposite side of coop. Hole saws are a wonderful thing. Simple 2 to 3 inch hole saw and few minutes to pop out 4 holes along one of the low roof ends would stop the frost in coop. Hole saw is just a round saw blade you attach to drill. Cover the holes with hardware cloth to keep out the weasels and your good to go.

    I like single slant roofs just because it makes venting easy. Intake on low end and exit on high end. With a gable design the vents there are only exits so some intake is needed unless you have a nice and shabby construction with good cracks in corners and around doors. It's not passive air flow, air will literally be sucked in and pushed out the top. Rate of flow is exponentially increased if vents are placed properly. It doesn't take a huge area, actually the larger area turns passive flow, smaller areas undergo natural vacuum forces.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2016
  10. MarcyR1011

    MarcyR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 29, 2015
    Hemlock Michigan
    It's an 10X12 big garden shed that I converted into a coop with a large fenced in run (even though some get out and free range). We put 2 more vents in approximately 8X10 at each end and I've been leaving the small door between the coop and kennel open a few inches and it seems to have helped quite a bit. I also have a make shift window I can open if I need to. I just don't want it to get too drafty in there. I worry about them getting too cold and I think that's something I need to get past. Really appreciate every ones comments and suggestions. I think I'm going to revamp my coop this summer and change some things to make clean up easier. I usually gut my coop out once a week and I want it to be easier than it has been! :)

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