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Heater suggestions for 3" PVC waterer

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by smokinyoda, Oct 13, 2015.

  1. smokinyoda

    smokinyoda Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2014
    Western NC
    The waterer on my tractor is a length of 3" pvc with horizontal nipples on the end. Last winter I bought a shatterproof aluminum submersible aquarium heater that was highly recommended on Amazon (Aqueon Pro 100). Even though it was on a thermocube It still only made it half way through winter before burning out, causing my pipe to freeze and bust. I was looking at TSC for a bucket heater but they are to large to fit inside my 3" pipe.

    Anyone with a similar setup or that is using a heater that fits my dimensions care to recommend a product? Guess I could wrap heat tape on outside if I have to.
    Here is a pic of my setup so you can see what I'm using.



    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. FarmerPhronc

    FarmerPhronc Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 15, 2015
    San Luis Valley, Colorado
    I just ordered a coop that comes with a 4 inch water pipe and the manufacturer recommends this, Allied Precision 300 200-Watt Bird Bath De-Icer available from amazon. Perhaps you can find something similar to fit your 3 inch pipe.
     
  3. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    I gave up on using pvc pipe for my flocks. I wanted it to work, I tried to make it work, if you have freezing tempetures at some point in time you will find yourself using a bucket with a bucket heater. They do work, not as fancy as I had wanted nor planed, but the fact that it just plain works for me, year in and year out, has to mean something. I suppose I am a victim of my own craftiness, I have even used an aquarium pump with a heater to keep the pvc pipe from freezing solid. Too many parts to fail, too complicated an contraption. Keep it simple, that is my recommendation ditch the pvc for winter and just use a bucket with horizontal nipples and noted bucket heater. Any heater can fail… but that is why we check the coop night and morning. Wrapping the pipe will lead to the birds picking the wrap, to the point it fails as well, birds are curious things.

    Best to you and your birds,

    RJ
     
  4. DanEP

    DanEP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2010
    Cadiz Ky
    RJ's right the only way you might be able to use the pvc pipe would be to have a heated reservoir with a circulation pump that pulls water out of the end of your pipe back to your reservoir constantly. Your best bet is a 5 gallon bucket with horizontal nipples and a bird bath heater.Come spring you can go back to the pipe and store the bucket till next winter.
     
  5. phryan

    phryan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 9, 2014
    Last year I ended up wrapping the pvc in roof deicer wire, not the preferred solution but it worked. This year I am going to try to run an aquarium heater cable through the PVC.

    Will post results in February saying it didn't work or in April thatit did.
     
  6. brickabracker

    brickabracker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 6, 2015

    Why horizontal nipples? I have a bucket with vertical nips hanging out. Will I have to change my whole setup??
     
  7. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    Vertical nipples will freeze up in the winter where I live. I don't see where you are, but if you are worrying about cold weather and don't want to be busting ice out of your setup every cold morning, a system with a bucket heater and horizontal nipples works hands down the best, for me, in USA zone 6. You can use what you will, but sometimes that is not what will work satisfactory for your situation. You don't need to change at all … but you may want to do so. Vertical nipples drip a lot more that horizontal ones, they freeze up much quicker as well. I see they still sell vertical nipples in my area, but only those whom have not been through a winter buy them. Then they will sell you horizontal nipples to get your system to work. They are in the business of selling, that is how profit is made, by selling. There is no guarantee that what they are selling is what you actually want, it is up to you to determine best use practices and implement them. Were you to enquire regarding the various nipples they may tell you, but they may not, or not know. Some folks are just sales people, there to sell.

    Below are a few photographs of my setup, a five gallon bucket, a bucket heater, and the preferred nipple in my area. Down south they can use the vertical ones and the like. It is just the cold weather climates that require a setup which works, for best results.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Best to you and your birds,

    RJ
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
  8. DanEP

    DanEP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2010
    Cadiz Ky
    One other advantage of the horizontal nipples is that they can be installed a couple of inches up the sides of your bucket with the heater below them. Warm water rises keeping the nipples in a warmer zone than having the heater above the nipples, I think that you'll find the horizontal nipples leak far less than the vertical nipples.
     
  9. brickabracker

    brickabracker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 6, 2015
    Unfortunately I have a bucket longer than it is wide and the stupid KC birdbath defroster has a cord of like 1 inch... so the defroster will only be submerged a little. But I will get the horizontal...
     
  10. newchick1358

    newchick1358 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2015
    Where can you get horizontal nipple? I can seem to find them near me. Is there and online store that sells them cheep? or is it just that red fixture above with a normal nipple?
     

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