Heating elements for homemade incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by justoldbobo2, Dec 26, 2014.

  1. justoldbobo2

    justoldbobo2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have built a few homemade incubators before and always used bulbs for heat. My question is has anyone tried using one of these type heating elements.

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  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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  3. justoldbobo2

    justoldbobo2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was comparing it to some of incubator diy kits. Have u had good luck with those
     
  4. justoldbobo2

    justoldbobo2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've considered ceramic bulb elements too. Lookin for long term ideas
     
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    the only DIY kit I've done is this one.
    http://incubatorwarehouse.com/225-watt-cabinet-incukit.html
    They were older versions so maybe they've been improved.
    My experience was that they worked for a while and then the heat went haywire. I'm assuming the controller was at fault. I loved the design but bad results.
    I've since changed out all the controllers and heat elements with more basic but more reliable ones.
    ETA
    Since you're set up for a lamp, a ceramic heat emitter would be a good option since it won't be affected by cycling like a filament will.

    I switched to ceramic for all brooding so I can provide a daily dark period.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2014
  6. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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  7. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Ceramic heaters like you showed will work just fine, especially if a fan is blowing across them...


    Any heater can fail, my advice if you want to do it cheap and use light bulbs simply use two light bulbs... Then just keep an eye on it, if one bulb blows no big deal as you have redundancy built in and can replace the blown bulb no harm done... I also recommend that you use two different brands or values of bulbs, because using two of the same exact bulbs (same brand, value and lot) generally means when they do fail it will generally be close to the same time, best to spread that failure time window out....

    No matter what heater you use, I would consider using two heaters instead of one so that you always have redundancy built in...
     
  8. justoldbobo2

    justoldbobo2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was thinking of moving away from bulbs just because of the room required and the Good cheap ones are harder to find. I have an old ceramic heater I may look at element in it just to see how they work lil better. I usually use computer fans as well but wonder if old heater fan would be over kill ?
     
  9. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    True, but the fragile filaments in lamps will fail at a significantly higher rate than a metallic heat element, primarily due to constant cycling of power.

    Two heat sources is good advice as well.
    I use two heat controllers and two heat elements in both the incubator and hatcher. One controller is set at about 97F and the primary is set at 99.5. If the primary fails, it stays hot enough to keep the embryos viable. Two heat elements and controllers also bring it up to temperature much faster.

    Filaments in light bulbs are just thick enough to provide enough energy to provide the specified wattage. Mass produced to get the best performance for the dollar.
    I would trust a metallic heat element much more even if it weren't cycling constantly.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2014
  10. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Hit up Ebay and search for "ptc heating element" lots of cheap options, pay attention to the working voltage... The nice thing with PTC heaters is that they have a fixed 'max' temp and that is almost always WELL below any ignition point, so they pose little fire risk...

    As for cheap light bulbs, no shortage by me, also appliance bulbs are exempt from the new restrictions actually pretty much every bulb can be exempt, but the stores like the higher profits found in CFL and LED so they are deliberately not caring the incandescent... Don't listen to the sales pitch, regular bulbs are simply not outlawed, only regular bulbs sold for 'general illumination' are being phased out, simply label it for another use like 'novelty' or 'heavy duty' and it's legal...

    And another option, this time of year Xmas lights are cheap, a 100 string of Xmas lights is equivalent to a 40W bulb and for most strings if one bulb burns out the string doesn't die meaning you have tons of redundancy and you can also spread the heat out more evenly...
     

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