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HOT water vs cold

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Madcap621, Jan 5, 2010.

  1. Madcap621

    Madcap621 Songster

    Oct 30, 2009
    Middle Tennessee
    I recently read in threads about frozen water that many BYCers carry water several times a day to their chickens because of freezing. Many said they carry out HOT water. Just wanted to remind all that hot water freezes faster than cold water. [​IMG]

    I am no physicist, but it has something to do with molecules being closer together and moving faster in hot water, thereby facilitating an increase in the speed of transfer of cold/freezing temps to the water. Who knew! [​IMG]

  2. chickendude

    chickendude Songster

    Jun 4, 2009
    Dutchess County NY
    Yea it is true what you say. I put hot water in a double walled insulated water fount. It won't freeze all day in temps in the teens. But hot water in the plastic fount is futile because it will freeze faster!
  3. nebraskaclucker

    nebraskaclucker Hatching

    Dec 24, 2009
    i use a heated dog dish i purchased at a local farm supply/hardwear getup... paid less than $20.00 its been great during the -10 - -15 degree weather were getting in NE... hens are doing great!
  4. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    I take hot water out to unthaw the rubber water dishes I use in the outside coop pens that do not have electricity yet. Replenish with warm water as my chickens like drinking the warm better than a cold water dish drink in this bitter cold weather. Inside the henhouse there are heated dog water bowls for them to drink out of.
  5. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

    Jul 7, 2007
    Middle TN
    Not necessarily so.


    What you are referring to I think is called the Mpemba effect. It can cause hot water to freeze faster, but it is really hard to replicate. I know the hot tap water I take out in the morning manages to not freeze all day long. It is slushy by bedtime, but I figure that's pretty good considering the daytime temps haven't gotten above 28 degrees this week.

    You can also snopes it.
  6. meathook

    meathook In the Brooder

    May 21, 2009
    This is not exactly true. Under very specific conditions this can be the case. Factors like evaporation and dissolved gasses make a difference in whether or not the Mpemba effect takes place but in general cold water will freeze faster most of the time.

    Cross post for the answer [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  7. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Quote:That's basically what I do. They have heated waterers in the coop all night/morning, but when I let them out they usually congergate around a red bucket that is on the fence. I go out with a pitcher of tap hot (about 130*F) water and a repurposed wood chisle. I get the majority of the night ice out and the chickens seem to enjoy the warmer water that is on top temporarily. It generally remains unfrozen all day if the sun stays out (it's not THAT cold here!) so I just have to do it once a day. IF by chance it freezes while I'm at work they can still drink from the heated waterers on the other side of the yard.

  8. RocketDad

    RocketDad Songster

    Jul 25, 2008
    Near US 287
    Just wanted to remind all that hot water freezes faster than cold water.

    Not really true. The Mpemba effect is poorly understood, poorly documented and difficult enough to replicate that it's irrelevant. Also, "freezing" in this case has to do with the solidity or liquidity of the water, not the temperature.

    Give the chickens warm water to drink. But don't burn them.

    One gallon of water dropping from 200 to 32 degrees releases as much heat as running a 40w light for 10 hours.

    {edit to add: OP quote}​
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  9. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

    Jul 7, 2007
    Middle TN
    Rocketdad, I've been putting the gallon jugs of hot water in the coops at night and so far not a single cold weather loss. The jugs are frozen by morning, but it has to be helping some. Excellent suggestion!
  10. Akane

    Akane Crowing

    Jun 15, 2008
    9th grade biology said that not only water but other things starting at different temperatures cool to the same degree quite quickly. The greater the difference in temperature the faster heat is lost. We had to spend a week testing that on various materials. Cold water though will freeze across the top sooner. If you fill even a heated water container with barely melted snow the top will freeze and the animals can't drink despite the rest staying liquid. You come back later to find holes pecked or shoved by larger livestock through the ice and a ring of ice where the top of the water was before they drank. If you use water that is a tiny bit warmer so long as it doesn't sit too long you don't see rings of ice later because the top never froze on them. I find hauling hot water pretty pointless though. I've had to haul enough water from the house for 8 horses some winters when the stable water froze and so long as the water is from the inside faucet and not already nearly freezing it made little difference what the actual temp was. Whether it was steaming or just the first water after turning on the cold side the water in the stock tank reaches the same point of undrinkable within hours of each other. I only use hot water when melting ice or snow in to the waterers.

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