How much can temp safely vary?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by KDailey, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. KDailey

    KDailey Crazy Cochin Lady

    Jun 27, 2011
    Bronson, Tx
    This is my first time hatching chicks. My incubator says it is preset for 100* and it came with a little thermometer to put inside.

    In the instructions it says to disregard the little thermometer for the first few hatches using the incubator. This is supposed to be because the incubator's internal thermostat that regulates the temperature is supposed to be more accurate than the thermometer. The instructions also said to incubate some eggs and see how the hatch goes and if it goes bad then you adjust the internal thermostat for the next hatch. Well the little thermometer is saying it's 101*.

    I don't want to risk my eggs just so I can see if the incubator really is where it's SUPPOSED to be set.

    How much can the temp safely vary before it causes complications. I know if it gets beyond 103* you're in big trouble but what about 101 or 98?

    My reason for asking is because the incubator is supposedly set at 100* but from what I've read it should be 99.5* and the little thermometer is reading 101*.

    The way I figured, if I adjusted the internal thermostat using the switch that will lower the temp by 1/2 to 1.5 degrees, hopefully it would be closer to right without going drastically one way or the other.

    If the little thermostat is right that would put me at around 99.5-101.5* but if the internal thermostat is correct it would put me at about 98.5-100*. This seems like a safer range than somewhere between 99.5 and 101*

    Opinions? Did I do the right thing?
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2011
  2. Farmer_Dan

    Farmer_Dan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2010
    I think it's ok to fluctuate between about 98 and 101. It's soooo hard for me not to adjust the thermostat! I'm trying not to touch it unless it drops below 97.5 or goes over 101 for 24 hours, but I keep touching it [​IMG] BTW, I'm getting pretty good hatch rates this summer (or at least it seems that way from how many people are having issues this year). My hatch rate is about 75% with about 150 eggs set over this summer.
  3. mandelaykay

    mandelaykay Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2011
    Southern maine
    That is what I heard... around 102-103 they start cooking. I also heard that cooler is better then warmer. If the eggs run a little cool they will develop fine just slower if they run too hot they can develop weird.
  4. KDailey

    KDailey Crazy Cochin Lady

    Jun 27, 2011
    Bronson, Tx
    Thank you! This makes me feel soooo much better.

    The temp was staying at exactly 101 last night and was the same this morning (this is going by the little thermometer). I adjusted it this morning and it's still sayin 101* but due to the un-reliable-ness of the little thermometer I think I should be safe.

    Thank y'all soo much!! [​IMG]
  5. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 4, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    What kind of incubator have you got? I assume if it's been preset for 100F that it's got a fan, yes?
  6. saddina

    saddina Internally Deranged

    May 2, 2009
    Desert, CA
    get a digital read out theromemter, instead of the glass ones. but from 98>101 is fine.
  7. KDailey

    KDailey Crazy Cochin Lady

    Jun 27, 2011
    Bronson, Tx
    It's a Hova bator Genesis 1588 and yes it has a fan.
  8. dsqard

    dsqard Crazy "L" Farms

    Jun 11, 2010
    York PA
    I would suggest getting a Brinsea Spot Check thermometer. They are very accurate and are not very expensive. You can set the probe right at the level of the tops of the eggs and know what your temperature is. I didn't have one on my first hatch and I am pretty sure my temps were low the whole time. I did get chicks but I only got six out of 18 eggs. Could have been many different reasons for the low hatch rate (to include my lack of knowledge) but my second hatch went much better with the new thermometer. Good luck hatching! [​IMG]
  9. KDailey

    KDailey Crazy Cochin Lady

    Jun 27, 2011
    Bronson, Tx
    Brinsea spot check huh? I'll look into that

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by