Humidity won't raise

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Country Parson, Jan 5, 2011.

  1. Country Parson

    Country Parson Songster

    Oct 1, 2010
    Bellefontaine, OH
    I just built a cooler-bator, following one of the how-to videos I saw posted on this forum. After, playing around for a half a day, I've been able to keep the temp within a 3-degree swing (99.1 through 102.4). I have a small computer fan wired in and running fine. The fan is in the upper left corner of the cooler (not the lid, but in the box), with the fan/air flow directed up. In the lid, just above the fan, I've drilled six small holes. In the bottom right corner I drilled 4 small holes, plus I've opened the drain plug (that is where my wire exit the cooler).

    The humidity stays at 20%. It rarely fluctuates (almost never). I've tried plugging many of the holes. Before I went to bed I plugged 4 of the 6 upper holes and all of the lower ones (except the drain plug). This morning I plugged the two remaining lid holes (but opened one of the lower holes).

    Still nothing. I have a shallow pan of water in the cooler, which takes up about 25% of the surface area. I also have paper towels in the pan.

    Since I have the temp stable, I went ahead and put in some chicken and quail eggs. But I understand the humidity will need to be higher for the final 3-4 days. Also, I built this incubator mainly to hatch out goose eggs, which need a very high humidity level.

    What am I doing wrong?

    Last edited: Jan 6, 2011
  2. Ms.FuzzyButts

    Ms.FuzzyButts Songster

    Sep 5, 2009
    North Alabama
    Try changing the direction of your fan.. Mine is pointed toward the opposite side of the cooler. It actually blows air across the light. So basically if you are looking a tthe end of my cooler.. You see the fan in the upper right corner an inch or so from the top. Then my light is dead center middle of that end.. Halfway between top anf bottom.. Then on the left side, my water dish is sitting on the floor... So basically the fan is blowing across the light moving warm air around the bator and the light is heating my water dish creating humdity, which in turn is being pushed around by the air current from the fan... I hope this all makes sense. I haven't had my coffee yet!! [​IMG]
  3. Country Parson

    Country Parson Songster

    Oct 1, 2010
    Bellefontaine, OH
    Ms.Fuzzy, thanks! That seemed to work. I remounted the fan to blow across the bulb, and I moved the water dish to the opposite side of the cooler (previously, it was just below the fan). I went outside to feed/water the birds and came back in 20 minutes later & the humidity was already at 32%!
  4. gmendoza

    gmendoza Songster

    Mar 23, 2010
    Rock Hill,SC
    Also swap out the paper towels with a sponge.
  5. Ms.FuzzyButts

    Ms.FuzzyButts Songster

    Sep 5, 2009
    North Alabama
    Quote:Yes, absolutley. Also, it isn't the depth of the water that counts.. It is the surface area. So shallow and wide, will make more humidity than short and deep. Another thing that can help the humidity.. I don't know if you are a misses, or you have a misses in the house, but maxi-pads work wonders for helping to up the humidity.. [​IMG]
  6. gitlost80

    gitlost80 Trigger Pullet

    Mar 27, 2009
    Maybe put a bigger container of water on the bottom and cover the entire bottom of the incubator with wire chicken netting,making a whole new layer. Use some kind of tubing to refill the water from the outside so you wont have to open the lid and loose your humidity every time....
  7. pkw

    pkw Songster

    May 14, 2010
    North Edwards, CA
    I place a sponge or a wash cloth in my water and it is keeping the humidity up to where it needs to be.
  8. bargain

    bargain Love God, Hubby & farm

    Apr 13, 2008
    Bowdon, GA
    Heat wet kitchen towels in microwave, roll them up and add to the incubator in final 3 days,,, In a styro foam, I use about 3 of these when I need really high humidity - like ducks in the lockdown. It really does the trick.

    Best Wishes and prayers for your hatching! Nancy


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  9. Country Parson

    Country Parson Songster

    Oct 1, 2010
    Bellefontaine, OH
    As an update, note the following changes w/ results:

    1. Moved fan as recommended (blowing over the light bulb) = Humidity raised from 20% to 34% & held steady.

    2. Replaced paper towels with wet washcloth = Humidity raised from 34% to 56% & held steady.

    It is amazing how minor changes create major results. Thanks so much to all of you for your counsel. I realize ducks/geese will need higher still, but is 56-62% OK for chickens in the final days? What about Quail?

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