Large potable water tank use

blefk

Chirping
7 Years
Oct 28, 2013
32
12
89
Southbury, CT
Hello all,
The water line from the house down to my coops freezes up in the winter and in the past I have always had to haul five gallon buckets of water down there each morning. The coops are a fair distance from the house, so I decided a few years ago to buy one of those square water tanks in a metal cage that are all over craigslist. It worked fine for the first couple of years, then cracked. I just replaced it with a 500 gallon water tank (Chem-Tainer, from Home Depot). It wasn't cheap, but I'm hoping that it lasts longer than the last one. Question: I enclosed my last tank with plywood with foam board insulation, but, of course, rodents loved that insulation and did a number on it; has anyone found a way to keep the rodents off of the insulation? I'm thinking of putting the insulation boards on the plywood panels and stapling hardware cloth over each panel. If anyone has any wisdom to offer on this I would appreciate your knowledge.
Thanks!
 

ValerieJ

Straw parade on snow day
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 24, 2016
10,552
63,504
1,287
Washington State
I'm following this thread. I have the same situation here, and after 4 years of carrying water for the chickens I'm ready to get a water tank. I have a shed next to my coops and run and I'm hoping I can just put it in there but it sounds like I may need to insulate it as well.
 

ValerieJ

Straw parade on snow day
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 24, 2016
10,552
63,504
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Washington State
I'd highly recommend having a water line run out there with a frost free hydrant! It's not impossible to do it yourself with a rented trencher, and hydrants are available at the farm stores. Repurchasing water tanks and all that isn't furin either, so consider it.
Mary
I do have a water line out there, but it comes from the river pump and we have to turn that off in the winter. Running a line from the well out there could be done, but would require DH to do it, and his honey do list is already so long I hate to ask. The chickens are a good 200' from the well, which really only supplies water to the house. All our irrigation is on the river pump, and except for chickens, we don't need that in the winter. Oh the things we do for our feathered friends. LOL

ETA: All our irrigation is on the river pump. oops
 
Last edited:
Sep 2, 2018
7,894
31,027
1,357
Big Chimney, WV
My Coop
My Coop
I'm in a similar situation weatherwise, but my duck-house is not so far away from the house, just 45 feet. My plan is to either
  • run an ordinary garden hose from the house to the duck-house attach a pipe warmer cable to the hose and wrap both in foam-insulation.
  • dig a shallow trench between the house and the duck-house and run the foam insulated garden hose under ground. Even if the trench isn't below the frost line, the insulation will protect the hose. (i hope!)
I don't know how the weather is in your location, but the coldest we had last winter was -9°C (15F) and we had frost only for short periods, longest was one week.
But hauling out buckets of water for ducks does suck! They drink so much more than chickens.
 

ValerieJ

Straw parade on snow day
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 24, 2016
10,552
63,504
1,287
Washington State
I'm in a similar situation weatherwise, but my duck-house is not so far away from the house, just 45 feet. My plan is to either
  • run an ordinary garden hose from the house to the duck-house attach a pipe warmer cable to the hose and wrap both in foam-insulation.
  • dig a shallow trench between the house and the duck-house and run the foam insulated garden hose under ground. Even if the trench isn't below the frost line, the insulation will protect the hose. (i hope!)
I don't know how the weather is in your location, but the coldest we had last winter was -9°C (15F) and we had frost only for short periods, longest was one week.
But hauling out buckets of water for duck does suck! They drink so much more than chickens.
That gives me something to be thankful for. :)
 

ValerieJ

Straw parade on snow day
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Jul 24, 2016
10,552
63,504
1,287
Washington State
Geez, how many birds do y'all have?
I just carry a gallon jug out each day to top off the heated waterer.
But I only have up to 20 birds over the winter.
I only have 12. I carry a 5 gallon jug out but I have to give fresh water several times a day. I have not been able to get my chickens to drink from a heated water dish with those little nipples. So I keep several water dishes and change them out all day long. Can't wait to have a large coop next year. I'll just put the water inside!!!

Also, I do have 4 little chicks drinking out of those nipples. Maybe they will train the older birds some day?
 

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