Making an automatic waterer out of a 55 gallon rain barrel?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by SophieLain127, May 11, 2009.

  1. SophieLain127

    SophieLain127 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So I am looking to make a automatic waterer out of a 55 gallon rain barrel. I was planning on feeding them the rain water from the roof of the coop (all other roofs have shingles and I don't want to make my birds sick). Does anyone have any advice on doing this. I'm trying to figure out if I should make the water inside or outside or both. Any advice would be great especially pictures....lol.
     
  2. Bird Brain

    Bird Brain Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good question. I want to do this too. This would help a ton!
     
  3. Ol'FashionHen

    Ol'FashionHen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My DH has thought of this also. If you don't want to use a pump you may want to attach the barrel high on the coop so you can gravity feed it into the coop for a little pressure. [​IMG]...Good Luck.
     
  4. katiek

    katiek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was just discussing doing this today.

    There has got to be a way. Hopefully someone has some experience.
     
  5. yotetrapper

    yotetrapper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    well you could do it like I do my 5 gallon waterers, if you could find a big enough water pan to set the barrel in. It would need to be a saucer like you would use to put under a planter, or something similar. Then you drill holes (1/4" or less) into the barrel opposite the lid, fill the bucket, and when the water in the saucer gets as deep enough to cover the holes, the waterflow automatically shuts off.
     
  6. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    No experience but some ideas.

    Water outside, since water inside the coop can be messy and lead to potential humidity/mildew/rot issues.

    Since you are collecting rain water, you need to filter it before it goes in the barrel. Or else let it run off at first so junk doesnt go in the barrel. It cannot sit around too long, either, without treatment for potential parasites or algae, which can grow in it. Ditto mosquitoes.

    I'd use auto drinker cups with it, simply placed low on the drum. Alternatively, you could run a hose from a bottom valve on the drum to the waterers. The use of these could allow you to place them inside the coop.

    You could also use a self-filling drinker bowl fed from the drum. Ive seen that on here.
     
  7. SophieLain127

    SophieLain127 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was told that if you paint the barrel black then it keeps water warm during the winter months and stops algea growth. I'm planning on putting the pvc pip directly into barrel so there is no exposed hole. Also I will be putting mesh over the downspout hole and also along the gutter itself in order to stop the gunk from getting into my water.

    I was thinking of using misquito dunks to make sure it stays bug free. http://www.summitchemical.com/view-products.aspx?id=8

    It
    says it is safe for animal water troughs.

    Oh I will also have to have some sort of water in the hen house because I plan on locking it up every night with my girl in it to ensure no preditors or mean people get to them. I might just buy a small waterer and fill it with the rain barrel. d/k yet
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2009
  8. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    Quote:BTW I love your avatar. Few people are likely to get the subtlety of that. [​IMG]

    Sounds like you are working through it pretty well. Way to go!

    Roy Eames, the famous American designer and inventer, once directed one of his protegees to figure out a certain problem.
    When given the task, the fellow went across town to see how someone eles had done a similar thing.

    When he found out about the source of the solution, Mr. Eames rejected it. He told the guy, "(sic)...I don't want to know how someone else did this or that, so we can copy their idea. What is wanted is something new and unique."

    ------------------------------------------------------

    How long are you planning to keep the water in the barrel? Water wont keep indefinitely, free from microbes and other "nasties."
    At some point, it goes "bad."
    I guess it depends on how often it rains and gets refreshed, right?
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2009
  9. SophieLain127

    SophieLain127 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    In ohio it rains very sporadically in the warmer months. So I will probably drain most of the barrel in my garden right before it is supposed to rain that way it will still be "fresh"

    I was thinking of building the rainbarrel actually in the run next to the hen house so that way I don't have to put another hole in the wire. I was thinking of doing a drip line into a smaller gravity waterer. That way I can close the spigot at night and cary the waterer inside the coop for my girls.
     
  10. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    Quote:You most certainly should put it with the chickens. The last thing you want to get into is toting buckets and bags around. Your efforts should always include ways to get the utmost in labor saving results.
    If it is to be filled from the roof of the coop, then the logical place for it is right there with it.
    If possible, keep the inside waterer fed from a line from the barrel.
    Then only remove the waterer for cleaning. Consider one of those automatic watering cups for inside - no muss, no fuss.
     

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