my coop burned down, need heating ideas

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by 54smokepole, Mar 1, 2009.

  1. 54smokepole

    54smokepole Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 25, 2008
    North Dakota

    I lost my chicken coop and 12 laying hens on 2/27/09 to a coop fire. As near as I can tell, the girls must have knocked down the heat lamp and ignited the straw. I noticed smoke coming out from it in the morning and I opened the door and let the smoke roll out. I went in and beat the fire out with a broom and ran to get some water. In the time it took me to fill a five gallon bucket of water to put out the embers, the whole coop was in flames. The fire must have just been waiting for some oxygen to be let in.

    I do heat my coop. I know some people don't, but I live in northern North Dakota, and it regularly gets 20 below zero here in winter nights and occassionally colder. I plan on building another coop this spring. What are some safer heating methods that people use? My last coop was built well and insulated. I don't keep it really warm, just above freezing.

  2. Harley's girl

    Harley's girl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Gosh, sorry you had that happen. I don't have any advice to give you. I don't heat my coop. Glad you got it put out!
  3. 54smokepole

    54smokepole Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 25, 2008
    North Dakota
    I didn't get it out, by the time I got back across the yard with the water there was flames coming out of the roof. It was a total loss.
  4. HennyPennies2007

    HennyPennies2007 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 26, 2008
    Dear Marty

    Sorry... OMG.... I think heat lamps are a gamble... I have one in each coop. I try to keep cords and lamps where chickens can't even get to them. I have them in the center of coops with cords stapled to ceilings. We don't as cold as you guys here, but I use them to take chill off the coop if it gets lower than 20... I don't put them pointing at, or near, roosts. But I still realize something could happen and I would have a tragedy. Right now I am having health issues and am about in the same mess from a different angle. Chickens can break your heart.
  5. chicken farmer meigs

    chicken farmer meigs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2008
    Florence Mt.
    Her is one idea. My sister in law uses an oil filled radient electric hearter set on low. It is warm to the touch and if knocked over there is an auto shut off on the thing. I am switching to on of these this year if I can find one on sale at Lowes or any other storer like that.
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    You can get radiator type heaters that don't get as hot as a heat lamp. And maybe build a cage around it to keep the chickens away and a cover over it for obvious reasons.
  7. partimer

    partimer Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 11, 2009
    [​IMG] sorry about your loss, any loss is a loss;
    As to some ideas; In Illinois we just used a 100 watt light bulb. If your coop is well insulated it will keep water from freezing. Use styrofoam for insulation, and put a plastic type screen around the bulb(S). They do make plastic covers or cages for the construction industry. That should do it for now, I'd have to go back to the drawing board for more ideas. Good luck
  8. ghillie

    ghillie Hen Pecked

    Nov 13, 2008
    Colorado Springs, Co
    Check out the radiant heaters from enerjoy at
    They are used by zoos. I have one and they are great. Even though they are a little pricey they can last a very long time.....
  9. lurky

    lurky Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    We use heat lamps, but we secure them so there is no way to be knocked over. I clean off any dust that accumulates on it. I think they are safe if you hook them in well.

    Sorry for your loss [​IMG]
  10. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    After reading about another BYC member that came close to burning down her coop I put thin wire through the holes of the silver reflector and wound it round an eye screw I screwed up into the ceiling... there is no way it can come lose now and fall. I was also worried about that with the hens jumping all over creation in there.

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