New Coop Floor Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by felidaet, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. felidaet

    felidaet Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have been reading these message threads here the last few weeks. I am going to build a chicken coop this spring and get some laying chicks when they come into the local feed stores in March. No Roosters. I have too many neighbors close by. I have a little over 1 acre of land and will be placing the coop near the center of our lot.

    I have a question about my coop design. I found a coop plan online that I like (with a few modifications). The coop is going to be 6' x 10' with 6' x 7' for the chickens and the other 3' x 6' for storage. There will be a hardwall seperating the two areas. It will basically be two sheds back to back. I will also have a large run attached. The plan recommends 3/4" pressure treat plywood for the floor. I am questioning if pressure treat is really necessary. It costs $53.00 a sheet. OUCH!!! I have noticed several people recently mentioning that they use vinyl flooring in their coop. I am thinking of using regular 3/4" plywood and then installing vinyl flooring over it. I thnk the vinyl will keep the floor from rotting. The coop is going to be sitting on concrete blocks. The subfloor will be framed with 2" x 4" pressure treat. The floor joists will probably be spaced 24". I am going to use the deep litter method with pine shavings. I will probably install the vinyl on the floor before I frame the walls. I will also make sure to use a single piece of vinyl with no damage.

    Has anyone had problems with the chickens pecking at the vinyl flooring? Or any other issues with it? Has anyone had problems with moisture getting under the vinyl?

    Any thoughts/comments would be appreciated.

    Note - I do plan to take lots of pictures during and after construction. I will be sharing them here.

    F.Y.I. - I live in Vancouver Washington (not Canada). I am in the Felida area for those of you familiar with the area. I know that there are at least two other homes less than 1 mile from my home raising chickens and selling eggs.

    Thanks.
     
  2. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

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    I have pressure treated plywood in mine. One of the coops has vinyl over it. The other two do not. WHat I have noticed is that the coop floors stay wet this time of year. They are fine in the summer, but with the winter monsoons the floors are wet constantly. I don't know what's under the vinyl, but I'm guessing it's damp too. [​IMG]

    It seems worth it to just pay for the good stuff. You'd hate to have to replace it later.

    edited to add- Welcome to BYC!!! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2008
  3. Momo

    Momo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would not place the sill plates / wall framing on top of the vinyl because any spilled water can run along the vinyl and into the wood framing. Instead, frame up the coop, plywood the walls, then install the vinyl and add some 1/4 round trim and caulk it well. It will help to keep the floor from rotting but it will depend on how much moisture comes up from below etc.
     
  4. Rustywreck

    Rustywreck Chillin' With My Peeps

    The floor of my coup is made of 1/2" treated plywood subfloor, 1/2" foam, and 1/2" plywood underlayment topped with a single sheet of vinyl flooring (no joints).

    I read about using the foam somewhere as a way to deal with cold floors. So far it seems to be working well.

    I also siliconed the floor and wall joints, put plastic baseboard molding up and siliconed that as well. The hope is that it I can hose the coup out and not get anything important wet.

    I'm not a construction pro by any means and went way overboard on this coup.
     
  5. FrChuckW

    FrChuckW Father to all, Dad to none

    Sep 7, 2008
    Louisville, KY
    The vinyl Idea is a good one, just make sure that you use a type that is designed for bathroom or kitchen use. You can paint the flooring before putting the vinyl down to help seal it from any possible moisture seepage if the vinyl gets a tear or hole in it. Also make sure that you really glue it down tight. Make sure that you also seal any cracks in the floors and walls with some type of caulking to prevent places for mites and lice to hide in.

    If you are using the deep litter method you should be fine, you just want to fluff the litter at least once a week. Aside from entrances the other possible damp spots in the coop would be around the waterers.
     
  6. dave27889

    dave27889 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am using 3/4 osb flooring that is sealed with a water based sealant. It is non toxic when dried and is non reactivated when it gets wet. I then put a heavy bathroom floor covering over that. I was lucky and got a reminent from a friend that owns a carpet shop. I use the same layout as you are talking about but I do live in eastern NC and don't have the moisture problems you talk about. I clean my hen house out weekly and I have an over hang on the roof of 12 inches all around. Have had it a year and a half. No problems. OSB is half the cost of plywood here. I got all the wood from Lowes home improvement. Most any home improvement store carries it. Good luck on the shed.
     
  7. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    I also would go with the expensive treated floor... and then put linlolium on it and up the inside walls + caulk. At 53 a sheet of 3/4, that's "only" twice the cost of non treated 3/4 plywood in this neck of the woods. Add cost of roofing stuff, the foundation/skids, walls, extras, paint and so on, for $75 of savings on the three floor sheets might not be worth it in the long run.

    Reason being, our wet nasty PNW will probably rot the boards out from under the coop even if the top is sealed. I guess if you filled the ground in with lots of sand and it's well drained and off the ground, it may not be that big of an issue.

    I say, expand the coop to 8x12 to fully utalize those pressure treated sheets of plywood!!! Building in common wood cut dimensions saves $ in that you have less bits of end pieces here and there AND gives you more space!
     
  8. Rhett&SarahsMom

    Rhett&SarahsMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 8, 2008
    We are going to be putting vinyl on the floor of ours this spring. Then NOT doing the deep littler method anymore. Where I am it will just make it easier to keep up with the coop cleaning. If I have to take them "underground" they will have a tarp floor with little shavings as well.
     
  9. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    couple of thoughts here... this is not at all criticism of your design, which sounds good, just a few details to think about, some of which you asked about and some of which you didn't [​IMG]

    Quote:It would be a bad mistake IMO to put the walls on top of the edges of the vinyl. For several minor reasons plus, the main thing, it will make it extremely difficult to remove the vinyl should it ever become necessary -- and in a damp climate it may very well *be* necessary, and possibly sooner than you think.

    The plan recommends 3/4" pressure treat plywood for the floor. I am questioning if pressure treat is really necessary. It costs $53.00 a sheet. <snip> I thnk the vinyl will keep the floor from rotting. The coop is going to be sitting on concrete blocks.

    I think there is also a pretty strong chance you would regret not using p/t plywood, for similar reasons. And it will be a BEAR to replace, if you do start having rotted flooring... [​IMG]

    If you lived in Arizona I'd say, sure (although I'd still say paint the plywood before you vinyl it)... however for the PNW I would suggest that trying to save fifty or seventy five bucks by using just plain exterior-grade plywood would be "penny wise, pound foolish", you know?

    Has anyone had problems with the chickens pecking at the vinyl flooring? Or any other issues with it? Has anyone had problems with moisture getting under the vinyl?

    Pecking, no. Moisture getting under it, yes, it is likely to happen despite your best efforts. Honest. It is better for your plans to allow for the eventuality than to imagine you're going to totally prevent it forever.

    The subfloor will be framed with 2" x 4" pressure treat. The floor joists will probably be spaced 24". I am going to use the deep litter method with pine shavings.

    Probably I'm just being stupid here but I am not sure exactly what you mean by subfloor framing. Do you mean, floor joists? I would be leery of using 2x4s, even if the structure is only 6' wide. Personally I would up them to 2x6, or at least run them a lot closer together than 24". Just a thought.

    Also, you may find that deep litter is more problematic in a cool damp climate than you expect. Also, not being on a dirt floor you will not get much if any composting going, so the heat etc benefits won't exist much (just labor-saving). If you really want to try it (and I'm assuming you mean not just having your litter BE deep, but maintaining it as a deeplitter pack i.e. nothing more than spot-cleaning and addition of fresh shavings for long periods of time), I would suggest using something rot-resistant for the lower 2' or so of your walls, and using quarter-round with a good bead of caulk behind it (none sticking out to be pecked) where the wall and floor meet. To reduce rottage of lower walls.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat​
     
  10. smith2

    smith2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When we built our coop, we poured a very rough makeshift footer out of quick-crete concrete mix and left bare ground inside the coup to absorb the water during rainy period. Yes, it took some extra time and probably cost about the same as a floor would have; however, I love my coop floor. I just do deep litter over the dirt and everything drains great. We get a lot of rain here during certain times of the year.

    We did the footer ourselves. It wasn't really fancy and not perfectly level but great for what we wanted. I also have a house with a floor in it and I hate it. It stays wet and yucky all the time. I guess it depends on where you live and what you want to deal with in the future.
     

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