Please help with fluctuating temperature!

Feath3rDust3r

Songster
Mar 16, 2019
273
249
126
Altoona, IA
I have a brooder outside...and now we're going from 90 degree days to 60 degree days...and nights are varied too. I just can't get my temperature stable...I plug in the lamp, unplug it and open the roof for air, then run out and close the lid when it rains, then it gets cold in the evening so I turn on the lamp...but I've had a couple die and I'm sure it's from the varying heat. I find on sunny days they're all sitting panting in the shade and I even have the lid open for fresh air. They're 2 weeks old.

I tried a mama chicken heater and it didn't work and I had a few of a batch die under it because it never got warm.

Any suggestions for getting my brooder to a stable temp, or at this time of year should I just leave the lamp off?

Putting the brooder inside isn't an option as the dust from the chicks gets over everything in the garage and my kids have bad asthma.
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I've been raising chicks since March this year in this setup and it's been working perfectly until now!
 

DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
29,525
236,614
1,612
NY Southern Tier
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I have a brooder outside...and now we're going from 90 degree days to 60 degree days...and nights are varied too. I just can't get my temperature stable...I plug in the lamp, unplug it and open the roof for air, then run out and close the lid when it rains, then it gets cold in the evening so I turn on the lamp...but I've had a couple die and I'm sure it's from the varying heat. I find on sunny days they're all sitting panting in the shade and I even have the lid open for fresh air. They're 2 weeks old.

I tried a mama chicken heater and it didn't work and I had a few of a batch die under it because it never got warm.

Any suggestions for getting my brooder to a stable temp, or at this time of year should I just leave the lamp off?

Putting the brooder inside isn't an option as the dust from the chicks gets over everything in the garage and my kids have bad asthma.
View attachment 2167986

View attachment 2167987

View attachment 2167988
View attachment 2167989

I've been raising chicks since March this year in this setup and it's been working perfectly until now!
Switch to a brooder plate instead of a heat lamp.
 

donddon

Songster
Mar 1, 2020
160
483
136
Marlboro, NJ
I have a brooder outside...and now we're going from 90 degree days to 60 degree days...and nights are varied too. I just can't get my temperature stable...I plug in the lamp, unplug it and open the roof for air, then run out and close the lid when it rains, then it gets cold in the evening so I turn on the lamp...but I've had a couple die and I'm sure it's from the varying heat. I find on sunny days they're all sitting panting in the shade and I even have the lid open for fresh air. They're 2 weeks old.

I tried a mama chicken heater and it didn't work and I had a few of a batch die under it because it never got warm.

Any suggestions for getting my brooder to a stable temp, or at this time of year should I just leave the lamp off?

Putting the brooder inside isn't an option as the dust from the chicks gets over everything in the garage and my kids have bad asthma.
View attachment 2167986

View attachment 2167987

View attachment 2167988
View attachment 2167989

I've been raising chicks since March this year in this setup and it's been working perfectly until now!
Try this from Home Depot. They work well.
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Wexstar...FKpHLYzH7fFOOotEVaBoCjkMQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds
 

NatJ

Free Ranging
Mar 20, 2017
6,011
11,446
596
USA
What you need is a warm end and a cool end. When the day gets hot, one end will be too hot, and when the night gets cold the other end will be too cold, but the chicks will be able to move back and forth.

You could move the heat lamp to the nestbox end, leaving the part with a wire door to be the cooler end (better ventilation because of the wire door, so likely to be cooler.)

Or you could leave the heatlamp where it is, open the roof of the "nestbox" and cover that with hardware cloth to keep out predators, thus making it the "cool" end. Maybe stretch a tarp over something several feet above the brooder, so it keeps off the rain and provides shade, while allowing air to flow freely. (Tarp for extra shade would be helpful no matter which end has the heatlamp.)

If you're able to move the brooder into a place that has shade in the afternoon, that would help with the heat as well (shade of the house or of a tree or anything else.)
 

rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
Jul 3, 2016
15,233
29,107
1,002
WA, Pac NW
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Heat might be the bigger issue here. If it's hot and sunny, then they need to have a way to cool off. Not seeing any source of deep shade in that photo.

Not sure how to troubleshoot your heat pad/plate - when you said it wasn't warming up, that tells me the pad/plate was faulty, not that the set up was. If using a heat pad, did it have an auto shut off?
 

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