Polcarbonate panels to side a coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by QuoVadis, Oct 26, 2013.

  1. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Has anyone ever tried those clearish polycarbonate panels (used for greenhouses) on the sides of a coop, instead of just the roof? The coop would be located in a place that would only get limited morning sun, and I'm in WI, so I'm not too worried about it getting too hot in summer, but how do they do in winter? If I have adequate ventilation will they keep the coop warmer of cooler than, say, wood?

    Part of my interest is financial (although I haven't priced it out completely yet) and part is because I live in the city, so anything that looks less like a chicken house, and more like something else (a greenhouse) is better. It is legal to have chickens where I am, but two if the houses bordering my property are rentals, so if my neighbors change they might not be as nice as a my current ones. Plus the other neighbor's house is for sale. I'd just rather keep my little banties on the DL.
     
  2. RonC

    RonC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If the panels are rigid they should work ok. Chickens can be quite destructive. Will they be confined to the coop or attached to a run or free ranging? I don't think they will insulate as well as wood but insulation is not as important as blocking wind. I think they would be ok in the winter to keep it warmer in the day but the summer it could get too hot if they can't get outside. Think greenhouse temperatures. With adequate ventilation they would be ok. Roosters cause more problems with neighbors than hens.
     
  3. QuoVadis

    QuoVadis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They will have an attached run underneath the coop that they will always have access to. I'm putting that sort of lattice stuff, like people put along the bottom of porches outside the chickenwire so it doesn't look as "cage- like". I will let them free range, if you can even call it that, sometimes in very small fenced yard, but I have dogs too, and they use the yard as well. Do you think it will get too hot even with being in shade all day except early morning? And yeah, I will not be having any roosters:( Wish I could have a couple, but they are out.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2013
  4. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    They can work for siding, and it's probably better than using them for a roof
     
  5. Dragonid

    Dragonid Out Of The Brooder

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    I haven't used them, but I'm considering some for the roof of my coop-to-be. I'd actually expect them to trap more heat and insulate much better than wood or metal sheeting, especially if you're talking about the double or triple walled variety that is full of tiny air cells.
    [​IMG]

    One other benefit they have over wood and metal, is that they are much more resistant to moist air and condensation.
     
  6. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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  7. Dragonid

    Dragonid Out Of The Brooder

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    Considering that the R-value of wood is about 0.7 per inch, I'd still say it's much better, even if it is awful compared to insulation.
     
  8. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    The great thing about the plastic panels, is that you get some sun gain, while still blocking wind. True, almost no heat is kept inside once the sun goes down, but that is why, in a cold climate, I would vote for an insulated roof, about one foot of wall open wire, and three foot of wall plastic panels.

    Make sure there is no breeze over the perches.
     
  9. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Price it out before you make a decision. That stuff is expensive, fragile in cold and will hold the moisture in. And unless you get the baffeled, its going to be hot in the summer and cold in the winter. You could make it work as long as you are aware of its weaknesses.
     
  10. RonC

    RonC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If the coop is totally shaded in the summer they would not be a problem. I was thinking the single layer panels when I made the comment about them not insulating. Most of the lower 48 states insulation is not necessary on a chicken coop for most breeds. I have had one dog that did not want anything to do with chickens. The one I have now there is no way I would trust her to be alone with them.
     

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