Question about insulation in MN.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by SleepyOwl, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. SleepyOwl

    SleepyOwl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Can someone please explain to me why I should insulate a coop when you have to keep large areas open for ventalation anyway. It does get very cold here, -30 sometimes, but if I am going to have a big "open window" what is the point of insulation? From what I understand, it needs to be draft free, but have lots of ventalation. I can get that without insulation. (If there is a good reason for insulation that I am just not getting, I don't mind spending some extra time and money to do it, but it just seems like a waste of time.)
    It seems it is so much more important to keep them dry, and if I close up the coop tight on those cold days, will it stay dry just because of how cold it is?

    TIA
    Laura
     
  2. Nicole01

    Nicole01 Overrun With Chickens

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    We fully insulated our coop 100%. Plus our coop is inside our garage with a radiator heater for the winter. We wrapped our run in plastic, so they had plenty of room for the winter. The ground in the run did not freeze. My waterer did not freeze. It's important to insulate to keep the heat in the winter and heat out in the summer.

    Our coop
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Our finished run winterized
    [​IMG]

    We were very pleased with the results. We have full insulation inside the walls. We will soon take the heater out of the coop, so it does not get ruined. We have full electricity and a fire alarm outside the coop.

    Here is our door leading to outside for easy access to free ranging. This is before we put the roof on.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  3. SleepyOwl

    SleepyOwl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! I plan to do something similar with the run in the winter, but don't plan on any additional heat (maybe I will add some sort of heat if it gets colder than -20, not sure yet.) I have read that chickens don't really heat up the air around them, just inside their feathers. ???
     
  4. Nicole01

    Nicole01 Overrun With Chickens

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    Our coop would be fine without the heater since its insulated, but I do spend so much time out there with them and the heat makes it more pleasant to clean. The heat must heat up the run a bit too. I clean both daily. I use sand in the run and pine in the coop. I'm also in MN. Plus, I'll never have to trek through snow to get to the coop. This makes it easier on me as well. We did not have to paint the coop since its not exposed to the elements.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  5. SleepyOwl

    SleepyOwl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do like the idea of having it in the garage! It won't work for me though, as our garage doesn't reach the back yard. There is about 6 feet between the back garage wall, and the fence. I even thought about building an enclosed run to the backyard, but our central air unit is right there in the way. I also don't want to make the coop in the side yard by the garage, as it woud be too close to my neighbors front door and pretty lawn. I know they won't mind me having chickens in my back yard, but if I have them right by their front yard, I don't think they will be pleased. (I wouldn't be.) That, and trying to convince hubby to give me garage space.... ;)

    I bought a small shed that is supposed to be delivered next week, so I am just trying to decide if it is worth my time to insulate it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  6. Nicole01

    Nicole01 Overrun With Chickens

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    I would definatly insulate the shed. The particle board we used to build the coop inside the garage was cheap. It's the run that cost us so much more then we expected. We are installing fans inside the coop before summer this year. Last year I used a box fan, which I hated. They kept jumping on top and I was worried it would tip over.

    Good luck with you coop and run! You can always build a covered pathway from the garage to the run. There were guidelines in our town with how close the coop and run could be to the property line. I believe it's either 50 or 70 ft away. I can't remember.
     
  7. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If those in Alaska don't insulate, they might be on to something. Chickens have nice down comforters with them all the time.
     
  8. toofarout

    toofarout Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are *some* in Alaska who do not insulate. There are *many* in Alaska who DO insulate!
    Even those nice down comforters they wear cannot deal sufficiently with the prolonged cold of the Interior winters without sufficient managment.
    However, there are always micro climate exceptions....
     
  9. SleepyOwl

    SleepyOwl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It definitely depends on where in Alaska you are, as many of the cities in Alaska are in a warmer zone than I am in MN (4a). (Not Fairbanks though. Brrr! ;) ) The whole southern coast of Alaska is warmer than me, some places are even zone 7!
     

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