Quick watering nipple question..

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by AllenInTampa, Jan 26, 2012.

  1. AllenInTampa

    AllenInTampa Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 8, 2012
    Finally got my watering nipples in the mail yesterday after almost three weeks. (Turns out it was not the senders fault, it was my lazy no good neighbor down the street and mailman. He put them in wrong mailbox, and instead of neighbor walking 3 doors down and placing them in mine, she sent them back to post office...oh well)

    Anyways, I made a setup out of an old 5gal water cooler. I took out the spout that was in there and found some 1/2" pvc parts to fit it, then expanded to 3/4" for my main run. I added 4 nipples to it. I drilled each hole with a 11/32" bit and put each nipple in with a wrench, snug but not over tight, just till the little clear washer started expanding. I let all the pvc dry for a few, flushed it with a full jug of water to get all the plastic dust out(I made a clean out at the end of the line for this purpose), and checked for any major leaks. I filled it back up, let the air get out of the system and went to get my kid from school. When I got back I noticed all 4 nipples were leaking(dripping) where it is screwed in. Not talking a ton of drippage...maybe one drip every 45 seconds to a minute...maybe more

    I guess my question is, has anyone else had them not seal well to 3/4" PVC? I am thinking I need to use teflon tape. But my concern is this...I did a test drill on a scrap piece of PVC to make sure everything would fit before I drilled the main piece. When I unscrewed the nipple from the test piece (only finger tight) I noticed the threads were boogered up. I am afraid if I back these nipples out and teflon tape them, then try to reinsert they are going to be too boogered up to go back in, and it will leave the nipples unusable.

    I just want to eliminate this leak issue before I build a similar watering system for inside the coop(currently using a shallow pan in the coop).

    Second question?..

    I have been using a bucket since I got my hens. Should I eliminate the bucket immediately and let them figure it out, or leave bucket in for a while? They paid no attention to it, but it was late afternoon before I got done. Sorry for all the silly questions. I usually succeed in over-thinking everything

    Some pics of the setup


  2. PsychoChicken

    PsychoChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 12, 2011
    San Diego, CA
    My nipples are just underneath a hanging bucket so I did not have a leak issue... but for your second question I would only remove the bucket if you have time to watch them and make sure they are learning to use the new system. Otherwise you may as well leave it but it will probably take longer for your girls to figure out the nipples. You can attach treats to the nipples to encourage them. I used bits of lettuce and fruit. Good luck!
  3. JMidJr

    JMidJr Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 7, 2011
    North Central Florida
    I also used a 5 gal bucket and 3/4 PVC. But, I did use Teflon tape - no leaks so far (ca. 2 months).

    My chicks were about 9 weeks old and figured the system out in about 5 minutes (literally!)
  4. AllenInTampa

    AllenInTampa Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 8, 2012
    So far they are not touching the water nipples. I built the one I have pictured above and also put a smaller 2-nipple pipe inside the coop and only left a shallow pan of water inside. Also made a small 1-gallon bucket with 4 nipples on it on other side of the run. I took out their water bucket, and they were wearing themselves out going in/out to get water out of the shallow pan. I finally had to put a bucket back in the run as I could tell they were thirsty. I tried putting some of their treat directly on the nipples. They picked it off and paid no attention to the water. I also even sat outside the run and pushed on the nipples with a stick to allow water to flow out. They all stared at them and saw the water coming out but still won't touch them after like 4 days now...

    I really want to eliminate buckets as they stay really nasty and it is a waste of water. The bucket I placed back in there I hung so they have to raise their heads up and over, and they still manage to get it utterly disgusting

    Guess they will figure it out in time
  5. BoltonChicken

    BoltonChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2011
    Bolton, Mississippi
    Yep. Gotta use that sealing tape.
  6. AllenInTampa

    AllenInTampa Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 8, 2012
    Yeah, I took everything apart and teflon taped them. Problemo solved!
  7. Tallulah Chicklet

    Tallulah Chicklet Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 9, 2011
    New Haven, CT
    Very elegant system! You must be using screw in chicken nipples. I ended up using silicone caulk on my push ins, I just use gallon jugs. I showed my chickens the nipples by dripping water onto my finger for the nearest chicken and the rest caught on quickly.
  8. AllenInTampa

    AllenInTampa Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 8, 2012

    Today something clicked in their little pea sized brains[​IMG]

    I came in from my daily errands/work early afternoon and did my usual(clean coop, rake run, gather eggs, etc). I had a few minutes to kill so I sat outside the pen like I have done several times and flicked the watering nipples with a stick, allowing water to dribble out.
    My 4 RSL's and my RIR were all over the nipples like it was the end of the world. I bet they drank a gallon. I purposely did not fill their water bucket completely full this morning and took the pan out of their coop

    The only 2 that did not partake in the nipple water was my 2 BR's. They watched the others and drank some puddle water but did not physically drink from the nipples. They will get one more day tomorrow with a bucket to figure it out and after that no more. I am so glad as its a pain in the arse to clean a nasty bucket twice a day
  9. KFaye

    KFaye Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2011
    I have four nipples under my 5 gal bucket. I click it with my finger to draw water...they let it drip on their heads and keep looking down. Duh. none of them have figured it out after two days. I am heading out of town and trust me my husband will have no interest in teaching them. Here's hoping they pick it up soon!

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