Recommendations on Auto Chicken Door

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by donnavee, Oct 23, 2011.

  1. donnavee

    donnavee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2009
    Central NC
    We are in the market for a new automatic chicken door since the one we had only lasted 15mo before the motor assembly simply stopped working. The company we got it from says they have changed their design and motor so they no longer support it but did offer to refurb it for $120 which doesn't sound like that great of a deal since there is no guarantee on how long it would work after the repairs and a new door from them is $180. Plus, after this negative experience we don't have much confidence in the company.

    So we thought this forum would be a good place come for advice and recommendations on a replacement auto door.

  2. kesali

    kesali Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 27, 2011
    far northern Wisconsin
    Can't help you on brands 'cuz I am looking, too. I have two problems. One is the door mechanism has to hold up under extreme cold conditions during winter. This does not mean the chickens are going out at -30F, it means the mechanism should be able to survive it and work when I turn it back on again. The second is that a couple of my chickens will perch on the bottom of the door opening and look out into the night until I come and push them inside to close what is now a manual door. I don't want an automatic door closing on their toes!!
  3. K8tieCat

    K8tieCat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 15, 2007
    Northern California
    I use the VSBi from AXT.

    Wartburgstrasse 10
    D 99817 Eisenach

    Owner: Ursula Axt
    Phone: 0049 36 91 - 72 10 70
    Fax: 0049 36 91 - 72 10 80
    eMail: [email protected]

    I love my VSB. Wells poultry also sells them, but I have found that their service lacks a little. The folks at AXT who actually invented and manufacture the VSB are great and bend over backwards for you. I know both Germany and England are nowhere near the U.S., but nobody here makes as good a product. Foy's Pigeon supplies used to sell them, but I don't think they do any longer.

    You get get one to put on a timer, or use the photo electronic eye and use the sunlight to open and close it. It opens and closes very slowly so as not to injure any animal and will also stop if there is any type of obstruction.

    Can't go wrong with this one.
  4. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 6, 2011
    Pacific North West
  5. The Sheriff

    The Sheriff Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 17, 2009
    Northern CA
    Foys has the VSB door back in stock. I ordered mine last week and it will be here tomorrow. Total cost for the inside installation door keeper with sensor, the medium sized door, and shipping was $264.00. Here is the link:

    I have two other automatic doors. The first one I bought three years ago and LOVE it. They are no longer being sold. Second one I bought I don't care much for. I am hoping the VSB works as well as the first one!
  6. Kassaundra

    Kassaundra Sonic screwdrivers are cool!

    Sep 1, 2010
    My husband is trying to figure out a way to put an automatic door on our coop too. Our problem is our chicken coop is raised and the door is in the floor, in the center of the coop.
  7. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    May 8, 2007
    I hadn't heard about Foy's not carrying them anymore. That's too bad. We bought both of ours before Foy's started carrying them.

    We bought one from Wells and had no problem. They were very nice, shipped right away and it came right away. We also bought one from the manufacturer in Germany. That was pretty interesting to try to order, because the web site was all in German, at least it was at that time. My husband must have filled it all out correctly, because it was eventually delivered. [​IMG]

    It does open and close very slowly. Chickens have plenty of time to move out of the way.

    I personally like the ones that have the light sensor, so you don't need to adjust a timer to get it to open and close as close to dusk as possible. We live in the woods and there are a lot of predators here at night. You can adjust the sensor sensitivity a little with a screw. Some people prefer a timer.

    It's been as cold as -30F here, without a problem. It runs on little batteries that you pop in. We change them once a year, just to make sure there's never a failure. They get used in the remotes or my wireless mouse, to use them up.
  8. SteveBaz

    SteveBaz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 6, 2011
    Pacific North West
    I Bet The Granger Catalog Has A Auto Door For Chickens
  9. donnavee

    donnavee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2009
    Central NC
    Quote:The VSB appears to be a favorite - would be interested in how it works for you once installed.
  10. donnavee

    donnavee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 7, 2009
    Central NC
    DH has diagnosed the problem with the one we have as the circuit board since when he applied power directly to the motor, it worked. Of course, he doesn't know how to fix it.[​IMG]

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