reposting my coop lighting question

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Mom2Cool, Sep 30, 2008.

  1. Mom2Cool

    Mom2Cool Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 8, 2008
    I had already asked this but at the end of another person's post and so I'd thought maybe I should re-post it here so it'll be seen because I've really been looking for some thoughts on the lighting for winter subject.

    I'd been hoping to use one of those solar lights for sheds in my chicken coop. Right now I've got one of those battery operated lightbulb things & I just use rechargable batteries. It actually lights up the coop very nice at night (like any lightbulb in a closet) & I think the night time fading thing is what drives them into their coop & then I come out & turn on the light. I hadn't throught of the solar light having a timer and I'm not sure if they come that way, but I'd been hoping to use the solar light to get around the wiring for electric... My question is if it's a solar light & is bright is that enough of a light to make a difference? I mean it doesn't have to give off heat right? I imagine a small heater going in in the winter & of course that'll be electric & I figured that would be enough of a deal with electric to coop. Right now I've got a baby cam in there along with a radio & so I'm thinking maybe I should just be putting a regular old light in there with a timer cause I've already got the extention cord thing going with the coop anyway. I was just hoping maybe 1 of those things would be easier/no wiring LOL anyone ever use one before & what did you all think of the set up? I bought this GREAT coop made by the Amish & it's really wonderful but the only thing missing is some wiring for electric....
     
  2. winniegirl

    winniegirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 15, 2008
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    I don't have any answers for you, just more questions ...[​IMG]

    What wattage is your bulb? Do you have it enclosed in a cage like a workmans lamp?

    My husband thought of the battery lightbulb idea, but I
    didn't know if it would work and he won't go along
    with an extension cord. So for this first winter we'll use the
    battery idea.

    I'll tell him how smart he is !! [​IMG] Great minds and all that...

    good luck!!
     
  3. morelcabin

    morelcabin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Okay, here's what I did.
    I run a 100ft extention cord from my outdoor plug to the coop. In the coop I have a power bar with a timer plugged into it. From the timer I run my light, and I have plugs in the power bar left for things like the electric fencer and heat lamps that stay on full time for chicks and water in winter. I have never had a problem with this set up.

    Where I live i think it gets too cold for solar lights during winter. Batteries die fast here, and I don't know how one would run a timer from solar either
     
  4. omelette'smom

    omelette'smom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 9, 2008
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    Morelcabin-would you be able to take a pic of the heat lamp thing?! I'm kinda worried about my chicks too and what kinda winter they'll have~ my coop is smallish and not sure what i'd do for heat and how to prevent frozen water bowl! don't know if i have enough room saftety wise!! Thanks!!
     
  5. sillybirds

    sillybirds Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mom2Cool: Solar is certainly doable. Lighting, heating, etc. Lighting shouldn't be too hard. You should be able to setup timed lighting with a low voltage DC timer.

    The heating would be the tougher, as heaters require a lot of watts. Here's a little 12V heater I found on a quick Google search: http://www.12voltaccessoryoutlet.com/catalog/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=63&idproduct=886 . Even this little heater uses 300 watts, so you'd need a fair amount of battery reserve and probably a couple solar panels http://cgi.ebay.com/Sharp-130-Watt-...39:1|66:2|65:12|240:1318&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14 to keep the batteries charged. (I'm not an electrician, so you'd have to work out the details...)

    Realistically, It'd probably be a lot cheaper and easier to hire an electrician to run power to your coop if you need winter heating. That being said, I'm a big fan of solar. Living in a relatively moderate climate, I'm not going to need to heat my coop. I am, however, going to install a solar electric fence setup, and am planning to install solar powered lights in my coop and on my run.

    Good luck!
     
  6. Mom2Cool

    Mom2Cool Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Hi winniegirl, I'm not sure on the wattage of the blulb it came with this light. They were part of one of those infomercials a while back & were suppose to be bright enough to do real tasks by like reading & such. It's by Westinghouse & is called the "stickup bulb". I've actually thought they've worked real well though I think that the different sets of *rechargable batteries* work differently or some will have the light lasting longer than others. I think the light it provides is more than enough really & I can see a coop that is lighted from my house... Or it's like looking at someones home & seeing a light on in a living room... I use 2 sets of 4 AA batteries that I rotate & so while 4 batteries are in use the other 4 are being recharged... the one set of batteries will keep it lighted until around 12 or so & the shorter set of batteries keeps it lighted for just like 2 or 3 hours. or until like 9:30. They don't put out any heat or get hot.

    Here's a picture of what it looks like.

    [​IMG]

    It has a holder that screws to the wall so it doesn't need to be set down somewhere & technically it does have an ac adaptor too so if you decide you want to plug it in you can. but part of the reason I was using it was so that I didn't need another plug in anything... but with the batteries My biggest complaint is that I have to go out & change the batteries every day.... I'd rather have it set up so that it'll be a light that just goes on ya know? I will say though this is something that worked. This past weekend we'd gone away & as I was giving my grown kids instruction on caring for the chick they did give me a look like I had 20 heads when I said to recharge the batteries etc. I thought that kind of thing would be easier if I wasn't giving that kind of instruction... But no your hubby isn't wrong & it would work if you're there etc. I'm certainly going to continue with what I have until I decide what change I'm going to make &/or until I've got it all figured out.
     
  7. Mom2Cool

    Mom2Cool Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Hi morelcabin yes see this is what I'd been thinking to do, my only concern is the chickens pecking at the power strip..... I think they leave the radio alone but I don't really know that... Everything else that's in there electric is hanging on the wall like the baby cam (great to be able to see in btw kids) and the little battery light I use has a string that was once kind of low & I think they were grabbing at the string that turns it on & off.... It's really for this reason I'd hoped to keep the wires all out of their reach. The heater I'm planning on is one that shuts off if it tips so it won't cause a fire. I'm in north Jersey & while the past few winters have been mild we've been known to have some pretty cold temps at times...

    Anyway the power strip you've got in your coop did you mount it on the wall ? I'm thinking of putting in a couple of shelves for this very thing. Do your chikens just leave the wires alone or do you keep them up high?

    And thanks for the info there's nothing like feed back from people who've done this stuff already.
     
  8. Mom2Cool

    Mom2Cool Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 8, 2008
    omelette'smom :

    Morelcabin-would you be able to take a pic of the heat lamp thing?! I'm kinda worried about my chicks too and what kinda winter they'll have~ my coop is smallish and not sure what i'd do for heat and how to prevent frozen water bowl! don't know if i have enough room saftety wise!! Thanks!!

    You know I think the fed store here has special plug in waterers so that the water doesn't freeze in winter.. I know I'd just seen something like that 7 thought "all another wire going to the coop mid winter... LOL I'm just feeling funny about all the wires in the coop ya know? But they do have them so the water doesn't freeze.​
     
  9. Mom2Cool

    Mom2Cool Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Well for heat I'll probably just run the outdoor etention cord etc. I was just hoping to not have to attach too much to the thing & have wires all over the coop. I love my baby cam in the coop & being able to see them & I think the radio at night is soothing for them. & I was a bit concerned about them pecking at wires etc. But I do love the idea of the solar panel etc. I hear some say the solar light for the sheds are great & then others say not enough light & so then I think "well it's just 1 more wire." but you know...

    the fence - we've got the solar charged electric fence around the coop & it works *great*! I did that on purpose so that if there is a power out the fence is still active... It's really there just for the bears anyway so if there's not enough juice in winter the bears are in hybrenation anyway. Any other critters & the golden retrievers would just go out scaring them off.
     
  10. Kung Foo Chicken

    Kung Foo Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm in the process of lighting my recycle coop with solar lights. I disassembled them though and extended the wires to the solar panels so they can be installed in a box together on the roof while the control units will be mounted inside a light fixture to combine a couple of the led control boxes together for more light.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2008

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