Sealing OSB floor

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ewerbos, Jun 7, 2017.

  1. ewerbos

    ewerbos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've seen other threads about this, but I'd like feedback on my solution. I purchased 23/32 tongue and groove OSB panels for the coop floor and have them about halfway installed; it's what my construction book said is good (for houses...). I was vaguely aware of moisture issues, but figured we'd just seal it. Now, though, I'm having my doubts. I spent way too much time last night searching for methods to seal OSB in general and chicken coops in particular--Answer seems to be that it was really pretty dumb of me not to spring for the extra $5 a sheet for plywood, and that the OSB will either last ten years untreated or disintegrate within a year no matter what I do (thanks internet).

    We are way overdue in making the coop, so I don't want to undo the floor that is already done (nevermind the money issue), but I'd like to do what I can to maximize our chances of it lasting an ok amount of time. I really hope this hasn't ruined the whole thing!

    OSB subfloor I purchased is: http://www.homedepot.com/p/23-32-in-4-ft-x-8-ft-T-G-Premium-Subflooring-486701/203169027

    Constraints/considerations:

    (1) Coop is 8'x10' elevated 1.5'-2.5' above ground (slope), we plan to do deep litter
    (2) Solution preferably under $50, could go up to $100 if it's really good
    (3) No vinyl (may be ok, but other sources seem to say it can be toxic; we don't want to take chances)

    My current plan is to seal the cut edges of OSB (with waterproofing?) before constructing further (I should be able to reach these even in the parts I've already laid), build the rest of the coop, then cover the interior floor with 7/32 plywood underlayment (maybe with vapor barrier?), and paint and waterproof the floor (and the rest of the coop), sealing/caulking the edges. I am also considering painting/sealing the outside bottom of the coop (not sure how much this helps or whether it is worth the time/effort to do so).

    Thanks for your help!
     
  2. ewerbos

    ewerbos Chillin' With My Peeps

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  3. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

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    Paint it with a exterior paint good. Nothing wrong with vinyl---if your coop has air movement/exchange----vented door and windows open. I sure hope you plan for good air movement.
     
  4. ewerbos

    ewerbos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for your reply!

    The objection to vinyl was a statement in "The Chicken Health Handbook" by Gail Damerow (https://books.google.com/books?id=2...=onepage&q=is vinyl safe for chickens&f=false), saying that chickens could peck the vinyl and that it would be toxic. I saw that most people on here seem to think it is fine, but the stuff she says sounds scary.

    We certainly plan to do lots of ventilation. For our gabled coop, I am thinking a 2x6 window in each of the short sides, then windows/vents on the gables, plus maybe a window on the human door/another window on the side facing the planned run. Do you think painting underneath the coop is worth it?
     
  5. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

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    I have read lots of scary stuff----a lot of it was from people I later found out have never raised a chicken or hatched a egg or brooded a chick, etc, etc, etc, etc. Best thing is to ask people that have done the things that you are interested in. I will start. I have raised chickens for over 50 years, hatched over 10,000 chicks in the last 3 or so years, brooded 1000's, I have used vinyl in my coop, did NOT glue it down and Always put bedding over it. Never a Problem. My coops are well vented. Maybe you will get a few more People that have actually used it for years reply to you----don't pay any non-users, non-chicken raisers any attention----experience is a better teacher.

    Now having said this, SURE vinyl in a new closed up home gives off some fumes----well vented and a bedding over it works good here.

    Edited to add---Don't forget that the paint will give off some fumes too when fresh. Well vented.
     
    LeslieMiikal and eggbert420 like this.
  6. Birdydeb

    Birdydeb Chillin' With My Peeps

    X2 I am nowhere near as experienced as PD but I can say that I have put vinyl down UNGLUED and covered with bedding with absolutely no problems that I can see for the past year. Ventilation is key...plenty of it. You'll need this summer anyway. I have painted and put chicks in new houses within 24 hours because I use a low VOC exterior paint. Again no problems because of adequate ventilation.

    I do want to remind you to pay attention to your windows and NOT make the silly newbie mistake I made last year. Know which direction you are likely to get your heavy rain from and make sure you have a way to keep rain out. Thinking about your nice big windows. I didn't take this into consideration and about a month after putting chicks in I was shoveling out all my nice DL because it got drenched. Not fun. On our new chicken house we put most of the ventilation around the top and the big window will be under the covered run....to keep this from happening ever again. Just something to think about. I think it was a real pain for hubby and friend to leave all of that open at the top and cover with hardware cloth...definitely took some time but it has already worked like a charm. Tons of rain and none has ended up in the coop....but plenty of ventilation. :)
     
  7. ewerbos

    ewerbos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I appreciate folks' thoughts on vinyl and I'm sure it mostly works fine--the issue Damerow cites in her book (mostly) isn't ventilation, the issue is that it is toxic if pecked. Which, sure, if it's covered by bedding probably isn't likely, but we'd rather be safe than sorry. By "we" I mostly mean my husband--he's freaked out by the idea of vinyl, and it isn't worth it to me to argue the point. So, sorry guys, still no vinyl for us.

    I've thought about windows leaking (haven't done the research on direction though)--I think I'll put hinged acrylic/clear panels over them, and mostly keep them propped open for ventilation. I might put some actual vents up high near the roof, and the soffits will be covered with just hardware cloth for ventilation also. I'm pretty comfy with the design on those fronts.

    What do you guys think about my non-vinyl sealing solution? Will it work ok? Will the OSB be destroyed? Should I paint/waterproof the underside of the coop?
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
  8. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Overrun With Chickens

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    Pecking the vinyl and it getting some to eat is slim---very slim chance --Just saying!! But to each his own. No Vinyl!

    Your sealing solution---hope you check all the paint, caulking, waterproofing, etc for toxicity to make sure none of it would hurt the chickens. I for sure would not want to use some of that around my chickens---even if it did check out non-toxic.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
  9. ChickenMammX4

    ChickenMammX4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have a OSB floor in the coop (it was a shed we repurposed). We used deck paint and it has held up very well. The coop stays dry, water is in the run and we have awning-type windows which keeps the rain out. Thick pine flakes on the floor & a poopboard under the roost filled with Sweet PDZ to catch most of the poo.
     
    hansoto and PD-Riverman like this.
  10. 1idrod

    1idrod Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello all. I'm new here to chickens but am a contractor. If you use osb I advise you to get Advantech . The stuff is great. I've had it on a deer stand untreated for over 10yrs now and it's still going strong. No roof or anything
     
    eggbert420 likes this.

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