Should I insulate?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by kitchwitch, Mar 4, 2009.

  1. kitchwitch

    kitchwitch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 3, 2009
    Greensburg, Pa
    Yesterday DBF bought a lovely playhouse for me to convert into a coop. The biggest issue I have is should I insulate it? There are three large windows on 3 walls. One is going to have nesting boxes installed and the other two will be made into working windows. The 4th wall is obviously the door.
    We're right between zone 6a and 5b (coldest temps between -5F and -15F) and I'm wondering if it is worth insulating the whole coop or should I just do the roof? because of the large windows on the walls, not to mention the openings I'll add for ventilation, I'm afraid that attempting to insulate the ENTIRE coop will be a piecemeal job and a waste of money. I don't want to spend $50 and only use $5 worth of materials.

    We have 20 chickens, so they should be able to keep each other plenty warm, right?

    All opinions welcomed! Thanks for your help!
  2. Hecate

    Hecate Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 27, 2009
    We intended to insulate our entire coop before cold weather came, but ended up only getting to two sides done before the cold hit. Our chickens had no trouble keeping each other warm even down to -19 this winter. Our coop is smaller (designed for 8-9 hens), and we had 10 in there. WE insulated on the outside with styrofoam sheets which we covered with clapboards. But since you hav a finished product, it might be difficult to put insulation inside that the chickens won't peck at!
    Good luck! I can't wait to see folks' suggestions.
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Insulation is virtually never a bad idea. I'd say go for it if it's in the budget and you have the time/energy -- but you don't HAVE to, and furthermore as long as you leave the stud walls open inside you can do it later on if you change your mind.

    It doesn't look to me like waste of materials would be that big an issue, though, if you plan things right. And in any case, insulating *some* of the building is still always going to be warmer than insulating none, just like going outside with a coat on but no hat or gloves is still warmer than going outside with no coat or *anything* [​IMG]

    Have fun, that playhouse should make a cute coop,

  4. bigmike&nan

    bigmike&nan Chillin' With My Peeps

    My wife and I had looked at that playhouse and a few others. But we opted to have someone build us a coop that is a bit larger, and we want this to be the coop to end all coops (yeah, talk to me this time next year) so we're having the guy do double walls with insulation in between. If you can only insulate a few walls and then fit in plywood on top of that you will be in great shape. Hopefully your hubby is a bit of a carpenter and has the tools (I do not have the tools, so us contracting someone is our best bet).

    We buy our pet supplies from a guy that sells pigeons and other birds and currently he has some larger chickens, he said in our area we don't "need" insulation. But we get a LOT of wind where we are and right now we have 12 inches of snow on the ground. Our chickens are currently camped out in a dog carrier in the spare room. I can't wait to get the new coop installed (with a heat lamp) so everyone can move in (late March).

    Good luck, that is a precious little building. A couple coats or really cute paint with accenting window trim and you'll have a great place. Put some planters and what not and wow !!

  5. SewingDiva

    SewingDiva Chillin' With My Peeps

    There's no heat or insulation in our coop, and this winter we had plenty of -0 and single digit days and nights. The girls were just fine. Our coop has no drafts at the joints and I added weatherstriping around the coop door, nest box door and the fold down top to make it as weather tight as possible (there are ventilation holes in the roof though.)

    We're in zone 6, and maybe if you live in zone 3 or 4 it might be a good idea, but I don't personally think it's necssary except in the coldest climates; in the end it's very much a personal decsion.


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