Should I paint the inside of the coop to weather proof it?

Skyla

Chirping
Aug 10, 2017
103
41
94
Northern Wisconsin
I am not sure if this was mentioned in this thread at all. Remember this. A DRY CHICKEN IS A WARM CHICKEN. Do not forget this. A chicken keeps itself warm if you give it an area that will make the chicken keep warm. The area needs to be well ventilated so humidity does not build up. It also needs to be draft free so wind does not ruffle the feathers causing the chickens to loose that wonderful heat they build up under that lovely down coat they make for themselves.

I am not against insulation. However, if you are going to insulate to give yourself an excuse to close up the coop to "keep the heat in" then there is a problem. Thinking about getting the humidity out and your chickens will be happier. It gets down into the -20s F here in northern Montana. I have never lost a chicken due to cold weather. In fact at that temperature my girls are outside in the covered and protected run doing chicken things all day. They peck at their food, they drink, and scratch through the pine shavings hoping to find a lost treat.
When you say "give yourself an excuse to close up the coop" do you mean closing the vents? During winter I usually keep the front door closed unless it's a pretty sunny day just to air our the coop a bit, else Its closed along with the windows, then I just have the vents for air circulation. There is a little back door for them to come out of however when it gets really cold I block it off.
 

wamtazlady

Crowing
Jul 18, 2013
1,649
1,957
286
Kalispell MT
When you say "give yourself an excuse to close up the coop" do you mean closing the vents? During winter I usually keep the front door closed unless it's a pretty sunny day just to air our the coop a bit, else Its closed along with the windows, then I just have the vents for air circulation. There is a little back door for them to come out of however when it gets really cold I block it off.
I am not quite sure what you are asking here, but I will try to answer. Some people who insulate their coop think they have to close all the vents in winter to "hold in the heat." A chicken can get frostbite at 32 degrees in a closed up humid coop. In other words, closing up the vents can make for the type of environment that causes frostbite. Other chickens can be perfectly fine when it is -20 F in a coop with lots of ventilation.

My chickens are outside every single day no matter the weather. Their water is kept outside to limit humidity in the coop. Their food is also outside. The run is designed to give them a comfortable place to spend the day. The run is roofed. Three sides are covered in clear vinyl during the winter to prevent wind blowing through the coop.

When I first got my chickens I was worried about winter. I read what others had said on here about ventilation and such. I was leery about following the advice but decided to give it a try. Guess what? It worked! The chickens were happy and healthy. That first winter with all pullets I was getting 8-10 eggs a day from 12 birds. They must have been having their needs met if they were laying so well.
 

SegiDream

Songster
Apr 23, 2020
197
598
146
Southeast TN
It's definitely taken longer than we thought and cost WAY more than we ever expected. Granted we picked a terrible time to build a coop with the prices of wood sky rocketing, but wow, we were not expecting it to be so much.
I was at the store the other day to get some lumber. The first thing I saw was some studs I bought in the spring for framing the coop were almost triple the price. Had a big woooooah moment in the store.. just cannot imagine what a fresh new coop build would cost atm...

Guess I was lucky (and a little creative) in the spring when building our coop. Got free plywood pallets and repurposed furniture (toy boxes) for the nesting boxes and was just overall very thrifty on spending to keep costs down. Initial cost to build/buy a coop and run is the most expensive part but once that is done the maintenance costs are fairly low. Having your own reliable source of food and maybe also compost for the garden is well worth it. Plus chickens are just cool to have around lol
 

21hens-incharge

Nuttier than a squirrels stash
Premium Feather Member
Mar 9, 2014
21,559
88,896
1,542
Northern Colorado
I was at the store the other day to get some lumber. The first thing I saw was some studs I bought in the spring for framing the coop were almost triple the price. Had a big woooooah moment in the store.. just cannot imagine what a fresh new coop build would cost atm...

Guess I was lucky (and a little creative) in the spring when building our coop. Got free plywood pallets and repurposed furniture (toy boxes) for the nesting boxes and was just overall very thrifty on spending to keep costs down. Initial cost to build/buy a coop and run is the most expensive part but once that is done the maintenance costs are fairly low. Having your own reliable source of food and maybe also compost for the garden is well worth it. Plus chickens are just cool to have around lol
No kidding!!
Sticker shock hard core!

I found myself hitting the cull bins last month.
 

Skyla

Chirping
Aug 10, 2017
103
41
94
Northern Wisconsin
I am not quite sure what you are asking here, but I will try to answer. Some people who insulate their coop think they have to close all the vents in winter to "hold in the heat." A chicken can get frostbite at 32 degrees in a closed up humid coop. In other words, closing up the vents can make for the type of environment that causes frostbite. Other chickens can be perfectly fine when it is -20 F in a coop with lots of ventilation.

My chickens are outside every single day no matter the weather. Their water is kept outside to limit humidity in the coop. Their food is also outside. The run is designed to give them a comfortable place to spend the day. The run is roofed. Three sides are covered in clear vinyl during the winter to prevent wind blowing through the coop.

When I first got my chickens I was worried about winter. I read what others had said on here about ventilation and such. I was leery about following the advice but decided to give it a try. Guess what? It worked! The chickens were happy and healthy. That first winter with all pullets I was getting 8-10 eggs a day from 12 birds. They must have been having their needs met if they were laying so well.
You answered my question, thanks. I definitely wouldn't close up the vents but I can see how some people might think that makes it warmer. Don't you have problems keeping the water liquid putting it outside? M water freezes inside, I can't imagine how it'd hold up outside. That sounds great for the chickens to have a covered run like that to keep the wind out during the winter. Mine sometimes brave the cold, but when It's really cold or pretty snowy out they just chill out in the coop all day. They can go under the coop to get away from the snow but i have to shovel them path to get there. The 4 years I've had chickens I've never lost one to the cold or gotten frost bite however mine never laid as much as yours during these times. I have been cautious about the ventilation as you mentioned above but after reading all this I'll definitely add more.
Speaking of winter, about 2 years ago I had a light bulb in the coop burst from the cold. It had been a stretch of a week of around 10-20 below 0, but luckily I was in the coop when it happened. Some of the bedding caught fire from the busted lightbulb but I was able to put it out, but i hate to think what would've happened if i wasn't there. I have a light bulb in this new coop, do you know any ways to prevent that from happening or have you had a similar experience?
 

Skyla

Chirping
Aug 10, 2017
103
41
94
Northern Wisconsin
I was at the store the other day to get some lumber. The first thing I saw was some studs I bought in the spring for framing the coop were almost triple the price. Had a big woooooah moment in the store.. just cannot imagine what a fresh new coop build would cost atm...

Guess I was lucky (and a little creative) in the spring when building our coop. Got free plywood pallets and repurposed furniture (toy boxes) for the nesting boxes and was just overall very thrifty on spending to keep costs down. Initial cost to build/buy a coop and run is the most expensive part but once that is done the maintenance costs are fairly low. Having your own reliable source of food and maybe also compost for the garden is well worth it. Plus chickens are just cool to have around lol
Let me tell you, its a lot. I think were over 1 grand at this point for what should have been a $3/400 coop. We had gone to the store to get some plywood, came back 2 weeks later to get some more of the same stuff and it was $7 more! That's great you were able to get free pallets. I had found some also but the person I was building the coop with thought the time saved not taking the pallet apart and nailing it all in would be worth paying for plywood instead (i disagreed but oh well), the toy boxes sounds like an awesome idea for a nesting box. I had stalked craigslist and facebook market place but wasn't able to really find anything except some windows we used. We're just hoping we can get the money back when we sell the coop when we move in 3 years (taking it with us would be a huge hassle). Even though I'm paying out the nose for these birds, like you said it's well worth it, they really are cool to have around.
 

SegiDream

Songster
Apr 23, 2020
197
598
146
Southeast TN
Let me tell you, its a lot. I think were over 1 grand at this point for what should have been a $3/400 coop. We had gone to the store to get some plywood, came back 2 weeks later to get some more of the same stuff and it was $7 more! That's great you were able to get free pallets. I had found some also but the person I was building the coop with thought the time saved not taking the pallet apart and nailing it all in would be worth paying for plywood instead (i disagreed but oh well),
Oh wow that's crazy and painful to hear. The pallets were solid plywood I just had to cut the pallet slats/pegs off so it was fairly easy. I think I'd agree that taking a standard pallet apart to nail it back together is rather painstaking.
 

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