For winter water I use an 11 gallon tote with lid, horizontal nipples, and a stock tank deicer. Keeps my water thawed for as cold as it has gotten here. To use this kind of system you have to have access to electricity. I have an outdoor outlet that is not far away.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?
I have never used anything that requires electricity in the coop itself. Light bulbs are just not safe. If I were using a light in the coop it would probably be something like rope lights. I just have had no reason to have a light in the coop.