Solar powered birdbath fountain as winter waterer?


In the Brooder
10 Years
Aug 10, 2009
New here, so sorry if this sounds crazy.

We're looking to our first winter with the chickens in New England (15 miles north of Boston), and we obviously need something to keep the water from freezing. We'd like to avoid running electricity to the coop, so that eliminates traditional heated waterers. I haven't come across a solar heated waterer either.

BUT, they do make birdbaths with solar-powered pumps. Presumably the movement of the water would keep it from freezing even when temps dip below freezing. For example:

do people think? Would this work? The water would probably freeze at some point, and could damage the pump and fountain. Interesting, though, no?
It's an interesting idea, but from what I've heard about solar fountains they stop working as soon as they are out of direct sun. Apparently, there's no battery backup to tide them over. So, whenever the sun is not hitting it directly, it won't work.
Now, if you could hook it up to a battery ... maybe.
I'm in the same predicament. In New Hampshire and I really don't want to spend money on an expensive heater and running a cord out to the coop. Everyone put their heads together and think. We're a pretty savey bunch of people and I know we can come up with something.

I did see an ad for a solar 'heated' water bowl but it was just a black plastic bowl with a small opening in the top for the animal to drink from. The drawback is that you have to leave it outside for it to work. I wonder if the inventer ever sold any?

Any ideas anyone???

What about those small hand/ toe warmers they sell at sports stores? Are they water proof?

Could a solar panel heat a wire that heats a piece of metal at the end that could be immersed in the waterer?
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