Too much ventilation?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Uzuri, Nov 21, 2009.

  1. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    Well, we'll see how this goes tonight, but rather than keeping the flap down on the front of this thing:


    I've put a cardboard hover over the side of the roost that they use (Note: the entire "ceiling" of the coop is hardware wire) and left the front flap up like this:


    So now they basically have an open 4' x 3' vent into "attic" space which is open to the outside.

    I'm hoping this halts Rooster's inclination to frostbite without losing *all* the warm air.

    So experienced folks, have I gone too far? Or still not enough?
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 22, 2009
  2. ellie_may12

    ellie_may12 Out Of The Brooder

    May 31, 2009
    St Tammany
    Where are you located? I live in Louisiana and that looks much cozier than my chicken's coop, but if you have freezing weather for long periods of time...I don't know...
  3. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    Ohio. It was 30 last night. It stayed nice and warm inside under the cardboard (I could tell when I put my face in this morning), but I can't say if the moisture was getting out or not.

    Of course, it's hard to get moisture out of anything when you wake up to freezing fog :p
  4. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think it too open for your climate, to be honest and that you are lacking predator protection.
    I'd cover all areas of wire with 1/2" gauge hardware cloth and get those accessible vents wired, too and covered with vents that can be closed in a blizzard...
  5. TcherDawn

    TcherDawn Granite State Chook

    Jan 30, 2009
    Prescott, AZ
    Ohio is huge, so climate can be very different depending where. On the border with KY, it can be much milder than on the border with Michigan. When we had the girls in the Chick n Hutch. When Fall here in NH got reallly cold, we cut a huge piece of blue hard foam insualtion for the roof, and wrapped the outside with blue accordian fold insulation, and tarped it all over like you did. Do remember as LynneP said, that blizzards will blow snow about wildly at all angles and into the tiniest hole, and the wind can whip off all your hard work. We put a cement paver on top of ours so even if the wind made our tarp tie downs fail, it could not take everything. It can also cause a big snow load on your shallow pitch, so be mindful of how much snow is predicted so you can keep scraping the top off. Sounds like you are off to a good start. Get a thermometer and watch the temp in the roost level. Good luck. Dawn
  6. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    Point taken- I'm familiar with the area around Cleveland, Philly and the countryside near Bluebell. Very concerned about predator access.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  7. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    Central Ohio.

    Read the first post, the entire ceiling (which you can't see in the picture since the props and the roof are in the way) is covered with hardware cloth -- there is no predator access. Nothing is just wide open. The reason that the holes you can see aren't covered is because I can pitch the roof higher by putting in taller props. The roof gets propped higher when rain or snow is predicted, lower for cold dry weather. So that I could do that, and also so I didn't have to deal with pred-proofing triangular areas I just pred-proofed the flat part under the roof.
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:Just for what it's worth, remember you do not actually have 4x3' of actual vent space goin' on there. What you have is only the space around the edges, which looks like approx. {(4" x 1.5 x long dimension of coop)+(4" x short dimension of coop)}. I forget what your coop dimensions are, but if it is 4x8, then you have a little over 4 sq ft of vent area total.

    To me, that is likely to be more than you need open at the moment, but remember that is just an opinion not a legally-binding guarantee <g> and in particular it basically comes down to, from your own familiarity with your coop and how it behaves and your chickens, do you think the frostbite is more from humidity issues or temperature.

    One thing you could consider is putting a hygrometer (use the salt method to figure out correction factor so you can get an ACCURATE reading from it, as nearly all sold commercially, even the less cheap ones, are considerably inaccurate) into the coop, at chicken-on-roost height.

    If you are going to close vents down somewhat, if it were me I would block up ALL the edge vents on the upwind side(s) of the coop, to reduce breeze in the coop. I know you have a half-solid 'drop ceiling' in there but the more breeze there is across the open part the more breeze there will be in any part of the coop.

    Good luck, have fun,

  9. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    Quote:Thanks for the giggle [​IMG] And the specifics.
  10. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    No, can't see the hardware cloth you mention but the run appears to have large gauge openings too. Easy fix...I've never been farther south in Ohio, but just seems open for a winter climate...

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by