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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by kkcummins, Nov 21, 2013.
Yes hopefully. That's the idea.
I use a five gallon bucket with nipples on the bottom and decided to use a submersible water heater from the pet store, found in the the fish section. The heater is 5w with suction cups. I stuck the heater to the bottom of the bucket, in the water of course, and have had zero trouble with the nipples freezing, we have had freezing temps for the past 5 days. I am new to the chicken scene as this is my first winter with birds and had the bucket freeze on me this past weekend and this was my newbie solution.
The thermostatically controlled plastic water dispensers found at Tractor Supply are a pretty easy install. Just fill the 2 gallon container with water, plug in and hang in the coop. Cost about 25 bucks and supplies the chickens with unfrozen water all Winter long. Well worth the money! I have 2 and check them daily for cleaning and refill them every other day.
That seems like a pretty good idea, though you should keep an eye out for the heater (if it's glass with filaments inside) cracking or exploding. Throwing in my fish-keeping experience for this one. Fish tank heaters aren't meant to be on constantly/so often or to be used in such severe temperatures (since they're meant for indoor temperatures around 70 degrees Fahrenheit) and run the risk of breaking from stress under such circumstances. Also, a friend of mine had a 5-10 gallon heater in a 5 gallon tank with a beta over the summer. It was too close to the air conditioner so the heater had to click on too frequently. The end result was a cracked heater and a dead beta. Just something to watch for.
My setup was still good last night, in which the lowest point was 19F-20F. No ice yet.
Just my thought on water heaters. Rather than mickey mouse something like cookie tin or fish tank heaters. Both I thought might have a limited life at best or a danger at its worst. I bought a bird bath heater they are made for the job operate on a thermostat safe and economical to run. I also use horizontal watering nipples a little more than vertical nipples. The deference I bought them once rather than hit and miss and replacing something several times. They don't leak and are absolutely as advertised. At times we are penny wise and pound foolish.
This is my 5th winter in the mountains of Wyoming, using aquarium heaters. Mine go in Oct 15th and are used until May. I have been using the same 3 heaters. They are on 24 hours a day. I have not had a failure yet. I use mine in buckets with nipples.During the summer I keep them in a box of chicken supplies where they get moved around and handled a lot.
I think I have proven that they work, are economical to use and don't fail like everyone likes to keep saying. I and my chickens rely on them and they have not let me down yet. This is not a mickey mouse solution.
So far so good with my cookie tin. Temps are below freezing here. I have set ceramic tiles on bricks on top of which I set the cookie tin.it is only warm to the touch.
Would the cookie tin heater work with a heavy Rubbermaid water bowl? And will someone please post a pic of their waterer with the nipples?
I never thought about flipping that over. Thanks for the tip.