waterer help please

crealbilly

Songster
Apr 1, 2015
364
62
121
Southern Illinois, USA
Last year I had a heck of a time fighting frozen nipples on my PVC Pipe waterer. I tried just about everything I could think of but even though I was able to prevent the water in the pipe from freezing the nipples would freeze and crack and leak...

I'm thinking of abandoning the whole PVC pipe nipple waterer idea and go with something else instead.

Can you guys point me to some ideas for homemade waterers that will not freeze? I need to make three of them. I have 3 chicken yards and 56 birds in them. My only requirement is the waterers need to be outside all the time in the chicken yards and not inside the coops.

I'm in southern Illinois if that helps.

Thanks
 
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Gray Farms

Conserve Heritage Breed Livestock
5 Years
Apr 11, 2016
14,349
19,098
647
NW Missouri
I think your hunting a unicorn. An automatic water that won't freeze outside in winter, large enough for several birds.
 

Finnie

Crowing
6 Years
Oct 27, 2014
2,614
2,921
366
Indianapolis
Everything will freeze if you don't run electricity to it. I run a long outdoor extension cord to my coop. I made a waterer out of a Tidy Cat litter box, a small fish tank heater and horizontal nipples. It has worked well for two winters so far. One year inside the coop and one year underneath. It does need to be sat on a wooden block. (Anything that will put the nipples up at chicken head height.) There was a discussion somewhere here on BYC where I learned how to make it. Maybe if you search it will come up.

Good luck!
 

crealbilly

Songster
Apr 1, 2015
364
62
121
Southern Illinois, USA
Everything will freeze if you don't run electricity to it. I run a long outdoor extension cord to my coop. I made a waterer out of a Tidy Cat litter box, a small fish tank heater and horizontal nipples. It has worked well for two winters so far. One year inside the coop and one year underneath. It does need to be sat on a wooden block. (Anything that will put the nipples up at chicken head height.) There was a discussion somewhere here on BYC where I learned how to make it. Maybe if you search it will come up.

Good luck!


I am not opposed to running electrical to all three of the waterers. I can bury underground cable pretty easily. Can you share a pic of what you built - please? I'm a visual kind of guy and get a much better understanding of how something works by seeing it instead of reading about it. Of couse pictures and explainations are the best for me though.
 

PingoBags

Chirping
Jun 27, 2016
214
71
81
Nova Scotia, Canada
I will be dealing with this for the first time this year. I'm also gonna be using nipples.

The idea I'm gonna try is using a pipe heating cable wrapped around a 5 gallon or smaller bucket.
For the nipples I'm gonna cut a piece of 2" abs pipe and glue it over top of the nipple with a small notch so the chickens can still drink.
I'll also wrap the heating cable around that small piece of abs pipe and wrap some sort of insulation around everything.
The idea is to heat the abs pipe and create a warm pocket of air around the nipple, might work.
My temps go down to -20 to -30°C at night.
 

crealbilly

Songster
Apr 1, 2015
364
62
121
Southern Illinois, USA
I did most of that also... what seemed to work the best was to get piece of shrink warp tubing insulate the upper piece of the nipple with rock wool insulation put the shrink wrap tubing over the insulation and heat it until it shrank for a tight fit. I also added heat tape and rock wool insulation to the outside of the pipe. But even after all this the nipple stems froze. Best of luck to you with fighting the freeze.
 
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greenfeathers

Chirping
Feb 17, 2016
194
22
51
People's Republic of MD
I used a heated bucket I got from TSC and a small pump. The bucket only turns on at 40 degrees and below. The warm water circulates though the piping and back into the same bucket. I used it for my rabbits with nipples last winter and we got down to -10F for a few days. It'll be setup for the chickens before it gets cold.
 

crealbilly

Songster
Apr 1, 2015
364
62
121
Southern Illinois, USA
I seen this idea of using a 40 watt light bulb inside of a cinder block with the waterer sitting on top. It seems like a good start but I'm still thinking the water is going to freeze since it's so far away from the heat source and it's not enclosed and insulated at all

pluggedin.jpg


http://citygirlfarming.com/2013/11/...ater-less-than-four-minutes-and-four-dollars/

setup.jpg
 
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crealbilly

Songster
Apr 1, 2015
364
62
121
Southern Illinois, USA
I used a heated bucket I got from TSC and a small pump. The bucket only turns on at 40 degrees and below. The warm water circulates though the piping and back into the same bucket. I used it for my rabbits with nipples last winter and we got down to -10F for a few days. It'll be setup for the chickens before it gets cold.


Can you share pics please? My 56 birds go though atleast 5 gallons of water a day and more in the heat of the summer - with my current PVC pipe nipple waterer setup. Nipples are great for provding clean water but bids don't have cheeks and waste a lot with nipples. The ground under the nipples is constantly wet. I suspect that's why I'm burning though so much water everyday.
 

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