What to do with a coop you hate?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by taprock, Nov 18, 2010.

  1. taprock

    taprock Chillin' With My Peeps

    I hate my coop!! It seems to be just one thing after another. My husband was going to move a small shed for me to use, well that didn't work out so he built me a 10x12 coop that is pole barn construction on a level cement floor- lots of gaps - no windows. So I put in two plexiglass windows on the south and windows that open on the east and west. I also put cardboard up to cover the cracks between boards. Ok for summer but it still was drafty and with a metal roof moisture would condense and drip on the birds. We live in Northern Michigan winter temps of -#'s. Now I am not talking bad about my husband but his construction experience was homes not chicken coops... so I wanted to insulate the walls and put in a drop ceiling to get rid of drafts and keep the chickens out of the rafters but my husband talked me out of it and instead I put foam insulation on the walls and roof and covered it again with cardboard. Now I have holes where the chickens have gotten through the cardboard and it is still drafty. I am just disgusted with it all at this point and have no idea what to do. Am I the only one that has issues with my coop? I see beautiful coops and wish I could just like mine.
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If it were me, I might consider taking plastic vapor-barrier sheeting and staplegunning it all around the inside of the insulation as a draft barrier, then covering the insulation with plywood (can be scrap, scrounged). Remove the cardboard first!

    For the roof insulation, you don't need plywood, just stick the foamboard up there whatever way you prefer and then if there are lots of gaps in it you might staplegun some more plastic sheeting onto the underside of the whole shebang, to minimize condensation drips.

    If there are still drafts at chicken level, get some pieces of scrap lumber and attach them as battens over the drafty gaps (which there should be few of, what with the plastic). Make sure you still have actual usable VENTS, though, preferably up high and on at least the usually-downwind side of the coop.

    I can totally understand your frustration -- do not even talk to me about the sheep night-pens and shelters I have been constructing this summer -- but it really does sound like you can get your problems in hand with not too much more work. And then settle down to *enjoying* the chickens [​IMG]

    Good luck, have fun,

  3. peterlund

    peterlund Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 29, 2010
    MA Cranberry Country
    Are your chickens unhappy with their home? If it is looks, then I can understand, but for the housing of your birds, I will bet they LOVE the high ceilings regardless of drips from the roof, and the "drafts" that you might not like are just soft ventilation...
    My 2 cents....
  4. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    May 8, 2007
    I can see where you'd be frustrated with a lot of issues going on. That's a big shed. Maybe you could focus on making their roosting area draft free, until you can figure out a way to work on the rest of it. Maybe make a little spot with three solid walls and a slightly slanted roof around the roost. It doesn't have to be heavy duty materials, but be something that won't let drafts through. Even a tarp over some supports would do it. They would be out of drafts when roosting, which is when they are most vulnerable, it would keep any drips off them from condensation and also retain a little more of their body heat at night.
  5. 4 the Birds

    4 the Birds Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 15, 2010
    Westfield, Indiana
    Cardboard is not a good building material. I would get a can of spray foam ($5 can of spray will go along way) and fill any gaps that you have issues with. That expandable foam is wonderful and I use it alot. A few sheets of plywood, a circular saw, and a hand drill with screws will also go along way to get your coup back into shape. Good Luck!
  6. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

    May 8, 2007
    I think chickens eat foam faster than cardboard. If you use any foam, I'd have it covered, if it's at a level that the chickens can get at.

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