1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

When Do You Close Various Vents/Windows?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by KCAmelia, Sep 16, 2015.

  1. KCAmelia

    KCAmelia Out Of The Brooder

    52
    0
    44
    May 31, 2015
    Hi. I am new to chicken keeping and this is our first fall/winter. For summer, ventilation is easy: open it all up! But when do you start closing it down? I have read about ventilation here on BYC, so I know it is important to always have a lot, even in the cold, but positioning also is important, right?

    These two pics are of either end of my roosts. At what temp/nasty forecast would you close the vent that is right at roosting bird height (closed in pic)? And the window and vent above the roosts? Are those high enough to leave open year-round? Maybe close one or the other when it gets really cold to prevent a cross breeze draft? If so, at what temp/wind chill? I have additional venting on the other side of the coop, so even if the vents and window pictured were all closed, there would still be significant air exchange. I'm just wanting to avoid closing ventilation unnecessarily or giving my birds a deadly draft.

    I'd love to hear what guidelines everyone uses and what your climate is like. We are in the US, Midwest. It's from 105 and humid in summer to -5 with moderate winds in winter. More ice than snow. Thank you!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]
     
  2. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,244
    290
    206
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    I am playing with the same thing (which reminds me I forgot to open one of the windows before I left this morning...oops). I have one window that is at ground and roost height and I have been closing that each evening. I have one that is higher than my roosts, sort of like how yours is, and I leave that open. I will probably close it in winter if its really cold out. Then I have several other vents that stay open all the time. My thought is to only close what might either produce a chilly cross breeze that is at the right height to ruffle feathers. From your pictures, it looks like you don't have any windows or vents that create that possibility.

    One thing I take note of is the condensation in the morning. If the windows are fogged up on the outside, that is okay. If your bedding or any other interior surface feels damp or icy, then there is too much moisture and/or not enough air movement. Unless it is pouring rain sideways or a blizzard out, I plan on always opening up the coop windows during the day to ensure that all that night time manure gets to dry out while the birds are outside.

    I would like to ask though, why are your roosts so low and what sort of bedding are you using?

    Edit: NVM that is just a poop board underneath the roosts, not the floor of the coop, right? I think you are doing right to close the vent at coop level at night, although if that side is wind protected it might not be necessary.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015
  3. KCAmelia

    KCAmelia Out Of The Brooder

    52
    0
    44
    May 31, 2015
    Thanks! Good tips on what to look for in the am! Yes, that is my poop board. :) the roosts are 2.5 feet high. I am using deep litter, so I will watch it for signs of wetness. I'm thinking of adding overhangs to my vents, though, because I think I get some rain in there.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    30,500
    3,384
    516
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    I leave all my windows wide open until the temps get down to the mid 30's...you want them to acclimate to the cold and changing day to night temps.
    All my venting is way up high over roosts...4 and 8 feet.
     
  5. barneveldrerman

    barneveldrerman Chillin' With My Peeps

    I close my windows when it starts to get cold. My vents are on the top of the building so I don't close them. You may want to keep one or two open.


    Hope this helped!:cool:
     
  6. KCAmelia

    KCAmelia Out Of The Brooder

    52
    0
    44
    May 31, 2015
    Great, thanks! I wish I had a little more height above the roosts to play with re: ventilation. Ah, hindsight.
     
  7. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

    6,631
    896
    336
    Sep 13, 2011
    I cover the lower west window and the lower south window that's next to a roost when it's below about 35F. The east windows and the upper vents east and west are always open, so it's not damp in the coop. This year we roofed the run and have a solid north wall, so the east doors will stay open all year. I might modify things slightly if it's below 0F and windy. Mary
     
  8. KCAmelia

    KCAmelia Out Of The Brooder

    52
    0
    44
    May 31, 2015
    Thanks, Mary. I would love to see your coop if you have any pics.
     
  9. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

    6,631
    896
    336
    Sep 13, 2011
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Pictures this summer, after the run roofing project, and before cleanup and staining the whole thing. Mary
     
  10. KCAmelia

    KCAmelia Out Of The Brooder

    52
    0
    44
    May 31, 2015
    Wow, the run is a screened in porch now. I'd live there! Looks good. My operation is much smaller. :)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by