When to heat the coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jazzpurr, Mar 2, 2007.

  1. jazzpurr

    jazzpurr Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2007
    I live in North Eastern Pa. Winters range from mild to severe.
    I can put a LP heater in the coop but I was wondering
    at what temperature should I have it kick on?

    I'm thinking around 40 degrees just to keep the water
    from freezing. But I would rather keep it at a temp
    that keeps the hens happy and laying.

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. salathiel

    salathiel Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2007
    Hi, Jazzpurr: I live in central PA, and struggled with that blast of arctic air we had a couple of weeks ago. Here is how I provide heat to the coop and waterer: I suspend a shielded heat lamp from the ceiling over the waterer. This keeps the water from freezing and provides a little heat for the coop. Chickens can take way below freezing temps as long as they are out of the wind. On below zero nights the water ices up, but not enough to break the waterer, and I can easily thaw it by pouring hot tap water into the trough in morning. On really cold nights I leave the light on all night; on other nights I use a timer to get the girls up early...it is the length of "day" that encourages them to lay, more than the temperature.
     
  3. jazzpurr

    jazzpurr Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2007
    Salathiel,

    Thanks for that info. I didn't know if the temp would affect
    laying.

    Do you know anyhting about the Liquid Propane (LP) heater?

    Theres's no way the exhaust would be harmful, would it?
    I have a LP fireplace so I would assume its okay but I don't
    know how sensitive the chickens are.
     
  4. salathiel

    salathiel Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2007
    Sorry...I don't know much about LP heaters in coops. I guess I would be a bit leery about anything with an open flame or glowing element in a coop. Maybe someone out there knows about the danger of carbon monoxide buildup with LP heaters in closed areas? Did your heater come with any instructions about where it can be used?
     
  5. TheBigWRanch

    TheBigWRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 12, 2007
    Wenatchee, Washington
    A fire place has a chimney to the outside. I don't know what kind of exhaust your heater puts off so I can't tell you if it's safe, but chickens are extremely sensitive so I wouldn't try it until I knew for sure.
     
  6. MTchick

    MTchick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 2, 2007
    Western Montana
    There are a bunch of vent-free propane heaters out there- and all share one huge problem- water vapor. It might sound strange, but the process of buring liquid propane without a designated exhaust vent creates an inordinate amount of water vapor. You don't want to have that much humidity in your coop, I would imagine, because you'll probably get mildew, other molds and bacteria. Not to mention the carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide could be a real risk, as was mentioned before.

    I would think electricity based heat systems (the heat cubes that are mentioned on the forum) or just plain heat lamps/light bulbs would be safer and maybe even cheaper.

    Good luck

    -MTchick
     
  7. jazzpurr

    jazzpurr Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2007
    Thanks Everyone..

    If no one out there is using it then I will avoid it.
    I can run electric to the coop and that is what I will do.

    I know the LP fireplaces put out a lot of moisture as a
    by-product.

    I am afraid my chickens will be as spoiled as any indoor pet
    could be. I already asked the guy at Agway to keep my feet
    on the ground to avoid overkill on the coop and feeding. If I thought
    it would make them happy I'd put a flat panel
    in the coop with He-Haw reruns playing all day.

    Thanks Again..
     
  8. raysflock

    raysflock Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 22, 2007
    newfoundland, canada
    I have 16 hens and 1 rooster in a well insulated coop 8' x10'. The only heat is a 40 watt light bulb. some ice forms in the water bucket when the night temperture goes down to -20C [-2F] with a little wind. The roost is 4 ft off the floor where they spend their nights, with no problems, I never went below 7 eggs per day since christmas.
    Ray
     
  9. kstaven

    kstaven Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    BC, Washington Border
    Ray hit the nail on the head "well insulated" and Draft free. From there chicken body heat and maybe a heat bulb take care of the rest.
     
  10. cresty

    cresty Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 26, 2007
    Probably sounds like a dumb question. I don't want to run a power line out to the barn but I'd like to make sure the birds are warm. Is there any way to put light in a coop (for heat) when there's no electricity run out to the pasture? [​IMG]
     

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