Where will the water come from?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by llnmaw, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. llnmaw

    llnmaw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 22, 2011
    Spokane, WA
    In the winter that is?

    I've got the part about keeping the water from freezing figured out. The part I can't figure out (at least with out us shelling out many more $$ than we currently have!) is where I am going to get water to fill/clean the waters? We shut off all outside water for about 4 months or we will have broken pipes in the house. I thought I was so clever getting an outdoor sink set up right near the garden/chicken coop for all the dirty stuff when we decided on chickens. It has served us well for the summer, but not so much in the winter I now see. There will be no water at the sink...or the hose...or....you get my point.

    I have visions of dragging the dirty water container inside, down the basement stairs and washing it in the laundry sink...back up the stairs and out to the coop. I'm lazy...so this seems tedious. And quite frankly the waterer is stinky and gross. And did I mention I'm lazy? (well.....lazy in theory....really I'm just a busy mama with lots to do). Part of the stinky and gross part is because the waterer is not high enough off the ground and I've yet to adequately fix the problem. Regardless this is not something I want to do in my kitchen or basement sink daily

    So where do all of you really cold weather chicken keepers get your outside water from?
  2. chickened

    chickened Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 2, 2010
    western Oregon
    Try frost-less spigots. Get them at a farm store.
  3. darkmatter

    darkmatter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 10, 2009
    Quote:The inside deep sink in the laundry room. I use a 2 gallon jug to carry the water to the coop. For really cold weather, I use one of those black rubber tubs setting on a concrete block in the coop. If it freezes, I just turn it upside down and stomp the ice out, then refill.
  4. gale65

    gale65 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:We are lucky to have a hydrant near the coop that doesn't freeze in the winter (it shuts off way below the ground). If we didn't, I guess I'd be taking a bucket of hot water and a bucket of regular every time I needed to clean and refill the waterer because the only running water other than the hydrant is in the house, and I'm not bringing any chicken stuff in the house.
  5. allpeepedout

    allpeepedout Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 2, 2011
    Southern Indiana
    This will be my first winter with chickens. I have to shut off my outdoor water source near the chicken for 2+ months in winter and also have horses to water in the same situation. I fill multiple 100 gallon horse water tanks for them, which also have thermostatic heaters, and keep one extra tank covered inside a shed for energy efficiency and to keep clean. I plan to dip out of that tank for daily chicken water. I use a clean dipper and keep the water as clean as possible, but it is also fairly cold, of course, which helps.

    My plan is to have multiple chicken waterers (cheap 8 qt. buckets and rubber tubs), so I can use a clean one every day or two and save up a pile of dirty ones for cleanup at the house once a week or so. I have one outside faucet that stays on all winter near the house, so in better winter weather their buckets can be sprayed and scrubbed outdoors.

    In winter, there is less rapid growth of bacteria and things seem less yucky, so I hope that will help. I find the gravity-type chicken waterers more work to clean and fill than simple buckets or tubs, but then I have only 7 chickens.

    When I refill the big tanks every 1-2 wks, I have to turn on my water, run a hose, fill tanks, and blow out the line with an air compressor. Yep, it's work. Part of animal keeping with less than ideal infrastructure. Hope to update water line some day.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2011
  6. kizanne

    kizanne Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2011
    Tallahassee, FL
    Quote:How many chickens do you have? I have 11 and I only take out 1 to 2 gallons every few days. This keeps a 5gallon bucket filled that feeds a chicken nipple system. I only have to clean about once a month with the nipples there isn't a bunch of wasted water and the water doesn't get dirty. The pipe holding my nipples is under a board so they can't poop on it and the bucket has a lid so the dander and poop doesn't get in the bucket.
  7. llnmaw

    llnmaw Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 22, 2011
    Spokane, WA
    Thanks for the responses!

    We have 5 chickens, use a 3 gallon water and 2 of the quart jar ones. I keep one quart in the coop for early morning drinks, that one may go as the colder temps approach since I only have a way to keep one container defrosted at a time. I'm sure I can get a way with only the 3 gallon one in the winter, maybe toss out a supplemental pan of water if necessary.

    So I guess if I can get the water container far enough up off the ground so it does not get quite so funky so fast (and the cooler temps will help with that I know) maybe just refilling it with a jug from the house will work. I could bring extra jugs with me for infrequent scrubbing. Or just schlep it indoor once a month or so for a good cleaning. I'm willing to do that.

    Not sure how the frostless spigot would work as the nearest water source for the chickens has lots of above ground pipes. I'll check with hubs to see if we can wrap it well enough and use the spigot. Good info! Thanks......
  8. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2011
    Taylors, SC
    I have frost proof hydrants, two of which are about 25 feet away from the coop.

  9. ailurophile23

    ailurophile23 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 21, 2010
    Another cheap option is to buy/create a second set of waterers - that way you can take the clean filled ones out in the AM and bring the dirty ones inside to wash - but you don't have to deal with them right away - you have all day to do it when it is convenient. Plus, I have found that in the winter, the waterers do not get a funky - cold water doesn't grow things as well so if you can get your waterers off the ground (on blocks or hanging), there may be less goo in them. Good luck!
  10. packmomma

    packmomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 10, 2009
    Argos, IN
    I use rain barrels. The tops freeze so I bring a hammer and one of those chisel things. The spikot..hm..how is that spelled lol Anyway it doesn't freeze and neither does the water in the barrel..just the top part. I break the top to allow air into the barrel so the water will flow. Plus it really helps on the frustration level getting to hammer away at ice [​IMG] I am hoping next year I will have the greenhouse done and the water barrel in there won't freeze. I am going to attempt to put a pop can heater as part of the wall. If only my husband would help me! [​IMG] But that is a whole nother story and post......

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