Will this be ok? Don't want to burn down the coop!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by NorthChicken, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. My chicks are 3 weeks old. They are out in the coop during the day and I plug in there ecoglow out there (temps are between 50-65 degrees). I still bring them in at night as the ecoglow only works in 50 degree weather, and nights are between 35-40 degrees. They stay in the basement in temps of 60, plus their ecoglow which they still all sleep under.

    So the smell is becoming an issue and my poor DH, who uses the basement as a mancave, is getting fed up with the dust. feathers and smell! So I will probably be moving them out full time to the coop at 4 weeks old, so next week.

    Of course night temps are pretty cold and their ecoglow won't really cut it, so I put up a heat lamp with a 250 watt bulb to use at night. I hung it about 3 feet from the shavings, will this be close enough to heat them, but far enough up not to catch the shavings on fire? Should I lower/raise it? The coop is uninsulated and 6 x 3.5 and there are 7 chicks, so hopefully it's small enough to keep in the heat, and enough chicks to cuddle. They like to snuggle under the poop board, so I'm worried the heat won't even touch them at night as the poop board is at one end of the 6 foot coop, heat lamp is towards the door, which is the only place I could hang the chain.

    What do you think? Should they be feathered up enough and enough of them to be alright in 35-40 degree nights?


    Just a few to show how feathered they are.

    Any ideas on if this polish is a girl or boy?



  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    I think they'll be fine outside. That's what I do.
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Such cuties.

    At your weather conditions you are describing, I tend to keep 3 week old chicks outside with a heat lamp only containing a 100W bulb on a dimmer switch. Why does the eco glow not work below 50? Is it just because it cannot maintain the 95F temp day old chicks need when ambient is below 50? If that is the case, at 3 weeks, even if the ecoglow can maintain a temp 40 above ambient, 80F with snuggling will be plenty for 3 week old chicks. I'd use the eco glow if possible.

    As for the light, in addition to securing with that chain, (good job), I would also tie the cord to the chain, just in case someone flies up and bumps the hanger housing. Some heat lamp attachments that you are currently hanging the chain on are not bent on the inside and can pop off.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Thanks for the tips!!

    I never thought about trying to use the ecoglow alone in the 30-40 degree temps, I guess I was thinking about the ambient temp. having to be 50 degrees and up at all times, didn't think about them being old enough to deal with less heat. I didn't think it would produce enough heat to keep them warm!

    But I really don't want to use a heat lamp, our kilowatt per hour cost is outrageous, and the thought of running a 250 watt light all night for weeks was starting to worry me. Let alone the fear of a fire if something knocked the light down!
  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Yeah, for the most part, with just a few chicks, those 250W heat bulbs are just expensive.

    I've raised up to a dozen chicks, with nights in the 30's, in a 4x4x6, non insulated, walk in brooder that is outside, with only two 60 or 100W bulbs on a dimmer switch for heat. I use the dimmer switch to turn down the heat as they don't need the full 200W at all. I would go with a single 100W bulb, but with day and week old chicks, if something happens to one bulb at 2am, it is good to have a back up bulb. Thus running two 60's or 100's turned down to about half the output.

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