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Winter water?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Gail in MN, Oct 9, 2012.

  1. gibsterl

    gibsterl Out Of The Brooder

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    has anyone used a heated dog water dish filled with sand with a galvanized waterer on top? Live in New England with cold winter temps
     
  2. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Anconas were hitting the nipples in my "saddle nipples in 3/4" pipe" system before I had the hoses connected to the bucket. All the other chickens followed suit. Don't worry about them finding the water [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    First they had this in their bathtub brooder and I put it in the coop with them when they were 1 month old. But, of course they were still sitting on it and getting junk in the water:

    [​IMG]

    So I put up this. It was in the barn when we bought the place. But it was messy to get in the coop (what can I say, I am a klutz) and it was rusty. Try as I might to clean it, they girls were getting extra iron in their diet:
    [​IMG]

    Now with the nipples connected to a 5 gallon bucket outside the coop, no more mess. Easy as pie to just pour more water in the bucket. This is my first year with chickens so I can't verify they effectiveness, but I have a 250W stock tank deicer and a very small pump (2.3W) in the bucket. The deicer has its own thermostat and the pump is plugged into a timer.

    I was thinking of getting a ThermoCube (lets power through only when the ambient temp is in a set range) so the pump wouldn't run if the temp was above freezing but I've read very mix reviews on them so I am leery.

    Bruce
     
  3. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just a guess but a $10 aquarium heater is likely the "hang from the edge" style. You will fry it when the water level goes down. If you are going to use an aquarium heater, make sure it is the fully submersible kind and that the container is deep enough that the heater will never be out of the water.

    Aquarium heaters will also likely be on all the time since they are trying to keep the water at ~75F or above.

    Bruce
     
  4. Island Roo

    Island Roo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just ordered my chicken nipples online. I was planning the bucket idea but I think I'll go with a pvc setup. If the water is kept warm enough along to pipe (and draft-free), the nipples will not freeze - at least in my climate. [​IMG] So, heres the plan:
    - Assemble a pvc waterer similar to the one above,
    - run heating cable along one side/top of it,
    - lay a piece of insulating bubble wrap over the heating cable,
    - cover with a length of wider diameter pvc cut lengthwise
    - secure with zip ties.

    Doesn't sound too bad if I can look forward to the chickens getting clean water, no poopy waterers to service and ice-free water just by plugging it in.

    Anyone have tips about placement of nipples - angled or bottom? Width of pipe?
    How close to a wall?

    I paid about 50 cents per nipple online and today at a local feed store I saw some for $7.59 each. [​IMG]
     
  5. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would guess that if the heat tape keeps the water in the pipe from freezing, the heat will be enough to keep the nipples from freezing. I say go with it and when it gets cold enough that you are worried, flick a nipple and see if water comes out. Keep doing that as the winter goes on and if you ever fail to get water, go to plan B.

    Bruce
     
  6. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    And this is not a concern to you? There is a reason the regs require grounded outlets with GFI anywhere water and electricity can come in contact. That is why I am nervous about the two prong lamp fixture heaters sitting under a container of water.

    I do like the brick design ( will hold heat where the cookie tins will not) as long as they can't come apart when the chickens go nuts. Mine seem to for unknown reasons. Well, unknown to me, I'm sure they know why they are freaking. At least the first one. It seems that anytime one goes, the others do as well. The "if she thinks there is something to worry about, I do too" flock mentality.


    Bruce
     
  7. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

  8. Island Roo

    Island Roo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nah... that sounds like way too much fun.

    I think I'll put some nipples in the bottom of a 5 gallon bucket and throw a stock tank de-icer in the bottom.

    That's pretty sad - I even respond to my own posts now [​IMG]
     
  9. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How far is "so far"? I recently bought a 100' 12/2 extension cord (for use with a 10 ton electric log splitter) . If you need longer, you could make your own by purchasing a 250' roll of building wire and wire one end to a box with an outlet(*) in the coop and put a plug on the other end (**). If you aren't doing any more than something like a 60W light bulb you could probably use 14 gauge to save money. But 2 caveats:
    1) The longer the run, the more the voltage drop. Might want to spend the extra for 12 gauge.
    2) It would HAVE TO BE laid in such a way as to be guaranteed you aren't going to cut into it by accident. And if you are plugging it into an outside outlet, it MUST be weather proof WHILE IN USE. The kind with weather protective covers that close over the outlet when not ins use are NOT weatherproof when in use.

    I'm proposing this only as a stop gap measure until you can get a permanent wire (over head or properly buried in a conduit) to the coop.

    * It is REALLY EASY but for some reason people don't get it right.
    - Black wire to the brass colored screw. It will also say "hot" next to the screw.
    - White wire to the silver colored screw. It will also say "white" next to the screw.
    - Bare wire to the green screw on the corner

    ** The plug should have the same green, brass and silver colored screws.
    - Bare wire to the green screw - round or U shaped pin
    - Black wire to the brass screw - "thin" spade if they are not the same size
    - White wire to the silver screw - "thick" spade if they are not the same size

    Bruce
     
  10. Joe Jordan

    Joe Jordan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good stuff on this thread. I'm going to try out one of these designs here pretty soon. Thanks!
     

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