You may be shocked / Test results on 250 watt red infrared bulbs from TSC -Producers Pride brand

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by bevis, Jan 28, 2015.

  1. bevis

    bevis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok, i wondered why my 1 week old chicks in the hen house brooder were not as comfortable as
    i thought they should be so i did some investigation on the temp in their environment. They showed no signs of distress
    but didn't seem to chipper.


    The brooder is 2 feet high X 4 feet long X 2 feet wide
    1/2 inch hardware cloth on all sides and top.
    Open bottom to coop floor and pine shavings.


    Hanging over the center of the top was 2 - ceramic socket fixtures with 250 watt TSC red infrared bulbs in them.

    I was using a digital wireless thermometer to monitor temps and all was not looking good.

    It was suggested that 2- 250 watt fixtures was too much and i might cook the chicks but the test results will disprove that in a BIG way.

    Ambient temp outside the coop was 55 degrees and the temp inside the brooder, under the lights was 78.7 degrees with 2 - 250 watt bulbs going.

    The distance from the floor of the coop to the fixture guards was 26 inches.

    I used a non contact laser thermometer to find out what was going on. The chicks did not exhibit distress in any way but i felt that something was wrong.

    By using the non contact laser temp gun, that rules out the wireless sending unit as being misleading.

    Here are the shocking temp results that explain why they are absolutely not a good choice, FIRE HAZARD not withstanding.

    Temp at the ceramic socket - 160 degrees
    Temp on the face of the bulb - 340 degrees
    Temp on the reflector from the inside where the bulb resides - 111 degrees
    Temp 8 inches from the face of the bulb - 126 degrees
    Temp 26 inches to the coop floor where chicks are residing - 85 degrees. Not enough for 1 week old chicks.
    Chick external body temp ranging from 81 to 83 NOT GOOD


    THATS A 41 DEGREE DROP IN 2 FEET !!!!!!!!!

    Now this is 500 WATTS OF LIGHTING ONLY A LITTLE MORE THAN 2 FEET FROM THE CHICKS.
    You would think " Chicken Roast for dinner " NO WAY


    The loss across distance of these type of bulb and reflector setups are truly amazing and sad at the same time.

    Im sure most people think that a single 250 watt setup will do but from these temp results, its not the case.

    Take it for what its worth.

    I ordered a 11x16 Sweeter Heater and my chicks are now in the house until it gets here tomorrow and i set it up and test it.

    I will post the Sweeter Heater test results if anyone wants to know.


    As a side note , i now have them in a 2x3 tote in the house with 1- 250 bulb and reflector with the bulb guard within 16 inches of the pine shavings on the tote floor.

    Pine shaving temp is 100 and the chicks are self regulating from one end of the tote to the other.
    Their exterior body temp is 90 degrees :)


    So once again proving the loss versus distance on these bulbs , the face of the bulb is 340 degrees
    and , lets say approximately 20 inches to the pine shavings, its 100 degrees .


    These things SUCK and they are responsible for many burnt down coops, broken hearts and cooked birds.
    If you are like me, they are like our other pets. Its just not worth loosing the entire flock over the $100 cost of a Sweeter Heater.


    .
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  2. Wxguru

    Wxguru Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I used a different brand...and only a single red bulb...at 2FT from the floor, it was registering about 99F. I started at 18" above floor and it was 106F.
    Glad I didn't use that brand...I had them in my hand when I was getting my heatlamp shield at TSC.
    My chicks are 13 weeks now...they were very happy with the heat they got...never panting and would chirp constantly...(happy peeping...not stress peeping). :)
     
  3. ChicKat

    ChicKat Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Thanks for posting your research - hope that your chicks will recover from the chill....

    For others looking for brooder heating - Look into the 'electric hen' type of heat for chicks:

    http://www.premier1supplies.com/detail.php?prod_id=135875&cat_id=173

    premier 1 has that one -- Brinsea has one called EcoGlow.

    Good discussions about them here on BYC too if you use the search box at the top.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. tj74roberts

    tj74roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Which brand bulb did you go with? I am waiting on babies and I have the "bad" brand and I'm getting nervous now. I do have a plastic tote but I'm going back to get a bigger one and want to get the right bulb. Thank you.
     
  5. bevis

    bevis Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just bear in mind that this is in no way a scientific test.
    You would need a LUX meter and probably a PAR meter to
    judge the real performance of these bulbs in those fixtures.

    I just care about the temp and what heat is being developed by radiance
    or infared . I just know what the temp gun says.

    Also remember this test was done in the outside coop with a lot cooler ambient
    than you would have inside your house, unless you are from the north pole.

    If you are using these bulbs over a tote inside the house, I'm sure they preform
    just fine for your chicks.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2015
  6. matt44644

    matt44644 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are you growing plants with it?
     
  7. Wxguru

    Wxguru Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I used a different brand that TSC carries. It wasn't in the aisle with the chicken feed and supplies. It was over in the lighting section with the flood lights and stuff. It was a black box with a small label up in the left or right hand corner I think (going from memory, as that was back in OCT). It worked basically 24/7 for 11 weeks (I did start to turn it off at night on occasion after about 9 weeks)...and then burned out. They were all feathered out completely so it wasn't a big deal when it burned out. Now I have a 60W bulb there just to give them some light (in garage and move them out this next week!)
     
  8. tj74roberts

    tj74roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you. I think I'm going to try the one that I have and see what happens. If it doesn't work then I have a heating pad that I can use for a while. Which come to think of it that might work better since it has a washable cover and doesn't turn off on it's own. I could just cover it with a towel so that its not that hot to the touch.
     
  9. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    The bottom line is: you can't just set up a light and walk away and forget it. Even if you've checked the temp, things can change, especially if you're brooding outside or in an area without consistent and steady heat. I wish you all the best with your chicks. They're a lot of fun, but also a lot of care.
     
  10. tj74roberts

    tj74roberts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the info. I'm gonna just use what I have and see what happens. :)
     

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