Avian Aqua Miser: Automatic, poop-free chicken waterers

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Adding heat tape to a chicken waterer

Adding heat tape to a chicken waterer to keep it from freezingMy name is Jim Hoffman, and we live in New Bern, NC. We have used your little red clicking waterer accessory for a few months now. We installed three of them on the bottom of a 3 gallon drinking water container available at Lowes or Home Depot.

They work great until the weather got cold and the temperatures wanted to freeze the water and the clicker accessory. What we did, is purchased a electric heat tape cord, also available at Lowes or Home Depot in the pipe section. They come in 3 lengths, 12 feet, 18 feet or 28 feet I think. Not very expensive. Simply wrap the black part of the cord in a spiral format around the tank to cover the most surface area.

Bucket chicken watererWe put our water on a stand with galvanized legs. Attached the sensor to the galvanized leg to measure temperature. When the temperature falls below 36 degrees, it comes on automatically to insure bottle temp does not freeze. Also goes off automatically. It provides just enough heat to keep the temp above freezing and also keeps the clicker accessory from freezing as well. Takes very little power to run as it is thermostatic.

Keep plug out of reach of chickensWe use packing tape to secure cord to water jug and make sure chickens did not pick at it. We also kept the plug connection outside the cage for the same reason and out of chicken reach. Hope the idea helps you all.

--- Jim Hoffman

We recommend our 3 pack DIY kit for making a heated waterer for up to 50 chickens.  The CD that comes with each kit includes complete instructions to help you build our favorite heated options without any trial and error.

The heated waterer we use in our own coop requires two buckets, a three foot length of pipe heating cable ($23), and the contents of our kit.  With a layer of chicken-friendly insulation, the waterer is good down into the teens.

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I know that you asked for people to post how they provide water during the winter months, but I can't figure out how to post to your blog. Thanks.
Comment by Diane Roeder Sunday evening, February 20th, 2011
You won't be able to post directly to the blog. To enter the contest, follow the directions at http://avianaquamiser.com/posts/Heated44_homemade_chicken_waterer_contest/ to email me your story and photos, and I'll put it up on the blog for others to enjoy. Thanks!
Comment by anna mid-morning Thursday, February 24th, 2011

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