How to make a homemade heated chicken waterer

Homemade chicken watererMarvin Bartel wrote in this week to share
his ingenious solution to
problem of frozen chicken waterers
.  His description and
photos were so great, I’ve reproduced the entire email here with just a
few modifications:

Here in Northern Indiana it gets cold. I have a three hens 
in a small insulated shed.  They use one of your drinkers. 
So far this year it has been down to 
7 degrees F outside and down to 15 F in the shed.

Homemade chicken waterer

Being a potter and expecting cold weather, I made a stoneware pot shown
here under the
drinker bucket.  It contains a 25 watt lightbulb
controlled by a thermostat.  The water bucket has 
wire and spring to secure it so it cannot fall off.

Heated chicken waterer

The yellow plug thermostat is designed to turn on heat tape to keep
pipes from freezing.  It is permanently set to switch on at 38 and
off at 50. 
Search for: Easy Heat #EH-38 Auto Thermostat.  Amazon has them at
$12.88 + shipping.

This is
the base with the stoneware cover removed. 
Inside the closed container it reached 50 degrees too soon and turned
the bulb off before it produced enough heat 
to keep the drinker from freezing.  By adding an inch of
insulation between the bulb and the thermostat, the bulb
stays on long enough to keep the drinker from freezing
(thus far). The insulation is alumina-silica fiber insulation
used in pottery kilns and space shuttles. Other fireproof
insulation would probably work. The bulb uses a standard
porcelain fixture.

Homemade chicken waterer

The closed warmer without the water container on top of it.  Any
potter can make these.  A tinsmith
could also make it from sheet metal.

Homemade chicken waterer

drinker is mounted with a rubber o-ring seal.
Inside the water pail it has a brass nut (sold to fit the little
pipe under a lamp sockets).

We’re always thrilled to
see unique
homemade chicken
like this
one.  Marvin’s base is very elegant because he’s a potter, but I
suspect less crafty folks could make something equally utilitarian with
even less effort.  Or contact Marvin and commission him to make you a unique art base!

making this post, we’ve done a lot of experimentation with the
best way to keep chicken waterers from freezing.  You can see my
favorite heated chicken waterer here
, which was good down to the
teens last year.

We recommend our 3 pack
DIY kit
for making a
heated waterer for up to 50 chickens.  The CD that comes with your
kit includes complete instructions on this and other heated options to
save you lots of trial and error.

Latest Comments

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