OLD chicken water warmer

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My dad tells me that when he was a boy (in the 20's) their chickens had a metal waterer that had a kerosene cannister underneath it to keep the water from freezing. It was sturdy and completely enclosed to eliminate any possibility of fire. He took a lid of some kind off to fill the kerosene part and something else to fill the water part. He says it held quite a lot of water. I realize this is vague but he doesn't remember all the details. I would like to find one of these waterers or maybe build one. Any ideas? Right now I'm using an electric dog water bowl and it does work well. Even in extremely cold weather the chickens can pick through the coat of ice to get water.But I don't like to leave something plugged in all the time.

-- Peg Johnson (jnjohnsn@pressenter.com), February 15, 2000


You can get a electric chicken waterer base. You might be better off anyway, Kerosene has gotten pretty expensive, more than the fire hazard is the odor.

-- Hendo (OR) (redgate@echoweb.net), February 16, 2000.

Peg, I don't know about the kerosene waterers, but I do know that kerosene brooders have burned down a lot of buildings. I also understand not wanting to leave things plugged in. A lot a buildings have burned down due to electrical fires too.

Is it possible to take out more water for the chickens several times a day during the coldest weather instead of trying to keep the water they have thawed? Can you move their waterer at least temporarily to somewhere that it will get more sun light on it? can you rig a way to insulate their water bowl?

I don't think I've ever seen any building or operating instructions for the type of heater you're talking about. Gerbil

-- Gerbil (ima_gerbil@hotmail.com), February 16, 2000.

build an enclosed base with a few airholes and use a can of "sterno", I use homemade sterno, just a jelled fuel, under the water, make sure it cant tip over, I use it for my dog outside and MICH winters get COLD

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), February 16, 2000.

Thanks guys for all the input. I have an electric waterbase and the chickens are in a greenhouse/barn so they get maximum sunlight. The problem with the elec. base is that I don't yet have the grnhs/brn wired. I don't like using the extension cord any more than necessary. It's a big job with #4 wire, scheduled for spring.

Dad says "his" waterer didn't use much kerosene and didn't smell. Also, we lose our electricity often, usually when we need it most; i.e. coldest weather, blizzard, or incubation/baby chick time. The sterno suggestion has possibilities. Thanks again.

-- Peg (jnjohnsn@pressenter.com), February 16, 2000.

We have had the same problem with our water freezing. We found one of the long, low crockpots at a garage sale during the summer for $5.00. In the morning we take out the fresh water in the regular waterer's, but plug in the crock pot at night, and unplug in the am. Just a possibility.

-- Mary Logan (mlogan298@yahoo.com), February 18, 2000.

Peg - why in God's name are you planning to wire the barn (I mean TO the barn) with #4 wire? That stuff is dreadful, almost as bad as phone pole guy wire! Unless you are planning to run an incredible amount of high wattage things it is serious overkill. #10 wire will carry 30 amps. Since it's best to make the run with 240V, you have 2 sides, each capable of 30 amps for a total of 60. Even if you are running something on 240V rather than 120, I can't imagine you needing anything bigger than #10. Let me know!. Meanwhile - Good Luck!


-- Brad (homefixer@mix-net.net), February 18, 2000.

Good question Brad. You have obviously done some wiring yourself. I agree, but the wiring is part of my responsibility since I wanted this new place and an electrician friend ( on whom I call when I run up against something I'm not familiar with) told me to run #4 so we can continue from a box in the greenhouse/barn to the machine shed which will house welding equipment, etc. The buildings will be connected. My husband will be able to repair plow truck, tractor, and other big things in there. All in the future, you understand. I'll be 85 before I get all my projects done.

-- Peg (jnjohnsn@pressenter.com), February 18, 2000.

I use two 3 gallon waterers in the winter filling one and bringing the frozen one in to the basement to thaw then switch them again I live in Amish country and that's the norm.

-- Russ Horner (rdh@bright.net), February 21, 2000.

I'm facing the same problem this winter. The idea of swapping out watering cans seems like a good way to do it. Does anyone know of anything you can safely put in the water to prevent it from freezing? I would assume salt is not a good thing for chickens. Has anyone heard of anything else that could be used?

-- Ken (pywacketthecat@yahoo.com), November 27, 2000.

We used the flat black rubber pans (I think they were meant to be pig feeders) for winter chicken water. When the water freezes in one of those, you just take it outside and whack it against something until the ice breaks and falls out. You can't break them. The only problem we ever had was when one of the geese sat in one and froze in -- we had to take goose, pan, and all, into the house and leave it set by the woodstove until the ice melted enough to get the goose out -- the goose was NOT happy to be in the house!! I noticed that the chickens also ate some snow when they had access to it. But I wouldn't want to count on that for their sole water supply.

-- Kathleen Sanderson (stonycft@worldpath.net), November 27, 2000.

Hello, good morning, and welcome. Electric dog water bowls are for women. Stop it. Why not use the fabled "Waffle Machine Deluxe Edition - The Stuff Dreams are made of TM". This comes with a reccommendation from that crazy chicken waterer himself - the one and only Dave. Trust me, I'm a doctor, i no these things.

C ya soon babe. Remember - 2Pac lives! Friends rules!

-- Jane 'the fighting machine' rogers (dave@fishtanksuntied.com), August 16, 2001.

This is a great dilemma i had too when i grew up on the farms of Kentucky during the mid 80's. I suggest u use crude oil. It is viscous and fantastic to use all year round. Or even use crystallised Camembert.That should do the trick. Even freshly squeezed Five Alive is good. I hope u like scary movies Peg.

Eneway, it is a difficult life. Don't give up until u find Lorenzo's Oil or the cure for smelly armpits.

Good Luck

(p.s. i hope u have Altec Lansing speakers as they r the best and that is what i use to eat with at night)

-- Jonathan Ruperto (weedkiller@cheesegraters.com), August 16, 2001.

Indeed, t'is an interesting situation which thou has presented to my SEX. Hark, a siren doth sound. Can you guess what it is yet? I'll give you a clue, it doesn't rhyme with table. Anyway, down to the real issues here. Chicken water warmers have long been resigned to the fact that they are no longer fixture in modern society. They went when 'Wassssssssupppppppppp' came in. I therefore believe that you should go and gve yourself some sweet lovin and leave it at that.


-- Kaiser Minnelli (schlong@schlongsareus.com), August 16, 2001.

I empathise with each and every one of you. Try using the watering can 3000. This is supplied by The Masked Assasin at costs $345.67 (+VAT). It is available at all good retailers (Walmart, Burger King, Claire's Accessories etc). This allows the water to be warm all year round. It acts like a thermos flask and is brill.

I hope u succeed in your quest.

May the force be with you

-- Prince "DGenreationLives" Albert (herbalteaisgood4u@depechestoi.com), August 16, 2001.

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