solar powered water bucket heater? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I'm wondering if there is such a thing as a solar powered bucket water heater? Please don't laugh and tell me to put the bucket in the sun! I figure that if there's a solar powered fence charger, there might be a solar powered bucket warmer. This is for only one horse, so it doesn't have to be big.

Thank you in advance, Tired of lugging water from the kitchen,


-- alex fleck (, December 26, 2001


I'm not laughing because you actually have the solution there. What if you use a modified water carboy mounted over the bucket to act as a minature greenhouse type structure? As the sun shines through it would provide a heat cap that could be collected by the bucket. You could also make a black box with a glass panel on one angled side to act as a solar oven. Cut a hole in the top of the box to set the water bucket in as a tray goes in a warmer table. Just a couple ideas from outside the box. Hope it helps. Thanks for giving my brain a little exercise.

-- Jay Blair in N. AL (, December 26, 2001.

Alex, Yes you could have a solar powered bucket heater, but its going to cost a bundle. Resistive heat is the worst way to use solar power. It takes a fair number of watts to keep water slightly above 32deg. If your upenn address is any inidcation where you are. There is not enough sunlight to do direct solar heating of a bucket, plus how do you keep it warm at night?

-- Gary (, December 26, 2001.

The difference is: a feencer (by pulsating) uses very little electric. A heater on the other hand, uses alot. Yoou would need a full size solar pad to even think abot heating a bucket. I like that solar cover idea. How about these: dig the bucket in the ground- i wont freeze nearly as fast. Use a black plastic (I use car/ truck gasoline tanks) contaainer to harvest the suns rays. A really well insulated box around the water buckett would help- put hot water in and itt would last quite a while before freezing. Use a larger container- a 50 gallon drum painted black lasts all through the winter here and wont freeze solid (altough it did gather some ice a few times). It lasts through the nigh much better because there is more mass to cool off. If you were real slick and wanted hot water, you might find a way to aim some mirrors at the container.

-- Kevin in NC (, December 26, 2001.

Geothermal is the way to go. You need a tube or tile sunk into the ground lower than the deep frost line, tube about 15" across or so. Then run your water line up through the middle to the bucket. Insulate & enclose everything (flap cover) and heat coming up from the bottom of the tube (earth temp is a constant 50-55 degrees) plus the heat in the water will keep it liquid. In theory.

Actually making it work, esp. for just one animal, is the hard part - you don't have enough water flow. Check out with 'frost free livestock waterer' for commercial designs.


-- paul (, December 27, 2001.

Fill your kitchen sink up with water....

Go get horse....

Bring horse inside.....

Let drink...

no more lugging water to horse...bring horse to water...

Wella .. problem solved!

-- LurkyLu (, December 27, 2001.

-- Rick#7 (, December 27, 2001.

ok, I do see the problem with putting a horse in the kitchen....

You can lead a horse to water but can't make them drink.

-- LurkyLu (, December 28, 2001.

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