Insulating Your Hen House Ideas
Here are some great idea's for insulating your hen house. No matter whether you have a large hen house or a small one, insulation can make your chickens more comfortable, increase egg production, and lower your heating and cooling costs, just like it does for your home.
Whether you are trying to keep your chickens cooler in the summer or warmer in the winter, these insulating tips can really make a difference not only by making your chickens more comfortable but it also lowers the cost of heating and cooling, and keep in mind a happy chicken is healthier and lays better eggs. You can use heavy plastic to cover coops and runs in the winter months but it should be removed during warmer seasons as your chickens will get too hot. You can use various types of insulation to suit your needs but keep in mind that all walls that are insulated need to be covered by heavy plastic or other type of wall covering so that your chickens do not peck at the insulation. You can also use hay bales in and around the coop during winter months. Hay retains heat. Most adult chickens can generate body heat up to 107 degrees and can survive during very cold temperatures as long as they are covered from wind and drafts, have plenty of fresh water and lots of feed. Chickens can generate heat in their bodies by grinding their food. The more chickens you have the warmer they will be. Bantams, Silkies, and most smaller and exotic breeds may need more heat than standard size breeds. It is important that your chickens are not exposed to the elements especially while roosting at night. Make sure your coop blocks the wind from your birds. If the hens get wet or cold they will lay less eggs. If you live in an area where temperatures drop below 32 degrees F you should consider insulating your chicken coop or hen house and even adding a heat source. See signs of frostbite you should use some type of insulation and/or heat in your chicken coop/hen house.
Heavy Plastic to Cover Coop and Runs
Heavy plastic can be easily stapled with cardboard strips or screwed on with lightweight wood strips on top and sides and held down with rocks at the bottoms to keep the wind from blowing it open.
Using Greenhouse Panels to Insulate Your Chicken Coop/Hen House
Polycarbonate panels used for greenhouse plants can offer your chicken coop/hen house attractive protection from the cold. Go to Using Greenhouse panels to insulate chicken coops
Reuse Old Feed Bags As Insulation in Your Hen House
You can reuse old feed bags as insulation by stapling them to the inside walls of your hen house. It will keep your hen house about 5-10 degrees warmer if you have all the cracks sealed well. Make sure you have proper ventilation in your coop. Go to How to insulate your hen house with feed bags
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Heaters for Hen Houses
If your hens get too cold they will lay less eggs, could get frostbite and even freeze to death! Check out the Pro's and Con's of various types of heaters used for barns and hen houses and then you decide which one you need or want. If you are using a heat lamp, it is a good idea to wire it into a metal bird cage (not plastic lined) and place it high enough that your birds cannot perch on top of the cage. DO NOT rely on the brackets that come with the heat lamp, they come apart and fall off easily which can cause a fire. "The safest way to use heat lamps I have found is to put them in bird cages. I have one heat lamp in an old floor standing parrot cage and used heat resistant wire to wrap around the back of the receptacle and attached to the top of the cage. I also have one in a smaller bird cage hanging near the roost, placed high enough they cannot perch on it and far enough away as to not burn or ignite any wood or plastic surfaces (approx. 3 feet). I've used this method for years and have had no problems with it. I found old bird cages at rummage sales, thrown in the trash, and even bought some new. Our birds live in an old 3 bedroom trailer house renovated into a hen house so on nights when it is going to be below 50 degrees I use the heat lamps in cages, and always use them for the baby chicks. I also have a box wood stove with a fan in their hen house which saves alot of money on heating costs, heats the whole trailer house and keeps the hens laying good all winter" --Rev. Penny Dean. Find out more about heaters for hen houses. Go to Heater's for Hen houses
Featured Video: How We winterize Our Chicken Coops
What You Need to Know Before You Purchase a Heater for Your Hen House
Before you purchase a heater for your hen house here are a few things you should consider first
Heating Your Chickens Water To Prevent it from Freezing
Chickens cannot drink frozen water. They need water to mix with their food so they can generate heat in the winter. You can keep the water in the coop if it is warm enough the water will not freeze. Drinking warm water in the winter will help keep them warmer but you do not want it too warm. If you keep water for them outdoors in cold weather it will freeze at 32F degrees so you may need a heated base or other type of water heater for their drinking water.
See More Great Idea's for Insulating Your Hen House
Visit our blog to see more great ways of insulating your hen house. Click here to see more great idea's for insulating your hen house
Tips for Keeping Your Chickens Cool During Summer Months
If your chickens get over heated they can suffer from heat stress. If they are panting and holding their wings out they could be under stress. Find out how to keep your chickens cool with our great tips.