Reader Interactions


  1. Great tips! The ping pong balls don’t work for me, either, but I do use a large black rubber tub set on bricks, and it does keep the water from freezing so fast. I also cover the tub with a shallow plastic bowl at night and many times it doesn’t even freeze overnight.

  2. I made highly concentrated salt water and put it in a 20oz plastic bottle then dropped that into my large waterer. It hasnt frozen for 2 winters now and weve had below freezing for several weeks straight on a few.occassions in those 2 winters.

  3. We have ducks.. and were thinking of using old windows as part of the roof hoping to keep things warmer inside with the sun shining through?? Thoughts?

    • You can try it. If you make sure the edges are sealed well to keep out drafts, then solar energy should do the job!

  4. I take 4 concrete blocks, form a square leaving a hole in the middle to drop a big heated rock into. Line the bottom and edges of the hole with hard foam, so the heat is concentrate upward. I keep a few rocks on the wood stove that fit in that hole and switch them daily. You sit your waterer on top of the hole where the rock sits. I learned this from an elderly farm lady. You can go one step further and take two black rubber bowls that will nest inside each other. When you set the small bowl inside the larger bowl, there should be at least an inch of space, where you are going to spray liquid spray foam. This shields the cold from entering from the sides. Also you can take a board and cover 1/2 to 2/3 of the top of the bowl. This prevents excess heat loss from the top. Change out your rock one or twice daily. If your bowl freezes, pop out the smaller bowl of ice and refil with fresh water. Easy Peasy! Helpful hint; Before spraying your foam around the small bowl and larger bowl, line the smaller bowl on the outside with Saran Wrap to prevent it from sticking. When the foam hardens, remove the Saran Wrap. You have created a perfect fit for your small bowl to nest down into your large bowl.

  5. This is my first winter with chickens and ducks. I have angora rabbits that I just use a heated waterer. This might seem like a weird question, but right now I have a hose running out to my run to easily fill up a small duck pond and a big bowl of water. My question is how do I keep the hose from freezing? Or should I disconnect the hose and bring water out from inside the house? I can do that, but it would be annoying and my ducks go through lots and lots of water.

    • Hi Loren, we unscrew the hose at night and bring it in. Otherwise, if it’s below freezing, there’s not much you can do. You can use a thick black rubber hose, they attract the sun more and are the first to unfreeze on our farm.

    • We live in an area with very cold, snowy winters and we purchased a hose that isn’t rubber. It’s a green stretch material. We still bring it in after watering the cow/sheep though. For the chickens I just bring a pitcher of water out once or twice a day. We don’t have a ton of chickens though so that amount works for us.

  6. I use a pond pump with a air hose to keep the water moving so it doesn’t freeze, this works well and we live in an area with very cold winters.Their water container is kept inside the coop. It is safe as the pump is kept out of their reach only the small clear hose is in the water.

  7. In regards to the windows, I would just make sure that you aren’t anywhere there may be branches that could potentially cause problems. You will need to flash around the edges. Skylights are one of the home owners biggest problems.
    What we do is just empty the watering can and rabbit bottles at night. You do have to make sure that you get back out first thing in the morning with warm water for the animals. Boiling water with hose water does the trick, or creek water in my case. In case of freezing during the day, use a pot of boiling water to unstick the watering can and add the rest to the hens frozen water. For the bunnies, I usually have extra bottles on hand that I can add warm water to and bring the others in to thaw.

  8. I’m dug a hole in our dirt floor of chicken house and put a 12 hr candle under a heavy pot then a heavy grill on top and put four bricks arround.

  9. I agree this works for chickens, but I just don’t see how it’ll work just as well for my ducks, turkeys, quail, or any other kind of poultry.

  10. Hello,
    You can buy garden hose now that has a built in heat line along the length. You do need to be able to plug in somewhere close to where your water line comes out of your house though or use an extension cord. There are a couple of problems or concerns that I had with the electric heated hoses at least for my situation. They are kind of expensive first and they can’t plug one into another to extend the line. So if your coop is within 100ft of your house and you live in the states where things are cheaper than here, it’s a viable option. Just enter heated garden hose on the google machine and something should pop up. Good luck