Automatic Chicken Coop Heater

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The Automatic Chicken Coop Heater is actually pretty simple:

Essentially 2 lights (1 halogen and 1 florescent bulb) triggered on an off by temperatures. There are 2 different chicken heater systems:

  1. Coop Interior: to heat the interior of the coop
  2. Coop Exterior: to keep the exterior water pipe from freezing/cracking.

Interior Coop Heater

Encased in a concrete block positioned near the water fount
A small concrete block with a single light socket (with a halogen bulb) mounted to a bottom brick cap and the is capped with another concrete cap. (actually I’ve replaced the concrete cap (pictured) with a section of thinner tile. Now the heat is distributed quicker. It is wired to the Arduino via the same temperature sensor, which triggers the relay (on/off) in the outlet installed in the EPPNOC (El Pollo Palace Network Operations Center). The heater outlet is triggered on when the temp goes below 40 degrees F and off at any temperature above that.

The Chicken Coop Interior Heater Images

Exterior Coop Heater

Located under the ladder, I installed a simple 2′ florescent work light, which when triggered turns on and throws just enough heat above the pvc water pipe with nipples, to prevent freezing. It is wired to the Arduino via the same temperature sensor, which triggers the relay (on/off) in the outlet installed in the EPPNOC. The heater outlet is triggered on when the temp goes below 40 degrees F and off at any temperature above that.

The Chicken Coop Exterior Heater Images

(to prevent freezing of the water system)

Automatic Chicken Coop Heater Parts

Masonry Block:
Automatic Chicken Coop Heater via Arduino

Automatic Chicken Coop Heater via Arduino

1) 6″ Block
2) Solid 6″ Caps
(found at any builder’s supply)


Arduino Compatible Mega 2560 Atmega2560 Mega2560 R3 Board + USB Cable


Single-Channel 12V 30A Relay Module
Waterproof Digital Thermal Probe Sensor DS18B20


Zip Cord Lamp Wire
Leviton 9875 Porcelain Outlet Box Mount


CableWholesales RG6 Cable Clip, Black
Cooper Add-A-Tap, Male Plug, 10amp, Brown


4′ Shoplight (for exterior heating of pvc pipes)
SYLVANIA Capsylite Halogen Lamp


Code for Automatic Chicken Coop Heater

David Naves

David Naves

I’m hoping that if you use or modify my code or ideas, you will share *your* coop project with me and the world (pictures, whatever) I’m big on sharing.
Cheers,
//D


David Naves

About the Author:

Hi, I'm David Naves. I'm a daddy, hubby and currently live in Auburn California with (1) wife, (2) children, (1) dog, (1) cat, and (6) chickens. I play drums, am an avid fly fisherman a proud chicken nerd, as well as an Arduino enthusiast. I also enjoy using my general contractors license from time to time... even if just to over-build my Arduino Automated Chicken Coop As far as name-dropping and shameless self-promotion, I have over 20 years experience in the web industry and have helped build out Ticketmaster.com, Guess.com, Citysearch.com and DisneyChannel.com to name a few. I've co-founded an Emmy Award Winning Music Editing Firm in Los Angeles (Milky Music) and I hold a Bachelors of Science Degree in Business Administration. I'm passionate about getting Small Business America in to the "Big Game" of SEO and ecommerce, so I founded LocalMarketplace.com™ to do just that. My favorite web host is Acenet, love my Chromebook, and am passionate about learning via Lynda.com. You can typically find me making noise out on Google+, Twitter and Facebook

Comments

  1. casssie  December 20, 2016

    I bought a ceramic wall heater for $100. comes with a temp gage and goes on and off at designated temps. I hung mine on the wall where my chickens roost, Toasty warm.

    reply
    • David Naves
      David Naves  February 9, 2017

      Howdy,

      Yeah, there are plenty of pre-built devices out there. This project is for us DIY’er Chicken Nerds. =)

      Cheers!

      reply
  2. Susan Buhlig  November 14, 2016

    Why would a florescent light keep the water pipes from freezing? I don’t understand, please explain. Thank you.

    reply
    • David Naves
      David Naves  February 9, 2017

      Hi Susan,
      In Northern CA, we do get some freezing weather (probably down to 25 degrees F) and these bulbs, located directly above the insulated pipes/nipples, kick off just enough heat to keep them from bursting. It doesn’t take much heat to prevent a complete freeze.

      Cheers!

      reply
  3. Gordon  March 29, 2016

    This is great information. I appreciate all the pictures, list of components and most of all, the code you’ve shared. I don’t know how to program but will try based on the detailed description you’ve provided. I’m curious about the additional components you used for this heater and how you’ve wired it together into your arduino set up. Any help would be appreciated. I’m also curious about your LCD display as you’ve only outlined how to automate the door but it’d be nice to have all the bells and whistles!

    reply
    • David Naves
      David Naves  April 6, 2016

      Thanks, Gordon.

      I appreciate the kind words.

      Yeah, I just haven’t had the time to create the Fritzing diagram nor the rest… just too busy. But it’s definitely on the way.

      Cheers!

      reply
  4. Sue  February 12, 2016

    I am not a electronics nerd but am a chicken nerd who lives in the NE. Will your block heater help my girls in sub zero temps? What is an EPPNOC and can I simply use a Farm Innovators Model TC-3 Cold Weather Thermo Cube Thermostatically Controlled Outlet – to make the bulb come on and go off? Also what wattage halogen? Thanks

    reply
    • David Naves
      David Naves  February 22, 2016

      Hi Sue,

      Thanks for the questions…

      1) Yes, the block heater can help in sub-zero temps. (although how much it will help completely depends on how big your coop is and how drafty, etc etc.)

      2) The EPPNOC = The El Pollo Palace Network Operations Center. =) Ahtankya!

      3) Sounds like that outlet type is very similar to what I built. So yeah, I’d say it would.

      4) I use a 50 watt bulb

      The fact is that chickens can live in very cold weather… they are wearing down coats. I just like to spoil my girls. =)

      Cheers,
      //D

      reply

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