Like human beings, chickens also prefer to drink fresh and clean water. You want to serve good-quality water to your feathered friends as it affects their growth and health.
Chicken keepers use various types of waterers to allow flocks to drink water easily. Regardless of your water type, it must be functional and keep it clean and fresh.
If you have recently started a chicken-raising journey or thinking of starting it, knowing how to keep your chicken waterer clean is crucial. We will cover all the important details about this topic.
Why Keeping Your Chicken Waterer Clean Is Important?
It is always necessary to serve fresh and clean water to chooks. Otherwise, they may get affected and catch various vulnerable diseases by drinking poor-quality water.
Dirty water can harbor harmful bacteria and parasites, leading to illness and disease. For example, if chickens drink any fungus-contaminated water, they may get affected by Thrush.
Likewise, when the water is full of rotting organic matter, your feathered friends may have Botulism disease from drinking this kind of water for several days.
Drinking toxic-based water may lead to Algae poisoning too.
Does the chicken waterer is placed above the roosters? Do all the chicken waterers have an open-type design?
If so, chicken droppings will likely be poured inside the water containers. Chooks may not be interested in drinking in such dirty water.
If they don’t drink water or less than the average for several days, it will result in various types of diseases such as Gout, Salt poisoning, etc.
More importantly, it will lead to dehydration. If your hens are laying eggs, it will affect their egg production. You may see the chickens panting or laboring breathing due to lack of water.
How To Keep Chicken Waterer Clean?
Ensuring optimal health conditions for your feathered friends requires serving fresh and clean water.
The waterer you use must keep the water fresh and clean before you refill it again.
The followings are top techniques you can follow to keep your chicken waterer clean for a prolonged time.
01. Select The Best Type of Chicken Waterer
Chicken waterers are available in various types, such as open bowl waterers, trough waterers, nipple waterers, cup waterers, automatic waterers, heated waterers, etc.
They vary in functionality, size, shape, and design. Before choosing a particular option, you must know what it is intended for.
For example, open bowl waterers have simple designs and are highly affordable. This type of water is simple to clean but prone to getting dirty more quickly.
Trough waterers are a better choice for heavy-breed chickens. But they cover more space and are a bit complex to clean.
Some water containers are not prone to get dirty easily. But cleaning them is a bit time-consuming and a little hassle.
Before choosing a particular option, consider important factors, such as type, material, capacity, ease of cleaning, spill, algae prevention capabilities, and cost.
02. Proper Placement Of Chicken Waterer
It is a good rule of thumb to place a chicken waterer in a cool, shaded, and protective location inside or outside the chicken coop.
Avoid keeping the water container in any area where direct sunlight is exposed. Otherwise, it will lead to algae development.
If chickens drink this toxic-based several times, they will catch various fatal diseases.
In some cases, the flocks may die if they remain unnoticed and untreated for an extended period.
Another important thing is installing the chicken waterer on a flat, stable surface. The water container should not be knocked over if chickens sit on the top.
03. Select A Clean Area For Keeping Waterers
Where have you installed your chicken waterers? Does the surrounding area have a lot of dust and dirt?
If so, it is likely to contaminate the clean and fresh water quickly.
Dust, dirt, and debris from the close-by area will get into the chicken waterer and spoil the water quickly. Choose a perfect location where water stays fresh for a long time.
However, before choosing a particular spot, consider the easy accessibility for chickens to let them drink effortlessly.
Make sure to maintain a minimum distance from the chicken feeder to the waterer to keep them clean.
04. Clean The Waterer Regularly
Another good practice is cleaning the waterer at least once a week.
However, expert chicken keepers recommend cleaning the waterer every time you refill the water.
Unfortunately, it might not be possible for a busy chicken owner. In such as case, you can clean it after every 7-10 days.
Whenever you clean the water container, use a soft-bristled brush. It will help you remove debris, dirt, and bacteria.
Make sure to scrub all parts, such as the cover, base, spout, etc thoroughly.
You can use dish soap or mild detergent for effective cleaning. They can cut through grease and other substances from the chicken waterer.
Don’t forget to rinse through the waterer properly to remove all the soap substances from the water container surface.
If you are interested in using a natural-based cleaning solution, white vinegar is a good choice.
05. Use A Water Filter:
What is the water source of your chicken water? Is it hard water with an increased level of Calcium, magnesium, sodium salts, and other minerals?
Do your chickens have loose droppings? Does the chicken waterer have a lot of stains and marks?
It might be already caused harmful effects on your chickens’ health. Hard water contains various types of impurities.
The best solution is to use a water filter. It will minimize the mineral build-up. Most importantly, water will remain clean and fresh for a prolonged time.
06. Add A Lid on the waterer
Does your chicken waterer have an open-style system? It is convenient for easy cleaning and refilling.
But the problem is that dirt, debris, and dust are more likely to get inside the waterer.
Besides, chickens may sit on top of the water container. They will spoil the water if their droppings go inside the waterer.
The best solution is to add a lid or cover on top of the water pot. You can design it with a locking system.
This will prevent flocks from getting accessibility into the internal area of the waterer.
07. Replace Your Old Or Damage Chicken Waterer
When was the last you replaced the water pot? Does it have any damaged parts? Are there any leaks in the waterer? If so, it is high time to change the water container.
The lifespan of a chicken waterer can be anywhere from 3 to 10 years, depending on its materials, design, maintenance, and other factors.
You can use it as long as it supplies clean and fresh water to your feathered friends.
But a damaged or leaked chicken waterer is more prone to attract dirt and dust. The water may not stay in good condition for a prolonged time.
The best solution is to get a new one. Otherwise, your flocks will not enjoy fresh and clean regularly.
08. Sanitize The Chicken Waterer
A chicken coop may have various bacterial, fungal, viral, or protozoal types.
These harmful substances may get inside the waterer and affect the water quality. Chooks may even get affected by various types of dangerous diseases too.
It is a good rule of thumb to sanitize the chicken waterer periodically to keep the pot clean and make it appropriate for drinking water.
But what sanitizer or disinfectant product should you use? Many commercial products, such as Flyte Mite Spray, Poultry Shield, and Net-tex, are available.
If you prefer a more affordable option, bleaching products come in handy too.
However, make sure to remove all the bleach substances from the chicken waterer.
Use your garden hose to clean the water container thoroughly after sanitization.
Common Mistakes To Avoid To Keep Chicken Waterer Clean For A Long Time
New chickens keepers often make common mistakes that put a heavy price on their chooks.
The followings are the common mistakes chicken keepers should avoid keeping the water pot clean for an extended period.
01. Neglecting To Check For Leaks
Does your chicken water have any leakage?
Leaks in your waterer can cause water to spill out and create a mess, as well as wastewater and increase your water bill.
Inspecting all parts properly after refilling the water container is a good rule of thumb.
Regularly check your waterer for leaks and repair or replace it if necessary.
02. Overfilling The Chicken Waterer
Do you have a habit of overfilling the water pot regularly? Avoid doing this!
Overfilling the waterer can cause water to spill out and create a mess. It is more likely to attract pests and bacteria.
Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for filling the waterer and avoid overfilling it.
03. Placing The Waterer In A Dirty Or Unsanitary Area
Have you installed the waterer in an area where it is likely to become contaminated with dirt or feces? If so, it can make the water container difficult to clean.
Place the waterer in a clean, well-ventilated area and protect it from dust and debris.
04. Using Dirty Or Contaminated Water
Water that is contaminated with dirt, bacteria, or other substances can make your chickens sick.
Always use clean, fresh water and avoid placing the waterer in areas where it is likely to become contaminated.
05. Not Protecting The Waterer From The Elements
Exposure to the sun, wind, and rain can cause your waterer to deteriorate more quickly
Make sure to keep the water pot in a shady location and add a lid or cover on the top of the waterer to protect it from external environments.
06. Using The Harsh Cleaning Products
What type of cleaning products do you use for cleaning the chicken waterer?
It is best to use natural-based solutions. If you want to use chemical-based products, ensure they don’t harm your flocks.
One important thing is using deeply washing the waterer base and nearby areas to remove harmful substances.
If your main aim is getting better egg production and growing the chicken healthily quickly, ensuring healthy food and safe drinking water is mandatory.
We have already mentioned how to keep the chicken waterer clean. Ensure the water source doesn’t contain too many minerals and other harmful substances.
Regularly clean the water container and refill it on time to avoid keeping your feathered friends thirsty. Also, always watch the water pot to ensure your chooks drink clean water.