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  1. #1
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    291
    Location
    Hillsboro, NH
    Tractor
    Kubota L4310

    Default Horse water tank heater?

    We have a 70 -gallon Rubbermaid tank that I made a solar enclosure for watering my wife's horse Mac (insulated w/ 2" blu-board on 3 sides, top and bottom with clear plexi-gass on south)

    We had electricity run thru conduit to Mac's pole barn, but not water supply. He didn't care to drink though, so now we have a 5-gallon heated water bucket.

    My wife bought a 1500 W "Universal Drain Plug De-Icer" by Farm Innovators, to use the 70-gal tank as make-up water (should last a week w/o refilling) but I'm afraid of the electric bill.

    I'm thinking of a 100w or 150w aquarium heater - has anyone tried? Thoughts?

    (NH is kinda cold this week)

    Dave

  2. #2
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    144
    Location
    ohio
    Tractor
    kabota

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    I HAVE THE SAME SET UP IT KEEPS THE WATER AT 40 DEGREES AND IS VERY EFICHENT
    MABE AROUND $20.00 A MONTH.THIS YEAR I AM ALSO USING FROM TRACTOR SUPPLY A DROP IN 6 IN. DIAMETER "PUCK".

  3. #3
    Super Member grsthegreat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    6,425
    Location
    north idaho
    Tractor
    dk45se hst cab

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    I tried a 100 watt aquarium heater in a large bird bath last year....didnt work. water froze.

    I have the same rubbermade tank and heater that you have, and after 1st year i installed heated water troughs in all stalls and dog pen. these units only heat 1 gallon of water at a time. major energy savings.-inbarn1-jpg

    of course...you need piped in water.
    currently own
    2011 Kioti DK45SE HST CAB tractor/loader, Jimna 6" - 3 point wood chipper, 60" JD Brush Hog, JD 60" Rototiller, 3 point post hole digger with hydraulic assist, 3 point spring tooth rake, Fimco 55 gallon weed sprayer with 12 foot boom, 3 point hydraulic wood splitter (home built)
    Quick Attach 79" loader mount snowblower & rear powerpack
    Quick Attach 84" Snow Blade
    Quick Attach 42" pallet forks

  4. #4
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    2,116
    Location
    Carroll, Ohio
    Tractor
    Massey 180 Diesel

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    Up until this year, I used the 1500w tank heaters. I could notice $1.00 more a day on the electric bill. But can't say it was all going for that. Furnace running more, plus the furnace in the shop running too.

    Like grsthegreat, I put in a heated waterer, a Nelson for my gang. 250w heater, and this week in single digit temps here has done well. Although when they call for a good amount of freezing rain, or high winds, I pull the trough back out and fill until the bad weather passes.

    I bought a pair of them off Craigslist from a woman who had them installed in her pastures for about 6 months. Her draft horses could not get their muzzle in them well to drink. She bought cattle waterer's much like in the picture above, and sold these for 1/4 new cost. Quite a deal for me, plus she was savvy enought to get a couple extra thermostats, and heaters.

    Cleanup is a cinch, and sure beats scrubbing that trough..!!

  5. #5
    Platinum Member bucktaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    785
    Location
    Sw Ohio
    Tractor
    Kubota L5740

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    I have the Rubbermaid 150 gal tanl and drain plug deicer. I put mine on a switch and only use it as necessary, Works great and has reduced the electric some...on level bill so have no idea how much. But by maintaining only enough water for the day plus enough to cover the elements works for us. With the real cold temps Single digits the last week I did fill the tank incase my spigot froze, Used some juice but we got through it
    Kubota L5740 La854
    MF 35 Deluxe gas wloader...For sale

  6. #6
    Elite Member bullbreaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    2,755
    Location
    Southwest,Florida
    Tractor
    Kubota L3400 DT,John Deere GT 235,JD GENERATOR AC-G8010S-E

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    Not saying its a good or bad solution but heres something I came across on another site.
    http://www.horseforum.com/barn-maint...6/#post1862463

    Boone
    2 CHRONICLES 7 : 14 (KJV)

  7. #7
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    17
    Location
    Eastern Washington State
    Tractor
    Furgeson TO35, Yanmar F245

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    I have used a Behlen 2 hole energy free waterer for close to 20 years now. (see 2-Hole Cattle Waterer, Energy-Free Waterers 17141000035 ) I have had to overhaul it a couple of times, mainly fixing the level control valve. The only it has failed me was when it got coated on the outside with a thick layer ice from freezing rain. Mirafount also makes one that is very similar. These are a foam insulated plastic box that use a large diameter plastic ball that floats on the water. It has a hole in the lid where the ball floats up to and seals the water off to the outside atmosphere. These type of waterers do need animals drinking out of them to replace the water, which provides the heat to keep it from freezing.

    I think I could make one, and if I ever need another I think I will. One could build a heavily insulated 3/4" plywood box around a stock tank. I think the lower layer of the lid where the ball touches would have to be made of plastic to keep the ball from freezing to it. Finding a ball that is tough enough for a horse banging his hoof against it might be a problem. (Our horse do that even in the summer. It has became a form of entertainment for them. I guess I would be bored enough to do that too if I were a horse in a pasture) The balls it came with are heavy polyethylene plastic about 10" in diameter. The balls need some ballast inside of them to make them less buoyant so the horse can push the ball down easier to get to the water. The Behlen's balls come with sand inside (about 1/3 full), and a access plug to put sand in them. I have had to adjust the amount of sand over the years to make them work better. Behlen sells balls, but they are spendy. ( 2-HOLE CATTLE 54110028 ) Another thing I would do different is I would put it inside a shelter or covering to keep snow and freezing rain off (Mine is outside now)

  8. #8
    Elite Member Chilly807's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    3,201
    Location
    Nova Scotia
    Tractor
    Kubota L3400DT

    Default Re: Horse water tank heater?

    We are on the 2nd winter in our barn, neither of us wanted to use either a tank heater or heated buckets for our two horses. My wife stitched up some insulated "bucket caddies" or "cozy's" out of nylon material insulated with quilt batts. They do quite well keeping water from freezing, we usually give each horse a fresh bucket in the morning and at night. Her latest trick is to add a kettle of boiling water to each bucket just before we leave the barn for the day or the night. I got home tonight after 12 hours away and neither bucket was frozen over the course of a -13 to -5 C day.

    The interior barn temperature is usually very close to the outside temp if the run-in doors are open as they were today, if the doors are closed and the horses are inside it stays about 5 C warmer than outside. We've been pretty happy with the cozy's.

    Sean

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