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Holly Jeanne
Dec. 10, 2010, 01:15 PM
Ok, I don't have a barn and no access to electric in the pasture. I'm really not comfortable with multiple, long extension cords from the house to the pasture. So, I wish someone would invent a solar charger like a fence charger that you could buy an attachment for to heat the water in my water tubs. In other words, A plug in attachment that would go from the solar charger to the tub to keep it from icing over. If that exists, please let me know. I've found solar water heater ideas but I'd still need to get the warm water into the horses water tub. Not exactly what I want.

Anything else you wish someone would invent?

MoonWitch
Dec. 10, 2010, 01:20 PM
BIG insulated tubs that didn't freeze!! I hear ya sista!!

horsepoor
Dec. 10, 2010, 01:35 PM
There are solar powered heated water troughs -- I know I have seen them. Sure they aren't cheap, but maybe worth it in some areas.

Just did a quick search and came up with this: http://www.enasco.com/product/Z30983N

I'm sure there are others to be found.

Holly Jeanne
Dec. 10, 2010, 01:44 PM
They look great but definitely out of my budget. Thanks for the info though!

coloredcowhorse
Dec. 10, 2010, 03:18 PM
Ok, I don't have a barn and no access to electric in the pasture. I'm really not comfortable with multiple, long extension cords from the house to the pasture. So, I wish someone would invent a solar charger like a fence charger that you could buy an attachment for to heat the water in my water tubs. In other words, A plug in attachment that would go from the solar charger to the tub to keep it from icing over. If that exists, please let me know. I've found solar water heater ideas but I'd still need to get the warm water into the horses water tub. Not exactly what I want.

Anything else you wish someone would invent?



Multiple horses, one tank/tub? Build a frame around it, cover with exterior plywood on three sides, plexiglass or something similar on south side, insulate the heck out of the interior of the frame except for the south facing side (and maybe spray on foam insulation on outside of tub/tank as well). Paint south side of tank/tub flat black....wood stove paint works well. Place frame over the tank with clear side on south and black tank showing in clear "window". Fill tank. Build a lid that fits on top of box, insulate inside of top, cut hole big enough for horses to drink from and cover edges with something to prevent rough edges from rubbing horses (split a water hose and glue/tack in place). Make sure to keep tank filled. Won't be "warm" water but will keep from seriously freezing (got 4 inches of ice to break over Thanksgiving in tank not insulated/protected or heated).

Leather
Dec. 10, 2010, 03:59 PM
Pics/plans of what coloredcowhorse described can be found here:

http://www.builditsolar.com/Projects/WaterHeating/water_heating.htm#Animals

ladybugred
Dec. 11, 2010, 12:57 AM
Leather - Thanx for the link!

I can't imagine what you guys who live where it's REALLY cold go thru. I will no longer complain when I have to knock thru less than an inch of ice!!!

LBR

Daydream Believer
Dec. 11, 2010, 08:05 AM
BIG insulated tubs that didn't freeze!! I hear ya sista!!

You can insulate those big tubs with bubble wrap and hot water heater blankets. I also would put a piece of Styrofoam in the water on top as a float. It will keep the water open a lot longer than you'd think.

howardh
Dec. 11, 2010, 09:02 AM
Go to Mother Earth News and I believe you can do a search of all old articles. There are always tons of do it yourself solar projects and I am sure you could find something that would work for you!

But the BEST horse money I ever spent went for my automatic waterer. Love Love Love it. On a day like today I could wrap my arms around it and give it a big kiss! Oh, I just waved to it from my toasty kitchen! Bless its little heart, it is out there watering the gang in the blizzard and I am drinking coffee!

shawneeAcres
Dec. 11, 2010, 09:10 AM
I was thinking the same thing, solar or battery powered tough heaters, my fields are way too far to run extension cords (except fo maybe two I could get a cord to)

VarsityHero4
Dec. 11, 2010, 01:23 PM
Yes! I keep trying to get my dad to invent one because he works with a lot of solar panel people. I'm slowly saving up for auto waterers in the fields but the fields are a good distance from the nearest electric/water lines so it will be a VERY costly project. I'd have no problem lugging water from the barn to the field all the time but I just want unfrozen troughs!

rugbygirl
Dec. 11, 2010, 01:44 PM
I can't imagine what you guys who live where it's REALLY cold go thru. I will no longer complain when I have to knock thru less than an inch of ice!!!

Northern Alberta here, kept horses for a winter on a lease with no water and no electric.

Trojan makes a propane fuelled trough heater. It actually works really well. In the area we had it, we got large propane "pigs" delivered every few weeks. With a smaller trough (fewer horses or whatever) you could probably just use small propane containers (like for barbecue.) If you insulate the trough and leave only a head-sized drinking hole, the heat stays in and you reduce the propane consumption considerably. If you can get a truck to your trough, you can get propane delivered to it. If your area lets you deal with propane yourself, giddy-up, you can take the container in to refill and bring it out with a 4-wheeler or something.

You could also MAKE a solar powered trough heater. You need a battery (deep cell is best, looks like a car battery), a power converter/regulator, a solar panel and assorted electrical parts to make it connect to a normal resistance element tough heater. They run on household voltage and current, so all pretty basic components. Any journeyman electrician can likely help you set this up. Solar panels cost a fortune though, and I wouldn't go this route.

The propane heater is a pretty good option.

ThisTooShallPass
Dec. 13, 2010, 05:10 PM
http://www.hydrogenappliances.com/stocktankheater.html

Spare battery is kept on a solar charger to recharge it.

superJ
Dec. 13, 2010, 06:37 PM
I built the solar tank from the builditsolar website this year. The way my pastures are set up, the south facing acrylic HAD to be inside the pasture where the horses could get to it. It didn't last 12 hours before they had kicked a hole in the "window".

So, if your pastures are such that you can keep them away from the "window" on the tank it might work.

Creaghgal
Dec. 13, 2010, 06:46 PM
But the BEST horse money I ever spent went for my automatic waterer. Love Love Love it. On a day like today I could wrap my arms around it and give it a big kiss! Oh, I just waved to it from my toasty kitchen! Bless its little heart, it is out there watering the gang in the blizzard and I am drinking coffee!

Sad... so, so very sad. :lol:

& by "sad" I mean I'd be doing the same exact thing :D

f4leggin
Dec. 13, 2010, 11:47 PM
I used the trojan water heaters for years in Colorado, they worked well. I had two of them, and two propane tanks (100 and a 250 gallon) since my farm was on propane, I had gas put into them at the begining of winter. They never ran out of gas in the winter, and I didn't fill them all the way at the start of winter.

They occaisionally had misc problems (like if the themostat freezes, it has to be replaced), but the company that makes the heaters has awesome customer support, and sells/ships parts.

ACP
Dec. 14, 2010, 12:00 AM
I can't remember WHERE I read about this....

I did a search on goggle. This was one of the suggestions.

Rent a power auger dig an overgrown posthole and bury a 8 foot (or longer) length of 18 to 24 diameter galvanized culvert pipe in the hole, with just 5 or 6 inches of the pipe showing above ground. Then attach some brackets to the top of the pipe (by welding or nuts and bolts to hold a small stock tank (90 gallons or less), so that the bottom of the stock tank completely covers the open end of the pipe. (The stock tank will appear to be mounted on a low pedestal.) The vertical pipe acts as a conduit for the warmer ambient ground temperature from the soil below the frost line. The beauty of this design is that it is essentially passive and there is no significant maintenance, once installed.

deltawave
Dec. 14, 2010, 12:30 AM
But the BEST horse money I ever spent went for my automatic waterer. Love Love Love it. On a day like today I could wrap my arms around it and give it a big kiss! Oh, I just waved to it from my toasty kitchen! Bless its little heart, it is out there watering the gang in the blizzard and I am drinking coffee!

Oh, AMEN. Although if I gave mine a big kiss on a night like tonight, my lips would stick to it and I'd either freeze to death or have to amputate my face! :D Sixteen degrees plus windchill, and the water is gloriously unfrozen. :yes:

Five feet, eight feet, or 100 feet down, the earth's ambient temperature is about 55 degrees. That's not enough (unless you have fans and pumps, a de facto geothermal heating system) to keep water unfrozen unless your night-time temperatures are maybe 29 degrees. :)

columbus
Dec. 14, 2010, 11:37 PM
I wish they would invent...an electric heated snood for a hydrant. Just slide it over the top and plug it in and slide it off when you need to use it. No blow dryers and wrapping with heat tape...I want a snood.

I wish that Rubbermaid would make a cover that snapped on to its water tanks...make it two halves so you can leave one half off for drinking in the winter and the other half would cover the float heater, then if horses come in at night both covers could be snapped on to keep the water warmer.

I wish Rubbermaid made a insulated plastic tank cozy that came in two parts that you could slide on the halves and toggle together in the middle (like 2 Cs) so we wouldn't have to be cabinet makers to cover our tanks in the winter...or summer either to keep water cooler.

I wish someone...Rubbermaid!!!...made a cat condo to keep barn cats warm in Minnesota winters...just frost bit my barn cat's ear and now he is in the house in the guest bedroom. He's going to be expecting Mimosas and anchovies soon.
PatO