A homemade automatic chicken waterer is not to hard to put together. The whole idea here is to have a reservoir to fill up and establish the “height” for the cup. A 5 gallon bucket is very convenient for this, because it is tall enough to house the fill valve, large enough to sit and not tip over easy, and can get a lid that fits pretty easily. There is a 3″ or so spread between the top of the fill valve where the water stops, and the bottom of where the arm swings where the water kicks on. The cup has to be maintained at the correct height. There is a balance between how high you can put the cup and how high the chickens can comfortably drink from. The whole point in doing this is so the chickens can drink.
This is the same fitting that is in your home connecting the toilet to the water source. The toilet fill valve is a 5/8″ thread. There is not a PVC fitting for this size, but there is brass fittings. This hose is better anyway, because the hose lets play exist between the bucket and the water line.
What you are seeing in the photo are 3 items:
- The Toilet Fill Valve Hose. 5/8″ thread on the fill valve to – whatever you want to attach to. In this case I am making my way to 1/2″ pvc as my water supply line. This is the one under pressure so it should be the one with the best effort and setup.
- The fitting to go from the other end of the hose to the PVC.
- PVC fitting with slip or glue on the other end.
This is the parts list to build the Automatic Chicken Watering System. I have already changed from the larger PVC pipe coming out of the bucket to smaller (3/4″) pipe. The idea was that the pipe itself was going to be the “cup”, but it looked like it would be too heavy once it all went together.
The other thing was that it gets into some money with all the larger parts.
The 1 inch paddle bit will drill the through seal hole for the fill valve and a 3/4″ thread for the outlet valve. You want to find a bit that is just bigger than the threads without any play, if at all possible.
Measuring the fill valve is important to establish the ultimate height of the cup. Usually the toilet fill valve can be adjusted by about 4 inches or so. This can raise or lower the cup the chickens drink out of. The center of the float at the top of the float arm pivot is the control measurement of the system. This is going to be where the level of water fills to everytime.
If you lower the float arm pivot and measure, it should be around 3 1/2″. This is the minimum height the cup can be to function properly. It may have to be taller due to the coupling seal fitting to let the water into it.
Click on the image to be taken to Amazon.com product page for purchase.
To be continued – It’s time to drill some holes.