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Los Angeles Urban Chicken Enthusiasts Message Board › water dispenser

water dispenser

user 10791150
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 43
I know I may be in the minority here (and a clean water freak to boot), and I respect everyones right to choose, that being said; I would never allow any of my animals (this includes horses, dogs & cats) to drink from anything made of non BPA- free plastic. The toxins that are released into the water, particularly when the temps get high, are not heathy for anyone to consume (there are numerous Googleable articles to support what I'm writing). And if any hose one is using isn't manufactured specifically for use with water, and has a black lining, it likely contains lead that is going right into your chickens systems (and into your eggs!)!
Sadly, I don't think I've ever seen anything made for animals in the way of plastic bowls or dishes that IS BPA-free confused
I personally wouldn't want anything that is enclosed and not cleanable because bacteria will build up eventually and one would have no way to eradicate it.
I have a "Pur" brand water filter (that I bought at Costco along with the filter refills) on my outdoor spigot for my chickens.
Clean water is one of the most important things any living being can put into their bodies.
I have a large galvanized, pressure activated chicken waterer (I think I paid $15-$20 at the feed store), that I clean and fill just once a week.
I know most of us have very busy lives (I personally work an average of 70hrs a week at my job!) and the chores of animal keeping can seem overwhelming at times but water, and the container it's held in, is one of the areas I never cut corners (time or $) on love struck
Very good points. Thank you!
Carrie G.
user 15135741
Reseda, CA
Post #: 45
We have a large galvanized waterer too. We have had it for a while, and it is getting rusty. No matter how much I clean it, it still gets rusty. I was thinking of getting an automatic waterer to replace it. I really like Chris' design with the large bucket. I would think food grade plastic buckets and hoses are safe. We also have a couple plastic waterers as backup in different parts of their area. It seems the chickens prefer water that puddles in the dirt when I'm watering to any other! They all fight over who gets it first. I wish I could figure a system to give them that, or something similar.
Brandi G
user 48566262
Pasadena, CA
Post #: 127
I bought my BPA free water containers at Stephen's in Glendale/Burbank. I also use a glass rabbit bottle. I have actually seen a few water containers that are BPA free around and I think they even had them on Amazon. Food safe buckets aren't always BPA free but you could probably get one that is both food safe and BPA free from better quality beer making suppliers. They are very careful about that sort of thing at the higher levels of craft beer making. They stand up to hot grains and water, also. They also have tubing and all the other things you may need. Morebeer's website is pretty good but I haven't looked if they have BPA free yet.
Sunland, CA
Post #: 184
I'm going to check out this website Brandi, thank you ( you are always such a great " sourcer"wink
You are correct that not all food safe buckets are BPA free (and in fact a couple of the ones I got at Smart & Final don't even have the correct "safe number" stamped into them,which I didn't know until after I'd been using them for a bit. I made an assumption that food safe actually meant safe, haha my mistake), I just recently learned this fun-fact.

Galvanized anything that's used with water has a shelf life and will generally rust out eventually. I really wish I could find one made out of stainless steel!
I did find one recently on a website called "" that's made out of ceramic! They are just going into production with them, and they are very expensive because they are each locally handcrafted but I have to get one as soon as they are available!!! I love having any reason to support artists when I can love struck
Brandi G
user 48566262
Pasadena, CA
Post #: 141

I share your disdain for plastic. I try to get BPA free for my son and the chickens. I have a few items that aren't, but I try to limit their use. The other issue with galvanized metal is if you ferment feed, ACV breaks down metal. Glass and ceramic are great alternatives. I actually use old terra cotta pots from the garden to hold their sprouts and oyster shell. They are cheap, plentiful and frequently people get rid of them for free.

I sprout my grains in compost in ceramic pots and just carry the pots over every once in a while and let the chickens mow down the sprouts and I then replace them. It looks more decorative to have them in pots and they seem to enjoy the fresh sprouts more than ones I cut for them. Like my 2 year old, "I do it myself!" rules around here.

I'll look into the beer stuff more and get back to you. They also have carboys- those are the 5 and 6 gallon old school water bottles they no longer use to deliver water in. Beer makers use them for fermenting and storing beer at various times. That's another alternative in a larger size. The only downfall is that they are VERY heavy. 5 gallons of water weighs about 40lbs, with the glass, it's probably over 50 or more. So there's that...

Stainless would be light, but expensive. Maybe it's available in food prep? Like a restaurant supply?
user 10791150
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 46
I ended up ordering the chicken waterer and attaching it to an old cooler. I am VERY HAPPY with this solution. The water stays pretty cool. No more rusty water dispenser to constantly clean and refill. This is a GREAT solution.
Thank you Gardenerd for recommending!
Anne D.
Pasadena, CA
Post #: 40
Here's another two thumbs up for the Brite Tap chicken waterer system. I bought their combo system including a cooler, but you can use any container you want to hold the water (opaque is best for minimizing algal growth), and just buy their nipple assembly.

(FWIW, I don't worry about BPA; a number of chemist and Chem E friends discount it as an insignificant health risk for people or animals. I did, however, worry about algae, mold, and chicken poop in their drinking warer, which are no longer problems.)

So wish I'd found this two years ago. The water stays sparkling clean and *cool* on a hot day, and it's much easier to refill, and clean when needed...but it won't often need it. They say they're testing a similar system now that can be auto-filled from a garden hose, and that might take care of the final bit of hassle involved in chicken watering. Highly recommend.
Winnetka, CA
Post #: 44
I, too, bought the Brite Tap Chicken Waterer after reading about it here on this thread. I love it! I has been the best solution to the constant soiling of the drinking water by the birds. Now I just have to check it to be sure it is filled.

Now my only problem is providing water for the new born chicks. They are too small to reach the nipples, which are currently up at the height of the adult birds' heads. So the babies have their own dish.... which is constantly filling up with debris.
Jeremy M.
user 9240997
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 1

(FWIW, I don't worry about BPA; a number of chemist and Chem E friends discount it as an insignificant health risk for people or animals.

In addition, chickens (sadly) don't live long enough for it to build up in their bodies and cause a problem - a human might be consuming it for 50 years. Not a chicken.
user 80252532
Los Angeles, CA
Post #: 14
If you add apple cider vinegar to their water, it is my understanding that galvanized containers are not suitable.
Plastic containers (with or without ACV) stay cleaner longer out of the sunlight (less grime and slime).

I've found multiple waterers are helpful:
the nipple feeders (whichever system - bottle on cage, low pressure system, high pressure system) offer a clean delivery method and can be entertaining for the birds;
sometimes the chickens just prefer the open dip method and a long cool drink;
other times, they want the muddy river that you just poured out of their dirty container - a fountain or small water feature is more appealing for the caregiver =)
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