Heated and Insulated Buckets – Take the Cold out of Winter

January 10th, 2013

For those of us that live in cold weather climates, dealing with ice in the barn is no fun. We have to chip away at ice laden buckets that can lead to cold water splashing in our faces, twice a day –  that is the worst kind of cold!  I did this for years, until we discovered how much insulated or heated buckets helped us and our horses through the cold and freezing winter months!

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Choosing between insulated or heated buckets depends on weather you have electricity in your barn or if you would rather use insulated buckets that do not require electricity.  With either choice, you will be providing your horses with needed water in the winter that is crucial to their good health.  And you cut back on the cold and daunting daily work load.

Heated flat backed water buckets require a 3 pronged  GFI 110 volt outlet.  Your bucket can hang on the wall with a secure ‘pail safe’ hanger or a 5-gallon bucket holder. Both of these options help to keep your heated bucket on the wall rather than becoming a ‘toy’ for your horses to play with if they become board. While the cord is wrapped in a wire coil, its best to run it through your stall directly to the power source.  If you are concerned about horses ‘playing’ with the cord, one idea is to cut PVC pipe in half and secure it over the cord to the outside of your stall.

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Heated buckets turn on and off at 40 degrees keeping electricity costs down.  Your horses water will not freeze – giving them the water that they need to keep them warm and hydrated.  I like to be sure to empty and fill my horses buckets twice a day in the winter.  With the heated buckets, I simply pour the small amount of water into another bucket and then clean or just fill them.  This way I can see how much my horses are drinking and keep the buckets clean of hay and debris.

Heated buckets come in a 5 gallon size, great for stalls, or a 16 gallon size that can be used outdoors, for more than one horse or for small animals like dogs, sheep, goats or reindeer (: We have 2 reindeer at the RAMM farm and the 16 gallon bucket works great for them).

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Insulated buckets keep water from freezing, however, you must change the water twice a day to keep buckets completely ice free.  Floaters that sit on top of the water further help to keep ice from forming.  These buckets come with a wall mount holds the buckets securely to the wall. The bucket can be pulled directly out of the holder and easily emptied – no more ice!

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When you need a way to keep water buckets from freezing in your barn – be it for your horses or small animals – I know you will love the benefits of a heated or insulated bucket in your barn. I have been using them for years now and would not go through a cold winter without them!

What do you do to keep your water ‘frost free’ in the winter?

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