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How do you keep your hoses and troughs from freezing??

Discussion in 'Horse Health' started by montyxk, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. tlwidener

    tlwidener Senior Member

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    We go out and break ice a couple times a day. There is no way to heat water tanks for cattle that are out on pasture 20 miles from electricity around here. There are solar heaters, but they're pricey.

    Just try to time your ice breaking right. Also try to make the horse empty the tank. Don't leave the horse without water, but also don't put 100 gallons in the tank, knowing the horse will only drink 10.

    I used to go out morning and night with an axe and pitchfork to break ice. Be sure to scoop the ice chunks out of the tank or they'll refreeze. Pitch the chunks away from the tank.

    Sometimes a piece of foam thrown into the tank will leave a hole for stock to drink.
     
  2. jmjarabians

    jmjarabians Senior Member+

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    Extension cord with tank heater. They make 200' cords. Last year my whole water line froze SEVEN FEET underground! Now, THAT's cold. I had no water to my barn or my cabin. Only my house had water and we had to bucket it from the house to the barn.
     
  3. Circle C

    Circle C Senior Member

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    I had to do that last year. Thought the water line to the barn froze, but the spicket was malfunctioning.. thank god :rolleyez:

    I went a LONG time w/out water to my barn... I DO NOT like to carry water from the house now that I DO have it lol
     
  4. jmjarabians

    jmjarabians Senior Member+

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    We have a John Deere Gator so we just filled buckets and drove it slowly down there. It's like I dunno, 100 ft maybe from the house. Not far.
     
  5. Purpledomino

    Purpledomino Senior Member+

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    I wouldn't rely on breaking ice regularly because water that is cold enough to freeze usually isn't well accepted by alot of horses. If it is too cold some horses won't drink enough, especially at a time when they are on a dry forage (hay) and they require water so essentially.

    In our area my vet has mentioned to me that when the weather gets cold enough to freeze water sources, and before people start preparing for winter by plugging in stock heaters, he has more colic calls. I know my horses don't like sticking their noses in ice cold water even if it isn't frozen.

    I would recommend a stock heater and extension cord, that's really the only way to guarantee water at a temp that all horses will readily drink. (unless you have an underground automatic system)
     
  6. tlwidener

    tlwidener Senior Member

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    True, but sometimes there is no other way. I use heaters when I can, but break ice when I have to :)
     
  7. trish12

    trish12 Senior Member+

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    Yeah I catch my mare eating the snow and not drinking the fresh water...I always wondered WHY she did that....even eats the ice I bust OUT of the trough she will eat that instead of drinking the water.... :rolleyes:
     
  8. montyxk

    montyxk Senior Member

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    Yeah its not that bad here, but my spigots froze a couple of times last year and I had to haul buckets. But the horses were right behind the house then. We bought the neighboring parcel with a barn and moved the horses there last month but now I don't have them close enough to think about hauling buckets. Hope my spigots don't freeze this year!
     
  9. montyxk

    montyxk Senior Member

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    I had a tank heater in the trough last year when the horses were closer to the house. I just worry about running a cord 200 feet. I'll go to Home Depot and check out what they have. It would be running over grass and through my riding arena to get to the barn too so I am not sure about that. I try and drain the hose and roll it up but it still seems to freeze, or the spigot freezes. So I end up hauling buckets anyway. Someone needs to invent a cheap cure for this problem and they would become very wealthy!
     
  10. Abberlaze

    Abberlaze Senior Member

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    Yep!

    My all-time favorite road trip last year was to Northern MN, we stopped at a HUGE set of 3 waterfalls that were frozen solid. Coming from further south where we're lucky to have small ponds freeze, it was AWESOME!

    Check it out: http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl...62ZEk&esq=1&page=1&ndsp=12&ved=1t:429,r:3,s:0

    And I have no advice about the water trough issue... we always put a heater in ours. You could put some electrolytes in the trough too in order to lower the freezing point (but that could get expensive!)
     

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