Wood for Chicken Coops
If you plan to purchase a chicken coop or build chicken coops, it is important for you to carefully plan out all of your material options. Most chicken coops will be made of wood, but the fact is that all wood eventually rots. Without the proper care and considerations, your coop will not provide you with the service that you are looking for. At best, it will be good for a few months, and, at worse, you may be harming the health of your chickens. As such, it is important for you use the best wood for the chicken coop and see what type will work best with your planned coop.
Most chicken coops are constructed with wood, and all sorts of wood eventually rots. You are able to cope with this fact in many ways:
- Build with wood that’s infused with pesticides (pressure-treated “PT”)
- Make use of a naturally rot-resistant wood (like cedar plank, redwood, or tropical hardwoods)
- Select a softwood (like Douglas-fir, hemlock, or pine) and use a sealer
- Make use of a composite material rather of wood
Many factors will weigh to your choice, but I’ll cope with the 2 biggies: toxicity and cost.
Treating lumber having a non-toxic preservative
Anything that’s put in or onto wood might find its distance to your chickens, then into you. So you might like to be careful about using pressure-treated wood. Its greatest advantages are durability and price. Its disadvantages include: leaching of copper and *potentially* harmful stuff in to the soil where your chickens is going to be you need fasteners that will not be easily corroded through the copper within the wood you have to re-treat at each cut to make sure complete coverage.
I only say “potentially harmful” above, since the preservative treatment presently utilized in PT (Alkaline Copper Quat, or ACQ) is stated to be safer compared to stuff they accustomed to use (Chromated Copper Arsenate, or CCA) in that it doesn’t contain arsenic. The Environmental protection agency still advises against using any type of PT “in conditions in which the preservative can become a part of food, animal feed, or beehives.” Therefore if you’re a player, your operation can’t be certified organic if you are using PT — the newer kind. That does not imply that PT has been shown dangerous, that it is not particularly shown to be safe.
And So I wouldn’t absolutely rule it, especially if you’re inside a damp or termite-prone area, but do consider all of your options.
For sealers, choose carefully to prevent toxic ingredients. Personally, I love these products from TimberPro Coatings. Green Depot offers some safe choices for exterior use, such as the brand Osmo. Finally, using naturally rot-resistant forest will get you round the toxicity problem altogether, but results in the 2nd issue. . .
We begin with cedar plank. It’s pricey, even though recognized because of its rot-resistance, this characteristic holds true a lot of heartwood compared to sapwood. Two local lumber stores explained that many available cedar plank originates from second-generation forests and lacks the durability of old-growth heartwood. Both steered me from it, stating that you’d need to seal it, and when you’re sealing it anyway, you may as well use cheaper softwood. Other pricey options range from the composite materials for decks and FSC-certified tropical hardwoods, each of which tend to be more costly than cedar plank, yet may last unsealed for many years.
The best option?
I am not sure. However I can share some concepts:
- Mix materials depending on how uncovered they’ll maintain your end product, purchasing longer-lasting materials where its smart to do this.
- Keep in mind that when you attach hardware cloth towards the wood, you will probably never can seal it correctly again.
- Make use of a non-toxic preservative for example Internal Wood Stabilizer from TimberPro Ultra violet on any unsealed softwoods.
- Build to be able to replace pieces without getting to dismantle the entire coop. By doing this, a rotten board every couple of years isn’t such an issue.
- Keep in mind that the very best wood might be what you could reclaim from another project. Make certain it is freed from toxic paint, seal up, and you’re all set.
- The right may be the enemy from the good. Don’t enable your look for the perfect materials or design obstruct of creating something. In the end, it’s only a chicken house!
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DIY $85 Chicken Coop Barn Wood Antique Windows
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