If you are a proud chicken owner with your very own coop and you have been using traditional equipment, then you may want to consider a technological update that can keep your chickens safe from both predators and the weather while still letting them in and out regularly.
Automatic chicken coop doors can do just that while requiring very little to no maintenance. They are even strong enough to keep out most predators. If you've been curious about this update and would like to learn about what makes automated coop doors so wonderful, read below and find out.
Top 5: Automatic Chicken Coop Doors Review
Product Image & Rating (Out Of 10)
Running off of a built-in battery, Incubator Warehouse's AutoCoop has two plugs, one for the power outlet and one that is hooked up to the door. On the face of this battery is the timer with the buttons and screen for setting everything up.
With no exposed wires that the chickens can peck at, and a door that is 10 inches wide and 13 inches tall, this is possibly one of the safest and cheapest options out there. To ensure that this auto coop is safe for your egg-dropping friends, make sure to install the power cables high enough so the chickens can't reach them.
One of the more popular choices among buyers is the Cheeper Keeper. The cables and box are also much smaller which makes this product more manageable.
This automatic chicken coop door actually uses an exposed wire, something many people avoid. However, the wire is at the top of the door, making it extremely hard for the chickens to tamper.
This automatic coop door runs off of a light sensor and the wire can be run within a few feet of the box. It is also equipped to be powered by four AA batteries, which can last for quite a while. It has a slightly smaller door than the last one, being only 13 inches tall and 8.75 inches wide.
The ChickenGuard Premium was created with a classic design but smart, automated features. Although not exactly common with newer automatic chicken coop doors, this door has a unique wooden frame. There is still an LCD screen on the timer control that can be seen up to 100 yards away.
This one comes with a timer and a light sensor, which makes this model more desirable. It also has two manual buttons that you can press if you want the door open at a time that isn't pre set.
Another feature that makes it one of the more popular choices is that it can run off of four AA batteries or a USB power cable, which is not included with the door.
Many past customers love this product because it has a strong and weatherproof door, which is larger than average at 16 inches tall by 12 inches wide. This size is ideal for larger chickens or those smaller ones that are a little intimidated by smaller spaces.
Being built with galvanized steel and no strings, this is possibly one of the more futuristic doors on this list. The AdorStore ADOR1 runs off of a 6-volt lantern battery (included with your purchase) and uses an infrared sensor that not only senses the light that opens the door, but it also remembers what time the sun rises and sets.
Using data that is stored into its memory, the door was designed with smart technology capabilities and can calculating future sunrises and sunsets. But don't worry, you can always manually change these settings if you need to without the need for programming.
The Happy Henhouse automated door is definitely one of the simplest products available, making it a highly effective and reliable product. From installation, which only takes a few minutes, to the sleek design and reasonable price, most customers appreciated that Happy Henhouse created an automated product that isn't overly complicated and won't break the budget.
One of the more intricate features included with this product is the daylight sensor that can be adjustable to fit your timing needs. The best feature is that the door will stop by itself when a chicken gets in the way of it closing.
The four AA batteries only last for about 6 to 9 months, which is less than some of the other products around. Also, the dimensions of the door are a little smaller than some would like at about 10 inches tall by 8 inches wide.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are automatic chicken coop doors?
They are chicken coop doors that open and close when triggered by a preset timer or a light sensor. Many coops actually come with both trigger options.
Automated coop doors typically work by using a series of ropes or wires, timers, a hardware/software programming mechanism, and of course a door that is attached to a frame. Some of the newer models do not use any exposed wires to open the door so the chickens won't tamper with it.
Almost all of them are weather-proof metal that is reinforced so predators cannot harm the chickens.
Why would you want to use them?
Many people like to sleep in on weekends and an automated chicken coop door will let them do so without having to worry about letting their chickens out in the early hours. Others who are too busy in the mornings like the peace of mind that if they happen to forget, the chickens will still be let outside.
Since these doors hardly use any electricity or battery power, an automated chicken coop door is simple and affordable, usually costing between $100 and $300. This is a great way to ease up on some of the stressors of your day, just like an automatic coffee maker.
What should you be careful of?
Many of these doors have safety measures in case a chicken decides to play a game of chicken with it while it closes. If the chicken tries to go in or out while the door is closing, it will stop and raise back up again.
Some will try to close after the path is clear while others usually wait a minute or two. It all depends on the programmed settings of the particular product.
Do chicken coops need doors?
Yes, chicken coops need doors. A door will help keep your chickens protected from predators and the elements. You will want to make sure that the door is properly sealed, otherwise cold drafts of air could get in and make your chickens too cold.
Can I leave the door on my chicken coop open overnight?
In most cases, you will not want to leave the door to your chicken coop open overnight. Wild animals that prey on chickens could attack them in their coop or gain access to them if they are out of the coop on their run.
You'll find that it is easier to ensure that your chicken coop is safe from tampering and entry from other critter than it is to make sure each section of fence around a fenced run is completely tamper-proof. Wild animals, such as foxes, are also less likely to become interested in your chickens and determined to catch them if they can't see them.
If you are completely confident that animals will not be able to access your chickens due to fencing or other protective measures, you may consider trying to leave the door open. You'll definitely want to closely monitor the situation for the first few nights to make sure things are going as you intend.
Do I need an automatic chicken coop door?
While you may not physically need an automatic chicken coop door, you'll likely find that owning one comes with many enjoyable benefits. First, you won't have to physically go out to your chicken coop to let the chickens out. If you want to spend a few extra minutes in bed, enjoy a leisurely morning sipping your cup of coffee, or work on other projects, you can have your coop door open automatically to let your chickens out without physically be right at the coop.
How do automatic chicken coop doors work?
Automatic chicken coop doors are designed to simplify your life. They will automatically open the door to your chicken coop to allow your chickens to enter their run or fenced area, allowing you to stay indoors or attend to other tasks.
Some automatic chicken doors include a timer you can program. With these models, you can program the exact times you'd like the door to open or close.
Other models have a light sensor that will automatically trigger the door to open based on the amount of light that is present. Some models feature either option, allowing you to choose the opening style you prefer.
What size door do I need for my chicken coop?
For most chickens, a door that is 12 inches wide and 15 inches tall should be a good size. This is the standard size for a chicken coop door.
If you have larger breeds of chickens, you may need to look for a larger door for your coop.
What should I look for when choosing an automatic chicken coop door?
There are a few different things you will want to keep in mind when you are selecting an automatic chicken coop door. First, you should be sure to pay attention to whether each item includes all the pieces you'll need for installing and operating the door or whether you'll need to make additional purchases. Some products are sold as all-in-one units and include both the door and the control box, while other options may include only one component and require you to make a second purchase.
Next, you should consider how easy each option is to operate. Once you set it up, will you be able to program the door to open at the times you wish? Does the door have a manual override and fail-safe in case something malfunctions?
Finding a door that closes slowly and gently is also important to make sure your chickens stay protected and don't get harmed accidentally. Avoid choosing a gravity-based mechanism, as it could close too quickly and harm one of your chickens.
Next, look for safety features such a wire that is kept out of the reach of your chickens as well as any rodents that could enter the coop and a waterproof control unit. You should also confirm that the door will operate under different temperatures and weather conditions, especially if you live somewhere that gets very cold.
Finally, consider the cost of each option and whether the manufacturer backs their product with a warranty. You should expect to pay between $200 and $400 for an all-in-one unit. Finding a product that comes with a manufacturer's warranty can provide you with some peace of mind regarding your purchase and the quality of the item you ordered.
What should I keep in mind when designing a chicken coop?
If you're designing and building your own chicken coop, there are a number of things you'll want to keep in mind throughout the process to help ensure you make the best habitat possible for your chickens.
First, you should have your design completely planned out before beginning the work. You may choose to start from scratch or find a plan for inspiration online, but either way, make sure each aspect of your design is well-thought-out to ensure what you build will be functional and keep your chickens safe.
Be sure to plan to add insulation for the walls when you build your structure. Proper insulation is important for maintaining humidity levels and keeping your chickens warm and dry depending on the weather.
Another essential item to plan for is sufficient ventilation. Chicken coops should allow for free air movement to ensure your chickens have access to enough oxygen to meet their basic needs. In addition to making it more challenging for your chickens to get the oxygen they need, improper ventilation can also allow for mold to grow, which could pose a major health risk for your chickens.
Chickens also need access to light throughout the day. When you build your chicken coop, you ill want it to face the south. Doing so will provide more sunlight during the day. You should also install a few lights in the coop for the winter months. This will help ensure your chickens are able to keep up with their egg production rates when number of daylight hours decreases in the winter.
Providing protection for your chickens against predators is essential. Avoid building the coop too closer to areas where other animals live. For example, if you have large areas of brush that are inhabited by other animals, choose a different spot for your coop. You should also use chicken wire to bury the outside chicken runs. This can help keep animals from digging under the run.
How can I heat my chicken coop without electricity?
Providing your chickens with a warm escape, especially in the winter, is important. However, using electricity to provide heat to the coop can get costly. Below are a few things you can do to make sure your chickens stay warm without spending money to use electric heat.
- Use a smaller chicken coop or close off a section of your existing coop. Make sure your chickens will still have enough space in the coop, but decreasing the space that is available will make the birds roost closer together, which will help them all stay warmer. When possible, you should also move the roosting bars up higher so they are closer to the ceiling of the coop. Since warm air rises, this will help keep your chickens a little warmer.
- Make the nesting boxes cozier: Add some additional bedding in the nesting boxes for your chickens to keep them warmer. You can also consider hanging curtains in front of the nesting boxes to provide additional warmth.
- Change the location of your coop: If your coop is not in a protected area, consider moving it. Placing it somewhere that will help block harsh winds will help prevent the temperature from getting too cold inside the coop.
- Add insulation: Adding insulation can help prevent cold air from entering the coop and keep warm air inside the coop. You can use materials like blankets, foam boards, and tarp to insulate your coop. When adding insulation, keep in mind that you want to make sure there is still plenty of ventilation in the coop.
Where should you place food and water bowls in a chicken coop?
Chickens like to scratch and dig, so if you place their food or water bowls in the wrong spot, they can easily end up spilled and all over the floor. If you place their feeds higher in the cage, around the height of their back, it can help prevent spills and messes. This will keep the chickens from being able to stick their feet in their food and water dishes and will make it impossible for them to scratch or dig in them. Even when you leave the food and water higher up where it won't get spilled, you will still want to provide your chickens with fresh food and water every day.
Final Verdict - best chicken coop doors
Those are just some of the best automated chicken coop doors that are out there. If you didn't fall in love with any of these, you can click on the one you liked the best and search through similar items, and you may find an even better one.