Keeping chickens can be a lot of fun, and many people become very attached to their animals. However, when the temperatures drop, you may need a way to keep them warm, in which case you might want to think about coop heaters.
There are several different types, each with associated advantages and disadvantages, and sometimes it can be hard to decide. To help, here are our top picks for best chicken coop heater to ensure you choose the right one.
1. Cozy Products CL Safe 200W Chicken Coop Heater
If you are worried about installing a bulb-style heater in your chicken coop, this ceramic model could be a much safer option. It emits radiant heat, which means it is designed to heat just the area around itself rather than the whole coop, saving you money on electricity bills.
We like the way it has a switch on the cord, making it convenient and practical to control. It’s also quick and easy to install, so you can have it in place and up and running in no time.
That said, it has two installation options – either attached to a wall or freestanding – and if you choose to leave it freestanding, you might find it is easy for your chickens to knock it over. For this reason, it is much better fixed to a wall in your coop.
Also, you only have three temperature options, high, low and off. This means you have less control over the heat in your coop – although perhaps chickens don’t need the kind of precise temperature options that humans prefer!
All in all, a great way of keeping chickens warm during the colder months, especially if you are worried about the dangers of brooder lamps. If that sounds like you, then this could be just the item you are looking for.
- Safe option – ideal for those worried about heat bulbs
- Energy-efficient – uses 13% the energy of a 1500-watt space heater
- Built-in thermostat – controls the temperature automatically
- Easy to install – simple to fit in your coop
- In-cord switch – makes it convenient to switch on and off
- Unsteady when freestanding – better fixed to a wall
- Only high, low or off settings – can’t control temperature accurately
2. BYB 150W Ceramic Infrared Heat Emitter
This is a ceramic infrared heater that gives off no light at all, making it great if you have fussy hens who won’t sleep when the light is switched on. It is rated to last over 10,000 hours, so it’s also an option you won’t need to replace very often.
We like the way it is made of high-quality ceramic that is resistant to cracking as well as water. This means it is less likely to get damaged. We also think it retails for a very reasonable price, making this heater great value for money.
On the downside, it doesn’t give off as much heat as a red bulb, although you can always install more than just one. Also, you may notice that your electricity bill jumps up a little – but this will probably happen with most heating solutions.
This heat emitter would be a great option for anyone looking for an inexpensive heater for a chicken coop that will let the hens sleep in the dark. It’s well priced and does its job without any fuss, making it another recommended pick.
- Lasts around 10,000 hours – won’t need to be replaced often
- No light emitted – means your chickens can sleep well at night
- Anti-crack materials – shouldn’t crack or break
- Waterproof surface – won’t be damaged by splashes
- Great price – very affordable option
- Not as powerful as a red bulb – gives off less heat
- Increases energy costs – you may see a jump in your electricity bill
3. OMAYKEY 100W 2-Pack Ceramic Heat Lamp
For anyone who needs more than one heat source for a hen coop – or other similar uses, including a reptile aquarium – this affordable two-pack of heat lamps could be just the thing you’re looking for.
They feature solid ceramic construction, meaning they should last a long time – and they are rated as being able to provide heat for around 9,000-15,000 hours or more, meaning you won’t have to replace them in a hurry.
We like the way they emit no light, allowing your animals to experience a day-and-night cycle, and the included digital thermometer is also great for keeping an eye on the temperature.
If we have to find fault with these heaters, it could be that they are not powerful enough to heat a large outdoor coop – unless you use several together. Also, there’s nothing to tell you when they’re switched on, so you need to be careful not to burn your hand.
This would be a great option for anyone who needs something to keep their chickens or any other animals warm during the coldest months. They come with a very reasonable price tag, too, making this a product that could be worth a look.
- Excellent value – a real bargain for a pack of two
- Solid ceramic construction – built to last
- No light emitted – allows your animals to sleep at night
- Will last a long time – rated at 9,000-15,000 hours lifespan
- Includes digital thermometer – to monitor the temperature
- Not powerful enough for an outside coop – better for inside ones
- Nothing to indicate when on – apart from the temperature when you touch it
4. Wuhostam 2 Pack 100W Infrared Ceramic Heat Lamp
If you like the sound of the product we just looked at but you want some similar options to compare it with, this is another two-pack of ceramic heat lamps that can keep your hens or other animals warm with a minimum of fuss.
They are rated as being able to last around 10,000-15,000 hours without needing to be replaced, and they don’t produce any light, so they won’t disrupt the sleep cycles or your chickens or other animals. They also sell at a very reasonable price point.
However, you may find that they don’t give out as much warmth as you might expect for 100W bulbs – although they are a pair, and at this price, you could use several together to achieve the desired result.
Also, the surface can become very hot, so you need to make sure nothing is in contact with them – and don’t touch them with your hands.
In sum, another solid and reliable option if you want an effective heating bulb that doesn’t produce any light. A big thumbs-up from us.
- High-purity pottery clay – crack-resistant
- Suitable for a range of animals – not just chickens
- Long life – rated for 10,000-15,000 hours of use
- Completely dark – don’t emit any light
- Very reasonable price – don’t spend more than you need to
- Not a huge amount of heat produced by just one – but can use several together
- Hot to the touch – make sure nothing is in contact with them.
5. BOEESPAT 100W 3 Pack Ceramic Heat Emitter
This is another versatile zero-light bulb-style heater that can do a great job of keeping chickens – or other animals – warm during the winter. It is solid and well made, meaning it won’t break easily – and it is rated as being able to last a minimum of 15,000 hours before being replaced.
What we like about this is that it’s a safe option. Understandably, people can be worried about something going wrong and harming their animals, but with this heater, it shouldn’t be a problem. It also emits no light, so your animals can enjoy a natural sleep cycle.
One slight issue is that it’s quite hot to touch – so make sure your chickens don’t get too close. On the other hand, the heat emitted isn’t enough for a large coop – if you want to heat a larger coop, you’ll have to install more than one.
In short, a good option for keeping chickens or other animals safely warm during the colder parts of the year. If you want an affordable option that you can trust not to harm your hens, this could be the item you’re looking for.
- Versatile option – can be used for chickens, reptiles and more
- Long life – rated at a minimum of 15,000 hours
- Emits no light – allows chickens to enjoy a natural sleep cycle
- Solid construction – won’t be damaged easily
- Safe heat source – no need to endanger your hens
- Hot to touch – make sure chickens can’t touch it
- Won’t heat a larger area – but ideal for smaller coops
6. Simple Deluxe 4 Pack 150W Chicken Coop Heater
If you are looking for a 150W ceramic heater for a chicken coop, this one could be a great pick. It sells at a very reasonable price point, making it great value for money, and it has high energy efficiency, too, also helping you save some extra cash.
It heats up quickly, and it also has a good lifespan – it is rated for at least 10,000 hours of use, but you will probably get even more. It is also designed to resist cracking, so it won’t become damaged, even with constant use.
One issue is that it doesn’t put out as much heat as other types of heat sources – although it does a good job for a ceramic bulb heater. Also, the surface can become very hot, so make sure your chickens or other animals can’t touch it.
Overall, another reliable option if you want to keep your chickens warm and safe when the temperatures outside begin to drop. If that sounds like what you need, this is another heater that could be worth checking out.
- Heats up fast – no need to wait for it to get hot
- Decent lifespan – rated to last at least 10,000 hours
- Anti-crack – won’t break through continued use
- Affordable price – inexpensive way to keep animals warm
- High efficiency – thermal efficiency of 99.9%
- Doesn’t put out as much heat as other types – but normal for this kind of heater
- Hot surface – install carefully to keep chickens safe
7. Sweeter Heater 150W Safe Chicken Coop Heater
For a different type of solution to keeping your chickens warm and toasty during the winter, this is a heating system that could be worth a look.
It is an overhead heater that comes complete with everything you need to hang it, and it covers a large area, so you can use it to heat a larger number of chickens or chicks than when using another method.
The heat distribution is even, too, so there won’t be any hot or cold spots. We like the way it is also highly energy efficient – it will only cost a few bucks per week to run. Finally, it is made in the USA, something that might make some people very happy.
The main issue with this heater is that it can move about when knocked, so you need to make sure your chickens don’t bump into it when they go to roost. Also, it might not feel very warm – but this isn’t really a negative since it’s supposed to heat the animals rather than the air.
This could be a smart pick for anyone who has a larger number of chickens to keep warm – and if that sounds like your situation, this is a heater that should be on your list of possibilities.
- Generous size – can provide heat for a larger area and more animals
- Energy-efficient – only costs a few dollars per week to run
- Even heat distribution – no hot spots
- Internal thermostat – regulates heat automatically
- Made in the USA – all-American product
- Can move when knocked – need to make sure chickens don’t bump into it
- Doesn’t feel warm – but it isn’t an air heater
8. Betazooer 100W 2 Pack Infrared Ceramic Heat Lamp
This is another ceramic infrared heater that can be used for keeping chickens warm in winter but is also suitable for reptiles and other animals. It has an estimated lifespan of up to 15,000 hours and can be left on 24 hours a day, keeping your animals warm at all times.
As with other similar products, one advantage is that it doesn’t emit any light, so your animals will benefit from a natural sleep cycle. It also comes with a generous 90-day guarantee, so you know you’re covered if there are any problems.
There’s not much to dislike about this product. Of course, since the surface gets very hot, it’s important to make sure your animals can’t come into contact with it.
Also, it can take a bit of time to cool down when you switch it off, so make sure you don’t grab it with a bare hand.
To summarize, this is an inexpensive yet effective solution for keeping animals warm. If you are looking for a light-free heater for chickens or any other animals, this could be an option that merits a look.
- Easy to install – very simple to fit in your coop
- Long life – can last up to 15,000 hours and more
- Can be used 24hr a day – a great solution for constant heating
- Doesn’t emit light – perfect for giving animals a natural sleep cycle
- 90-day guarantee – in case anything goes wrong
- Gets hot – make sure your animals can’t get too close to the heater
- Takes time to cool down – be careful not to touch it with a bare hand
9. Farm Innovators 60W Heated Chicken Mat
Here’s another innovative solution for keeping your chickens warm during the winter – it’s a mat that you place on the floor for the chickens to sit on when they need warming up.
One of the best things about this mat is that it’s totally safe for your chickens to use, so you don’t need to worry about them getting burned or the coop catching fire.
Since it’s controlled by a thermostat, they will enjoy a consistent and even temperature, and it’s easy to clean up too.
That said, since this heating system is meant to be placed on the floor, chickens will poop on it, so it will need cleaning more often than other options. Also, it’s a bit expensive. It only heats a small area, and you would need to install several if you have more than one or two chickens.
However, despite these minor negatives, we think this is an excellent choice if you want to offer your chickens somewhere warm and comfortable to sit when the temperatures drop. If that sounds like an interesting possibility, this mat should be worth considering.
- Durable item – built to last
- Safe heating system – no danger to your animals
- Easy to clean – no problems with wiping muck off it
- Controlled by thermostat – for consistent warmth
- Easy to install – offers great versatility over how you fit it
- A little expensive – although still great value
- Chickens poop on it – needs regular cleaning
10. RentACoop 15W Chick Brooder Heating Plate
If you need a way to keep your chicks warm as they grow, this could be the answer you’re looking for. It’s a heated plate the chicks crawl under to stay warm, and it has 25 height settings, so you can adjust it as your babies grow.
We love that it’s so easy to install and use, and once in place there’s no risk of fire – so you know your chicks will be kept safe as well as warm. It’s very energy efficient, so you’ll save money compared to bulbs, and it will also last a long time, again saving you some cash.
The main negative is that chicks like to climb on top, and this means it can get messy, but it’s easy to clean, and you can also buy the no-roost cone separately to stop them climbing up.
Other than this, the only other problem is that it’s designed for chicks only – it isn’t a general-purpose coop heater. But for anyone who has chicks to raise, this is the perfect solution. A smart idea and a recommended pick.
- Energy-efficient – will cost much less to run than a bulb heater
- 25 height settings – you can adjust it as your chicks grow
- No fire risk – complete peace of mind that your chicks are safe
- Easy to install and use – could hardly be simpler
- Lasts a long time – don’t need to keep replacing it like bulbs
- Chicks like to climb on top – can get dirty
- Not an all-round coop heater – designed especially for chicks
What to Look for When Buying a Chicken Coop Heater
If you’re looking for the best chicken coop heater, you’ll probably be wondering what to consider when making up your mind. Let’s have a look at some of the most important factors now.
Maximum area heated
How large an area can a heater cover? You need to make sure any model you are interested in will be powerful enough for the size of your coop.
How much electricity will it require? Some heaters consume more energy than others, and this will result in higher electricity bills.
Do you want a heater that is only suitable for a chicken coop? Or are you looking for a heater that could also be used for other animals like reptiles, rabbits, guinea pigs or dogs? Some heaters are suitable for a range of uses while others are designed specifically for hen coops.
How is it regulated? Does it have an internal thermostat that regulates the temperature? This is important if you want it to maintain a constant heat when the external temperature fluctuates.
Easy to install
Is it easy to fit? Or does it require complicated installation? Most coop heaters don’t require specialist skills to install, but it’s worth checking.
Easy to clean
How easy is it to clean? Remember, chickens can cause a lot of mess, so you’ll need to take it out and clean it from time to time.
Is there a fire risk? Or is there a risk of it overheating and harming your animals? This is an important consideration that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Plenty of great options
As you can see, there are plenty of options in a range of styles and at prices that will suit any budget. If you need a chicken coop heater but are having trouble deciding which to go for, any of the picks in our review would be a great place to start looking.
Joseph Hudson has been raising chickens for over 15 years. In 2018, he completed the Agriculture & Natural Resources program at Mt. San Antonio College. He currently raises over 1400 chickens on his 7.5-hectare farm. He keeps sharing his experience on raising healthy and happy chickens on Chicken Scratch The Foundry.