Chicken Coop Self Feeder/Water System On The Cheap

Detail Plans

Home Made Self Feeder


Link to Free Chicken Coop Plans website The farm stores all carry a nice selection of chicken feeders and water containers but they can be rather expensive. I made a 5 gallon feeder and waterer using two 5 gallon buckets I got for free at our local grocery store – usually the bakery or deli section – and two 20 inch plastic planter bases. The plastic planter bases cost around $5.00 – I purchased mine from a garage sale. Of course, any local retailer such as Walmart, Target, or your local hardware store or nursery would carry them as well. The 5 gallon feeder I’m currently using is pictured above – after filling it with feed, it will last about 3 weeks for 13 chickens.

How it’s done: To make the Chicken feeder – drill several holes about 1 1/2″ in diameter around the bottom of the bucket. Make sure the bottom edge of the holes are no higher up than 1/2″ from the very bottom of the bucket. Next – place the bucket in the bottom of the plant base so the top of the bucket is still up. Don’t throw away the lid – you’ll still need it. Make sure the bucket is centered as best as possible in the plant bottom and then screw it in place using 3 or 4 screws until it is secure. That’s it! just pour in the feed and put the lid on and you’ve got 5 gallons worth of feed. I’m guessing this would be roughly 20 lbs of feed since it holds just under half of a 50lb bag of chicken feed in my feeder. I place my feeder on top of 2 concrete blocks – chickens are sloppy eaters and this helps prevent feed spillage. I’ve seen other people hang their feeders a few inches off the ground with rope. The suggested distance off the ground is about the height of the chickens back.

eHow Automatic Chicken Waterer
For small flock, one to five chickens, the cheapest way for you to make a water dispenser is to use a plastic milk or juice bottle. Fill the bottle with water, poke a 3/8-inch hole ½-inch from the bottom, and put it in a 8-inch pan with tall sides. It works because the water flows out of the bottle from the hole until the hole is under the water level. Once under the water level, no more air can get in the bottle to replace the water. The air inside the bottle expands until it cannot expand any more and the flow of water stops. This system allows for a constant level of water in the bowl, as the water refills it each time the level drops below the hole.
Please Notice that your home made watering jug or bucket MUST have an air tight lid. A open top bucket or jug WILL NOT work!

Why is common sense so uncommon?
Don’t be Shy. Leave me your Comment(s)

3 responses to “Chicken Coop Self Feeder/Water System On The Cheap

  1. Re: 5 Gallon Bucket Chicken Feeder

    I suggest using one long 1/4″ bolt installed through the center of the bucket and plastic planter base. If either turns, they will always be centered.

    The reason for the long bolt is to install a cheap plastic funnel up-side-down inside the bucket. The funnel should have an approximate 7″ top diameter. Since the feed at the bottom center of the bucket will never fall out, there is no need to have feed there. The funnel will accomplish this. By the way, get a bolt with threads all the way to the head so you can install a washer and nut to separately hold the bucket and planter base together. Use another washer and nut on the top of the bolt to hold the funnel in place.


  2. Hi, the feeder worked out perfectly! Having a problem with the waterer.Followed directions. But the water does not stop when the saucer is full. I have the lid on tight. What did I miss?


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