Hutch/shed heater recommendations

Lizzieejoyce

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Hello everyone,

My guineas are in the shed for the winter but it’s still quite cold in there so I am looking for a heater or a heated blanket that’s safe to keep on overnight and likely 24/7 soon. Does anyone have any recommendations please?

There’s no power out there so if there’s an alternative to using the mains that would be ideal. If not we will have to figure something out. They have wooden huts, fleece bedding and a ton of hay at the moment.

Thanks so much x
 

Betsy

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Sounds like your piggies need Snugglesafes. They are like piggy hot water bottles that you heat in a microwave and stay warm for up to 10 hours. My 3 girlies are in an unheated garage and Patsy hops on one as soon as I put it in the hutch. Here she is in the hutch demonstrating a Snugglesafe for you.

Patsy Chooken.JPG
 

Piggies&buns

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:agr:
my two also live in a hutch in my shed and unfortunately don’t have power either. They have four snugglesafe heatpads between the two of them. Their hutch is covered with three blankets, a thermal hutch cover and then a duvet pulled over all of it. Mine are bedded on hay and only have fleece tunnels for warmth night (so I can ensure they are properly dried during the day)
Snugglesafes stay warm to up to 10 hours although I find it is slightly less than that with them being outside. i heat them up as late I can in an evening (and on very cold days they have them during the day a well)
 

Lizzieejoyce

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Thank you both, do you mind my asking where you got yours from?

More than happy to get one or two but am still concerned that their living space in general will be cold, is there anything I can do to heat up the temperature in general rather than targeted spots?
 

Siikibam

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You can get them on Amazon. Stuffing the hutch with hay helps. And having a thermal hutch cover as well. I wouldn’t use fleece bedding as it’s likely it won’t dry properly.
 

Lizzieejoyce

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Their hutch is built into the shed itself so a cover won’t work unfortunately.
 

Piggies&buns

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i get mine from Amazon. I use four pads to warm my 6ft x 2ft hutch.

Without power in the shed the space is going to be cold, so you’ve got to do whatever you can - as I said in my post, insulation on the hutch (and on the shed itself if you can do so) - I’ve got foil insulation on the ceiling inside the hutch, and on the outside on the back and sides, then it’s got a three blankets then thrown over the hutch (down all sides), then the thermal hutch cover, then a thick duvet over everything. Absolutely stuff the hutch full with hay to fill the airspace. Snugglesafes then go in. I have two wooden log hides and each of those have a snugglesafe under (i then put a small fleece blanket on top of the wooden hide to keep the warmth in further. There is then two other snugglesafes in the middle of the hutch under the hay (basically there is a snugglesafe every 18 inches or so throughout the entire hutch). All of these measures mean once it is warmed up inside, the warmth can’t escape. I don’t use fleece as bedding at all as it doesn’t dry well enough outside in winter.
 

Piggies&buns

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Their hutch is built into the shed itself so a cover won’t work unfortunately.
just seen this after I posted my reply.
do you have a thermometer in there?
Can you insulate it in any other way? If you can’t and you’ve got no way of trapping the warmth into the hutch itself and preventing the cold air from outside the hutch from coming in, and it is dropping too cold, then you may have to consider bringing them indoors for the rest of the winter.
 

Lizzieejoyce

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I have a thermometer that I check the temperature with but nothing to regulate it. We could get power in there it’s just going to require some thinking. Will bring them in if it gets too cold.

Is there a heater that anyone could recommend? & am buying a snugglesafe now, thank you!
 

Piggies&buns

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I have a thermometer that I check the temperature with but nothing to regulate it. We could get power in there it’s just going to require some thinking. Will bring them in if it gets too cold.

Is there a heater that anyone could recommend? & am buying a snugglesafe now, thank you!
Below 15 degrees is too cold really so do keep a close eye. The snugglesafes don’t produce heat, they just provide a warm spot for the piggies to sit. When put under hay they will warm the hay around it. They say they last 10 hours but the most I’ve had from them is about 8 hours. Can you put some plastic sheeting over the front of the hutch to stop the hutch/shed air exchange (With some small holes for ventilation, of course)

if i had electricity in my shed id use an oil filled radiator. You need something thermostatic so it can come on and off as needed to keep the temperature constant.
 

KHBz

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I have a thermometer that I check the temperature with but nothing to regulate it. We could get power in there it’s just going to require some thinking. Will bring them in if it gets too cold.

Is there a heater that anyone could recommend? & am buying a snugglesafe now, thank you!
Hello, I've posted before about the heater and thermostatic plug I use. Our two are in a hutch in the 'shed'. I use inverted commas because it doesn't look at all shed-like on the inside, having been insulated and converted to a study [alas, now a guinea-pig sanctuary]. This does mean it is probably warmer than most sheds but it does nevertheless require some work to keep them warm. Like Piggies&buns, I have been able to wrap the (already insulated) hutch in blankets, carpets, more silver insulating foil, hutch covers etc, and then in the sleeping area at night I have upside-down cardboard boxes over snugglesafes, with those boxes then filled loosely with hay and topped with more hay. The shed is heated throughout the day and that means the night-time temperatures in the shed haven't gone below 10 degrees whilst within the hutch space itself it has never gone below 16 degrees and is usually around 18 degrees. The piggies should be warmer than this if they stay with the snuggle-safes inside the overturned hay-filled cardboard boxes.

I keep the electric heater on, plugged into a thermostatic plug, from 6 am to 8 pm (when they are shut in for the night). Although you can't buy that one anymore, a quick search brought up this one which looks much more sophisticated in terms of thermostatic control than mine: Daewoo Free Standing Bedroom/Kitchen 2000W Convector Heater with 3 Heat Settings, Safety Cut-Out Function with Thermostat Dial - White: Amazon.co.uk: Kitchen & Home (That is just the first one I came across -- there are so many.)

Because the thermostatic control function is inadequate on my heater, I also bought a thermostatic plug similar to this one, into which the heater is plugged. (The heater is switched permanently to its highest setting as it is now controlled by the plug): NASHONE Wireless Thermostat RF Plug Digital Temperature Controller with Heating and Cooling Mode. Remote Control-Built in Temperature Sensor. 3680W: Amazon.co.uk: DIY & Tools . Now that it is getting much colder, I have set it to 20, and that keeps the daytime temperature, totally reliably, between 19-21 degrees.

That, of course, does all need electricity. The system is working though. Having said that, I'm also going to buy another snugglesafe for elsewhere in the hutch as, although they have two at the moment, the hutch has increased in size from last year.

Can you wrap the inside of the shed with insulating silver foil (or radiator foil)?
 
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