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Any tips for unfreezing water trough ?

20 replies

ponymad · 17/12/2009 13:57

How does everyone cope with frozen pipes and troughs?

I keep a heavy football in mine as the movement of it floating around is meant to help it stop freezing.

Any tips on how to cope would be very much appreciated I'd forgotten how grim winter can be.


OP posts:
MrFibble · 17/12/2009 16:37

The water in the boxes is on a continuous circulation system and is well lagged as we have nasty cold winters here.

As far as the water trough in the field goes (filled by hosepipe in the morning usually) I smash the ice with a large fence post , and top up with boiling water before the nags are turned out to ensure that when they are they will at least have something to drink in the first 30 minutes! However, today the water has frozen all the way down - it's pretty grim here at the moment. Minus 7 this morning, didn't get over -2 all day and the thermometer is heading south again.

Pixel · 17/12/2009 17:31

We can often get away with smashing the ice with a brick for a couple of days but then the ice gets thicker and the water gets lower as the troughs are no longer self-filling. Usually we end up taking water from home in a lidded container. If it gets too bad to take the car I'll have to strap it to the dcs sledge .

MitchyInge · 17/12/2009 21:19

smash with rolling pin

what else can you do?

MitchyInge · 18/12/2009 10:30

alternatively dare one another to stand on it for longer and longer periods of time

MrFibble · 18/12/2009 13:51

isn't there something so satisfying about smashing the ice and getting to the water below? Maybe I was an inuit in a previous life. Or maybe I just happen to like the odd bit of mindless violence.

ExplodingBananas · 18/12/2009 20:08

I have a colander to scoop the ice out, otherwise it just freezes over within 5mins of being broken.

ponymad · 19/12/2009 08:15

Thank you for your post MrFibble it has made me realise my situation is not that bad
This is my first winter at my new field and I was very spoilt last winter as my mil would have broken the ice on the trough and topped it up before I arrived as it was behind her house

We had snow yesterday and the water was much easier to break so I'm not panicking anymore, am also going to take a water container up everytime I go to keep water level topped up as I know in the summer the 6 of them drink the trough dry in 2 days.

Thank you all for your comments and suggestions xx

OP posts:
MrFibble · 19/12/2009 12:13

MINUS 16!!!!

Can't even turn out today as the roads are too slippy to walk along leading 2 horses so all they are getting is 45 minutes in the all weather turn out.

All I aiming to do today is to light the fire, play with the playmobile ponies with DD, drink hot chocolate and look at thermal / padded / quilted legware just in case this weather continues.

Southwestwhippet · 20/12/2009 20:13

I used to smash the ice with a metal shovel when it got really bad then cover with boiling water. Actually kinda fun, just think at least when it is this cold the mud freezes!

Butkin · 22/12/2009 22:53

Break it with my heel and then fish out all the big bits. DD decided to copy me and it overflowed her wellies - not impressed

magsnags · 05/01/2010 17:40

I was just looking on google for an answer and saw these posts! I've moved mine acoss to paddocks opposite which haven't been grazed since April (thereby conserving hay which is very scarce in the SE of UK & also because my hosepipe was blocked solid on Sunday morning) anyway there was already water in containers but the ice on them seems to be much thicker than it was on mine and it is a really hard task smashing them, so will take a couple of flask of boiling water this evening to see if it makes it easier to break.
Hi everyone by the way!
Thanks :-)

MitchyInge · 05/01/2010 21:10

have got some good tips for zipping across frozen water jump on x country course - put your legs up and you go much much faster

(for avoidance of doubt, on sledge not horse)

Pixel · 05/01/2010 22:31

LOl. I was eyeing up the shetland today wondering what I could use to fashion a harness. I'm sure she could pull our sledge!

MitchyInge · 06/01/2010 06:57

could you knot lots of scarves together, attach them to a breastplate?

hello magsnags btw, welcome!

snorris · 06/01/2010 07:12

Dh lit a fire under the infill pipe one year . I guess that only works if you have metal pipes and not plastic!!

magsnags · 06/01/2010 12:37

Well the hot water idea certainly seemed to work, it wasn't frozen when I got there at 7.30 last night but I poured the three boiling flasks it into the water anyway. This morning there was only a thin layer of ice from the area I've been clearing which took seconds to clear - so thanks all

MrFibble · 06/01/2010 13:51

I'm officially giving up on water in the field. DD and her wee friend spent an hour last week extracting the block of ice from the water trough and have transported it on a sledge and deposited it in my front garden . It is very big.

It's supposed to be minus 18 at the weekend... My mares are going nuts! Almost afraid to ride as the ground is so hard I just don't fancy falling off. Roll on spring please!

mummydoc · 06/01/2010 17:59

Mrfibble - my 2 ponies haven't been ridden now for 4 weeks ! god knows how i am gogin to get them sane enough to put children on , should have stuck to playmobil type

MitchyInge · 06/01/2010 18:04

can you ride them first, to take the fizziness out of them? (there must be a more technical term for that!)

or lunge?

MrFibble · 06/01/2010 19:43

Lunging first is always a good plan to get the fizz out but I hardly have time to ride let alone lunge first. It's such a vicious circle isn't it? No time to ride, horses get fizzy / nutty and take more time to get into a state where you can ride and then you run out of time...

I can't even lead my two to their winter turn out - it's too icy on the road and the TB is being such an idiot when I lead her so I dare not take both of the mares down the road on my own and I can't take one at a time because the one I left in the field on their own would break out. It's soooo frustrating - it's just 50 metres of main road to get past and I then I'd be fine but I simply can't find a way of doing it! Horses!

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