Tips on Keeping Your Horse Buckets Clean This Summer

July 20, 2016 3 min read

Tips to Keep Your Horse Buckets Clean This SummerWe give a lot of consideration while deciding what to feed our horses. We tweak meals to come up with an ideal ration providing the best nutrients. As horse owners, we must also take great care of our horse's water source. Here are some tips on keeping your horse buckets clean this summer. Your horse buckets need to be completely clean to ensure your horses’ overall health. It’s not a happy scenario when you find automatic waterers stocking up with algae in the middle of summer. Unlike feed buckets, water buckets should actually be scrubbed from time to time, and rinsed on a daily basis. We know that it is absolutely impossible for your horses to be choosy about the cleanliness of their tubs, buckets, and bins, but a well-cleaned water container is simply a staple of a properly managed horse barn. Not only will your pails and water bucks look better, but your horses will be happier and healthier.

Cleaning the insides of the bucket

The first thing that you need to ensure is that the insides of your horse buckets are perfectly cleaned. Clean the buckets with a hard toilet brush or a regular household scrub brush. Follow it up by rinsing the buckets with water. This is something that needs to be in your weekly routine. To ensure the spread of any disease or virus, you can use a mild soap, apple cider vinegar or bleach to wash the buckets with. Depending on how filthy the buckets are you may need to let them soak overnight. Make sure to always rinse your buckets thoroughly to ensure there is no smell that could deter your horse from drinking. It is also a great idea to leave them empty out in the sunlight for a few hours, as that is a natural bacteria killer.

Keeping the buckets free from debris

Make sure that buckets are not only tidy but also free from debris. This is a job that requires your daily attention. Depending on where your buckets are located you may have animals (birds are best known for this) that try and drink but end up drowning in the buckets. If you find this a problem, you can put a piece of wood in the bucket or something that would allow the animal to get out. The other thing you can try is just moving the location of the water buckets. This is a common problem in the spring time when there are lots of baby birds being born in the barn. It is important to dump and refill buckets with clean water as often as possible so that the water does not become stagnant. Stagnant water is a great place of incubation for disease inducing insects like mosquitoes and flies.

Troughs and Automatic Waterers

A strong and hardy broom or a scrub brush with a long handle is a great tool to get rid of algae and grime from the surfaces of your larger troughs. Automatic waterers also require regular observation. You should ensure these devices are functioning well and that they have fresh water consistently available all year round. Many of these waterers come with stainless steel bowls. Cleaning them regularly with a sponge or a scrubbing pad will minimize the buildup of algae. Also, make sure that it is dumped regularly as the accumulation of grit and grime rests in the bottom. More important than the method you use, is the consistency with which you clean your buckets. If you make it a part of your weekly routine, you will not have the nasty buildup that you find in buckets that have not been cleaned in weeks. We would love to hear your “recipes” for the cleanest barn buckets so feel free to comment here or post it on our Facebook Page for all to see and try!


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