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Oct 16, 2018

Preparing Your Barns for Colder Weather

By Dave Limoges - Feed Sales Manager
Are your barns ready for winter?

Frost on the windshield serves not only as a reminder that colder days are not far off, but that it’s time to prepare livestock buildings for winter. It’s important to bring back thoughts of cold weather ventilation. There are three major challenges associated with cold weather ventilation; maintaining a healthy comfortable indoor environment, conserving energy and keeping operating cost down.

There are several things to check on hog buildings.

Checking all the controllers would be a good first step. You want to make sure the settings are right, so you aren’t heating a room more than it needs to be heated.

Ceiling inlets should also be checked. You want to make sure they’re loose, you might need to adjust the cables and controller to make sure they are opening and closing correctly, and you are getting that fresh air. You want air moving; you don’t want some areas of the barn to get stuffy. Be sure you don’t have leaks around the inlet.

Check your curtains; if there are a lot of leaky areas around the curtains, the inlet system will not perform as well as you need it to perform.

All fans should be cleaned, and the belts checked.

Heaters are also likely to need some maintenance.


The pigs can be a valuable source of feedback to help identify ventilation issues, cold drafts in the sleeping area will cause your pigs to pile, are they dunging where they sleep? These and other signs will let you know you need to adjust your ventilation settings, the combination of inlets fan and static pressure need to be adjusted.

Don’t forget about the outside of your barns especially after a heavy snowfall, be sure you check for snow piling up in front of your fans and check your roofs, heavy snow loads can cause roofs to collapse.

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