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Last updated on May 6th, 2021
Being brought up in a family of animal lovers we always kept a range of chickens, from Cochins to Rhode Island Reds which make really good layers. Our issue, even when we lived in a smaller town, was the foxes. We always had an electric fence but needed a way to make sure the chicken coop door was open at first light and closed again in the evening once the chickens were all roosting.
Now back in the day, my dad has always done this the good old fashioned way, manually. Now, however, technology has moved on and we have fitted the automatic chicken coop door opener that opens either by timer, or how we have them set, by using the LUX light sensor most models have. You can even adjust the light setting for opening and closing which is useful.
If you are looking around for the Best Automatic Chicken Coop Door Opener, you have landed on the right page. I have researched, done some testing and have some great models to recommend. These five automatic chicken coop door openers presented below are accompanied by a buying guide to assist you as you make a choice.
Omlet Automatic Chicken Coop Door
Until I came across the Omlet automatic chicken coop door there was one problem with most other models I couldn’t ignore. If the door on your coop was not perfectly aligned, it could jar and jam so as good as the control unit might be, it could be unreliable. Even if you purchased a door that drops down that many companies sell as an extra, your coop would have to be perfectly straight for it to work.
That was until I tried this model by Omlet. This is the only automatic door that has overcome all these issues by opening either right to left or left to right and it is so smooth and reliable. It has been well designed, extremely well made and can be controlled by a timer or light sensor, you also have the option for a coop light which I have installed to encourage the chickens to come into the coop in the evening before the door closes.
Top 5 Automatic Chicken Coop Door Openers Reviews
1. Omlet Automatic Chicken Coop Door
In the past I had reviewed several automatic chicken coop doors openers but none have got my attention or impressed me as much as the Omlet Automatic Chicken Coop Door Opener.
Full disclosure, Omlet reached out and asked if I wanted to test their model, usually, I would say no as I don’t usually accept free products to review because most of the time they are just cheap products they want to push in front of my readers. However, after seeing this model I just had to check it out so I said I would take a look but no promises. I also made sure it would not affect the outcome of my review. If it didn’t work or there are things I didn’t like, I would say so.
So back to the review, most of the previous models I have reviewed it was just the control units supplied with a wire to lift a standard door up and down. Most also don’t include a door and if they do its one that slides up and down which isn’t a great design.
Watch my video review of the Omlet automatic chicken coop door
What makes it so special
The problem is, as good as any control unit might be (ChickenGuard ‘Premium’ controller) if the door doesn’t slide freely enough they often jar and get jammed. This is the problem the Omlet model has overcome by totally redesigning how the door opens. They also added some other innovative features too.
Can attach it to any wooden coop, plastic Omlet coop or chicken wire
You can attach it to any of their coops and runs, you can also attach it to normal chicken wire and of course to any wooden coop as I did myself and suspect many other people would probably be doing also.
You do need to order an additional attachment kit to attach it to Cube M1 which is their older Iglo coop, to traditional mesh or the Omlet run. However, if you want to attach it to a wooden coop like I did, it comes with everything you need.
It was super easy to install and within around 60 minutes was ready to use
So when it arrived all I needed to do was attach the door to the frame, this took around 5 minutes and just involves inserting a metal cog into the small motor spindle as shown in the pictures below.
Then all you do is attach two plastic bars that hold the door to the frame and then it’s ready to attach to the coop.
So you need an opening of around 8 inches wide by 12 inches tall, my door opening had been altered more times than I can remember so it needed a little more taking off the hole to make it fit, this is where my trusty DeWalt oscillating multitool came in. It was actually wider than I needed but it still fit nicely so it’s quite flexible.
All you basically do is cut a hole or remove your current door, place the automatic door opening over your hole and mark four holes with a pen or pencil for the screws. Drill four holes in the coop for the bolts and then fix the chicken coop door to the coop. It is just four bolts, four brackets and four wing nuts. That was simple enough although I had to make some small alterations which you can read in my full detailed review which includes the installation here.
I also ordered the coop light buts it is optional
So something this model has that no other model does is the option of a light for inside the coop, now this was additional but I ordered it. The idea of this coop light is that it comes on 5 minutes before the door closes and encourage any hens that have not come into the coop yet to come.
Now I have this installed but decided to turn it off as I was worried about it using too much battery power, I’m not sure how much power it really drains so will have to test this over the next few months. However, I can still turn it on manually from the control panel I just don’t have it come on 5 minutes before closing at the moment.
Maybe if I had it connected to the mains electric which is also possible with the power adapter, however, this is also sold separately and I had no electric points near the coop and the chickens always come in well before dark anyway so its not really a problem for me.
Control panel installation and setup
So the main control panel is also very well built, you simply attach a steel plate to the shed with three screws and the main control unit slides into this. The power cable for the door and light just connect in with push fit clips and all you need is 4 AA batteries and it’s ready to go.
Again this takes a few minutes and then once I had clipped the wires out of the way, I just used some cable clips but it did come with some cable ties it was ready to use.
Timer and light sensor
So I have tried both the light sensor and timer and decided the timer was the best option for me. The light sensor automatically senses when it’s almost dark and closed the door and then opens up in the morning at first light.
You can even adjust the light sensitivity to get it just right for you or adjust it if it gets a little shade for example so you need it to stay open a little longer than the standard setting.
The reason I switched to the timer option is that my chicken hut is in a small paddock next to some woods and although we have an electric fence around it, the chickens go over the fence into the woods.
The problem is that it gets light early and the door opens but it just a little too early as the foxes are still around. So I simply set the door to open at 7.30am and close a 9.30pm and it works well. If only the chickens could stay inside the paddock with the electric fence around the light sensor would be perfect. If you have a contained chicken run this would also be perfect.
The control panel is very easy to use
The control panel is very easy to use as there are only three buttons, + button and – button and an OK button. You can also override the setting to open and close the door manually by holding in the OK button for 3 seconds, super simple.
Another feature I also like is that it has the battery power level as a percentage too. I just check this once a week as part of the cleaning routine but they should last for around 6 months so not something I really need to worry about. Would be nice to see a LED low power indicator you can see from a distance, this is the only feature I think is missing.
The control panel is also easy to set and add the opening and closing time, adjust the light sensitivity if you using this feature. It also controls the coop light I have installed. It really is very simple to use.
- Can be fitted to any wooden chicken coop as I did, Omlet’s own coops and runs as well as traditional chicken wire.
- Easy to install with everything needed for a wooden coop.
- Can be mounted so it opens right to left or left to right.
- Extremely well made from quality plastic with a metal cog that opens the door.
- Optional coop light and power adapter for mains power.
- 4 AA batteries last around 6 months.
- Timer and light sensor for automatic door operation.
- Battery level indication on an LCD screen.
- 2 years warranty for full peace of mind.
- Amazing customer service.
- Its expensive but I think it’s worth the cost.
Overall this is an amazing piece of kit, it’s well made and much better than anything else I have seen. It’s also very reliable which is what I really wanted in a good automatic chicken coop door. I no longer have to worry if the door has shut properly which is an issue with most other models, especially if it’s done manually and you forget as I have done more than once.
The only issue is price, however, none of the models is what you would call cheap. I think when you take everything into consideration, this model actually offers the best value for money even though it’s also the most expensive.
I love the design, the way it opens and closes, it’s easy to set up, flexibility and probably the best in terms of quality. At the end of the day, when it comes to convenience and the safety of your chickens I would choose this model every time. I’m that impressed I’m ordering another one for my other coop so they both have automatic doors on.
2. ChickenGuard ‘Premium’ Automatic Chicken Coop Door Opener
Previously my best pick before I tested the Omlet automatic chicken door, the ChickenGuard ‘Premium’ Automatic Door Opener is the next best thing. It’s ideal for those who already have a door that opens and closes up and down and just need a device to control the door on a wire. Personally, I would change the door for the Omlet model but if you do want to keep the door, this is the best model for that situation.
It features a light sensor and high-end timer to program when the door opens and closes. You can adjust the timings to suit the time of the year, and it has manual settings accessible through the large buttons provided. One of the features I do like is that you can set the LUX light sensor to different brightnesses for opening and closing. Basically, you can open the coop door when it’s fully light and close the coop door just after dark when you know all your chicken will be roosting. That alone is a great feature.
This model also has an LCD screen to access the menu settings with ease, even with thick gloves. The screen is powered by 4 AA batteries (so ready to replace) that can last up to 12 months, obviously, the heavier the door the quicker it drains the batteries but 9-12 months is a good expectation for battery life.
It has an indicator light to signal battery activity from as far as 100 yards, this means if you have the coop at the bottom of the garden you can still see if the battery is running low. It also glows red when the door shut so you know the door is closed, again also useful.
This model takes a short time to set up, and it is weatherproof to contend with the British weather with no problems. This really come down to the high-quality build, it also made the UK which I like to.
The automatic coop door opener is lightweight, weighing 544.3g, and it possesses a lifting capacity of 1kg, now this is probably good enough for most domestic chicken coops but if unsure, check the weight of your door. Our runner-up will lift up to 5kg and is the Extreme version so you may want to order this model if you have a very large chicken coop door. Same great features just a heavier weight capacity.
It comes with a 3-year warranty and excellent customer support; thus, you can rest easy. Just don’t forget to register your waranty.
- Perfect for automating the opening and closing chicken coop doors up to 1kg.
- Comes with a light sensor and a high-end timer to open and close the door.
- Offers manual and automatic settings.
- Runs on 4 x AA batteries that can last 9-12-months.
- Features an easily accessible LCD screen with large easy to use buttons.
- It is waterproof for durability, great for the UK weather.
- Easy to install.
- Comes with a light indicator that can be seen from 100-yards to let you know of low battery warning and when the door is closed.
- Accompanied by a 3-year warranty for full peace of mind.
- The light sensor’s accuracy is affected if the coop is in a shaded area so you will need to plat around with the setting to fine tune.
The ChickenGuard ‘Premium’ Automatic Door Opener is easy to install and operate, making it convenient for regular size chicken coops. This model is a bit expensive, but it is a waterproof premium product created to lasts for years and has some great features. I honestly don’t think any other brands build a better alternative or at least from what I have seen.
It has a light sensor, which works with the timer to open and close the door in the morning and evening; hence, it is important to place the coop in an open, unshaded area if possible. If the coop is in a shaded area, the light might not reach the sensor on time, thus delaying the door opening by a couple of hours. Adjusting the light sensor level can help overcome this. Other than that, the model functions really well and is probably the best option for most people who keep a few chickens.
3. ChickenGuard Extreme Automatic Chicken Coop Door Opener
The ChickenGuard Extreme Automatic Coop Door Opener is the big brother of our best pick. However, it has a higher lifting capacity of around 4kgs making it perfect for those with heavier doors on their chicken coops, and it does not limit you to a specific door height; you can install it despite the size/style of your chicken coop door, obviously, it still needs to slide up and down. It features a durable cord that can withstand 25kgs of breaking strain, which is impressive.
This model has a LUX light sensor just like our best pick and morning and evening can be adjusted independently. You can also set the timer to operate the door twice a day, in the morning and the evening. The door will close automatically, but it is possible to operate it manually using the control panel next to the LCD screen.
The automatic door opener uses 4AA batteries to operate optimally, and it comes with an indicator visible from 100 yards to notify the user of how much charge is left in the batteries plus it also lets you know if the door is shut. Again, just like the more affordable Premium model, it comes with a 3-year warranty.
- Ideal for opening and closing larger chicken coop doors up to 4kg.
- Features a programmable timer and light sensor for automated opening and closing of the door.
- Comes with a battery status indicator that is visible from 100 yards away.
- A warning light also lets you know the coop door is closed.
- It is weatherproof and functions in extreme weather (Not sure what you actually class as extreme weather).
- Uses 4AA batteries that can last up to a year.
- Easy to install.
- Comes with a 3-year warranty and excellent customer service.
- It is pricey.
The ChickenGuard Extreme Automatic Coop Door Opener is perfect for those with large chicken coops as the model has a higher lifting capacity of 4kgs. This Extreme version of our best pick is fairly expensive when compared to our best pick, but the coop door opener functions well in harsh weather, and it features an accurate light sensor to prevent any delays. If were honest, this is probably only a better model than the more affordable Premium model (Our best pick) if you have a heavy chicken coop door and need to take advantage of the extra lifting capacity. As for extreme weather, I suppose you can only say whether you get what you might describe as extreme weather.
4. Titan Incubators Automatic Chicken House Door Opener
Introducing the Titan Incubators Automatic Coop Door Opener, which is waterproof for durability and is among the easiest models to install. This is a more affordable option than our prevous picks but it also has fewer features.
All you need to do is insert the 4 AA batteries, set the current time, set the opening/closing times, screw the device above the chicken coop door, and finally attach the cord from the device to the chicken coop door and you are all set!
The waterproof model has a sizeable display screen for easy visibility and simple to use control panel to set the times. It has a lifting capacity of 1kg; hence make sure that the door you are using is not too heavy to lift. The Titan model has a 2-year warranty, which speaks for the coop door opener’s good quality.
- Easy to install and setup.
- Timer setup to set opening and closing time.
- It is waterproof for durability.
- Sold at an affordable price.
- Offers a lifting capacity of 400g- 1kg.
- Accompanied by a 2-year warranty for full peace of mind.
- You cannot manually override it.
- No light sensor to open the door instead of timer.
The Titan Incubators Automatic Coop Door Opener would suit those looking for an affordable option for a small chicken coop and don’t need some of the features of the ChickenGuard models. The model is easy to install, durable, and easily programmable; therefore, it is ideal for those who want something easy to operate.
What this model does not have is the light sensor which I would prefer to use over a timer as it doesn’t need adjusting with the daylight hours as they get longer in summer and shorter in winter. Overall, it’s a good quality affordable model.
5. CUBE Chicken Coop Door Opener with Timer PLUS Standard Door
If you are looking for a model that offers good value for money, the CUBE Chicken Coop Door Opener is a good choice and comes with a metal door to fix to your coop. As mentioned, the coop door opener comes with a standard door that is easy to set up, as there are no complicated wires to deal with. It comes with 4-AA batteries too to get you started.
This quality model is protected from the worst of British weather and is fully waterproof for outdoor use. The easy-to-install door opener has a simple timer to assist in setting when the coop door is open or shut just like our previous models. You don’t have to worry about the door’s size for those who are wondering, as it is large enough for most geese breeds to pass through. To assure you that the quality of this model is reliable, the manufacturer offers a 2-year warranty for full peace of mind.
- Comes with a standard coop door, simply attach the door to your chicken coop.
- It is waterproof to protect it from harsh weather.
- Easy to install.
- Offers good value for money.
- Fitted with quality batteries with a decent running time.
- Backed by a 2-year warranty for full peace of mind.
- Installation instructions are a bit vague.
The CUBE Chicken Coop Door Opener is perfect if you’re looking to purchase an automated door opener that comes with an actual door. This affordable model has a lifting capacity of about 1kg so on par with our best pick, and it is easy to install.
It comes with an accurate timer but it does lack a light sensor. For the features offered in this model, we find that the price is fair and the quality offers good value for money. It’s differently worth considering, especially if you also need a door.
Knowing that you can get out of the house and still have your chickens return to the coop for the night feels good. A chicken coop door opener that is effective will run at the programmed time and never fail unless the batteries run out but the best have warning lights so you know when they need changing well before they actually run out.
If you are shopping for the best automatic chicken coop door opener for the right price, here are a few things you need to keep in mind:
What is it powered by?
Automatic chicken coop door openers need power to function optimally, and there are various ways to power these devices. You will find some models using batteries, mains electric or solar power and each of these sources has its advantages and disadvantages.
Electric models are costly, and they are limited if there is no electricity. You also have to make sure the wiring is well set up so that it does not get in the way of animals. The advantage of these models over batteries is that if you can guarantee constant electricity, you don’t have to worry about the chickens getting locked out because of lack of power.
Battery-based models are affordable, but they need replacement regularly to avoid operational failure, usually every 9-12 months. Solar panels are also an excellent option, but they will cost you a little more. Furthermore, solar panels are also limited because when there is no sunshine, there is no power and I have not seen many in the UK powered in this way, I think there is a reason for that.
Timer and Light Sensor
Many models rely on timers and light sensors for the coop door to open and close in time. A timer allows you to set the times you want the door to close or open, usually twice a day. Models that have light sensors are triggered by the increase or decrease of light to open or close the door. When you buy an automatic chicken coop door opener with a light sensor, you need to position it where the sensors are able to detect changes in the intensity of light so these are best for coops on open sunny positions.
Some models come with both the timer and the light sensor, like the ChickenGuard ‘Premium’ Automatic Door Opener. Select the function that serves you the best depending on the location of the coop. Those with coops in shaded areas will find timers more effective than the light sensors that can be delayed by low light levels.
Protection from Harsh Weather
Most chicken coops are outdoors; hence the devices need protection from rain and other elements. Select a model that is waterproof to prevent electrical failure or the water soaking the batteries. If you experience harsh winters, make sure that the model you buy is designed to meet the challenge. Some manufacturers specify if the model is suitable for winter or not; therefore, always be on the lookout. All our recommended models are suitable for UK weather outdoors.
The size of the display is important for easy programming of the timer or the light sensor. Using a small screen is tasking and may cause people with eye problems to strain even more. A good display will be visible and backlit for easy operation at night. Also, the control panel should have large, clearly indicated buttons that are accessible with gloves on.
Door size and Lifting Capacity
The size and the weight of the door are essential because it determines the device you purchase. The door needs to be sizeable to let the flock pass through without issues but chicken coop door openers have different weight limited that can lift. Large doors for large coops will weigh more and therefore require a higher lifting capacity.
Small coop doors can easily be managed by devices with a 1kg lifting capacity, while larger doors will need a lifting capacity of more than 4kgs. As long as the connecting cord between the device and the door is strong, the automatic door should open seamlessly.
The safety of your animals is important; therefore, it is crucial to get a device that won’t squash the animals in the doorway. A safety feature that helps to keep the animals safe is a sensor that prevents the door from moving if it senses an obstacle in the way.
Do I select a programmable light sensor or a light sensor?
This depends on the location of the coop. If the coop is in an area where light can reach easily, then a light sensor might be appropriate. However, if the coop is in a poorly lit area, you might want to use a model with a timer instead.
Do all models come with battery life indicators?
No, not all of them do. You have to look at the device’s specifications to know whether it has a battery life indicator. If you want to keep track of the battery life to prevent any door operational failures, it is better to get a model with an indicator which both our best pick and runner-up have.
Are automatic coop door openers affected by cold weather?
Some models can survive winter, and others freeze shut. If you settle for a cheap model, there is a high chance that it will suffer the effects of winter and ice. Invest a little more and get a fully waterproof model and protected from differences in environmental temperatures.
Our Final Conclusion
There are amazing products in the market, so take your time to select the best automatic chicken coop door opener. You have models like our best pick, the Omlet automatic chicken coop door, that are suitable for wooden coops, plastic and can even to fitted to mesh chicken wire and runs with its amazing design and reliability. It has both a timer and a light sensor, so you can pick which function will serve you best.
On the other hand, the ChickenGuard Automatic Coop Door Opener will serve those with large coop doors because of its higher loading capacity of 1kg. This runner-up model offers a programmable timer and light sensor, and it is easy to install. Whether you have a large or small coop, you cannot lack a device in the marketplace that will satisfy your needs.
Last update on 2021-05-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API