Sponsored by Ritchie
Hot weather causes a unique set of challenges for maintaining the quality of your horse’s water when using a traditional water tank or tub. Fortunately, Ritchie automatic waterers can help ensure your horse has fresh, cool water all summer long.
Let’s start by looking at why water quality is important to pay attention to throughout the season. Horses prefer water that is neither too hot nor too cold. Rising temperatures outside mean your horse’s water supply heats up. By using a Ritchie automatic waterer, your water will cycle and refill as your horse drinks, and it won’t be exposed to direct sunlight for too long. This means your horse will always be drinking fresh, cool water.
It’s also a good idea to provide your horse with constant access to water. Ritchie automatic waterers allow you to relax, knowing your horse will always have the perfect amount to drink. This isn’t easy with troughs or buckets, which have to be frequently monitored and refilled.
Another environmental factor unique to the summer season that can affect your horse’s water quality is the presence of insects like mosquitoes. Mosquitoes spread many diseases, such as West Nile virus (WNV) that can affect your horse and diseases such as Zika and Dengue Fever, which you yourself can be at risk of contracting. They breed in stagnant, standing water—as little as a teaspoon or bottle cap of water standing for more than a week is enough for eggs to develop into adult mosquitoes. Automatic waterers lessen the chance of harmful insects breeding and laying eggs in stagnant water by limiting the amount of water in the trough at any given time.
When considering the environment, it’s important to keep in mind how much water we’re using and how much is being wasted. The spillage associated with cleaning and refilling standard troughs or buckets due to debris or horses’ tendency to play in their water buckets can lead to unnecessary waste. Automatic waterers help preserve water by delivering a constant supply that never needs to be manually refilled. The moving water also helps limit the growth of some types of algae, although occasional cleaning is still necessary for complete prevention.
Ritchie waterers can also help preserve the land around natural sources of water by providing a clean alternative at home. The days of horses accessing natural water sources are dwindling for many reasons, including water quality concerns, environmental impact and even the promotion of algae growth. By leading animals to and from streams and ponds, we’re doing damage to the streambanks and creating dirtier water downstream.
In addition to helping protect the environment, Ritchie automatic waterers are engineered to be low maintenance and dependable. Just a few simple tasks can help keep your Ritchie waterer running effectively all year long:
• Make sure your heater is off in the summer. If your waterer has a heater, turning off the power will help save energy and money.
• Brush to prevent algae growth. Algae flourishes in the heat, so inspecting your waterers frequently and brushing when necessary will help keep them algae free.
• Keep your valves, floats and drain plugs clean. These parts may have a tendency to build up with mineral or hard water deposits, which can lead to overflow.
• Check for water leaks. We recommend that you inspect your hoses and clamps once a year to make sure they are not leaking, corroded or cracked.
• Inspect your hardware. All Ritchie units have an access panel that is easy to remove and allows you to inspect the internal parts and hardware for rust or corrosion that may affect functionality.
These are just a few reasons why automatic waterers from Ritchie can help you water responsibly and keep your horses properly hydrated. Find out more about keeping your Ritchie Automatic Waterer running all summer long, and if you think it’s time to retire your traditional water tank, visit our website to find a Ritchie dealer near you.