Highly Accurate Digital Spot Check Incubator Thermometer
Successfully incubating chicken eggs for the 21 days of hatching chicks in an incubator is a precise and careful process. Losses and mistakes can be expensive and disappointing. When the incubator conditions are ideal and hospitable to the eggs, hatch rates are higher and more strong chicks survive. Having an accurate digital thermometer for checking the egg incubator temperature is imperative for successful chick hatches.
Eggs are ideally incubated at 101.7ºF for egg incubators with a fan and a gradient of 100ºF-102ºF for still air incubators. When the temperature soars over 103ºF, the chick embryos can quickly die. If temperatures drop or are too low for too long, chicks can take longer to develop and often are much weaker with skeletal or developmental issues and can die hatching or shortly after.
After seeing better more timely, successful chick hatches, with our GQF Sportsman Incubators, I have recommended these to friends on poultry forums. I was pleasantly surprised when I see them wholeheartedly recommending the Brinsea Spot Check Digital Thermometer in turn to others asking about failed hatches. These have saved the lives of more chicks than any other piece of equipment I have owned!
Using a Thermometer in an Incubator for Hatching Fertilized Chicken Eggs
Digital thermometers are great when they are accurate. Seldom do two store-bought thermometers read the same, so it is frustrating figuring out the real temperature. It can be heart-breaking if you find, too late, the incubator temperature was wrong. When off a few degrees, inaccurate thermometers mean extreme temperatures may the incubator undetected, killing the developing chicks in the eggs.
Using thermometers in an egg incubator is a frustrating process. Many hobbyists end up purchasing a second thermometer because they don't trust the first thermometer, and sometimes even a third thermometer to see which of the first two is correct. Often the temperature readings are interpreted and roughly averaged, or the highest one taken to err on the side of caution, or maybe the middle one is chosen.
At the end of the first hatch while the hobby chick-hatcher thinks they are keeping the incubator at a steady 101.7ºF, chicks hatch days early, or days late with associated health problems or do not hatch at all. That is when they realize there is a problem with their digital incubator thermometer readings. This will usually happen no matter how carefully the hatching egg incubator is chosen and used.
If you put the accurate Brinsea Spot Check Digital Thermometer beside all your other thermometers, you will see which are the furthest off because you can depend on these Brinsea Spot Check Thermometers!
How the Accurate Brinsea Spot Check Thermometer Differs from Regular Thermometers
The Brinsea Spot Check Thermometer only reads temperature over a narrow range 90ºF to 104ºF (showing and L or H outside those limits) unlike the commonly used and less accurate weather thermometers that might read from -50ºF to plus 130ºF.
The Brinsea Spot Check can read a tenth of a degree, giving an accurate temperature of the incubator, with an accuracy of ± 0.2ºF.
It remains outside the incubator so the delicate electronics are spared a damp, hot environment for 21 days. A thin temperature probe from the Brinsea Spot Check Thermometer goes into the incubator to get the internal incubator temperature reading.
The Brinsea Spot Check can be switched on as needed for rapid readings and lower battery use or left on like the regular digital thermometers.
Price Comparison for Brinsea Spot Check Thermometer v's an Inexpensive Digital Thermometer
Brinsea Spot Check Digital Thermometers have come down in price a fair amount in the past few years. In the past they were a luxury item for serious chicken fanciers costing over $50 each. Highly Accurate Digital Spot Check Incubator Thermometers are now less than $23 and worth every penny.
It is easy to accumulate $50 in multiple inaccurate hardware store thermometers that require more batteries than a single watch-battery powered Brinsea Spot Check Thermometer. Even if just one inaccurate thermometer was bought at $10 and used to hatch a dozen $40 hatching eggs and temperature was off giving a lowered or non-existent hatch, that is an expensive failure. Even if an inaccurate digital thermometer costs $5, the cost of the fertilized chicken eggs and the loss of the chicks is the biggest cost.
The good news is these less accurate digital thermometers you already own can be reused. Especially the indoor/outdoor sensor thermometers. Place the sensor right under the heat lamp at ground level, for measuring brooder temperature. If the thermometers are off 2-4 degrees it is not as serious once the chicks are already hatched and the chicks can get closer under the light if cold.
I truly hope this helps with your chick hatching experiences, it's a shame to lose young chicks when it is avoidable with the right tools. Happy Hatching!