Concrete bird baths can be expensive, ranging in price from $75 to more than $200, the larger and more elaborate these designs are. As beautiful as bird baths may be, they’re also vulnerable to cracking once winter sets in. Unless you have a bath heater placed in the bowl or your birdbath is weather resistant, you’ll need to take steps to winterize it before cold temperatures take over.
You can extend the life of you birdbath for many years, but have some twine, burlap and wrapping material such as newspaper or plastic on hand before you get started:
1. Drain the bowl. Empty the bowl portion of the birdbath and allow to dry. If you use a pump to circulate the water, turn it off and disconnect it from its power source. Remove from the birdbath and place it in storage.
2. Separate the top portion of the birdbath from the bottom portion. Most bowel sections can be lifted off of the foundation while others must be unscrewed first.
3. Wrap each section separately of the birdbath, using newspapers, burlap or a blanket for protection. Cover each section in plastic. Take twine and wrap it around the now enclosed and protected sections and tie it.
4. Find a safe, dry storage place for your birdbath. In the event that you don’t have inside storage space available, your now covered birdbath should be able to resist the elements. However, you’ll want to check on the birdbath throughout the winter to ensure that no water was able to penetrate it, thereby potentially exposing your birdbath to adverse conditions.
Bird Bath Heaters
What if you don’t want to put your birdbath away, but prefer to use it all winter to provide your feathery friends with a place to visit? That’s easy: purchase a birdbath heater and keep it plugged in all winter.
Bird bath heaters won’t make the water hot, but should prevent freezing by maintaining a constant temperature between 40 and 50 degrees. Fully submersible, such heaters are constructed of diecast aluminum and can activate automatically when water temperature drops to a certain level, such as 35 degrees. You’ll save electricity by choosing a device that works only as needed. Look for one that is UL-listed and offers approximately 150 watts of power.
Most bird bath heaters do not work in extreme conditions such as temperatures below minus 20 degrees Fahrenheit. You can limit exposure by keeping your birdbath exposed to the sun, but not where stiff wind can quickly lower its temperature and quickly freeze the bowl.
See Also — Lyric Wild Bird Food