How to Clean a Chicken Coop and Run with Dirt?

How to clean a chicken coop? New chicken owners usually have trouble figuring out how to clean and disinfect poultry houses and the run area. 

If you have this question, this guide will help you know all about disinfecting and cleaning a chicken coop with dirty floors.

Many chicken farmers are interested in learning about a few easy steps for cleaning and disinfecting chicken coops. Cleaning chicken coops and other equipment like nesting boxes, drinkers, feeders, and brooder guards are most important in poultry farming.

You also need to clean electric equipment like brooding machines, bulbs, heaters, to maintain the biosecurity in chicken farms.

Also read: Best 7 Chicken Coop Rake (For Cleaning Chicken Poop)

Benefits of Cleaning A Chicken Coop

It’s best for your flock’s health, growth, and productivity to clean out the chicken coop after each batch of chickens. Regular cleaning of coops removes all bacteria, viruses, and bad smells from the surface.

But it is most significant to know the proper methods of cleaning using a good disinfectant. So, hygiene and health are the major reasons why you should clean the chicken coop regularly. 

Cleaning the coop helps prevent various infectious diseases. It also saves you money by preventing any type of fatal, unexpected disease. 

What Are the Benefits of Cleaning Chicken Coop
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Here are some remarkable benefits of cleaning and sanitizing a chicken coop:

1. Good Chicken Hygiene

Healthy chickens are usually found in a healthy environment. You can keep your chickens healthy by preventing disease-causing bacteria and viruses. 

Moreover, people and companies like to buy clean chickens, not flocks with poop and muddy wings (recommended chicken poop cleaner) and wet feathers.

A clean, healthy, and attractive chicken is a sign of good poultry farming. You will get more eggs and meat if you keep them healthy. 

Overall, it will give you a profit in your chicken farming business.

2. Disease Prevention

Prevention of disease is always better than cure. Chicken coop floors that are wet or covered in spider webs are a major cause of bacteria and viruses’ growth. Dust on the hardware cloth can also lead to the spread of disease.

So, cleaning a chicken coop will directly stop these types of diseases in flocks. Always remember to clean the coop properly after selling every batch of chickens.

If you cannot do that, at least try to clean your chicken coop and run area once a month to avoid any contamination.

3. Keeps Away Foul Smell

The foul smell from the chicken coop is very annoying for you and your neighbors. This is also a good reason to clean your chicken coop regularly.

You will never want to live in a house with poop at one corner, and your hens, and roosters also feel this same. A foul smell mainly occurs in chicken coops when litter inside the sheds is not changed for a long time. 

In the rainy season, if the chicken coop floor bedding is not changed every month, your coop will cause an awful smell. 

Changing litter is most important every month if you are adding a new batch of chickens every month, if not, then you can change litter after every 2 months.

In the rainy season, try to keep litter dry by avoiding rainwater inside the coop. In heavy rain, you can cover open areas using tarpaulin (buy tarpaulin here) to stop water from getting inside the coop.

Moreover, in the rainy season, remove wet litter as soon as you can and replace it with new chicken bedding.

It is also recommended to use an odor eliminator to remove stubborn odors. Here are two of the best odor eliminator:

Here is our complete guide on the best odor eliminators.

4. It Controls Pests and External Parasite Infestation

4. It Controls Pests and External Parasite Infestation
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If you remove the litter from the coop regularly, you can easily protect the chickens from nasty mites, lice, and pests. The fact is that mites can be lessened and controlled just by regularly cleaning the coop.

The prevention of fleas, mites, and ticks is also a major reason to keep the poultry coop clean. You can also use good chicken wormer.

If your chicken flocks get infested with fleas, mites, and lice, it’s very hard to get rid of them. So, try to prevent them from growing inside your poultry coop by cleaning it regularly.

Below are the best medicines for external parasites in chickens:

How to Clean a Chicken Coop in 3 Steps?

Cleaning and sanitizing your chicken coops and nesting boxes need some specific steps to perform. One who is experienced should use only natural cleaning items familiar to the chickens.

Here are some things that you should follow for the best ways to clean the chicken coop:

1. How to Clean Chicken Coop Inside?

How to Clean Chicken Coop Inside
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a) Clean all the dirt, nesting materials, feathers, and bird droppings

Cleaning dirt and debris in a chicken house consumes a lot of time. But it is essential to remove as much as crap you can.

It may also include cleaning walls, internal pull-out drawers, wood parts, and other parts like feeders, drinkers, etc. You also have to clean other stuff like poultry heaters and chicken coop fans.

For electronic items, use a soft dry cloth to clean them. For other objects, water or a cleaning solution will make the job easier.

Check out one of the best disinfectant liquids- Vital-Oxide Mold and Mildew Remover

b) Break out the hose and quietly spray the enclosure down

You need to get rid of all the dust and dirt that is left over from scraping and shoveling. Do the first step again if there is a lot of debris left.

c) You should use a natural cleaning agent like vinegar to make the chicken nesting boxes and coop disinfect. 

It would help if you did not use bleach, as it is harsh for animals and can also be toxic for chickens.

Vinegar also has the same cleaning properties without severe effects. It is possible to make a cleaning solution with equal parts of water and vinegar.

To remove any remaining droppings, stains, dirt, and debris, you should use a hand brush and thick-bristled broom.

d) Rinse once more.

If you are still not satisfied with the quality of the cleaning, then you should clean all the dust inside the coop again. A clean environment provides better growth and productivity for poultry.

Some poultry farms keep a gap of 2 months in each shed to clean and make it infection-free. Meanwhile, they use another already-cleaned shed for growing a new batch of chicken flocks.

e) Sweep out water and let the coop and nest boxes air dry. 

The fresh air will prevent the vinegar smell, and sunlight will help in the disinfectant processes. Also clean all feeders, drinkers, and other stuff inside the coop using the disinfectant solution.

You can dry the equipment, like feeders, drinkers, their stands, in sunlight after washing them. 

After making the coop dry, lay down the fresh nesting materials (recommended beddings) to keep the floors clean and the chickens warm.

The bedding must be 6-12 inches thick, which will help prevent the chicken from cold. But before that, read the complete guide on cleaning chicken coop floor step by step.

2. How to Clean the Chicken Coop Floor?

How to Clean the Chicken Coop Floor
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You are all ready for your new flock of laying hens. What kind of bedding do you plan to use on the chicken coop floor? 

Pine shavings, straw, hay, or something else? How often is it required to clean it out? How will you make it not get stinky?

The deep litter method is a sustainable way to deal with the chicken coops litter that many farmers use. The deep litter method forms a compost pile of your chicken poop on the floor of the coop. 

It includes cleaning litter, disinfection, cleaning the floor, adding new litter, and chemicals used to clean the floor.

Similarly, like a compost pile, you must begin with a layer of pine shavings or any organic matter in the “browns” category. The high-nitrogen chicken poop is “green.“

You should add enough pine shavings to keep the floor composting nice, and the chickens will do the aeration automatically with their scratching behavior. 

If you scatter corn or any other type of chicken treats on the floor of the coop, it will encourage them to scratch. The litter contains a beneficial microbe that acts as probiotics for your hens.

Here are two of the best pine shavings for coop floor bedding:

Benefits of the Deep Litter System Are:

  • The deep litter method is easy to clean and doesn’t take a lot of time to manage the dirty coop.
  • The chickens scratch the bedding, and they get a beneficial culture of the living compost little material, suitable for them.
  • You can use various types of litter material like wood powder, and paddy rind up to 6-12 inches on the coop floor. It will keep your chicken clean and healthy.
  • You end up with compost, which is best for your garden plants and trees.
  • The deep litter system is entirely safe, and the birds also stay healthy.
  • This type of bedding has no smell to absorb all watery things that fall on the coop floor.
  • But the major thing is you have to change it after every 1 to 2 months or after changing a batch of flocks.

3. How to Clean Chicken Coop Run?

How to Clean Chicken Coop Run
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Cleaning the chicken run is also important because it is the main area where your flocks graze most of the time.

You can easily spray the roosting bars down by using the water hose for the chicken coop run. 

Just take a sponge, and soak it in white vinegar to make them run over the bars, depending on how nasty they are. This will help to sanitize and deter bugs.

Now, you’ll be able to use many materials. You can use shredded paper, straw, hay, or mulch. Most people use cedar pine shavings. However, you can use whatever you have.

You may know that sprinkling diatomaceous earth has many benefits; it is also very natural and must be included while cleaning out the coop because it helps to keep everything and everyone in a maintained manner and healthy.

If your chickens don’t free-range, then they might have a run or a chicken yard. You can make your chicken free-range inside your fenced backyard during the fall, as they may have cleaned up our garden beds.

Honestly, we don’t have to scoop this area out, but at least a few times a year when the compost is required. However, if you don’t have sufficient knowledge about the deep litter method, you must empty it while cleaning it for sanitation.


Every season brings new tasks and challenges for the chicken keepers to clean the coop and add various equipment for spring-cleaning to winter warmers. 

Come rain or shine, something that we’ll never be able to control is the weather. This is a matter of worry and concern while thinking about your backyard friend’s safety and comfort.

Luckily, you can easily prepare for all the seasons because we have made a valuable guide of everything that you must know on how to clean a chicken coop not current.

Moreover, with a necessary set of checklists, you can save them or bookmark this page. So, try to use these tips to clean your poultry coop and sheds. 

I hope these step-by-step guides on ‘how to clean a chicken coop?’ helped you in your backyard farming, Must share your thoughts in the comment section.

Bijaya Kumar
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