How to Operate a Hova-Bator Incubator


The Hova-Bator egg incubator from G.Q.F. is a self-contained environment for incubating and hatching eggs. Various types of eggs can be hatched in the Hova-bator, including chicken, duck, turkey and quail eggs. Eggs require constant temperatures to hatch properly. Normally the mother bird will provide this through her own body heat. She will also protect and turn the eggs. The Hova-bator provides the shelter and temperature and the turning is done by hand.

Things You'll Need

  • Hova-bator incubator
  • Water
  • Eggs
  • Ensure that the temperature of the room that the incubator is between 70° to 80°F with good ventilation and no drafts. Do not let sunlight strike the incubator, as this will affect its internal temperature.

  • Remove the lid of the incubator. Attach the wire floor of the incubator to the plastic liner using the owl clips included with the unit. Place the liner and wire floor assembly into the bottom of the incubator.

  • Fill the center trough in the plastic liner with warm water. Refill the trough, as needed, during the incubation period.

  • Assemble the thermostat by threading the wing nut onto the adjusting screw. Thread the adjusting screw into the thermostat hole in the top of the incubator until there is enough of the screw protruding to attach the thermostat wafer, then thread the wafer onto the adjusting screw.

  • Plug in the incubator. Loosen the wing nut on the adjusting screw. Turn the adjusting screw until the thermostat indicator light comes on, then turn it another four complete turns. Allow the temperature to stabilize.

  • Check the thermometer for the temperature within the incubator. Adjust the temperature, using the adjustment screw, to the appropriate temperature for the eggs being incubated. For most eggs, this will be 100° F.

  • Place the eggs on the wire floor of the incubator, laying them on their sides with the small end down. Place the thermometer on top of the eggs, every few days, to ensure the incubator remains at the proper temperature. Adjust the thermostat accordingly, as incubation progresses.

  • Turn the eggs 2 to 3 times per day. Mark an 'X' on one side of each egg and an 'O' on the other side to help keep track when turning the eggs.

  • Stop turning the eggs 2 to 3 days before hatching will occur. Make sure the center trough in the plastic liner is filled and also fill the outer trough with water.

  • Do not remove the incubator cover until hatching is complete. After the chicks have hatched, remove the red vent plugs in the incubator to help the chicks to dry properly. Remove any chicks that are completely dry to a brooder.

Tips & Warnings

  • An optional automatic egg turner is available for the Hova-bator incubator.


  • Photo Credit Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images
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