Energizers for the grazing system

Selecting the proper electric fencers for the grazing system is key to the success of the entire fencing system.

The first step in determining what size of energizer will work for your electric fence is to determine what type to use. There are three main types of energizers for the electric fence, those are:

  • Electric plug-in style
  • Solar powered
  • Battery powered

When sizing the energizer, the type of fence that it will be used on and the total length of the fence are major factors that will be used in the decision making process of which size enegergizer to choose. Experience at the University of Missouri Forage Systems and Research Center has shown that allowing one mile of fence per joule of output will give satisfactory results in most scenarios.

The next step in determining the size of the enegergizer is to determine what type of fence it will be used on. Single wire interior type systems require less enegery than do multiple wire systems. The multiple wire systems will most likely carry a higher amount of vegetative load on the lower wires. Also with multiple wire fences, such as the common five wire fence, charging every other wire on the fence is advised to reduce the overall total length of charged wire and the resulting load on the fence.

The type of fence can also affect the performance of the energizer, and will help determine what size of output is required. Grazing experts recommend a 12.5 gauge high tensile wire to achieve the most satisfactory results on a permanent exterior or semi-permanent interior fence. It is also worth mentioning that there are many types of fences, and fencing products available for portable type fences.

The type of animals being grazed can also determine the type of fencing material or wire that is used. Some cow-calf producers prefer the woven wire style, non-electric, instead of the high tensile single strand wires, especially if those fences are located along a busy roadway, or near a residential area.

Educators at Michigan State University Extension recommend doing your homework when looking for the proper Electric Energizer for a fencing project. There are lots of manufacturer recommendations that exist, just be sure that those claims match the type of system being installed. also had this to say when asked about Electric Fence Chargers.

“The biggest time (money saver) that I have come across in fencers is the use of a remote control,” Lake City Research Center Manager Doug Carmichael said. “If you are moving cattle very often or are a long ways (lots of gates) from your fencer, the ability to shut the fence off from where the short is or where the new fence is being built is huge. We save literary hours a week by having a remote shut off. We also have a lightening sink on all fencers. The sink will dissipate the lightning before it can do any damage. The sink is just a coil of wire between the fencer and the fence to prevent damage to the fencer.”

For more information on energizers, contact me at thurlowk@anr.msu.edu , or Jerry Lindquist at: lindquis@anr.msu.edu.

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