Knowing Your Weather Station: An Instructional Guide

Best Weather Station

Weather stations have increased in popularity over the following years. This is because they have helped millions of users find and track the data they need to make accurate weather analysis.

Knowing Your Weather Station

Our primary goal is to teach you everything there is to know about weather stations. Having a clear understanding on how weather stations work will ensure that you make a more informed purchase when you're out shopping. Let this guide be of assistance and read it to make the shopping process less time consuming and easier for you.

What Is A Meteorology?

Meteorology is a branch of science that includes atmospheric physics and has a large focus on weather forecasting. Put simply; it is the study of weather prediction.

Meteorology started back in the early 18th century. It was only until the 19th century that we seen some moderate improvements in the field when weather observation small networks were created and predicted weather across broad regions.

Earlier weather prediction based their facts solely on historical data. It wasn't until the developments in physics and the invention of computer technology, where it created a lot of solutions to the equations that makes the weather.

At the 20th century, meteorology has seen a lot of huge improvements and innovations. Today, we use meteorology in our weather stations.

What Is A Weather Station?

A weather station is a tool that is used in either the sea or land. It has equipment and the instruments for measuring and analyzing different weather occasions that occur.

You can use a weather station to find the temperature, wind direction, humidity, wind speed, and the atmospheric pressure.

Weather Station

It's an extremely versatile tool, and you should plan on buying one. Weather stations are useful and will help you predict the weather accurately so you and your family can survive a natural disaster.

How Is A Weather Station Built?

A good weather station is made out of high-quality materials and technology that can accurately pinpoint the exact weather in a location. If your weather station is made out of metal, chances are it will be durable enough to survive in outside climates with heavy rain or snow.

Parts Of A Weather Station

Here is a table explaining the different parts that make up a weather station:

Name

Explanation

Thermometer

The thermometer measures the temperature in your environment. A good weather station should be able to predict the short term future weather ranges.

Barometer

The barometer is the tool that finds the atmosphere pressure. High end stations have a atmospheric pressure history chart and can spot pressure drops.

Rain Gauge

As it’s name suggests, rain gauge devices calculate the rainfall and the liquid precipitation.

Hygrometer

It finds the relative humidity in your current location. Humidity is the certain percentage or amount of humidity that’s in an area. Rain gauges can help alert you when there’s a storm or a potential flood thats nearby.

Wind Valve

A wind valve is a instrument that finds out the wind speed and determine your wind direction.

Anemometer

An anemometer finds the wind speed and is measured in KPH, MPH, current, average, peak speeds, or in knots.

Box To House Instruments

You will need a box to protect the instruments (wind valve, thermometer, etc.) and keep the wind, sun, and the rain from them. You'll need to invest in a good box where you can place such instruments to increase their life span and also be able to share your results with other users.

A good weather box will have a louvre or a slat that helps air circulate while the wind and the rain is kept out. It protects the metal casing from getting exposed to rust and damaging the internal system of your devices.

Wired Or Wireless Weather Station

When searching for a weather station, you have to decide whether it's going to be wired or wireless.

Wired weather stations are more stable as they are able to continue working in the event that your WiFi shuts off. We suggest getting a wired station if you plan on tracking weather casually.

However, there are some who want to track the weather for a longer time span. WiFi weather stations allow the user to connect to an app and record their weather results. But, the data is stored on a server for later access.

Get a wireless station if you want the highest level of data analyzation. Also, it's easier to use; all you have to do is plug in the device, set up the WiFi connection and connect to the app. For advanced weather aficionados, wireless stations are the best option.

What Is A Home/Personal Weather Station?

Home weather stations are smaller and are more friendly version to the traditional weather stations. Your average home weather station will measure the humidity, temperature and air pressure.

The benefit of having a home weather station is that they can be wall mounted. This helps you easily access to the weather station and quickly receive a quick weather report.

personal Weather Station

How Do Weather Stations Work?

As we said earlier, weather stations work the parts that were built into it. They work by predicting the temperature, rain fall, humidity, wind speed, and much more variables depending on the quality of your device.

Weather station collects and uses information from the weather that can be used in multiple ways. Weather stations help you do the following:

  • Weather Forecasting
  • Finding Weather Information
  • Allows people to be warned about any hazards.

If there weren't any weather stations, not only would it be harder for you to predict the weather, but would be more likely to injure yourself due to natural causes (electrocution, unable to survive a storm, etc.).

All of the information that the weather station receives is gathered. The gathered information is used to help you find the weather patterns that occur. With this information, you're able to make good predictions and also plan for the future.

What Does A Home Weather Station Measure

Temperature

Temperature is the most important measurement that gets measured via the weather station. Usually, thermometers are used to measure temperature and can tell you if a room is too hot or too cold within seconds. The thermometers are used as temperature sensors and relay the data back to its main console.

Working Principle And Type

Your weather station's temperature sensor is affected by the following ways:

  • Thermocouples: This is formed by joining two different metals to produce a voltage once the temperature changes from the reference temperature. This is based off an electromagnetic force that comes from the junction of two me
  • PTD probes: PTS probes consist of pure metal, mainly platinum.The temperature will increase at the same time as the electrical resistance of the platinum metal. Even one small change can signal a 1-degree temperature increase.
  • Thermistors: Thermistors have an active resistor that has metal oxides. The oxides are encased in either epoxy or glass. Also, the resistant output will change according to the changes in the temperature.

Like any other form of thermometer, the temperature sensor in your weather station finds the exact temperature in the surrounding atmosphere and then converts it to an understandable and proper set of data.

Your outdoor weather station also has a temperature sensor. Outdoor temperature weather station works within a range of 100 feet or 30 meters.

Some outdoor temperature sensors work solar energy while others are run by batteries. Your outdoor weather temperature sensor works better if it's protected by a radiation shield.

Humidity

Humidity is always measured and captured by the hygrometer. Moisture plays a huge role in weather predictions; it has to be calculated with the humidity that's present in our atmosphere. Weather stations can have different types of hygrometers to measure various forms of moisture.

Humidity weather stations

How Does It work?

A hygrometer is placed near the sides of a temperature sensor. They hygrometer, that's supposed to measure the relative humidity, is a capacitor. The hygrometer's sensor is made of a dielectric polymer layer that has a thin metal electrode.

The water molecules are absorbed and captured from the air. This causes a large change in the device's capacitance and notes the change in relative humidity. Then, the dew point is calculator due to both the temperature and humidity factors placed together.

Air Pressure

Your air pressure is calculated by the barometer. It's used to measure the air pressure or the barometric pressure of your current area.

How Foes It work?

The electronic barometer or the electronic pressure sensor in your weather station unit measures the pressure via a force collector to find out the strain due to a certain amount of force applied to a specific area.

When the mechanical strain is placed on the area, the electric charge that the semiconductor or metal is calculated, recorded and measured. The data or scientifically known as the voltage output is displayed in analog data, which is then converted to digital data that are shown on the console.

Rainfall

The rain gauge is used to calculate the rainfall. The data is then transmitted. There is a myriad of rain gauge models, but the one that's mainly used is the one that has tipping bucket technology.

Rainfall

How Does It work?

In your rain gauge's tipping bucket, it consists of an 8-inch rain collector that delivers an accurate reading of the amount of rain that has fallen. It measures every .01 inch of precipitation, every time the rain collector's bucket is tipped over.

And it has debris and insect meshes to keep the gauge clean and free from the outside elements.

Wind Speed And Direction

Anemometers are the sensors that help measure the wind speed and direction in the environment. There are three different types: sonic anemometers, cup anemometer, and propeller anemometer

Sonic Anemometer

This form of anemometer has ultrasonic waves that help transmit the wind data. Sonic anemometers are placed high above the air like an antenna, which is at least several inches apart from each other.

The wind that goes through the spaces either slows down or speeds up the ultrasonic waves. That way the different changes in the ultrasonic waves become recorded by the anemometer and then the wind speed and wind direction data is finally displayed on the device

Propeller Anemometer

This type of anemometer comes from a propeller and a vane. Both work together to collect and transmit data for wind direction and wind speed. The propeller becomes forced by the device's wind vane to face towards the wind's direction.

Once this occurs, it measures the maximum wind speed and where the wind direction comes from. The wind speed is finally calculated by the four-blade propeller where the speed of wind is directly correlated to the rotation frequency.

Cup Anemometer

Cup anemometers come with three cups that are used to measure the wind speed. It includes an extra wind vane that's used to measure the wind direction. The anemometer is designed in a way where it points against the wind's natural direction and creates an analog signal that's proportional to the angle of the device's azimuth.

When it comes to calculating wind speed, the three cups are made in a way where one of the three cups is placed on at a 45° angle placed on the wind. While there are some anemometers with four cups, they aren't as reliable. After that, the voltage is scaled to the wind speed of the according to the rotation diameter and the respective sizes of the cups.

UV Radiation

UV (Ultraviolet) rays are electromagnetic wavelengths that come from the sun. Having a high concentration of UV radiation in the area can lead to skin cancer, sunburn, suntan, and freckling.

Because of this, you'll want a weather station to assess the UV radiation. The UV radiation unit is measured in nanometers. On average, UV radiation sensors will have a range of 290-390 nanometers. Once you fall outside of that range, chances are you're going to be exposed to a lot of UV rays.

Uses Of A Weather Station

Amateur Weather Watching

There are some people who treat weather watching and forecasting as a hobby. People in this group tend to check the weather frequently and see the different trends that occur. If you fall into this category, search for a wired weather station as they'll help you track the weather without too much effort on your end.

Home Automation

Home automation is where certain aspects and rooms in your house are automated via smart technology. To have this included with your weather station, you're going to need to get a wireless weather station.

Home Automation

This ensures that the device will automatically work even when you're not at home. With a wireless weather station, you can automatically receive updates to the weather and can track it via smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

Education

Having a weather station is a great way for students to learn the basic mechanics of weather creation. To teach them, place your weather station outside and let it gather data from the environment. After that, explain to them the meaning of each of the results to enhance their learning.

Home Environmental Monitoring

A home environmental system allows users to be alerted when a natural disaster or issues such as smoke, fire, leaks, and flooding. Most weather stations come with a feature that tells you when such accidents occur.

Home Environmental Monitoring weather stations

Why is it important to have this feature? Because if your weather station can alert you on these sudden disasters, you'll be able to avoid them completely. Thus, you need to buy a weather station that is great at predicting upcoming storms to ensure that you'll successfully evacuate them before they enter your location.

Landscaping

When it comes to landscaping a weather station is a very valuable tool to have. With it, you can track how often you need to water your plants, add mulch, much more. For landscapers, get an outside weather station to ensure that your area will remain in good condition no matter how volatile the weather changes are.

Meteorology

Meteorologists tend to use weather stations to get quick information on the weather. They use these readings to analyze the weather and make predictions on how the weather will act in the future.

If you're planning to do some meteorology on your own, then you should invest in a weather station. They will help you find the temperature, humidity, rainfall, and much more and will help you stay alert if a storm or other natural disasters happen.

Benefits Of A Weather Station

Farmers tend to rely on weather stations to receive accurate information. This information helps them take care of their crops, cattle, and other farm animals so they can grow properly.

From family-owned farms to large industrial scale farms, knowing how to track the weather is very important. Their livelihood and food are fully reliant on up to date weather information.

Benefits of a Weather Station

For the average homeowner, having a weather station keeps you alert on the natural occurrences that are happening in the world. Also, you gain information based on your current area and not the general information that the National Weather Reports give.

It doesn't matter if you're a full-time farmer or a weather hobbyist. Getting a weather station is the smartest investments you'll make. This makes it easier for you to stay informed about the constant changes in the weather and make a smart decision if a storm arises.

Installing A Weather Station

The most common mistake we've found users have is installing a thermometer sensor. Here, we'll show you a few steps and tips on how to install one easily. When setting up your weather station make sure:

  • The thermometer doesn't receive direct sunlight.
  • If the thermometer is above the grass, make sure it’s 5 feet above the grass surface
  • Make sure the thermometer isn't blocked by the wind. Ensure that it has proper ventilation.
  • The thermometer is about 50 feet from the next surface.
  • If it's placed on a rooftop, it should be 5 feet above the rooftop.

Tip: If possible, invest in a radiation shield to further protect your weather station. That way it can be placed in direct sunlight with your thermometer protected from the UV rays.

Tips For Weather Station Placement

Here are a few tips to help you install the other sensors on your weather station:

  • Don't place your anemometer in an awkward area where you are unable to reach it. It will cause a problem for you to reach the anemometer when you have to clean it.
  • Your rain gauge should be placed 5 feet away from any form of obstruction. This ensures that the rain isn't blocked by the object.
  • While elevation doesn't affect the radiation sensor, place it in height below 3 meters so you can easily access to it.

Manufacturers

AcuRite

AcuRite is the #1 brand in North America when it comes to weatherization and weather stations. Founded in 1943, the company gained a reputation by creating a product line of high-quality thermometers, timers, and scales.

Now, the company creates mobile-friendly weather technology. Users can easily use their weather stations through a WiFi connection and get the reports they need. Buy from AcuRite if you want a reliable weather station that will work every time that you use it.

Davis Instruments

Ever since 1912, Davis Instruments has been the leader for control, measurement, and testing instruments. When you buy a product from this company, you'll be able to connect online and have a safe place to store your weather data. Thus, making them a trustworthy manufacturer that provides some of the best weather stations in the market.

Ambient Weather

What makes ambient weather a leader in the weatherization industry? For one, the company takes pride in giving a great experience for their customers by providing premium customer service and support.

The manufacturer has been serving their customers online since 1998. If you want a weather station that doesn't malfunction and a company that helps you with installing and repairing it, you should get a device from Ambient Weather.

La Crosse

For the past 30 years, La Crosse Technology has provided high-quality atomic time pieces and weather stations to help you get the data you need. Buying from this company will ensure that you get accurate weather reports so you can plan your day confidently.

Oregon Scientific

Oregon Scientific is a manufacturer that specializes in the development in creating public alert monitors, weather stations, radio referencing clocks, and other weather predicting products. If you're looking for weather stations that can survive without a WiFi connection, this is the right choice.

Instrument Maintenance

You need to take care of your weather station to ensure that it remains accurate. Here are a few tips to follow:

  • Air dust the interior of your weather station.
  • Clean out the collection buckets.
  • Inspect the mast and the anemometer.
  • Apply grease on all of the device's rubber seals.
  • Replace the batteries when needed.

Conclusion

Weather stations are the most useful tools to own. Not only do they help you predict the daily weather, but also helps you predict the future weather patterns. Having one in your possession makes you prepared for any situation that can randomly occur with weather.

Now that you know everything about weather stations, there are still a few things that we've left out in this article. We suggest that you look into our buying guide to find out the best weather stations that are within a good price range.

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