Home weather stations
Looking at forecasting your own weather, measuring barometric pressure and temperature, maybe both indoors and outdoors ? Then a barometer or maybe a home weather station could be for you.
Wonderful educational tools, simple weather stations for the home, farm and school have come a long way since the days of the barometer hanging on the wall, they now include a range of instruments to record different aspects of weather.
A weather station may be as simple as a rain gauge or as sophisticated as an automated, computer controlled weather station.
Many keen gardeners also have weather stations as a part of their planning and recording procedures, having a local record of rainfall in particular is a useful tool for garden planning and monitoring.
Weather stations may be used to record
- barometric pressure
- dew point – min/max
- soil moisture
- leaf wetness
- wind speed
- wind direction.
Weather stations that are connected to computers are available,some are directly completed others use a USB to download date, these allow more sophisticated data collection and analysis.
Reviews of different systems
The simplest system for the home is the old rain gauge and a barometer. You get out into the garden every day, record everything by hand and that’s it. You measure and record manually. Now this sounds a little basic, however a barometer in a prominent position and a rain gauge can create interest for children, and get them interested in learning.
The next step up is a digital display that includes a thermometer, barometer, anemometer and rain gauge. All of the information is displayed on a digital screen, no output to computers, you still record manually.
After this we go into systems with on station recording to a USB or the more advanced automatic remote recording to a remote computer, some of these are even solar powered. Many of these also have software packages for more advanced recording of weather patterns right in your own home.
Some of these systems are suited to agricultural use and will also measure soil moisture, leaf moisture and relative humidity, these are designed to remotely monitor conditions that contribute to disease and pest problems.
You can connect by Wi-Fi, by mobile phone and just about any other method you can think of. And if you really need to you can even get satellite controlled weather stations.
So the decision is, what information do you want and how much to you want to pay. A barometer can cost as little as $20 (you can even find then in second hand shops). Simple digital systems start at around $60. After that it really depends on the features that you are after. From $200 – $3000 and upwards.
So make a list of what weather information you need to record, decide on your budget and you can then have a weather station at home.