Personal Weather Stations: What They Are And What They Do

Personal Weather Stations: What They Are And What They Do

A personal weather station can be an excellent purchase if you find yourself doing tasks that require accurate and timely information on the weather. These are particularly effective for people such as fishermen, hunters, and homeowners in rural areas as the forecast for your entire area may not be thorough enough to cover more difficult spots.

Many people wonder what exactly a weather station consists of. This is a very hard question to answer in such a general sense as there is a large variety of products available which would fall under this category and these products do not all share the same features.

What a weather station requires to be considered a legitimate weather station typically boils down to two important aspects.

What Are Weather Stations?

The first thing a weather station must contain is instruments which are capable of measuring the weather. A weather station would be entirely incapable of its job if it did not contain these instruments and they are the most expensive components of a weather station.

The instruments which will be used to measure the weather will tend to differ based on the price range of your weather station as more specialized instruments will necessarily be more expensive.

The instruments included on home weather stations will change based on the price point, but there are some more common inclusions such as barometers, sensor tubes, wind speed gauges and a large variety of other components.

Woman working on the weather station

We will go into further depth about the potential features you will want on your weather station further on in the article, as we will be limiting this section to a more generalized overview.

Why You Need A Personal Weather Station

There are many reasons why you may need your weather station as they are not simply limited to weather enthusiasts. Having a weather station is an excellent way to stay on top of the weather. Your local broadcasts from official weather networks will not always be as accurate as you may prefer or perhaps they are not localized enough for your needs.

Weather stations allow you to map out the weather in an area of your choice during your time frame, so you do not have to wait for the next weather broadcast.

Another advantage to having your weather station is that you can see more in depth variables about the weather in your immediate vicinity. Some of this information may not be available from official weather networks, or it may require a subscription to be accessed.

It’s a good idea to purchase a weather station if you need accurate measurements on the weather in an area of your choice. While larger, official weather stations may have more precise or more varying measurements about the weather, you will find that these products are far more convenient.

What Every Weather Station Should Measure

There are a few measurements that should be taken by weather stations regardless of their price range.

A few things such as temperature and humidity are quite elementary for meteorologists, both amateur and professional so we will attempt to list a few of the more crucial measurements that you should confirm your prospective weather station can measure before deciding on it.

Temperature

The first and most elementary of the measurements that should be taken by your weather station is the temperature. Every single weather station should feature some form of thermometer so that you can keep an eye on the surrounding temperature.

Weather station on the harbor

These tend to be some of the cheaper components that may be built for weather stations, so even lower grade weather stations will feature thermometers.

The difference between cheaper and more expensive temperature sensing equipment is the degree of precision that they feature. As it is more expensive to manufacture precision thermometers, if you would like a temperature reading which begins to go into fractions of degrees, you will have to pay more money.

Another aspect to consider is the unit in which the temperature is displayed on your weather station.

The vast majority of weather stations will tend to feature displays which can be adjusted between Fahrenheit, Celsius and sometimes even Kelvin.

Since the unit of temperature you use tends to depend on your geographical locations, the default temperature for your weather station will vary from model to model depending on where the manufacturer is based and where their target market lives.

Humidity

Another important aspect of the weather that should be measured by your weather station is the humidity which is present in the air. The level of ambient humidity which is present in the surrounding environment can change your experience with the weather. A higher level of humidity will tend to make the surrounding air feel hotter and heavier.

Put simply, the amount of humidity is the amount of evaporated water which is present in the air. This is what contributes to the heavy, sticky feeling of humid air and results in a lot more discomfort and annoyance when it comes to dealing with heat.

Weather station under the rain

This is why many professional weather stations provide a temperature which is accurate and a temperature that it would normally feel like when accounting for the humidity.

More advanced models of home weather station are also capable of providing a “feels like” temperature, using a formula which accounts for the percentage of humidity in the air and the ambient temperature to give you a better idea of what it is like outside.

What Every Weather Station Should Contain

There are a few aspects that all weather stations should feature. As there are a large variety of these features, it is important to have a decent knowledge of them before attempting to make a purchase.

If you are not adequately educated about the product you intend to purchase, you may end up making a mistake in the buying process and making a purchase which will result in buyers’ remorse.

It is for this reason that we will now attempt to cover the more important features that you should look for when deciding on a weather station.

Even if you are not presently interested in buying a weather station, it is an interesting and informative experience to learn more about the components of these machines and how they accomplish their individual appointed tasks.

Differing Indoor And Outdoor Measurements

An important aspect that your personal weather station should include is different measurements for the inside of your home and the outside of your home.

This may not seem entirely helpful at first, but it is an ideal feature for those who will be using their personal weather stations for their home. There are many reasons why you may wish to implement a personal weather station in your home.

One of the more professionally oriented reasons for personal weather stations are if you own a farm and you would like to have a better idea of the exact weather conditions in the surrounding area.

As you may know, if you are a fan of growing plants, the ambient atmospheric and environmental conditions can have a very large bearing on the outcome of your agriculture or your horticulture.

Remote weather station

If you own a rather remote farm, it is a good investment to purchase a home weather station so that you will have a good idea of what the conditions are like on your farm and how they change over time.

Unlike official weather broadcasts, it is much easier to track the progress of the different variables in the weather with your personal weather station.

The reason for it being so much easier to track progress regarding the weather with your weather station is that many home weather stations come with proprietary software designed to help you more easily interpret the data that you receive from your weather station. This can include graphs and other methods of displaying the data.

Having access to line graphs, bar graphs, pie charts and other methods of displaying your data allows you to much more accurately interpret the data you are receiving from your home weather station.

This is an excellent feature as it will make it easier for you to predict the weather yourself. Graphs and tables make it far easier to see the fluctuation of the weather regarding temperature, humidity, wind speed, and a large variety of other variables.

Who Can Benefit From Weather Stations The Most?

There are many potential customers for personal weather stations. You will find that personal weather stations are far more than a niche product which is only made for meteorology enthusiasts. Weather stations have been rising in popularity over the years due to the advancing manufacturing technology which is used in their construction.

A couple of decades ago, it was simply impractical to purchase a home weather station due to their very high cost and bulkiness.

Father and daughter with the weather station on their farm

With advancing technology, it has become far easier to manufacture weather stations which are affordable to the average person. In the previous few decades, equipment used for measuring weather was only affordable for either the absurdly rich or for actual weather stations. For this reason, personal weather stations are a somewhat recent phenomenon.

Due to the increasing level of technology which goes into personal weather stations, they are more easily accessible for the average person who means the number of possible applications and users of personal weather stations increases.

Users of personal weather stations can range through a large variety of professions and hobbies, and we will attempt to list off a few of them so you can get an idea of how versatile these products are.

The first hobby in which personal weather stations are applicable is in amateur meteorology which is the most evident choice.

A personal weather station is essentially necessary if you plan on becoming an amateur meteorologist as it allows you to keep track of your findings more effectively and will typically have more accurate measurements than a set of different weather measuring implements.

The ability to compile your data into one easily accessed program is an absolute blessing when it comes to keeping track of your meteorological data. A personal weather station is a great way to get into meteorology in a convenient and easy manner.

Another excellent aspect to personal weather stations is that they are available for a reasonable price, so you will not have to worry about wasting your entire budget on equipment when it could be used for meteorology lessons and software to compile your findings better.

Fishing

Fishermen can also make excellent use of personal weather stations. A personal weather station can provide more precise information about the weather in a more specific area than the general broadcasts you will find available from most networks.

This attribute is very important for fishermen as most masses of water will typically have different weather conditions to the surrounding terrain.

This is due to the unique effect that a body of water has on the surrounding atmosphere. When you are near a lake or a river, the air will necessarily be more humid due to the large abundance of water; this can make it somewhat uncomfortable to go fishing on exceptionally humid days, as it will be even more so around the water.

Weather station on the rooftop

However, knowing the weather before you go fishing is not simply about the climate and how comfortable you will be. The weather conditions around a body of water will have a very large bearing on whether or not you will find the type of fish you are searching for when you are fishing.

This is due to different species of fish having different preferred water conditions and temperatures.

In a closed off body of water, like a lake, it is less important to know the weather conditions as the fish do not migrate.

When you are fishing in a lake, there will typically be species of fish with similar attributes grouped together, so you will be using your personal weather station as a means to ensure that you are comfortable with the conditions more than anything else.

When it comes to fishing in rivers, you will find that a personal weather station is an excellent investment as you can get a better idea of the exact weather conditions of the part of the river in which you will be fishing. This allows you to more easily target certain species of fish for either sport or for eating purposes.

In addition to having the advantage of knowing which kind of fish there are in the river, you will also be able to better choose between bait or lures as water temperature can have a bearing on the effectiveness of these two methods of fishing.

You will also be able to increase your level of comfort when it comes to knowing what you should wear on your fishing trip.

Hunting

Another excellent use for your personal weather station is in hunting. The usefulness of a personal weather station in the domain of hunting is similar to the usefulness regarding fishing.

The rationale behind using a personal weather station to help you hunt is that you will typically be in more secluded areas where the weather forecasts are either sporadic, inaccurate or even non-existent unless you wish to pay extra.

Having your weather station allows you to bypass the hassle of searching for the weather forecast on your preferred hunting ground, as long as it is near your personal weather station.

Man fixing the weather station in the forest

Knowing the weather forecast before you go hunting is a very important consideration because even minor shifts in the ambient environment can make you more easily detected by your quarry.

It is important to know the prevailing weather conditions before you go out and hunt as rain can result in anything from discomfort due to having picked the wrong clothing, or a complete absence of game due to the undesirable conditions.

Sometimes, you can even say that knowing the weather while you are hunting is more important than knowing the weather while you go fishing because there will typically be a good amount of fish present regardless of any condition short of a thunderstorm or torrential downpour.

Weather Stations And New Technology

Weather stations are becoming more and more advanced due to increasingly impressive technology being used in their construction. The implementation of internet and cloud-based abilities in more modern personal weather stations allows for startling advances in the field of meteorology, now so more than ever before.

These digital weather stations are an excellent choice if you are searching for an effective and quick manner to share your weather findings with the rest of the meteorological community.

Weather station sheme

Up until the advent of digital weather stations, it had been somewhat difficult to share your findings in this field with colleagues due to the need to compile large amounts of data and ensure proper accuracy.

New technology in weather stations is not simply limited to the manner in which the data is shared. There are many other forms of weather stations which can be used to demonstrate this progression.

One example of the increasing influence of technology in this domain is the introduction of wireless weather stations. Previously, to set up a weather station, you either needed a connection to the power grid of your home or a large number of wires to ensure that all of the devices worked together in tandem.

Now, with the rising popularity of wireless weather stations, you can measure the weather in a more portable and efficient manner.

Wireless weather stations and portable weather stations tend to be somewhat similar. However, there are a few key differences.

While wireless weather stations are certainly more portable than their wired counterparts, they are not always designed to be portable to the same extent as models which are specifically designed to be used on the go. Another difference is that portable weather stations will not always be wireless.

A wireless design helps make a weather station more easily portable, but it is important to consider that it will typically also make the weather station more expensive. Wireless technology when dealing with such a large variety of variables can get somewhat complicated, so you will have to pay a premium regarding price.

An outdoor weather station is also similar to wireless and portable weather stations, but they tend to be a little bit larger than portable weather stations and are not necessarily wireless. Outdoor weather stations tend to take advantage of technology to improve their durability.

An outdoor weather station will typically be the most durable type of weather station you will find due to them being designed for use in an outdoor environment.

Weather station on the farm during rainy weather

They must be resistant to damage due to the possibility of random shocks and wild animals damaging the delicate equipment. When discussing a product such as a weather station, you will typically find that durability is a relative term.

Weather stations are complex pieces of equipment with a variety of delicate sensors, so even a more durable model will not be built to withstand very much punishment.

The technology used in the manufacture of home weather stations has also steadily increased over the years. They tend to share similarities with digital weather stations as there is enough room to fit the extra equipment required on the device itself.

Conclusion

We hope that we have helped shed some light on the somewhat obscure product of personal weather stations. You will find that their use is not restricted to meteorology enthusiasts.

There is a large variety of users for these types of products, and the market is growing by the day as more advanced technology, and manufacturing techniques are developed.

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