The Top 5 Home Weather Stations for 2017

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Wireless Weather Stations for the Home:The Best Home Weather Stations

A weather station can be a very useful tool to have. Whether you have a serious interest in the subject of meteorology or if you are just looking for a way to know how to dress the kids for school it can come in handy. Obviously your needs are going to be different depending on what you are planning to use your station for. Therefore our list of the top 5 weather stations includes some that are aimed at the serious weather person and others that are aimed at people who are just interested in basic knowledge.


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How to Choose the Best Home Weather Station for your Needs

There are a lot of home weather stations on the market and some pretty big differences in terms of what they can do. In order to help you to determine which is best for your needs we have listed the features that you are going to want to look at.

Wireless:

There is not much to say here, there is no reason to consider a home weather station that is not wireless, they are so much easier to install and to move if necessary. The only issue to consider in this regard is how far your station will transmit. Read the reviews carefully as few wireless weather stations transmit anywhere near as far as the manufacturers claim. This is particularly true if it has to transmit through a wall which it almost certainly will, you are not going to put the display unit outside after all.

What it Measures:

You can get a very basic home weather station that measures just the temperature, dew point and pressure or you can get a professional weather station that measures every weather parameter that you would possibly need to know. There is obviously a big price difference between the two so most people tend to stick to the more basic units. A better option for most people however would be a mid range model. These go for about a hundred dollars and in addition to temperature, dew point and pressure they also usually measure wind speed and rain fall, these are the things that most people want to know.

Accuracy:

A weather station that is not accurate is not going to do you any good. In general you do get what you pay for in this respect with a professional weather station usually being quite a bit more accurate than a thirty dollar basic station. You are going to have to weigh your need for accuracy against how much you are prepared to spend in determining which is the best option for you. A couple of things that will improve accuracy dramatically are a shield for the temperature probe to keep it out of the direct sunlight and mounting pole if your station comes with an anemometer or a rain gauge. If these are not included it is usually a good idea to buy them separately.

Ease of Installation:

This is far more important than most people realize, some weather stations are very easy to instal others can be very frustrating. If you are getting just a basic weather station it should be just a matter of putting the sensor in an open space and the display unit where you want it. If you get a more sophisticated station that has an anemometer and rain gauge installation becomes much more complicated. They will not work properly if they are not perfectly level or if they are located near to obstructions. This is why a mounting pole is such a good idea, not only will it improve accuracy but also make it much easier to install.

Data Collection:

If you are looking for a weather station just so that you know how to dress the kids for school this will not be a major factor. If on the other hand you have a serious interest in the weather you are going to want to have a station that records the data that it collects. This will allow you to see changes in the weather over the course of several hours or even several days so that you can spot patterns. For the true weather buff or professional users being able to download the data to your computer is important so that you can save it all, in this case a station that allows you to do this is critical.

These are the most important features when you are choosing a home weather station. There are other things that you may want to have like some type of alarm when certain weather conditions exist. A lot of home weather stations include a forecasting feature that some people like, although in reality this is not particularly accurate and is based solely on changing pressure which you can track yourself.

The following reviews will look at the features that we have listed here as being important to see how the top home weather stations stack up. This should help you to make a good choice when it comes to buying the best one for your needs.

How to Choose a Home Weather Station




1. Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue Wireless Weather Station Reviews


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The Best Wireless Weather Station

The Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue is a top of the line home weather station. It comes with a price tag that pushes four hundred dollars so it is obviously aimed at the professional user or the serious weather buff. In this review we will look at how it stacks up in terms of the important features for a home weather station so you can decide if it is a good option for your needs.

Wireless: Excellent

Like virtually all home weather stations these days the Vantage Vue is wireless. Where it really stands out however is in the distance that it can transmit. The manufacturer says that it can transmit up to distances of a thousand feet, although we did not have enough space to actually test this. We are also well aware that having to transmit through a wall will greatly reduce the distance it will go. That being said we were able to set up our station more than two hundred feet from the display unit, which was of course inside and it worked without a problem. We would therefore conclude that the vast majority of people will have no issue in this respect.

What it Measures: Excellent

This is a professional weather station so it measures all of the weather parameters that you could reasonably want to know. This includes temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction, rainfall and pressure. In addition the Davis weather station will show you the phase of the moon as well as the date and time and the time of sunset and sunrise.

Accuracy: Excellent

There is no more accurate home weather station on the market; at least that we have tried, that is more accurate than the Davis Instruments 6250. This should come as no surprise as it is a top of the line product that is intended for people who have a serious interest in the weather. We tested it using professional weather instruments and while the Vantage Vue was a little bit off it was as close as a home weather station is likely to get.

Ease of Installation: Average

The Vantage Vue is not the easiest weather station to install, although it is not really any other harder than similar stations on the market. The big thing is making sure that the anemometer and the rain gauge are perfectly level and clear of obstructions. There is no mounting pole included in the kit and we would highly recommend that you get one as not only makes set up a lot easier it also improves the accuracy of the wind and rain measurements. On the positive side because the station has a solar power feature it greatly reduces how often batteries have to be changed which can be a hassle when it has to be done.

Data Collection: Average

The Davis 6250 is good in this regard in that it does record and store a fair amount of historical data so that you can see things like changing trends in pressure or wind speed or temperature. You can collect data for several days before it starts to recycle. The major downside is that there is no way that you can download the data directly to your computer as there is no USB port. If you want to do this you have to buy an adapter. For a top of the line home weather station this seems a bit of an odd oversight on the part of the manufacturer.

Should you Buy the Davis Vantage Pro 2?

If you are serious about the weather or have a need for accurate weather information than we highly recommend it. To be sure it is a pretty big investment but for people who need this level of accuracy there is simply no better option.

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Davis Instruments 6250 Review



2. Ambient Weather WS-1001 Wireless Home Weather Station Reviews

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A Great Weather Station for the Home

The Ambient Weather WS-1001 is one of the best selling home weather stations on the market. This is mainly because it provides all of the data that you would get from a professional weather station at a fraction of the price. We have therefore tested it to see if it is really a good option for people looking for a home weather station.

Wireless: Good

As would be expected the Ambient WS-1001 is a wireless weather station. The range that it can transmit is decent but not great, although it should be fine for people who have a normal sized yard. If you do need to transmit a long way or if there are a lot of obstructions between the sensor and the main unit you may find that the range is not adequate.

What it Measures: Excellent

The WS-1001 measures all of the major weather parameters. This includes temperature, humidity, pressure, wind and rain. It will also record the maximum and the minimum temperature and humidity.

Accuracy: Good

This is where we encountered our first problem with the Ambient WS-1001; the problem was that the temperature reading was not at all accurate. It turned out however that there was a reason for this and it had to do with the radiation shield. In order to get accurate temperature readings you have to keep the sun from shining directly on the temperature sensor. The radiation shield that comes with the WS-2080 was too small to do this properly. Once we replaced it with a bigger one the accuracy improved dramatically. With the change all of the readings were quite accurate; in fact they were very good for a weather station in the price range of the WS-10011.

Ease of Installation: Average

The manufacturer advertises the WS-1001 as being easy to install although we did not find this to be the case. As with all weather stations you have to make sure that you get the rain and wind sensors perfectly level. This is fairly easy to do when you have a mounting pole but of course there is not one included. We found setting it up without the mounting pole to be very frustrating so in the end we had to use one. A couple of other issues with the installation, the first is that the instruction manual is basically useless. The other issue is that there is no solar power with this station which means that you have to change the batteries on a fairly regular basis. This is not a huge issue if you put the sensors in an easily accessible place, most people however put theirs on the roof making having to change batteries a hassle.

Data Collection: Excellent

This is where the WS-1001 really shines. It includes both a USB port and software to make it easy to download the data that you collect to your computer. You can also use your computer to monitor the current weather conditions. Of all the weather stations that we have tested this one is by far the easiest to download data from.

Should you Buy the Ambient Weather WS-1001?

We actually think that this is the best weather station for the vast majority of users. While it is not as good as the Davis 6250 in terms of the things it measures and accuracy it also quite a bit less expensive. You will get all of the weather information that you are likely to need; it will be accurate and easy to read. If you want to download the data you collect you will really come to appreciate the WS-1001. We consider it to be the best value for the money when it comes to home weather stations.

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3. La Crosse Technology 308-1414B Wireless Forecast Station Reviews

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A Nice Little Wireless Home Weather Station

The La Crosse 308-1414B is one of the most popular weather stations available. The main appeal for most people is its low price tag. Obviously an inexpensive home weather station is going to be somewhat limited. This does raise the question of just how limited is the La Crosse station and should you consider buying one?

Wireless: Average

The La Crosse weather station is wireless although the distance that it can transmit is somewhat limited. This is not a huge deal in this case however as the way that this station usually gets used it is not likely that the sensors are going to be located too far from the main unit.

What it Measures: Not Good

This is not in reality a weather station at all, it is really just a way to determine the temperature and the humidity. It also has a forecast feature which clearly uses pressure readings to predict the weather, oddly however it does actually display the pressure.

Accuracy: Good

For a weather station that comes it about twenty dollars the accuracy is surprisingly good. Obviously it is not going to be at the same level as a professional station but it does give fairly accurate readings for both temperature and humidity. Of course when those are the only things that a station can measure it should provide accurate results.

Ease of Installation: Excellent

This is by far the easiest station that we tested, of course the fact that it is very limited in terms of what it measures was a big factor in this. All you have to do is decide where you want the sensor and the main unit, put some batteries in them and mount them to the wall, it is that easy.

Data Collection: None

Again this is not really a weather station it is basically a thermometer and hygrometer so it does not store the data that it collects nor does it provide you with a way to download it.

Should you Buy the La Crosse  308-1414B?

Whether or not you should consider the La Crosse weather station is going to depend in large part on why are looking for a weather station. If you have a serious interest in the weather and want to collect large amounts of data you will find that it is not a good choice. If on the other hand you are looking for a very basic station that provides you with an overview of the weather and you don't want to spend a lot of money this may be one to consider.

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4. Ambient Weather WS-1075 Wireless Advanced Weather Station Reviews

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A Good Home Weather Station for a Great Price

This is another example of a basic weather station that is aimed for people who just want to have an idea of what the weather is like and are not all that serious about the subject of meteorology. The WS-1075 provides just the most basic of weather information like temperature, humidity and pressure, it does not measure wind speed or rain fall. There is a forecasting feature but it is pretty basic and is based almost entirely on the pressure.

The thing I like best about the 1075 is how easy it is to set it up and the fact that it surprisingly accurate for its price. There is a reason after all that this is by far the best selling home weather station.

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5. RainWise MK-III-RTI Solar Powered Wireless Pro Weather Station Reviews

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One of the Best Weather Stations

This is a high end weather station and it is clearly intended for the serious user. Really given that it is priced at more than a thousand dollars it is more likely that it will be used by people who have professional requirement to measure the weather. It has all of the features that you would expect on a top of the line weather station and can record all of the important weather parameters. I do have a bit of concern with the way that it is laid out, the rain gauge, the anemometer and the temperature probe are all located in areas where it looks like they could interfere with each other. In certain weather conditions this may affect accuracy, especially temperature with a black rain gauge being located right next to the temperature probe. Nevertheless we consider it to be one of the better options out there if you need a serious weather station for use in your home.

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6. Oregon Scientific WMR200 Professional Weather Center Reviews

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A Decent Professional Weather Station

The Oregon Scientific WMR200 is a professional quality weather center that is priced at a level that a home user could afford it if they had a serious interest in having accurate weather information. There is a lot to like about this particular weather station, the main one being the display. Of all of the home weather stations that I have tried this one has the best display, all of the information that you could need is there in a format that is easy to read.

There is a great deal of information provided by the WMR200 it has all of the features that you would expect, temperature, dew point, wind and rain as well as some features that are often not included on home stations like a UV sensor. The accuracy is fairly good but not up to the level that you would get from a higher priced station like the Davis 6250. Set up is fairly easy so there should be no problems in this regard.

While there is a lot to like about the Oregon Scientific station there are also some things that I really didn't like. The biggest of these was how long it takes to update. Unlike other professional weather stations this one seems to update far less frequently, this can be a problem if you are looking at something like wind speed where you want to know the current wind speed not the speed a minute ago. I also have some doubts about the durability of some of the sensors, they look a little flimsy.

To be honest I don't know what to say when it comes to a recommendation about the WMR200. It is certainly better than the lower cost stations like the Ambient 2080 but not as good as the Davis 6250, although it is about a hundred dollars cheaper. Personally I would recommend that if you need a professional quality weather station you should pay the extra for the Davis, if not you can save some money by going with the Ambient.

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