Recommended weather stations?
I'd like to invest in a personal weather station. There are not too many stations around where I live, and I'd like to contribute to the Windy community with data.
Can you please suggest any "set it and forget it" type stations that wouldn't break the bank and are compatible with Windy?
My budget is ~$300 (including shipping to EU).
Any suggestions are welcome.
Some extra aspects:
- I live in a valley of some sort (we have a 500m ridge to the south, and a relatively large river to the north, ~1000m away)
- I can install stuff on my rooftop, including a pole if needed...
- ...But I'm looking for a wireless device (ie. I don't want to put any wiring up there)
- I'd like to have the "usual" package, ie. temperature, wind speed+direction, rainmeter
- I need something that doesn't need too much maintenance. Once or twice a year it's OK to go to the roof, but preferably not more than that :)
Still looking for some suggestions folks.
Can you please help me out? I'm interested in firsthand experience with PWS units used with Windy.
Please help :)
I can recommend you the HP3500B weather station by Ecowitt: here
or HP3501 wireless weather station: here
The advantage are separated sensors for all parameters. You can mount anemometer on the rooftop and temperature sensor in the different place 2 meters above the ground. I have one and by the CumulusMX I upload data to windy.com
Here you have a review:
Thanks for the feedback!
Do you have any experience with the batteries? I read in the manual that for HP3500B a regular set of AA alkaline batteries can last up to 2 years, but it depends :)
As the station would be mounted on the roof, I somehow don't feel the urge to replace batteries more often than annually :)
Bonus question: is there a PWS with solar-chargeable batteries?
@mark014 Thanks again.
Just to bump my question again: how is the practical battery life in your unit (assuming you bought any of these Ecowitt units)?
@tomszechy Most weather stations have the same design. They use a solar panel to run during the day and it also charges a battery or a capacitor (its like a battery). Then at night the capacitor runs the station when there is no solar energy. But there are times when there is not enough solar energy during the day to run the capacitor for the next night (rainy days...extreme cloudiness...extreme locations at the poles where there is minimal daylight...etc). Therefore for these reasons a good station besides the solar panel and capacitor will also have batteries to us in case of those extreme cases.
Typically the station will only deplete those batteries about every 2 to 3 years depending on how much those batteries need to be used as it will be different for every location. Certainly it should last a year. Even if using rechargable batteries they have a limit of charge cycles and just about any battery after 2 to 3 years starts to show signs of needing replacement.
But you should not think of a weather station that you can mount and forget. Because you should be servicing the station for other reasons. Sure if you only mount an anemometer on the roof you can get by with minimal maintenance, but if you also mount a rain gauge and temperature/humidity sensor you should be cleaning it out of debris, spider webs, and insects. Therefore a maintenance of at least every 6 months to at most a year is recommended.
The bottom line is that you can't mount a weather station and forget it. So battery depletion is the least of your worries.
@tomszechy Hello- I'm here wanting to ask the same question and wondered if you settled on a device and installed it? I don't see that you received much support on this thread, so I think I will post another and hopefully receive more suggestions for a station with the specs you posted here. There are several between $100-150USD, I just don't know if they're sturdy or compatible.
Thanks in advance.