A rain gauge is an instrument that allows you to measure the level of precipitation. It is therefore an instrument through which you ascertain how much rains fell in your area. It can also measure snow, sleet, and hail. This can be helpful, for instance, if you want to avoid over-watering your lawn or garden. It can also be useful for water conservation purposes. The gauge can come in handy at teaching kids about the weather. And it is of course useful in meteorological work. Also, check the buyer’s guide for the best water purifiers & raincoats in India.
Normally, the gauge is mounted on a post. It can also be staked to the ground. That has to be in an open place, without obstructions. As rain (or another form of precipitation falls), it enters the gauge. Thereafter, you can objectively measure how much precipitation there was. That is on the basis of how much water is collected in the rain gauge cylinder. You can take readings in millimeters, centimeters, or inches.
Top 10 Best Rain Gauges in India
Features of Rain Gauge
- The most important feature in a rain gauge is accuracy.
- In this regard, the best gauges can give accurate readings up to 1/100th of an inch.
- The ease with which one can take readings from the gauge is important.
- Regarding this, the best gauges have self-magnifying capabilities. Therefore when water enters them, they magnify automatically.
- But at least all the gauges should have a scale that is clear and easy to read.
- Yet another important feature in a gauge is the ease with which it can be staked or mounted.
- Ideally, a gauge should have a bracket (or some other such mechanism) for easy staking and mounting.
- Rust resistance is also important in a gauge. The best gauges are made using materials that never rust.
- The gauge’s ability to withstand exposure to water and sun without corroding or fading is important as well.
Types of Rain Gauges
- There are graduated cylinder rain gauges. Then there are tipping bucket rain gauges as well as weighing rain gauges.
- There are rain gauges that give readings in inches. Then we have others that give readings in millimeters/centimeters.
- We also have others that give readings in both inches and millimeters/centimeters.
- We have glass rain gauges. Then we have plastic rain gauges.
How to use a Rain Gauge?
- The first step in using a gauge is to identify an ideal spot to stake or mount it. It should be an open spot, with no obstructions.
- The second step is to mount or stake the gauge.
- The third step is to be visiting the spot where you mounted or staked the gauge regularly.
- This you would be doing to take readings. After taking the reading, you can record it, then empty the water in the gauge to start afresh.
Buying guide for Rain Gauge
- The most important thing is to ensure that the rain gauge you buy has good accuracy.
- You also need to ask yourself what purpose you need the gauge for. Is it for gardening? Or is it for official meteorology work? Then go for a gauge that is ideal for that particular purpose.
- Check the gauge’s rain capacity. This is the amount of rainfall it takes to fill up (and thus stop recording).
- Check whether the gauge has staking/mounting brackets and whether it comes with any warranty.
List of Top 10 Best Rain Gauges in India-Buyers Guide
1. Acu-Rite (00850A2) Easy-Read Rain Gauge
Has a 5-inch rain capacity. Comes with a self-magnification feature for easy reading.
- It is easy to mount or stake
- Considerably accurate gauge
- Measuring capacity of up to 5 inches
- Precision has limits
- Some may find it to be physically too massive
2. Stratus Precision Rain Gauge
Comes with a mounting bracket. It is a 14-inch gauge.
- Made of polycarbonate material (hence can never rust)
- Accurate up to 1/100th inch
- Easy to install
- It May be limited to giving inch readings
- Price is quite high
3. Bits and Pieces Gnome Rain Gauge Sculpture
Unique gauge which comes in the form of a polyester statute. Serves the purpose while also beautifying the space where it is placed.
- Very elegant gauge
- Withstands harsh weather well
- Price is reasonable
- Can be tricky for some people to take readings
- It May not always be very stable
4. ROUSHUN Rain Gauge Glass Replacement Tube
What you get here are two tubes. The capacity is 5 inches.
- Calibration never fades off
- Easy to install
- Has great precision
- Delicate glass requires careful handling
- Some may find the second tube to be superfluous
5. SPI Rain Gauge Glass Replacement (Small)
Comes with a very clear calibration. Has decent thickness.
- Gives readings easily
- Price is reasonable
- It never rusts
- May have compatibility challenges with certain rain gauge assemblies
- Glass may have limited ability to withstand very extreme weather changes
6. Juegoal Rain Gauge With Butterfly Garden Stakes
What you get here is a set of two gauges. Beautiful and practical at the same time.
- Tubes are plastic (hence not too delicate)
- Rain capacity is 5 inches
- Enhanced aesthetic appeal
- May be prone to small transportation deformities
- Precision is limited
7. EZREAD Magnifying Rain Gauge Spike
This is a super-size rain gauge. Comes with a very bright scale that is easy to read.
- Easy to mount or stake
- Has magnifying feature
- Has to funnel to keep debris out
- Prone to breaking if let outdoors at temperatures below freezing temperatures
- May sometimes seem to be affected by wind
8. Taylor ClearVu Rain Gauge
Comes with a bracket for easy post mounting. Rainfall measuring capacity is 5 inches.
- Capable of giving precise readings
- 5-inch rainfall capacity is adequate for most needs
- Easy to mount on posts (thanks to the brackets it comes with)
- It is somewhat delicate
- The lower part of the scale may be somewhat hard to make sense of
9. AcuRite (00840A1) Rain Gauge
This is an easily stackable/mountable rain gauge. Gives both centimeter and inch readings.
- The bright calibration scale is easy to read
- The gauge has considerable precision
- Not too delicate (being more of a plastic gauge)
- Leveling the gauge may be tricky, given the pointed stake
- The opening seems to be rather small
10. Ancient Graffiti Tube Rain Gauge
What you get here is a glass-based rain measuring gauge. Comes with easily readable large numerals.
- The glass color is clear for easy reading
- It is quite sturdy
- Has a standard inch calibration scale
- May have challenges working under freezing conditions
- Calibrations may be prone to slightly fading off
To measure rainfall levels accurately, you need to have a high-quality rain gauge. If you follow the information in this guide, you will have an easier time buying a high-quality rain gauge.
What is a rain gauge used for?
It is used for measuring the amount of precipitation (rain) that has fallen in an area
How does a rain gauge measure rainfall?
It collects the rainfall as it falls, against a scale that can be read in inches, centimeters or millimeters
What are the types of rain gauges?
The main types are the basic graduated cylinder rain gauges, tipping bucket rain gauges and weighing rain gauges.