How to Choose and Use Moisture Meters?

How to Choose and Use Moisture Meters?

Moisture meters are portative devices applied to identify the amount of moisture in plants to find out the time of watering them. Watering plants properly is a significant and quite tough task. Overwatering and underwatering will result in problems with plants.

Determining the amount of moisture is crucial because moisture refers to plenty of problems including flooring failures, damage to inventory, and issues revolving around liability. Moisture meters allow for determining the amount of moisture of the substance to make sure that the area of items has the proper amount of moisture.

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Types Of Moisture Meters

DIYers and industry professionals that work with the home inspection, fine carpentry, and flooring use the two most common types of moisture meters: pin and pinless.

Pin Moisture Meter

Pin moisture meters include two metal pins that rise on the top of the moisture meter like an antenna. Such pins help to identify the amount of moisture. Using a pin moisture meter needs to adjust the pins with a spot on the substance and then press them to identify the required substance or item.

When these pins are pressed, the users may use the moisture meter with a control pad to send the signal from the pin to the device. The signal passes through the substance to the other pin. The moisture measurement tool uses the signal to identify the item’s or substance's resistance to the electrical voltage, which helps to identify the amount of moisture. Nevertheless, pin moisture meters are the tools that allow for determining the exact location of moisture.

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Pinless Moisture Meter

A pinless moisture meter doesn't enter the substance or item to start the determining process. Instead, the plate on the back of the meter lays flat against the substance and item, so that the high-frequency signal passes through it. The signal changes refer to the substance’s ability to store the electrical charge, which helps the moisture meter identify the amount of moisture in the substance or item. The major advantage of the pinless moisture meter is that it becomes clear when determining the amount of moisture in the drywall. A pinless moisture meter can identify the amount of moisture several times without damaging the drywall. However, pinless moisture meters are less invasive than pin meters, as their results identify the amount of moisture in a specific area rather than the general spot.

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Aspects Of The Moisture Meters

Before selecting the moisture meter, it is crucial to find out about crucial aspects of the moisture measurement device to produce the proper results for future tasks.


Precision is the first major aspect that should be mentioned when selecting the moisture-determining device. The device with incorrect precision is useless, that is why a high-range moisture meter should produce precision within 0.1%, but such high-performance devices are pricey. For an affordable moisture meter, the normal amount of precision may be within 5%.

Each moisture meter displays the amount of moisture as a percentage of the amount of moisture (%MC). Generally, a moisture measurement device is calibrated for using wood and has a scale from 5% to 40%. Measurement of the amount of moisture of the non-wood substance (for instance concrete) produces a relative scale from 0% to 100%. Moisture meters that identify the moisture of gypsum or drywall offer the third scale that ranges from 0.2% to 50%. It is required to find out the precision amount for the substance you need to identify, before selecting the moisture measurement device.

Durability And Ease Of Use

The moisture meter’s durability is significant for the user’s who use the moisture meter regularly. The moisture meter should offer users long-lasting performance and durability. Decide what aspects should have the moisture measurement device for the proper project.

Select the moisture meter that is quite easy to use. Moisture measurement devices that are tough in use may result in false and unstable results that may cause moisture meter damage.

Moisture meters with a backlit digital display that shows the information you require offer the ideal achievement of the task. Users should be applied with a durable device that offers easy and fast switching among functions. Pinless moisture meters are easier to use than pin moisture measurement devices, however, the only trade-off is the precision.

Range Of Measurement

The range of measurement of the moisture meters is identified by the minimum and maximum moisture percentage it may identify. The higher the measurement range, the less precise the device is when several moisture meters produce a range of 0.2-60%. Smaller, more precise measurement devices offer more precise results and are better for flooring and fine carpentry sphere to offer normal moisture percentages. Nevertheless, many DIYers offer a larger scale range so they may use the same moisture meter for several spheres.

Additional aspects

Moisture measurement devices may offer various additional aspects to produce the project faster and easier. One of these crucial aspects is the temperature that allows for locating the source by the changes.

Other aspects are memory aspects that allow keeping the previous results instead of noting them, sound alerts for the moisture results, and a comfortable carrying case for the proper storage of the moisture measurement tool.

How To Use The Moisture Meter?

Step 1:

Press the metal probe into the substance, soil, or item. If you stick to resistance, remove the metal probe and try one more time to push the probe into the soil. Don’t produce a lot of force on the probe as it is sensitive.

How To Use The Moisture Meter?

Step 2:

Wait for 30 to 60 seconds as the moisture meter produces measurable results within a minute. If you don’t get the result after a minute, remove the probe, softly wipe the probe down, and try again in another location.

How To Use The Moisture Meter?

Step 3:

Read the measurement results. According to the model and manufacturer of the moisture measurement device, the results may appear on the display window on a numerical or percentage amount scale. The scale is generally color-coded for additional clearance.

How To Use The Moisture Meter?


The type and function of the moisture meter depend on the substance you need to identify, whether you need to identify the amount of moisture in wood, or soil, you should take into account that the quality of the tool matters the precision of the results.

Less expensive devices may have visible options, which may include a backlit LCD, a sound alert, or several buttons that brighten up. However, higher-end meters are valuable because of invisible aspects such as precision, durability, and ease of reading.

Take into account that the moisture meter is suitable for the item you require to identify. Read the description of the device carefully to complete the task properly.

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