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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 17 Models Considered
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    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best indoor outdoor thermometers

    Last Updated July 2018

    If you want to understand more about weather, you certainly can. It’s one thing to check your local nightly forecast; it’s quite another to have a feature-rich indoor outdoor thermometer that you can check whenever you want to. Weather buffs would agree that the latter is far more interesting. An indoor outdoor thermometer uses a sensor placed outside to wirelessly transmit measurement data to an indoor display. From the comfort of your home, you can find out information about temperature, wind speed, barometric pressure, and a host of other fascinating weather-related variables.

    At BestReviews, we perform extensive research on many different products, including indoor outdoor thermometers. If you’re thinking of buying an indoor outdoor thermometer, we can help you understand the market better and point you in the direction of a quality product.

    Read on to learn more about these handy weather tools. When you’re ready to examine actual products, we invite you to examine our shortlist of indoor outdoor thermometers in the table above.

    Some indoor outdoor thermometers can send collected weather data to a computer for storage and analysis.

    Indoor outdoor thermometer basics

    If you’re used to reading the temperature by looking at a bulb thermometer, you may be pleasantly surprised by the features offered by an indoor outdoor thermometer. These thermometers take full advantage of modern technology to collect weather data.

    How measurements are taken

    Computer chips inside the exterior unit perform the measurements. For example, a thermoresistor determines temperature by measuring the flow of electricity through the chip. The flow speed changes based on the exterior temperature.

    Other chips in the exterior unit may collect other data, such as humidity or barometric pressure. However, you won’t find these features on all indoor outdoor thermometers. The more features a thermometer measures, the steeper the price tag will likely be.

    Most indoor outdoor thermometers operate on a wireless frequency that differs from other devices, avoiding interference.

    Staff
    BestReviews

    Parts of an indoor outdoor thermometer

    Indoor outdoor thermometers consist of two different parts. One part is situated outdoors. This exterior unit collects weather data and sends it wirelessly to the interior unit. Wireless transmission occurs over a wavelength that differs from other common devices to avoid interference.

    The indoor portion of the thermometer delivers data measurements from the exterior unit via a display screen. It may also measure temperature and humidity levels inside your home.

    You can mount the exterior unit using adhesive tape or a mounting bracket. You can do the same with the indoor unit, or you can place it on a counter or dresser.

    EXPERT TIP

    Place the exterior sensor in an area that has good airflow to produce an accurate temperature reading. If the exterior sensor seems to be working oddly or sporadically, try changing its batteries.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Key features to look for

    Here are some of the most important features we think you should look for when purchasing an indoor outdoor thermometer.

    Clear display screen

    Regardless of how much weather data your system measures, you need to be able to decipher and read it. A sharp display screen that you can see from a few feet away is important for your enjoyment of the system.

    Adequate screen size

    If you want to see data from across the room, a larger display screen will be a key feature. Screens of roughly 4 x 6 inches are about average.

    If you’d like to see the temperature data from across the room, select a receiver with a large display and big numbers.

    Staff
    BestReviews

    Temperature forecasting

    Based on the data the indoor outdoor thermometer collects about your local weather, some units can give you a prediction about upcoming temperatures.

    Wind speed and direction

    Some indoor outdoor thermometers use an anemometer to measure wind speed and direction. Notably, a smaller exterior unit won’t measure wind speed as accurately as a larger thermometer or weather station.

    Your preferred power source

    Some people prefer a battery-powered indoor display screen, as they can place it anywhere. Others want to use an AC adapter power source because it costs less to operate over the long run. And some indoor outdoor thermometers can use either power source. Our advice: seek out a thermometer with a power source that meets your needs.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Many interior thermometer display screens should be able to run from battery power or from an AC power adapter. However, some are limited to battery power only.

    Advanced features

    If you want an indoor outdoor thermometer so you can study weather – or if you’re looking for a unit that tracks a lot of data – advanced features will be important to you.

    Stored data

    Are you interested in tracking weather information? Many indoor outdoor thermometers can store data. You can then download the data to a computer and view it in different configurations, such as the high and low temperatures each week or the hour-by-hour temperature changes each day.

    Color screen

    Some devices use color screens to code different parts of weather data. By using a different color for each piece of data, it’s easier to decipher the information at a glance.

    Some weather sensors can send data to multiple displays at once, giving you the option of using screens in multiple rooms of your home.

    Staff
    BestReviews

    Data refresh rate

    The refresh rate of an indoor outdoor thermometer reflects how often the exterior unit sends data to the interior unit. A faster refresh rate gives you more data points. The average data refresh occurs every 30 seconds.

    Fahrenheit and celsius units

    Would you like to be able to easily convert your temperature data to different units? Most thermometer display screens will do this for you at the touch of a button.

    Advanced weather measurements

    Not all indoor outdoor thermometer units measure things like barometric pressure, wind speed, and UV index. If this information is important to you, seek out a system that measures the variables you’re interested in.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Most indoor outdoor thermometers allow you to switch between Fahrenheit or Celsius measurements, and some display both simultaneously.

    Indoor outdoor thermometer prices

    Most indoor outdoor thermometers aren’t expensive. You can get a high-quality unit for less than $100 and an average-quality unit for less than $40.

    • Low price

    The most basic indoor outdoor thermometers sell for less than $20. These units offer basic tracking information, primarily temperature measurement. The displays for these devices will be monochrome only; no color. For some people, this is all they need.

    • Mid price

    A mid-priced indoor outdoor thermometer will cost between $20 and $40. These units can do things like measure humidity and show the moon phases. Some have a color display. You may also get WiFi connectivity, which allows you to download your weather data to a computer.

    • High price

    The most powerful indoor outdoor thermometers have color displays. They can give you wind speed and barometric readings. They can connect to WiFi to transmit weather data to a PC while also retrieving forecast data. These pricier units are often able to run from either battery or AC power. Expect to pay anywhere from $40 to $100 for these feature-rich units.

    CAUTION

    With cheaply made indoor outdoor thermometers, rain can cause problems with accurate readings.

    A note about weather stations

    You can purchase more a more extensive measuring device called a weather station.

    These units measure advanced weather-related data. They are far larger than the exterior sensor of an indoor outdoor thermometer, and they carry a higher price.

    For a weather station you can use at home, expect to pay anywhere from $100 to several hundred dollars.

    Most outdoor sensors can transmit data 100 feet to reach the receiving station, but in a clear area, some sensors can reach 200 or 300 feet.

    FAQ

    Q. What are some extra features indoor outdoor thermometers offer beyond temperature measurement?

    A. Most indoor outdoor thermometers can do more than measure temperature. You can see the humidity level, both indoors and outdoors. Some units measure the barometric pressure and show the moon phase. And some, in addition to displaying the upcoming forecast, will share information about the current weather in graphical format.

    Q. Can I use an indoor outdoor thermometer in an apartment or rental unit?

    A. Most of these units do not require any in-wall wiring or drilling, so it’s easy for a renter to use one. In fact, many ship with a stand, so you can place them on a counter or dresser. (Wall mounting is usually an option, too.) The exterior sensor can attach to any part of the building exterior with an adhesive. In most cases, it’s small enough that it won’t be highly noticeable.

    Q. I live in an area with temperature extremes. Can I still use this type of device?

    A. Yes. Most indoor outdoor thermometers are rated to work adequately in extreme weather conditions. A common operational temperature range for these units is -40°F to 140°F. However, we do suggest checking the working temperature range of a device before you purchase it.

    Q. Where should I place the outdoor sensor for best performance?

    A. Place the sensor at least five feet off the ground to receive accurate temperature readings. Avoid placing the sensor in an area where it will receive direct sunlight or heavy precipitation, as these could cause incorrect readings. Try to place it in an area where it has good airflow for the best measurements. Also bear in mind that thick walls or metal in the area could potentially interfere with the wireless signal.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Jennifer
      Jennifer
      Writer
    • Katie
      Katie
      Editorial Director
    • Kyle
      Kyle
      Writer
    • Melissa
      Melissa
      Senior Editor