5 Expert Tips To Choose An Outdoor Thermometer

Outdoor thermometers can be a handy way to keep track of the weather or an interesting centerpiece for your garden or patio. However, you might be asking why you should purchase an outdoor thermometer when you can get all the information from TV or radio weather reports.

Well, we believe there are a few things to convince you about the correctness of this decision. Check out our expert tips for choosing the right thermometer for your home.

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Why should I buy an outdoor thermometer?

In the age of advanced weather forecasts, you should still get an outdoor thermometer. Read further to find out why we think so.

  • Weather reports are broadcasted on an hourly basis, while an outdoor thermometer provides you an up-to-the-minute temperature reading any time of the day or night.

  • You are not glued to your TV or listening to the radio all the time. Hence, you may easily miss the weather report.

  • Outdoor temperatures differ from home to home, depending upon the greenery, shaded areas, lawn-to-built-surface proportion, and other landscaping and exterior elements. Can a weather forecast provide your backyard's temperature reading? Only your personal thermometer can do that.

  • Weather reports are general, regional broadcasts, not your home-specific reports.

  • Modern outdoor thermometers are multipurpose devices that display humidity, wind, and other atmospheric factors apart from showing the temperature.

What are the main types of outdoor thermometers to choose from?

Basic thermometers

They are good if you just need to compare the indoor and outdoor temperatures. They will show you the exact temperature in your patio or garden and help you plan your evening accordingly. They display the temperature in both Centigrade and Fahrenheit. Available in a wide range of designs and styles - from a frog to zodiac signs and more, you are sure to find one that you like. Their installation is simple - hang the thermometer either from a nail or insert its clamp into a wall coupling.

Basic Indoor And Outdoor Digital Thermometer
Large Fish Basic Thermometer
Vertical Retro Blue Metal Basic Thermometer
White Tube Basic Thermometer
House Styled Basic Outdoor Thermometer
Basic Outdoor Thermometer in Black


You get them in a combination of functions - a clock-cum-thermometer, a humidity reader, or some other important function. They are usually of a round dial or rectangular shapes. Meant to be read from a distance, they have bold Roman numeric markings. Again, the varieties available will let you choose the type that you like.

Dual-purpose outdoor thermometers will help you get a more comprehensive idea of the 12-hour weather, hence, you can plan your outdoor activity in a better way. For example, if the humidity level is high, you better move your BBQ dinner indoors, expecting rain or thundershowers.

Pineapple Outdoor Thermometer with Clock
Outdoor Clock and Thermometer
Wall Thermometer Measures Humidity
Clock and Barometer Outdoor or Indoor Thermometer
Rectangular Decorative Clock Outdoor Thermometer
Outdoor Wall Clock and Thermometer

Digital thermometers

These are sleek, accurate flat-front devices that you can either hang on a wall or simply place on a level surface. Often, digital thermometers are dual or multi-functional, combining, time, humidity, and even indoor temperature reading in one handy device.

A major advantage of digital outdoor thermometers is their handiness and portability. Hence, you can also use them indoors or take them with you for expeditions and road trips.

White Square Digital Thermometer
Temperature Humidity Outdoor Digital Thermometer
Small Wireless Digital Thermometer
Small Wall Clock with Digital Thermometer
Rectangular Wireless Digital Thermometer

Personal weather stations

These are your full-fledged weather bureaus, telling you all that you need to know about the current and next day's weather. They offer the following key advantages:

  • They provide the latest, up-to-the-minute readings and forecasts

  • Better than TV or radio forecasts, because they are precise-location based and armed with error-free technology

  • You can carry the portable models with you wherever you go

Personal weather stations are professional devices with the following features:

  • Accurate outdoor temperature with high and low readings, and actual "feels-like" feature
  • Indoor temperature meter with high and low readings
  • Humidity meter
  • Precipitation reading
  • Wind speed and direction
  • Day, date, and time
  • Rain or thunderstorm forecast
  • Atmospheric pressure
  • Compass
  • Advanced models also display lunar and night-sky constellation positions

That's not all. Advanced models offer the following state-of-art features:

  • LCD display for sharp and clear readings

  • Advanced wireless transmission range with wide-spread coverage, hence useful in backyards, stables, and small farms

  • Sensor-aided temperature and other settings that alert you about high or low variations. It is very useful in various situations. For example, it warns you about high humidity or heat, so you know if you need to bring plants, furniture, and other outdoor belongings inside.

  • Wi-Fi connectivity

  • Mobile app-based control lets you calibrate settings and view current weather conditions any time, from anywhere.

  • They even send you push notifications about prevailing weather conditions that you can forward to neighbors or family members to take necessary action if needed.

  • These weather stations will supplement their reading with those of reputed weather forecasters for double surety

  • They can also detect water or other leakages that can prevent major mishaps

A word of caution: Personal weather stations are high-end devices costing upward of $150. Be sure that you will put it to a good use before you get swayed by the rich features and make an impulsive purchase.

Wireless Forecast Personal Weather Station
Pro Personal Weather Station
White and Blue Wireless Weather Station
Forecast Personal Station with Barometric Pressure
Black Personal Outdoor Weather Station
Wi-Fi Professional Personal Weather Station

What are the core features my outdoor thermometer should have?

Being feature rich can take a thermometer from being a boring utility to an interesting decoration. Here are three core features that you should consider when purchasing your outdoor thermometer.

Solar power

Solar power seems to be on an unstoppable rise in popularity and rightly so. Not only is our source of sunlight practically guaranteed for life, but it's usually enough to power an outdoor utility like a thermometer even when the weather is gloomy.

Solar power ensures that your thermometer will always have enough charge to give you accurate temperature reports while maintaining its other functions. You'll also be saving yourself the stress of frequent battery changes, required by non-solar powered thermometers.

Digital display

Analog temperature displays can be complex, especially in thermometers that have large dial displays. Often these displays are complicated by having multiple temperature readings - both Fahrenheit and Celsius - and other measures that may not be as relevant to you, like humidity.

Digital displays almost always simplify the process of interpreting the temperature and condense all of the "extra" - and often unnecessary information - into an easily digestible format. Digital displays can also be customized to be read from multiple distances, so you'll be able to read the temperature from the comfort of your living room or kitchen without straining your eyes or braving the outdoors.


Whether you choose a digital or analog display for your thermometer, having a clock is a useful feature in an outdoor thermometer. As time goes by, you'll come to know what temperatures you can expect depending on the time of day, especially as the peak of each season rolls by.

Woden Thermometer and Hygrometer
Outdoor Wall Clock and Thermometer
Small Digital Forecast Thermometer
Digital Wired Indoor and Outdoor Thermometer
Dial Solar Powered Thermometer
Solar Powered Thermometer and Hygrometer

What are the best materials for outdoor thermometers?

The material you choose for your outdoor thermometer will determine its lifespan and style options, our next tip briefly covers the common thermometer materials and their benefits.


Aluminum is a metal that is commonly used in outdoor thermometers. Normally, aluminum alloys contain extremely small amounts of iron, which makes them almost entirely rustproof. Of course, rusting can be found in extremely rare cases, but for the most part, aluminum thermometers are weatherproof.

 Aluminum lends itself well to rustic and aged designs, which can make for stunning additions to your garden or patio. So long as there are no major accidents while handling, you can expect your aluminum thermometer to last you several years.


By nature, plastic is very responsive to molding and dyes, and so, sports a number of design options not necessarily available with aluminum. It shares aluminum's ability to resist a variety of temperature and humidity conditions but does run the risk of becoming brittle after very intense winters.

 If you aren't physically interacting with your outdoor thermometer often, you can still expect plastic to last you a few years without much issue.

Slate Outdoor Round Thermometer
Plastic Square Clock with Thermometer
Metal and Glass Outdoor Thermometer
Plastic Tube Outdoor Thermometer
Aluminum Forecast Weather Station

What thermometer style should I go for?

Depending on what style your outdoor is, you can choose between a wide range of thermometers.

If you are looking for an accent piece for your exterior, go for a big, bold analog thermometer that will attract visitors' attention. You may choose a metal country-cottage style thermometer, which will spruce up the look of your outdoor area.

Clock-style thermometers with sleek wooden finish are understated pieces that can fit almost any style. They will be your choice when you look for something modern and elegant.

Highly ornamental tower clock thermometers are great for the vintage look. For a cohesive feel, you may pair it up with antique style metal garden furniture. Alternatively, you can let the thermometer be the focal point of the exterior by setting it with classic wooden furniture.

Frogs, fish or lighthouses are for those who like playing with styles or follow eclectic trends. Vibrant colors and quirkiest patterns are most welcomed here.

Popular bird-theme thermometers will be great decorations for a rustic or French-country look. Such thermometers, especially if accompanied by loads of colorful flowers growing around, will create a pleasant rural atmosphere that can deepen the feeling of relaxation.

Lily is a modern designer with great appreciation for sleek architecture, a love for art in its many forms, and a passion for sharing her experience with people. If you’re looking for advice on how to modernize your old-fashioned place or make your new restaurant a visual blast, she’s definitely the one to ask.