As with most gardening tools, there’s no shortage of soil moisture meters to choose from. While choice is certainly a good thing, as you can imagine, it can also be quite overwhelming. If you’re trying to shop for a moisture meter for your soil but you don’t know where to start, you’ve come to the right place!
In an effort to help you find the highest quality, most reliable tool that will best meet your specific needs, we’ve taken the liberty of doing the research for you, we’ve narrowed to down the list to what we believe are the best moisture meters currently on the market.
In this guide, you’ll find a collection of reviews that highlight the key features of our picks for the best soil moisture meters. We’ve also included a list of pros and cons for each one, as well as a buyer’s guide that highlights the key features that you should take into consideration when you’re shopping.
We wrap things up by answering some of the most frequently asked questions gardeners have about these handy tools. With the information you’ll find in this guide, you should have no trouble choosing the best soil moisture meter for your particular needs. For the health and well-being of your plants, keep on reading to find the right moisture meter for you.
Our Top Picks
- 1 Our Top Picks
- 2 Soil Moisture Meter Reviews
- 3 Other Best Selling Options
- 4 Soil Moisture Meter Buyer’s Guide
- 5 Moisture Meter FAQs
- 6 Conclusion
For gardeners who don’t have a lot of time to read through detailed reviews, yet still want to be sure that they find the highest quality soil moisture meter, this section is for you. These reviews are short, concise, easy to read through, and highly the most notable features of each of these three models.
Best Pick: Safe2m Soil pH Meter, 3-in-1 Soil Tester Kit
- Moisture/pH Testers in One Set - Clear reading dashboard with arrow pointer, wide scale interval and large number. Lightweight and portable, making it convenient for on-the-go testing.
- No Battery Required -- Save you from changing the battery, simply plug and play. Kindly note that DO NOT leave the meter in the soil for a long time, prevent it from corroding.
- Single Probe Detection -- Make it easier to insert into the soil and lessen damage to the probe and get you more accurate data quickly.
- Regarding pH Value -- To get the relative pH value close to the absolute value, soil moisture should be between 4 and 7. the margin of error between relative and absolute PH value is around 1-2.
- Quality Assurance -- Any quality issues, please feel free to contact us.
Our pick for the best overall soil moisture meter is the Safe2m Soil pH Meter 3-in-1 Soil Tester Kit. We chose it as the best overall model because it not only accurately measures the moisture content in the soil your plants are growing in, but it measures the pH and light levels, as well, which provides a more accurate assessment of when to water. With this handy tool, you’ll instantly be able to see how much moisture, sunlight, and pH is in your soil so that you can tell when it’s time to pull out the hose, turn on the sprinkler, or bring out the watering can.
Premium Pick: Reotemp Garden and Compost Moisture Meter
- Easy to Operate for Home Composting, Gardening, Schools & Community Programs
- Rugged Stainless Steel Construction
- Long 15" Stem with Thick 5/16" Diameter
- User Calibratable, 0-10 Wetness Scale
- Instant Readings Powered by One AAA Battery (Included)
If you’re serious about gardening and/or composting, the Reotemp Garden and Compost Moisture Meter is an excellent choice. This heavy-duty meter is extremely durable and can easily withstand all types of wear and tear. Thanks to the unique calibration feature, it can easily be used in several different applications, such as gardening, composting, and general soil moisture testing. The calibration makes it possible to adjust the meter to the particular moisture needs of different types of plants and different kinds of applications, as compared to meters that aren’t adjustable. It relies on a sensor, which is situated on the bottom of a probe, to measure moisture content. The reading is delivered on an easy to decipher scaled meter; readings fall on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 indicating dryer and 10 indicating wetter. Calibrating the meter is easy to do too, thanks to the instructions that are located on the head of the tool. It runs on a single AAA battery, so it can be used anywhere you need to measure moisture.
Budget Pick: Moisture Meter
- ▶ 【Compact & Portable】 Have you been sticking your finger in the soil hoping to feel when it's time to water? Why not eliminate the guesswork and keep your hands clean when you use the Dr.meter Soil Moisture Sensor Meter! Know the right time to water your garden, farm, lawn and plants, anytime.
- ▶ 【Easy to Read】No experience required--while this machine is sophisticated, it's not complicated! With an interface using ten scales and a color-coded reading system from red, green to blue, it's never been more straightforward reading your soil moisture.
- ▶ 【No Batteries Required】Who needs batteries or electricity? Just plug stick it into the ground and get a reading in no time!
- ▶ 【Gentle to Plant Roots】Keep roots intact when you do readings thanks to the single probe design. You won't have to dig up too much soil or disturb sensitive roots when you take readings so your plants can stay perfectly healthy.
- ▶ 【Helpful Tips】The Dr.meter Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is designed only for soil testing and should not be used in liquids. Keep it away from rocks and extremely hard soil to avoid damaging it. Make sure to clean the probe after each use.
If you’re on the market for a high-quality, durable, and reliable meter to measure the moisture content in your soil, this is a great option. The design is rather simplistic, but just because there aren’t any bells or whistles, that doesn’t mean it isn’t easy to use or reliable. It features a single 7.7 inch probe, which is constructed of durable materials and won’t overly disturb the soil. The indicator at the end of the probe reads the moisture content and immediately delivers the reading to the highly visible display, which displays the information on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the driest and 10 being the wettest. No batteries or electricity are need, which makes it an eco-friendly soil moisture reader and means that you never have to worry about not having power when you need it. Thanks to the lightweight design, you’ll have no trouble transporting it or stowing it away. Of course, because it’s our pick for the best budget soil moisture meter, it’s also very affordably priced.
Soil Moisture Meter Reviews
If you’re looking for more in-depth information about the best moisture readers for soil, this is the section for you. Here, we provide more detailed overviews of our picks for the three aforementioned moisture meters (best overall, best premium, and best budget models), as well as a handful of additional high-quality, reliable, and easy to use meters. Not only do we discuss more of the key features of each tool, but we also provide a list of pros and cons for each model so that you can quickly and easily see which one will best suit your needs.
Safe2m Soil pH Meter, 3-in-1 Soil Tester Kits
The Safe2m Soil pH Meter, 3-in-1 Soil Tester Kits is our top pick for the best overall soil moisture meter, and for good reason: it does more than just measure the moisture content in the soil, but measures the light and pH levels, too.
Because it provides all three readings, you’ll have a better understanding of when it’s time to water your plants, as both pH levels and sunlight levels directly impact the moisture content of the soil. It features two probes, which have a sensor positioned on the end, and when placed into the ground, immediately displays the moisture, pH, and sunlight levels on the easy to read display.
Designed to be very lightweight, yet super durable, it’s easy to transport, yet will stand up to regular use and wear and tear. The upgraded double-needed detection technology powerfully enhances the speed and accuracy of detecting and assessing moisture, pH acidity, and light levels. Because it doesn’t require any batteries or electricity, it’s environmentally friendly and is ready to use whenever you need it.
To use, just insert the probes into the soil around the base of your plant about 4 inches from the surface, and you’ll immediately receive an accurate and precise reading. The Safe2m Soil pH Meter, 3-in-1 Soil Tester Kits is easy to use, durably built, highly accurate, and affordably priced. It also comes backed by a satisfaction guarantee; if, for any reason, you aren’t happy with it, contact the manufacturer and they’ll correct whatever is wrong and will ensure that you are satisfied.
- A 3 in 1 soil tester; tests moisture, pH, and light levels in the soil to give you a better understanding of when it’s time to water your plants
- Outfitted with advanced double-needle detection technology that powerfully improves the speed and accuracy of detecting and assessing the soil moisture and pH acidity levels in the soil
- Delivers an extremely accurate, rapid response
- The meter is very easy to read
- Durably constructed, yet lightweight and easy to transport
- Eco-friendly, as it doesn’t require batteries or electricity
- Backed by a customer satisfaction guarantee
- Very affordably priced
Reotemp Garden and Compost Moisture Meter
Whether you’re an avid gardener, you’re a composter, or you just want to make sure that you’re getting the most accurate moisture readings possible, the Reotemp Garden and Compost Moisture Meter is an excellent choice to consider, and our top pick for the best overall soil moisture meter.
This heavy-duty tool is extremely rugged and quite durable, so it can easily withstand all types of wear and tear and environments. It’s outfitted with a unique calibration features that makes it possible to use the tool in a variety of applications, such as gardening, composting, and just general soil moisture testing. By calibrating the device, you can adjust the meter for the particular needs of your specific plants, and it will deliver a much more accurate assessment than non-adjustable meters.
The probe measures 15 inches and is just 5/16ths of an inch in diameter, so it minimally disrupts the soil around your plants. Once the probe is inserted into the ground around the root system of your plants, the reading will immediately show up on the easy to ready display. The moisture level is displayed on a 0 to 10 wetness scale, with 0 being the driest and 10 being the wettest; the closer the reading is to the 0, the sooner you’ll need to water, and the closer it is to 10, the more you can hold off on watering your plants.
You can easily calibrate the reader to, using the instructions that are printed on the side of the reader, which will allow you to accurately assess the moisture needs of different types of plants and in different types of applications. Powered by a single AAA battery, you can use it anywhere, and because it’s lightweight yet durable, it’s very easy to transport and can withstand all types of wear and tear.
- Heavy-duty construction; built of high-grade stainless steel
- Can accurately read moisture content in the soil of various types of plants, as well as in different applications, such as composting
- The calibration can easily be adjusted so that you can measure the specific moisture needs of your plants, gardens, or compost pile
- Features a long, 15 inch, 5/16th inch diameter probe
- Quickly and accurately reads moisture content
- Easy to read
- Uses a 0 to 10 wetness scale to assess the moisture content of your soil or compost pile, with 0 being the driest and 10 being the wettest.
- Powered by a single AAA battery
If you’re on the market for a high-quality, reliable soil moisture reader but you don’t want to invest a lot of money, this option is a great choice. It’s very simplistic in design, yet it is extremely durable and very accurate, so you’ll be sure to get reliable readings. It features a single probe that measures 7.7 inches that is specifically designed to measure the water at the root level, yet the probe has a very thin diameter, so it will minimally disrupt the soil.
As soon as you place the probe into the ground, a detector will measure the moisture content, and the reading will be show up on the easy to read display. The display measures moisture content on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the driest and 10 being the wettest; in other words, the closer the reading is to a 1, your plants need water, and the closer it is to 10, you can hold off for a day or more.
This soil moisture reader is constructed of highly durable materials, so there’s no need to worry about damaging it, yet it’s also very lightweight, which makes it quite easy to transport and store.
Since it doesn’t require any batteries or electricity, it is eco-friendly; plus, you can use it anywhere, as you won’t need to worry about finding a power source. On top of all of these benefits, this Moisture Meter is also very affordably priced (hence why it’s our top pick for the best budget soil moisture meter).
- Simple, easy to use design
- Provides very accurate moisture readings
- The single probe that measures 7.7 inches long and has a small diameter will minimally disrupt the soil around your plants.
- Specially designed to measure the water content at a plant’s root level
- Can be used with all types of plants, including soil-grown and pot-cultivated
- Constructed of durable materials
- Easy to read moisture display
- Users a 1 to 10 moisture level scale, with 1 being the driest and 10 being the wettest
- Doesn’t require batteries or electricity, so it’s eco-friendly and can be used anywhere
- Very affordably priced
Sonkir Soil pH Meter, MS02 3-in-1 Soil Moisture/Light/pH tester Gardening Tool Kit
Up next on our list of the best soil moisture readers is this model from Sonkir. Not only can it be used to measure the moisture content in the soil of your plants, but it can also be used to measure the pH value and the sunlight levels in the soil
. This model features advanced double-needed detection technology that is specially designed to improve the speed and accuracy of detecting and assessing the soil moisture and pH acidity level of your soil that you can make the necessary adjustments and ensure that your plant has the most suitable environment for optimal growth.
It’s highly durable, so there’s no need to worry about damaging it. No batteries or electricity are needed to operate it; just insert the dual probes into the soil around two to four inches, toggle the switch to test the moisture, pH, and sunlight that you’d like to measure.
Lightweight, portable, easy to carry, and can be used both indoors and outdoors, the Sonkir Soil pH Meter, MS02 3-in-1 Soil Moisture/Light/pH Tester Gardening Tool Kits for Plant Care is well-made, easy to use, accurate, and affordable.
- 3-in-1 soil moisture reader that can detect the moisture content in the soil, as well as the pH and sunlight levels
- Two-pronged design does minimal disruption to the soil and provides highly accurate readings
- Double-needle detection technology significantly improves the speed and accuracy of detecting and assessing the moisture and pH acidity levels
- Doesn’t require batteries or electricity, so it’s eco-friendly and can be used anywhere
- Durably designed, yet lightweight and highly portable
- Can be used both indoors and outdoors
- Affordably priced
Other Best Selling Options
- Reliable and accurate: Sensing probe ensures accurate and instant testing results, matching for both indoor or outdoor use.
- Easy to read: Large and clear dial, including ten scales, plug and read.
- How to use: Simply insert the moisture meter into soil and you'll get the test result instantly. Help your plants grow healthy and strong.
- Less hurts: Single probe, less hurts to the roots, doesn't dig up too much soil after test.
- Important tips: 1. Do not use it to test very hard soil 2. Never use it to test water or other liquid. Designed for testing soil only. 3. After use, please wipe clean the probe.
- 2-Pack comes with 2 separate packages: Reliable and Accurate-Sensing probe ensures accurate and instant testing results, matching for both indoor or outdoor use.
- EASY TO READ: Large dial, including ten scales, Plug and read.
- HOW TO USE -- No batteries needed, Indoor or outdoor use. Simply insert the probes into the soil about 3-4 inches, and you'll get your reading Ideal tool for indoor/outdoor plants, help your plants grow healthy and strong.
- Less damage: Single probe, less damage to the roots, doesn't dig up too much soil after test.
- IMPORTANT TIPs --1, Do not use it to test water. Do not touch the stone or hard rock soil, if the soil is too hard and dry, easy to damage the probes. 2. Never use it to test liquid. Designed for testing soil ONLY. 3. After use, please wipe clean the probe.
- Kindly NOTE: This soil tester can not be applied to test pH value of any other liquid. If the soil is too dry the indicator will not move, and water it before testing.
- 3-IN-1 FUNCTION: Test soil moisture, pH value and sunlight level of plant with our soil meter, helps you specialize in grasping when you need to water your plant.
- ACCURATE & RELIABLE: Double-needle Detection Technology strongly enhances the speed and accuracy of detecting and analyzing soil moisture and pH acidity.
- EASY TO USE: No batteries needed, just insert the sensor probe into the soil about 2-4 inches, toggle switch to test moisture, pH, sunlight you would like to measure.
- INDOOR & OUTDOOR USE: Design to be lightweight and portable, easy to carry around for outdoor use, ideal soil test tool kit for home plants, garden, lawn and farm.
- 【4 in 1 function】This is a 4-in-1 multifunctional soil tester.Our soil tester fastly to measure soil moisture, pH, temperature and sunlight to help you take better care of flowers and plants.You can know when you need to water your soil by measuring moisture and pH & Temperature value of the soil and sunlight level of plants with it.
- 【Large Screen ＆ Backlight LCD Display】The Soil Tester uses a large LCD screen and green backlight to coveniently display and read digital parameter in day or dark.Use AAA1.5V * 4 batteries (not included),it will alert when the battery is low.
- 【Quick Accurate measurement】The latest probe detection technology in 2021 can quickly and accurately measure the pH, moisture and temperature in the soil，with the light intensity of the light sensor analysis on the instrument, it can allow you to know when to water, to control the pH and temperature acidity, and determine whether the plants have enough light to better cultivate the plants more scientifically.
- 【Easy to use】Just simply plug the probe into the soil about 4 inches（10cm) , wait 10 seconds to read intuitive data,and you will get an accurate and precise reading immediately.（This soil tester cannot be used directly to test any liquid. When measuring the soil, if the soil is too dry, do not insert it into dry and hard soil. Before testing, please water the soil test area and wait for 10 minutes, otherwise the testing machine will be damaged.）
- 【Wide Range＆Provide satisfactory service】Both indoor and outdoor can be used. The plant measuring instrument can be used for your garden, farm, potted plants, succulent plants, etc.We are committed to providing customers with satisfactory service. If you have any dissatisfaction with the product, please contact us.
- 🌼 SIMPLE and EFFECTIVE: Gouevn Soil moisture meter only for testing soil moisture, basic model works stably. Plug and read, responds quickly and provides easily readout. Large dial, ten scales. Includes watering guide for 200 plants printed on the back of the packaging.
- 🌼 INDOOR & OUTDOOR USE: A super helpful tool for your garden, Yard, lawn, Farm, potted plants etc. Especially is important for some delicate plants which are very sensitive to over or under watering.
- 🌼 LONG PROBE SENSOR: 7.7” probe length specifically designed for measure water at the root level, For use on any plant, even it is big potted plants.
- 🌼 NO BATTERY REQUIRED, LIGHTWEIGHT: Compact and portable, Gouevn plant water meter No batteries or electricity needed, stick the sensor probe into the soil area you want to check and instantly get an accurate reading.
- 🌼 SIMPLIFIED YOUR LIFE - Accurate & easy to read, When you have a lot of houseplants, you don't have to remember when you watered this or that, just check each one with the moisture meter and water accordingly. And "Gouevn Direct" Store offers 18 monthes of replacement service with your purchase! No ask, to ensure the worry-free shopping.
Soil Moisture Meter Buyer’s Guide
Are your potted plants dropping leaves like no tomorrow? Are your veggies or fruits failing to produce? Do the flowers in your beds keep shriveling up right after you plant them? Despite the fact that you’ve used high-quality soil and fertilizers and you’ve made sure that your plants are receiving the appropriate amount of sun that their particular species requires, if your flowers, veggies, fruits, succulents, or whatever type of plants you’re trying to grow are failing to thrive, there’s a simple – yet vital – part of care that you may be overlooking: moisture.
It’s no secret that all varieties of plants need water, not only to survive, but to thrive. However, different species have different moisture requirements, and trying to determine how much water your plants need – and making sure that you’re meeting those needs – can seem like a difficult task.
Fortunately, there’s a way that you can assess the moisture content in the soil your plants reside in and ensure that they’re receiving the moisture they need in order to thrive. How? – With a moisture meter!
As the name suggests, a soil moisture meter is a specially designed gardening tool that measures the moisture levels in the soil your plants reside in. These tools are really quite simple; all you need to do is probe the soil moisture meter into the soil around the base of your plants and the device will display the level of moisture content around the root system. Based on the information your moisture meter displays, you’ll instantly know whether it’s time to water or if you should hold off for a couple of days.
In other words, a moisture meter can help you avoid over-saturating the soil and potentially drowning your plants, as well as prevent you from holding off on watering too long and completely drying out your plants. Put simply, with very simply, yet very handy tool, you can promote healthier, happier plants.
It’s no secret that plants need adequate moisture in order to thrive; however, it can be difficult to determine how much moisture is in the soil and when it’s time to water. If you wait too long and the soil becomes too dry, the roots can shrivel up, and if you water too soon, the roots can become waterlogged; either way, your plants could die.
A soil moisture meter takes the guess work out of determining the moisture content in your soil so that you know when it’s time to water; in other words, these handy tools can help to ensure that your plants not only survive, but that they thrive.
As you can see from our list of reviews, there are several different types of soil moisture meters currently available on the market. While all of the models we selected are high-quality, you really only need one.
So, how do you narrow down the options and decide which one will best suit your particular needs? – By taking some key factors into consideration. In this section of our guide, we share the most important factors that you should consider when you’re shopping for a soil moisture meter, as doing so will allow you to determine which model will work the best for you and help you maintain the health of your plants.
The Type of Soil Moisture Meter
As you’re shopping, you’re going to find that there are several types of soil moisture meters, so the first thing you’re going to want to do is consider which type will best suit your needs.
Some models features a bunch of bells and whistles, while others are simplistic and are designed to simply measure the moisture content in your soil. For a basic gardener, you really only need something basic; however, if you’re a commercial farmer or you’re planning on using it for other applications, such as measuring the moisture in a compost pile, a more advanced model may be better suited for your particular needs.
Examples of the different types of moisture meters for soil include:
With an analog meter, batteries aren’t required. These tools are quite simple, yet they’re very effective. The majority of analog moisture meters work via conduction of electricity; the naturally-occurring electrical current that’s found in soil.
The tip of the probes on these models feature at least two types of conductive metal, and if any water is in the soil, the electrical current that naturally travels through the soil will be transmitted to the probe.
That’s because water naturally conducts energy. The more water in the soil, the higher the electrical charge the meter produces will be, and the lower the water level, the lower the electrical charge. Typically, these soil moisture readers are highly accurate.
Digital meters are more advanced in design and usually, they feature more features than a standard analog meter. Usually, the probe part of the meter doesn’t corrode and rely on batteries in order to deliver power to the screen on the meter.
Additionally, they often deliver a small electromagnetic pulse that is able to detect moisture. The probes are usually situated on cables instead of being secured directly on the tool itself.
There are basic and hybrid digital soil moisture meters. Some options can be charge using a USB cable, and these models may also be able to display date related to moisture levels to software, such as on your computer, smartphone, or tablet.
The wicking soil moisture meter is the earliest style of moisture readers, but they’re highly accurate and they’re very popular for use with houseplants. This kind of meter absorbs moisture from the part that is placed in the soil and the moisture is then “wicked” (hence the name) upward to a piece of material that changes color if the soil contains moisture. The less color displayed on the fabric, the dryer the soil will be.
Wicking moisture meters are designed to remain in the soil, which is why they’re intended for house plants. With this type of meter in place, you can quickly and easily see when it’s time to water your indoor potted plants.
It should be noted that this style isn’t intended for use outside, as it doesn’t work well in outdoor climates or when exposed to direct sunlight.
This style of soil moisture meter is becoming increasingly popular and will give you the biggest bang for your buck. They aren’t used solely to determine a plant’s hydration needs, either; they may also feature a sensor that reacts to light and can measure sunlight levels, as well as a pH meter that can measure the pH acidity level of your soil.
However, if you’re using this type of meter to measure pH levels, it should be noted that they aren’t always accurate, so you may still need to conduct additional testing; however, the device can at least give you an idea that there’s an issue.
Once you decide what type of soil moisture meter will work best for your specific needs, you should then consider the overall construction of the tool. Since you’re going to be using it on a regular basis and will be pushing it into and pulling it out of soil, it will be exposed to relatively harsh conditions and you want to be sure that it can withstand the general wear and tear. The best soil moisture meters are constructed of high-grade and durable, yet lightweight, corrosion-free metal, such as aluminum. If there are any plastic components, those should also be highly durable to ensure that they don’t break.
It’s also important to consider the display that your soil moisture reader uses. The display is what you will be using to see how much moisture is in your soil, so you want to be sure that it’s clear and easy to read. Most meters feature a scale that ranges from 1 to 10, with 1 being the driest and 10 being the wettest. Be sure to assess the display before you purchase a meter so you can be sure that you’ll be able to easily read it.
Of course, you also want to be sure that the soil moisture meter you choose provides accurate readings. If it doesn’t, it really isn’t going to do you any good, is it? In order to determine the accuracy of a soil moisture meter, read through customer reviews to see if you can find out what other users have had to say about.
Moisture Meter FAQs
Why use a soil moisture reader?
There are many reasons to use a soil moisture reader, some of the most notable of which include:
- Improved plant health
- Reduced water consumption
- Cost savings
Are soil moisture meters a worthwhile investment?
Absolutely; especially if you have a hard time determining when it’s the ideal time to water your plants. It can be difficult to tell when a plant needs water, and this tool really simplifies the process.
Are soil moisture meters hard to use?
Not at all! Even more advanced models are easy to use; just follow the directions and you should have no trouble being able to read the information presented.
Moisture is one of the most vital elements a plant requires, but trying to determine when it’s time to water can be tough. With a soil moisture meter, you can easily gauge when your plants need to be watered and will be able to enjoy stronger, healthier plants.