Weather station accuracy?


#1

Is there an online resource you al go to to assess the reliability of weather service station data? I thought it was odd that the only reason my system seemed to not water was an activated rain sensor. Recently, after a soaking rain, the system watered right after the sensor dried, and I looked to see what precipitation the rachio had seen locally. NONE. None as far back as I cold scroll. I ended up selecting a PWS that is closer to me despite the advice not to. I was hoping you had an idea as to how to assess reliability of weather station data.


#2

@obmd1 My best advice is to go into the “More Info” link next to the weather stations and see if the data reflects what you have been experiencing (more info on how to do that here). If you would like to post the link here too, I can help review it!

McKynzee :rachio:


#3

Huh. Thanks. When I click on “more info” there’s no precip data being reported as far back as you can scroll!!


#4

@obmd1 Probably not the best choice then. When we display the “No recorded precip” tag on stations, this is actually a value that is returned by the station saying it is physically not equipped to measure rain. The issue is (especially with PWS’s) some stations are able to record precip, and just aren’t for some reason or another. These stations do not have the same “No recorded precip” flag.


#5

I swear hat station had precip data last year. I picked this station over the PWS I’m using now which was closer because it was “more reliable”. Half of me wants to reach out to NWS to inquire. No worries. It’s going to be my justification to pull the trigger on Bloomsky.


#6

@obmd1 Keep in mind that Bloomsky only supports weather underground (which is one of a few networks Rachio does not support directly) so you will need to port your data from weather underground to pwsweather to use with Rachio. You can do this for free through wufyi.com, more info on how to set everything up is here (link)

Since you would be dealing with data transfer no matter what, you may as well checkout if there are any existing good weather stations on weather underground which you can use. You can find more on how to look for a good weather underground station here (link)

Cheers,
Gene


#7

Gene,

This is great! I wasn’t really read for the PWS of my own, but there is a station right near me that rates quite well with Weather Underground. I’m having a really hard time following the instructions to port data. So far I have spen an inordinate amount of time looking for the API key for Wunderground. From there I’ll need help with the code in wufyi.com, but first… where is the damn key???


#8

Deleted. Apologies.


#9

Thanks for sharing your error information, definitely something to address in the future (improve error handling for this particular error type). I’ll be happy to help you, but please be careful about posting your information publicly, someone can start using your weather underground API key and cause issues for you down the road.

Such detailed information can be emailed me directly to support@wufyi.com and I’ll be more than happy to assist you, meanwhile I encourage you to edit your post (look for a little pencil icon at the bottom of your post) in order to delete your actual URL and anywhere else you mention your API key or pwsweather password.

That being said, lets figure this out.
I’m not quite sure what you mean by your handle, “WU_0339***”, could you elaborate on that?
I also see that you have seemingly already figured out what went wrong: your wuID should have been “wuID=KPAB****” (use real data instead of stars, I use them for your privacy).
Your pwsweather station appears to be updating so you, or someone on your behalf, has already setup the cron-job and everything is moving along nicely (if it was not you who set this up, let me know).

One issue I do see is that your pwsweather station was setup with an incorrect GPS coordinates (which is different from the address). This will initially make it impossible to find it within Rachio interface, but it will also screw up your rainfall data, such as another user has discovered (link).
Quite frankly I think your easiest solution at this time would be to create a new station with your pwsweather account, this time making sure you specify the location correctly (look for click here to use google maps option).

Keep in mind you do not have to name it the same as the name of Weather Underground station you are getting data from. What ever name you pick will go into “pwsID=…” section. Please make sure not to have any spaces after the “=” sign.

Update your cron-job with a new URL and remember, if you run into any problems or require assistance, please email to support@wufyi.com.

Cheers,
Gene


#10

Well the quest continues. At this point it appears academic, as the PWS I was trying to port data from is already reporting to Rachio and available. But still… when I trace that station back to weather underground, the name is different, and the lat lon coordinates are in Kazekstan. I was able to get the one I set up to report, but since the location is way off I can’t find it on the Rachio app side.

This won’t be important until I add my own weather station.


#11

Sorry you are having so many issues with the setup, I’ll definitely try to make it easier in the future.

Here is an example of another good station in your area. Note that it already provides a GPS coordinates (40.032 and -75.229) and elevation (204 ft)

When setting it up with pwsweather, you can use those coordinates for Latitude and Longitude. This will ensure that you can find it within the Rachio and that it will use the right time zone: (Note that display name and Station ID do not have to match weather underground)

Finally, you can confirm that the station is indeed in the right location:

Hope this helps,
Gene


Malfunctioning Weather station
Ignore False PWS data + Feature requests
#12

Many thanks. And I do apologize for the lack of prowess with this. I love this system.


#13

There a number of ways to check accuracy.of a station. On place is to go to http://weather.gladstonefamily.net which uses MADIS data to analyze accuracy. MADIS is a meteorological observational database and data delivery system that provides observations that cover the globe. Rain is very localized so you will not be able to get a measure of rain accuracy but you will get a general accuracy feel for each station.

For example see http://weather.gladstonefamily.net/site/search?site=AV089&Get+information=Get+information for information about my station.

For rain, go to https://www.cocorahs.org/ and find the closest station to you. Most cocorahs observers use a rain gauge that is more accurate than automated gauges. My cocorahs gauge is close to my automatic gauge but there are differences.