SKY shows continuous rain but it's not raining (cause = pole vibration in strong winds)

Since yesterday one of my SKYs shows that it’s raining but it is not.
I have a second SKY close to it that (correctly) does not report rain.

I hope it’s not a faulty SKY again!. WF has already replaced 2 SKYs and one AIR.

Now my second sky reports rain too. It indeed “rain” (a few drops) for a minute at 9am but it’s not raining now.
It seems to me like a software bug.

@WFmarketing can someone please take a look at my station ? Today had no rain. Just a few drops at 9am.

Hello @dimitris19 . Can you tell us a bit more about the general conditions and your specific mounting? Is it quite windy? Please also post detailed pictures of your mounting. (Suspect mount vibration caused by winds…but need more info.)

It’s a little bit windy today (about 28km/h)

Thanks for posting pics @dimitris19 . Lots going on with that mounting and location! During our field testing, we had lengthy testing and discussion regarding vibration of guy wires in higher winds. We suspect your mount is experiencing vibration which causes input to the haptic sensor. We have a broader solution for this once we roll out the CL system for rain – including QC checks that inspect a range of local rain data which will drastically reduce any false positives.

In the mean time… just looking the pictures, we do suspect some wind-induced vibration is happening in higher winds. It’s possible that something as simple as adjusting the height of the mast, or the vertical position of a guy wire, by just a few inches could change the natural frequency of the pole and thereby eliminate the vibration.

Before making any mounting adjustments, wait for the winds to die down and look for a correlation between higher winds and false rain reports. If there is a correlation, experiment with adjustments to your mounting to eliminate any vibration if possible.

Tomorrow morning (it’s 9pm now) I 'll remove completely the guy wire to check if there is a difference.

:+1: Given the complexity of your mounting, the vibration could be caused by a variety of factors…not just the guy wire. (Difficult to tell without being there.)

I did some tests this morning and you are right. The pole is vibrating and causes the rain sensor to show rain.
But how can I solve this problem? Is there any pole that does not vibrate on strong winds ?
Unless it is very short and screwed onto the roof, but then the wind speed won’t be accurate.
Any idea what to do ?

First, move the Sky to its own pole. The pole should be a material that is not dense.

Do you mean has to be plastic or metal ? Do you have a suggestion ?
On Saturday if the weather is good I want to fix everything before the winter comes.

A few here are using wood or fiberglass and find it produces much less vibration. I would stay away from metal.

Yes but a 2 or 3 meters pole from fiberglass will keep SKY on top of it, stable enough ?

I am using a 16 foot fiberglass pole and it works fine.

I’m using an acrylic mast. Photos of Sky and Installation
it does sway a bit in strong winds, but doesn’t cause false rain events. I went for acrylic because of the looks and didn’t expect it to sway.

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@WFmarketing I think I’m having a similar issue as @dimitris19. We’re currently under a wind advisory with clear blue skies, and my Sky has been reading moderate rain for a while. I suspect it’s the wind vibrating the mounting (10’ metal fence top and I can see the pole moving a little). First I’ve noticed it happening here. Anyway, just checking in - I know the CL system for rain should help with this. Hopefully you’re getting closer to releasing it. Thanks for the awesome system and for the tremendous support.IMG_1022 PNG IMG_1025

Hi @les_jeanne . Great report, appreciate the detail. And nice looking station we might add.

As you are aware, the haptic rain sensor in SKY is very sensitive to vibration. There are different ways to address this. The most significant gains come from elimination of vibration in your mounting. Other owners have successfully reduced vibration by experimenting with pole material, mounting brackets, sand inside the pole, shorter pole length, etc. We’ll DM you with another unique solution to test.

The CL system for rain is significantly more involved than the other parameters. We have yet to release the details, but in very general terms it will include two unique capabilities: 1) automatically tune your haptic sensor based on an ongoing analysis of a variety of trusted source data, and 2) take the calibrated instantaneous rain intensity data from SKY in addition to a sophisticated schema of spatial precip analysis to provide quantitative accumulation values for your exact location (translated: SKY rain intensity data is one of many pieces of data that ultimately determines accumulation). So in your situation as described above, your SKY would still spit out the instantaneous rain signatures until you eliminate the vibrations, however, the system would reject the values as actual rain accumulation based on the other non-corroborating inputs.

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I 'd like to report that I have tried everything I could do to eliminate vibration (metal pole, plastic pole, sand inside pole, longer pole, shorter pole) but still the sensor reports rain in high wind conditions.

Is there any estimate of when the CL for rain will be implemented.

Hi there

Im experiencing a high number of false positives on rain events or rather non rain events. They generally appear in wind events over 25kph. Ive tried just about everythin including shortening the pole to arond 18 inches and placing rubber dampeners between the structure and the pole however nothing seems to work. The pole is 3mm gal steel btw. I agree that this would be due to potential vibration, however given that this would occur regardless of any fixing method out there im beginning to think that the unit is either faulty or not suitable for coastal or areas that cannot be completely sheltered from wind. Another bug bear is that the unit is a great perch for birds. I have made up a bird spike system however my thoughts would be that this would create more vibration due to wind sheer in high wind events

If anyone could share a similar story and a possible solution that would be great, otherwise i will have to concede that the unit is only good for wind analysis.


Andrew, Tasmania