How Do You Measure Rain?

Tools

By By Steve Pool

SEATTLE - Measuring rain can be as simple as putting a bucket outside, letting it rain, and then sticking a ruler in the bucket and measuring the water's depth. As long as the container has a flat bottom and is a consistent width (i.e., not wider at the top than at the bottom) this will work.

If your rain gauge isn't symmetrical, you'll have to do some complex math to figure out how to convert your data. For instance, if your top rain catcher part is twice as wide than the rain holder at the bottom, you have to divide your measurement by 2.

Electronic "official" rain gauges have a little tipping mechanism that knows exactly how much weight 0.01 inches of rain is, and will tip the rain out at that point and add 0.01 to the digital readout and start over.

For More Information -- snow.plymouth.edu

Editor's Note: In the printed P-I article, we erroneously said to multiply, not divide, your measurement by two if your collector is twice as large as your container.

Your Photos

YouNews Up! Up! And away! Up! Up! And away!
When I saw this dramatic cloud to the north, it reminded me of smoke, rising in billows until it hits the jet stream, then it's pulled hundreds of miles east. I had to capture it quickly. Within minutes the effect had faded.
YouNews Inside an osprey nest Inside an osprey nest
For my girlfriends birthday we had a party at her parents. We knew the nest was there but the owner hadn't seen or heard the osprey for a day or two. He asked me to fly my drone up and see if any was wrong. I flew up and found that there were two eggs inside.
YouNews Our Garden Our Garden
The growing season has been great.

The secret to this garden is simple.
I used recycled grass clippings.