10 Best Soil Moisture Meters of 2024 – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
You’ve just stepped outside and noticed that your plants are dying. You frantically turn on the hose and water them, hoping they will bounce back. If only there were some kind of tool that could let us know when our plants need water and when we might need to drain water away from them.
You’re in luck! Soil moisture meters can help solve this issue and save you from looking at the carnage of your favorite plants shriveled up and dead. Even better, we took the time to do product reviews of different makes and models to save you the hassle.
Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2024
|Sonkir MS02 Soil pH Meter
|VIVOSUN 3-in-1 Plant Moisture Meter
|Gain Express Soil pH & Moisture Meter
|XLUX T10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter
|Dr.Meter S10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter
The 10 Best Soil Moisture Meters
1. Sonkir MS02 Soil pH Meter – Best Overall
The Sonkir MS02 is a 3-in-1 meter that will test soil moisture, pH value, and sunlight levels. Its double-needle technology provides quick and accurate readings, something other moisture meters aspire to but often fail to achieve. It is a lightweight meter that can be used indoors and out.
No batteries are required, and it’s very easy to use. You place the needles 2–4 inches deep into the soil and get your reading. Some users have complained that the moisture needle is bendy, so you have to take caution when placing the meter in the soil, or it could possibly break. However, we think the Sonkir is the best overall soil moisture meter.
2. VIVOSUN 3-in-1 Plant Moisture Meter – Best Value
If you are looking for the best soil moisture meter for the money, check out the VIVOSUN 3-in-1 Plant Moisture Meter. This 3-function soil meter tests moisture, light, and pH levels and does it for a great price.
The meter is easy to use and read, but after sticking the meter where you want the soil tested, you have to wait a while for the readings. However, the VIVOSUN is durable, and batteries are not required. Again, this is a great product for someone looking for a soil moisture meter on a budget.
3. Gain Express Soil pH & Moisture Meter – Premium Choice
The Gain Express Soil pH and Moisture Meter is at the top of the price range as far as moisture meters go, but it has several features that make it worth the cost. The first feature is how easy it is to use. It only has one prong, which is thicker and more durable than others. Once in the ground, the meter will measure moisture and pH levels that range from 3 to 8 on the pH scale and give readings accurately within ±0.2%.
The wide-faced dial is easy to see and read, so there is no guessing. The Gain Express does not need batteries, but we rated it lower because it takes a long time to get a reading—a very long time. Yes, you need to have some patience, but the accuracy of the information is worth the wait.
4. XLUX T10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter
If you only want to test the moisture of the soil and nothing else, the XLUX T10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is what you’re looking for. No fancy bells or whistles are included; this meter tests moisture only, which makes it relatively easy to use. Place it in the soil where you want to test the moisture and get instant readings.
Reading the large and clear meter is easy, too. The issue with the XLUX T10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is one thin prong that goes into the ground is not durable and should not be used in dry soil.
5. Dr.Meter S10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter
The Dr. Meter S10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is another no-frills single-function soil meter. However, it is fairly easy to use and read. The user places it in the ground and uses the simple 10-scale red, green, and blue color system to determine the moisture level and action they need to take for their plants. The meter is generally accurate, and the compact design is a nice touch.
Another plus for the Dr. Meter $10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is that it does not require batteries. Like other meters, however, its design is vulnerable to breaking in hard soil or if it hits a rock, so users should be careful when plunging it into the ground.
6. Ruolan ZB Soil pH Meter
Moving back to the multifunction soil moisture meters, the Ruolan Soil pH Meter measures soil, sunlight, and pH levels. This is another dual-pronged meter, which helps determine results with accuracy. You can change operational settings with a switch, and the meter can quickly change gears to give a reading.
The Ruolan meter is fairly priced and requires no additional add-ons, such as batteries. We found one major issue with this product. If the user switches between readings too quickly, they may have to remove the meter and start over, so our advice is to go slow when switching functions.
7. Luster Leaf 1820 Rapitest Soil Moisture Meter
The Luster Leaf Rapitest Soil Moisture Meter is a no-nonsense moisture meter. It has only a single function, but does it accurately. The meter is easy to read and ranges in scale from 1 to 10. Luster Leaf’s meter reads information quickly, and the results are almost instantaneously delivered. The unit has a guide that tells you the watering needs of over 150 plants, so there is no more guesswork on how much to water the hydrangeas.
The Luster Leaf is more hands-on because the user places the prong in the ground and has to hold the meter. Storing the system can also be an issue because the cord that connects the prong to the meter can get tangled or damaged.
8. iPower Soil pH Meter
The iPower Soil pH Meter is another dual-pronged soil meter that measures moisture, pH, and light. This model is more limited than others as its pH meter ranges from 3.5 to 8. The meter also can take up to 10 minutes to read, but the reading is very accurate. This model requires no additional power source, such as batteries. The issue with this meter is it will not register any data in dry soil, requiring the user to wet down the soil to begin reading.
9. Kensizer Soil Tester
Near the end of our picks, the dual-probe multifunction soil moisture meter from Kensizer Soil Tester is easy to use. Batteries are not required, and the readings are produced quickly so the user can move on and test other areas if needed.
The switch to toggle from the different settings is easy to navigate, and the readings are visible in bright sunlight. The downside of the Kensizer Soil Tester is that it is less durable than other meters. It also costs more than many other multifunction soil meters.
10. Alotpower Soil Moisture Sensor Meter
The Alotpower Soil Moisture Sensor Meter is a stand-alone simple soil moisture meter. It is easy to use, but it’s flimsy, and there is some concern over the accuracy of the reading at various depths. This model, for simply being a soil moisture meter, is also priced on the high end of the scale for these meters. This meter does not require any batteries for operation.
Buyer’s Guide – Choosing the Best Soil Moisture Meter
Now that you have examined several soil moisture meters, you need to select the right one to keep the roses blooming and the garden fresh. To pick the meter that fits your needs, you need to consider the following factors.
Before buying a soil moisture meter, ask yourself if you want just the moisture level or more. Many soil moisture meter models have extra features such as pH and light exposure monitoring.
Ease of Use
Most soil moisture meters are easy to use. However, when placing the probes in the ground, you must be careful not to break them. Some models are more durable and easier to use, such as the Gain Express. Buyers should look for more durable meters if they have dry or rocky soil. Other meters tell you that the ground needs to be wet to work correctly, like the iPower Soil pH Meter.
If you are looking at a multifunction soil moisture meter, you need to see how it reads the measurements and how easily it is to switch from one reading to another. Models that have a switch are nice because the user gets to select the reading they want.
Buyers should see if the soil moisture meter needs a power source to operate. Many soil meters are battery-free, but you can find battery-operated machines.
If you are looking for a meter to do more than just measure the moisture in the soil, the price will go up, but you can still find meters that won’t require you to take out an extra loan. If you go with a less expensive moisture meter, you won’t get the extra functions, and be aware you could end up with more headaches in the form of inaccurate readings and broken meters.
Hopefully, these reviews have helped you decide on the best soil moisture meter that fits your needs. The best multifunction meters are the Sonkir Soil pH Meter and the VIVOSUN 3 in 1 Plant Moisture Meter. The Sonkir is easy to use and gives accurate readings, and the durable VIVOSON is affordable and accurate. If you have drier, rockier soil in your garden, a great, durable buy can be found with the Gain Express Soil pH and Moisture Meter. If you simply want just a soil moisture reader, your best buy is the XLUX T10 Soil Moisture Sensor Meter.