There are many tools intended for predicting the weather. While you can find some modern and digital options, you might also want to go analog and traditional. A storm glass predicts the weather from the crystal formations that occur inside itself.
Stormglasses appeared in the 18th century and were intended to be a cheaper option than barometers, which were quite expensive then. The storm glass weather predictor inventor is unknown, but 100 years after its invention, the British Royal Navy started using it more and more.
This device was used aboard the HMS Beagle by officer Admiral Robert Fitzroy. It is why sometimes this tool will bear his name. We will show you the best storm glass weather predictors if you want to go traditional with weather prediction. It includes how they work and how to place them on your windows.
What is a storm glass weather predictor?
The storm glass weather predictor works in a very interesting way. There are specific chemicals placed inside the clear and sealed glass. These chemicals react and crystalize to predict the weather a couple of days in advance.
This device can predict storms and severe weather up to three days in advance. That is why the Royal Navy used this device on their sails. The captain could avoid storms and predict the weather without the help of complex and sophisticated tools.
The barometric pressure is used to predict and identify the approaching weather. These storm glasses have various ingredients, but they can differ slightly from one another. Most of the time, you will find ethanol and potassium nitrate, as well as distilled water and ammonium chloride, in their composition.
How does the Admiral FitzRoy storm glass work?
Stormglasses are easier to understand than barometers, and anyone can use them. You don’t have to be an expert meteorologist to predict the incoming weather. You will find that they come with their instructions provided by the manufacturer.
Pay attention to the liquid inside the glass. It should be clear when the weather is stable. However, it will show different patterns when there is a significant change in pressure. It means that the weather is changing. The instructions provided with the product will help you determine what kind of storm is approaching.
These tools should be placed indoors on a level surface, preferably near a window. If the window allows direct sunlight, you should remove the storm glass and place it elsewhere.
Best storm glass weather predictors
Because these products are not expensive, everyone can purchase one regardless of their budget. It is also an excellent addition to your house because it is both a practical and decorative item.
The weather predictions will assist you in planning your days accordingly. At the same time, the specific shape will catch the attention of your guests, which will surely be impressive. We researched the market and even purchased one storm glass ourselves. Here are the best ones we could find:
Best cheap option – SUNJULY
This storm glass is made with high-quality materials. The company that manufactured them has a strong reputation in the decoration industry. It is the best option if you want a great addition to your living room.
It works the same way it did hundreds of years ago. It’s using a special chemical composition to predict the approaching weather. You can predict storms, fog, or snowfalls up to three days before they arrive.
Practical and very easy to operate, you only have to pay attention to the water in the glass. If it is clear, the weather is sunny. However, a storm is approaching if the water suddenly gets cloudy. You don’t have to worry about this tool breaking down, as the high-grade glass has excellent durability.
Best decorative piece – CAVALLO MERCANTILE with Dark Wood Base
If you are looking for a storm glass weather predictor that also looks good, this is the best option for you. We also purchased and tried this model mainly because it has both efficiency and good looks incorporated into one high-quality piece. The crystals inside the glass will constantly change to reflect weather changes.
If the weather gets cloudy, the crystals themselves will form a cloud inside the bottle to signal you that there won’t be any available direct sunshine soon. If it’s wintertime, the crystals will rise to the top and slowly snow down.
Because it is also a good decorative addition to any house, you can purchase this product as a gift for your loved ones. The dark wood base is a unique feature not found in any other storm glasses. It also helps keep the storm glass upright, and you can place this item on any surface.
Best vintage option – Creative Weather Station with Wooden Base
It is another high-quality storm product that is made with premium materials only. It comes in a special gift box which you can then give away to someone in your life that is passionate about meteorology. This gift box is upgraded and will reduce the damage from transit and shipping.
A creative decoration, this product is similar to the ones used on wooden ships hundreds of years ago. The special design of a globe held by a wooden stand makes this a vintage piece, which is also a great decoration for any room.
Be advised that you must wait up to 2 weeks after the product arrives. During this time, the storm glass will adapt to the environment. It will eventually be able to predict the weather accurately.
Best fancy option – Weather Forecast Barometer Bottle Diamond
This product will satisfy you if you are looking for something more sophisticated. A diamond-shaped storm glass is just what you need if your living room features exquisite items such as cigars or fine drinks. While looking great on your window, this storm glass will also accurately predict the weather.
Special chemicals will react to the pressure and temperature change to predict the incoming storms. It works well in both summer and winter, as it can accurately predict rainfall or snowfall.
Many satisfied customers purchased this product as a gift for their loved ones. Giving someone a diamond-shaped storm glass will make them remember you for this special gesture. However, do not forget to tell them that a minimum of 2 weeks of acclimatization are necessary before seeing accurate results.
Best minimalistic option – Kikkerland ST717
This simple product is ideal if you have a minimalistic style and don’t want something complicated. The simple design makes it more practical than other models intended for decoration.
Place it in your library or bedroom where you can see it every day. When you wake up, check the inside condition of the glass and interpret the change with the help of instructions provided by the manufacturer. This way, you can predict the weather every single morning.
Special markings on the glass indicate the forecast, and the crystals will always be contained inside the glass tube. A solid wood base ensures stability on any surface.
Best modern option – Bits and Pieces – LED Light-Up Color Changing
The LED-lighted base makes this product unique and different from the other storm glasses. It makes the crystal formations glow in various shades. This way, you can interpret the weather even at night or in low visibility conditions.
Because of this special addition, the storm glass also becomes a wonderful decorative piece that will light up any room. For the lights, you will need three AAA batteries not included in the package when you order them.
If you want to place this item in a specific place, be advised that the weather globe measures 4 inches and diameter and stands 6 inches high on its base. With this predictor, you can tell the weather up to two days in advance.
Best unique shape option – Forecaster, Liquid Barometer Swan Shape Bottle
While most storm glass weather predictors are shaped like a globe or teardrop, this special model features the beautiful shape of a swan. High borosilicate glass ensures excellent quality and malleability that let artisans get creative when designing this product’s shape.
This item works well both as a weather predictor and decoration piece. An ancient principle lets us predict severe weather based on the changes in air pressure. This swan-shaped beauty will do the same. You can plan your days ahead and always be updated about the weather.
Different patterns can form inside the glass, and all of them represent specific weather. The manufacturer provides clear instructions, which will help you determine the conditions before going outside.
Best large storm glasses
Stormglasses are usually small, and they are designed to fit near your window or on your desk. But if you want to go big, you might consider a large storm glass that can be placed on the ground.
Because it is so large, this item becomes a wonderful piece of decoration that also accurately predicts the weather. Many options are available on the market, but here is the best one we could find.
Constantinople – 2 in 1 Set
If you want something to predict the weather accurately, this one will always do the job. Because it is so big, there is no way you can miss checking it before you leave your house. All you have to do is set this product in a ventilated space where it will be undisturbed.
After a couple weeks of accommodation to the environment, the predictor will show the forecast for the next few days. You don’t have to be an expert in weather and atmospheric conditions to read the indications of this product. Clear instructions are also provided, and you will determine the weather at a glance.
If you are bringing guests over, expect admiration and lots of comments from them. This piece attracts attention wherever it is placed. If you love decorating interiors, you will find this storm glass an excellent addition to your home.
Storm glass guide
Using a stormglass is not difficult; anyone can do it. You don’t have to be a weather enthusiast or expert meteorologist. Still, you have to do some operations after you receive your product. The predictor can get stuck due to the shipping process. The crystals will sit at the bottom, resulting in inaccurate predictions.
At this point, many people are confused and request a refund, thinking their product is broken. But all you have to do is let the glass sit for one to two weeks. During this time, the tool accommodates your environment and will start working properly.
How to read a stormglass
The most common patterns that can form in a storm glass have been documented since the 19th century. They are still accurate to this day. Predicting the weather based on the patterns is easy. All you have to do is associate them with external conditions.
- The weather will be clear when the liquid is transparent
- The weather will be cloudy when the liquid is foggy
- The weather will be humid when there are small dots in the liquid
- The weather will be snowy when there are small stars in the liquid
- The weather will be overcast when there are large flakes in the liquid
Ideally, you might want to place it in an area of your home that is not directly exposed to sunlight. Do not place it near devices that generate heat, as the change in temperature will give inaccurate predictions.
There are many ingredients in a storm glass, but the most common ones are ethanol and distilled water. The special composition varies by manufacturer, but most of them follow the original substance used by Admiral Robert FitzRoy.
While there are no special requirements for indoor placement, storm glasses are often placed near chilly windows or on special spaces outside that are protected from direct sunlight.
If you live in a temperate climate, there is nothing wrong with keeping them indoors. But you might want to avoid warm temperatures since they will interfere with the proper functionality of your weather predictor.
If the storm glass weather predictor worked for Admiral FitzRoy hundreds of years ago, it surely works for you too. Today there is complex technology available in our own pockets. Still, some people want to get traditional and simple predicting the weather.
Back then, the storm glass and the barometer were the only options. Seas were navigated with the help of these tools, so it is safe to say that the weather in your local area can be easily predicted by such a simple yet effective tool.
If you decide to place this tool outdoors, ensure the wind will not blow it over. After it warns you about severe weather approaching, you should take it inside to protect it from hail or debris carried by the wind.