Moisture meters: uses and applications

Moisture meters are essential tools in various industries, including construction, agriculture, food production, laboratory research, and many more. They’re amazing at accurately reading the moisture levels within a given material. Also you can purchase one at any reputable supplier, for example, RS Components

If you’re wondering about the different kinds of moisture meters and their industrial applications, keep reading!

Moisture meters: a quick rundown

A moisture meter is an instrument that measures the moisture content of materials. It is often used in construction and landscaping because it can measure how dry a surface is and help to determine the best time to apply a sealant or paint.

Moisture meters generally have four scales: dry, moist, wet, and damp. Workers can interpret the reading as “dry” if it falls into the lower range of the scale, “moist” if it falls into the middle range of the scale, “wet” if it falls into the upper range of the scale, and “damp” if it falls somewhere between “moist” and “wet.”

There are many types of moisture meters available today, including pinless moisture meters and pin-type moisture meters. Pinless meters work thanks to electric impedance, while pin-type meters measure with pins penetrating the measured material.

You’ll also need a different type of moisture meter depending on the material you hope to measure. We’ll go into detail about these types in the sections below.

1. Wood moisture meters

A wood moisture meter is a portable device that (as you might expect!) measures moisture levels in wood. They’re popular within the construction, forestry, and furniture manufacturing industries.

Moisture meters typically follow one of two design principles: resistance or capacitance. The most common type of wood moisture meter is the capacitance type.

Capacitance meters measure changes in electrical capacitance to determine the moisture content of wood without touching its surface. This process happens via a capacitor probe, which generates an electric field through conductive metal prongs that project into the tested material.

Resistance types generate an electric current between two probes to measure how much water is absorbed by the sample’s surface.

2. Soil moisture meters

Soil moisture measures can measure both the depth of roots and the amount of water available in the top layer of soil.

These moisture meters are usually electronic devices that use a probe or electrodes to measure resistance, calculating moisture content.

A probe-type soil moisture meter will often have two probes, with one inserted into the moist ground and one inserted into dry ground. In contrast, an electrode-type soil moisture meter will feature three electrodes placed in moist ground.

3. Concrete moisture meters

Concrete moisture meters are useful tools for contractors and engineers. Their main purpose is to measure the amount of water penetrating a concrete slab. 

These devices send out electric signals that bounce off the water molecules inside a concrete slab, returning them to the receiver. The device will then indicate how much water is in the slab.

On construction sites, workers who have just poured new concrete slabs can use a moisture meter to determine if curing is necessary.


Now you’ve learned about the different kinds of moisture meters and their industry applications; you’ll know which type to invest in for your company.

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