Best Wood Moisture Meter To Consider [Reviewed]

Best Wood Moisture Meter

Are you unable to determine the moisture of wood just by lifting? If your answer is yes, you ought to have a quality wood moisture meter.  

It helps detect the accurate moisture content of wood, which helps woodworkers decide if a piece of wood is durable or not. Available in pin and pinless variants, they can be helpful for both professionals and DIY enthusiasts.

But with so many options and the plethora of features on offer, it can be a pain to select  the ideal one for your needs. That’s why we are here to help you select the best meter by reviewing some of the top models out there. 

You’ll also find a detailed buyer’s guide that’ll help you make a better purchase decision. So, without further delay, let’s get in!

Top 8 Wood Moisture Meters

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IMAGE PRODUCT DETAILS
Our Top PickOur Top Pickleoplaid-table__imageGeneral Tools
  • Humidity sensor pad
  • Moisture reader and water leak detector
  • Low, medium, and high moisture sounds
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leoplaid-table__imageTavool
  • 2 measuring mode
  • 8 calibration scales
  • 5-60% moisture range
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leoplaid-table__imageKlein Tools
  • Pinless electromagnetic field (EMF) technology
  • 9 LED bars
  • Bright reverse-contrast display
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leoplaid-table__imageProster
  • Large HD LCD
  • Moisture range of 0-99.9% 
  • Large HD LCD with Data Hold function
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leoplaid-table__imageCalculated Industries
  • Multiple moisture-detection modes
  • built-in calibration test pins
  • Auto-shutoff
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leoplaid-table__imageDr. Meter 2-in-1 Moisture Meter
  • Pin-type and pinless scanning
  • Different measurement modes
  • Current ambient temperature measurement
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leoplaid-table__imageSAM Pro
  • 4 Material Type Modes
  • High/ Low Moisture Reading Bar
  • Large easy-to-read color LCD screen 
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leoplaid-table__imageDr. Meter
  • Automatic temperature compensation
  • 10 different timber densities at the option
  • Ultra-large LCD
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Wooden Thermometer and Hygrometer Device For Sauna on a white background. 3d Rendering

1. General Tools

Whether you’re a professional woodworker or a homeowner who needs to check the moisture levels of your home regularly, this can be an ideal product. It helps effectively detect leaks in concrete, wood, carpet, and plaster. Available as both digital and analog models, it delivers highly accurate results every time you use it. 

Why Did We Like It?

If you’re looking for a versatile moisture meter that can be used on materials other than wood, then this unit by General Tools is worth consideration. It’s designed to detect leaks and moisture levels in cardboard, firewood, paper, concrete, etc., thereby making you aware of mold growth on these surfaces. 

This digital moisture meter is critical while working with sensitive subjects like wood. It gives precise readings for moisture levels ranging from 5% to 50% in wood and 1.5 to 33% in building materials like drywall and concrete. Besides, it uses a color-changing screen and several tones to indicate the moisture level, making it easy to read. 

The display of the unit showcases only current mode and moisture content to ensure easy viewing. You can freeze the readings using its hold function to note them down for maintaining a record. Furthermore, it automatically switches off if kept idle. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

The only negative side of this model is that its cover is difficult to get off. This can become annoying, especially when you’re in a hurry, as much of your time is wasted fighting with the cover before using it. However, once you get used to it, you can derive accurate results and work with high-quality wood every time. 

Pros 

  • Versatile function
  • Accurate 
  • Easy-to-read display readings
  • Wide measuring range

Cons

  • Cover is challenging to get off

2. Tavool

The Tavool MT270 is a versatile solution for measuring the moisture content of wood accurately. It has an easy operation, a LED display, and convenient switches to turn it on or off and detect moisture in various (high, medium, low) ranges. Apart from woodworking, this meter is ideal for agricultural restoration, building construction, and floor laying. 

Why Did We Like It?

Tavool wood moisture meters are reliable, durable, accurate, and quick to display results. This model has 8 calibration scales, which can be used to measure the moisture levels of softwood and hardwood. Hence, it is an ideal choice for carpenters, woodworkers, and even homeowners who burn firewood to warm their homes. 

It also can measure high, medium, and low moisture levels within a range of 5%-60%. And for convenience, it comes with a sizable backlit LED, so you can accurately note down the results, even in the dark. 

The other impressive features of this meter include temps, memory function, maxim and minimum moisture measurement, and auto-power-off. Moreover, it features two modes: one is to measure wood moisture levels while the other is for building materials. And lastly, its unique design and rubberized grips make it easier to use on wet wood and keeps it from slipping off your hands. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

We were disappointed to find that it needs to be calibrated for different wood species to generate accurate results. So, if you’re working with different wood species regularly, it might be a tiring job for you. Otherwise, it leaves no stone unturned in terms of performance and usability. 

Pros 

  • Simple to use
  • Easy to handle
  • Versatile 
  • Affordable 

Cons

  • Need to be calibrated for different wood types

3. ‎Klein Tools

Klein Tools has been a known name as a manufacturer of premium hand tools designed to meet professional needs. As such, the ET140 is a pinless moisture meter that detects the hidden moisture content in wood, masonry, or drywall. A bright reverse-contrast display ensures an easy-viewing experience, and the integration of various buttons complements its easy usability. 

Why Did We Like It?

If you want to get the moisture readings of a surface without poking holes into it, then this meter can fit the bill. It can accurately detect moisture within a surface that’s up to  ¾ inches deep. 

In terms of display, its high-contrast screen enables easy readability, and the LED bars denote the moisture levels, so you won’t need any practical experience to collect the data. Just touch the meter, get the reading, and note it down. Plus, you can use it for measuring a variety of materials, like wood, masonry, etc. 

The unit is integrated with other useful features like a mode button that allows you to set the unit in accordance with the material it’s being used for. Furthermore, the low battery indicator, hold, and auto-power off options make it an ideal product for anyone who works with lumber. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

Although it can measure moisture levels for different materials, the range is not as diverse as some of the other options on the market. However, if you’re concerned only about wood moisture, this one shouldn’t be as big of a problem, 

Pros 

  • Pinless meter
  • Easy to read
  • Switch to shift from one material to other
  • Accurate moisture readings

Cons

  • Measuring range is not very diverse

4. Proster

The Proster PST050 is a viable option for people looking for a high-quality moisture meter that they can use on multiple materials like wood, paper, cardboard, or other building materials. It delivers an accurate reading, thanks to the sensitive electrode pins. Plus, the integration of different modes and convenient design sets it apart from a lot of its peers. 

Why Did We Like It?

This versatile digital moisture meter delivers accurate readings for a moisture level up to 99.9%, with a 0.5% margin of accuracy. You can also switch it between four built-in modes, which allow a user to determine the moisture level in more than 50 wood types. Measuring data using these modes helps you attain the highest level of accuracy. 

It has a big HD LCD display that makes it easier to get the moisture readings. Plus, it has an auto power-off button and low battery functions. 

This unit delivers one of the best value for money for DIYers and woodworking professionals. In terms of design, its ergonomic build delivers a great feeling to hands. And it is made of ABS plastic, which adds to its superior durability. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

One thing to note is that this model doesn’t work on gypsum, drywall, concrete, or any other construction materials, which makes it less versatile than some of the other options we have discussed above. So, if you wish to have a multi-functional meter for all your building purposes, this might not fit the bill. 

Pros 

  • Detect slow leaks 
  • Comes with several modes
  • Accurate results
  • Solid ABS plastic and hence durable

Cons

  • Suitable only for wood 

5. Calculated Industries

The Calculated Industries XT 7440 is a good option if you want to check the moisture content of your hardwood. It will help you avoid any further water damage to your wood walls and prevent the growth of mold or other toxic materials. Besides, the specially designed buttons and display allows you to operate the device efficiently and excel in your woodwork. 

Why Did We Like It?

Like most models on our list, the Accumaster XT 7440 uses pins to detect the amount of moisture in the wood. Being the most expensive product on our list, it is loaded with a whole lot of features and usability. 

The most appealing feature of this product is its ability to detect hidden leaks in wooden surfaces and walls. Keeping track of moisture levels in these areas allows you to prevent damage to your home. 

Aside from that, it’s pretty easy-to-use, thanks to its backlit screen that has audio alerts and icons to correspond to different moisture levels. And the ergonomic and sturdy body is durable and feels solid when used to press pins into the surfaces. 

Last but not least, it is integrated with a hold key that freezes readings, allowing you to maintain a record on pen and paper. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

One of the major issues with this model is its premium pricing. Not all the features are needed for novices or DIYers, which makes it more expensive for them. Additionally, we often received false dry indications while testing it even for fully drenched surfaces. 

Pros 

  • Can be used for different surfaces
  • Easy to use
  • Loaded with features
  • Finds hidden leaks

Cons

  • Expensive 
  • Not very accurate

6. Dr. Meter 2-in-1 Moisture Meter 

Towards the end of the list, we have the Dr. Meter 2-in-1 moisture meter, which is a fit for both DIY and professional woodworking t. It boasts both pin-type and pinless modes, allowing you to scan the present moisture quickly but without damaging the measuring surface. Also, it is integrated with a wide measuring range and an over-range alert. 

Why Did We Like It?

There are many things we liked about this product in terms of its features and functionality. The most useful aspect of Dr. Meter’s wood moisture detector is its two measurement modes, i.e., pinless and pin-type. 

Two electrode pins should be inserted in the wood material in the pin-type mode, whereas the pinless type scans the material using its sensor and displays the results. It enables you to get accurate and quick results using the former, while the latter doesn’t require you to poke a hole in high-quality wooden materials. Hence, you can work with almost all kinds of woods. 

It is also integrated with four modes for scanning softwood, hardwood, concrete, and gypsum. The accuracies of both modes differ accordingly, where the scale range of the meter is 5-50% in pin mode and is 0-53% in the other. Thanks to its advanced alert system, you will be notified whenever moisture reading exceeds 17%. 

Lastly, it also displays temperature and humidity readings to understand the wood’s condition better. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

With so many intricate features and modes, the device is suitable for professional woodworkers, but beginners might struggle to operate it. Also, we found its reading to go off-the-track in some cases while using the moisture meter. This is one area where the company needs to focus on. 

Pros 

  • Versatile meter 
  • Works with four kinds of wood
  • Displays temperature and humidity reading
  • Advanced alert system

Cons

  • Difficult for beginners
  • Shows inaccurate readings in some cases

7. SAM Pro

The inexpensive wood moisture meter by SAM Products is one of the better options available on the market in terms of functionality and features. Its four material type modes quickly detect the temperature and moisture of more than 100 materials, including softwoods, hardwoods, concrete, and drywall. Also, it comes with a carrying case and spare probes for lasting it longer.  

Why Did We Like It?

For people looking for an inexpensive yet feature-loaded wood moisture tester for occasional use, this product is suitable for them. Irrespective of its price, you won’t have to compromise a bit on its performance. 

Its large LCD screen is easy to read, which changes colors in accordance with the amount of moisture present. These colors help you determine whether the moisture content of the wood is high or low. So, being a beginner, this will be a practical option. 

Apart from that, it’s integrated with four modes for showing accurate results for different materials. In all, you can get moisture reading from carpet, wood, drywall, concrete, and hardwoods. 

And lastly, a set of replacement probes, a durable nylon case, and batteries is included with it so you can use the unit for longer. It is also backed by a lifetime replacement warranty of the company. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

Although it claims its suitability on hardwoods, it might be unsuitable to poke holes in your new floors. So, there is no way you can measure moisture levels of your wood floor without damaging them. Also, we found the battery cover and port to be poorly designed.  

Pros 

  • Inexpensive 
  • Different modes
  • Easy to read screen
  • Long-lasting and durable

Cons

  • Pins may damage the surface
  • Poorly designed battery ports

8. Dr. Meter

Yet another model from Dr. Meter, the MD-918 is a pinless wood moisture meter with a decent accuracy level, and its various measurement modes make it a versatile product. Detecting the moisture level of a wood surface or floor is pretty simple with this meter, and you won’t have to dig a hole in it. Also, it comes with many other features, which we will discuss further. 

Why Did We Like It?

Having a pinless wood moisture meter in hand like this means you won’t have to poke holes in your new hardwood floor for detecting its moisture content. This unit has a wide range from 4-80%, with a maximum error percentage of 1. It means you can keep track of the moisture levels of materials in hand accurately enough. 

You can also choose between 10 different timber densities with it. If you are well aware of the density of the wood that is being dealt with, you have perfectly accurate data every time. 

The particular moisture meter comes with a temperature compensation function that keeps the measuring surface temperature similar for delivering more accurate results. In order to exploit the feature, one needs to hold the unit close to the test surface for 5 minutes. 

Its intelligent auto-off function shuts your device off if it’s not been used for 5 minutes, in turn saving its battery. Plus, the ultra-large LCD screen delivers clear and accurate readings, even if in a dark space. 

What Could’ve Been Better?

Its 10 lumber density grades might not be useful for all as you need to know the density first in order to switch between the modes. So, many might consider it to be an unnecessary feature that can be compensated with something useful. Other than that, it cannot be used on materials other than wood. 

Pros 

  • High-precision
  • Temperature compensation 
  • Intelligent auto-off function
  • Clear readings

Cons

  • The density unique grades may not be useful for everyone
  • Can be used only on wood

Close-up of wooden surface in drops of water. Wet wood texture. Water drops on a rustic wooden board. Empty place for text or creative design. Clapboard, desk or table. High quality photo. Wood Moisture Meter Buying Guide

Wood Moisture Meter Buying Guide

Picking the best moisture meter doesn’t have to be difficult with our handy reviews. So, by now, you might have selected an ideal unit for your wood-based projects. If not, don’t worry, as we have developed a detailed buyer’s guide to help you with your purchase decision. 

In this detailed guide, we’ve discussed several factors which need to be looked out when selecting an ideal product from a sea of options. Of course, in the end, it will rely mostly on your personal preferences and needs. So, without much ado, let’s understand further. 

1. Pin Vs. Pinless

As you’ve already seen in our reviews, some wood moisture meters come with tiny pins while others don’t have any. Both of them have some advantages as well as disadvantages. These pins are to be inserted into the material being tested, which is not the case with pinless ones. 

The former ones often cost less and provide better accuracy while avoiding common errors of the pinless moisture meter. However, they require you to poke holes in the material to read them accurately, which might be unsuitable if you’re checking the moisture content of walls or new hardwood floors. 

On the other hand, the pinless option doesn’t need you to make any holes, but the results are not as accurate and require you to invest more. Still, it can be the best wood moisture meter when checking your wooden ceiling or floors. 

2. Cost

Usually, these meters can get very expensive and are not suitable for homeowners. Unless you’re a woodworking professional and need to use it all the time, consider buying one. Otherwise, we suggest you invest this much amount in them. 

As discussed earlier, pin-type moisture meters are cheaper than pinless options because the latter is integrated with different technology and costs more than the former. But it might not cost you a fortune to purchase a pinless moisture meter. If you don’t want to leave holes on the precious workpiece, an extra $10 won’t burn a hole in your pocket. 

3. Accuracy

Are moisture meters accurate? Accuracy moisture meters come with a wide accuracy range. Some have an accuracy within 0.1%, while it may be 2 or 3% in others. The greater the accuracy, the more you’re going to spend on it. 

In this case, you’ve to be sure what you’ll be needing the meter for. If you’re a professional who works on major projects mostly, a more accurate meter will be suitable. If there are any minor inconsistencies, the woodwork may become a disaster if it absorbs more water.

On the other hand, if you’re a homeowner residing in a very moist area, you can have the liberty to go for a less accurate unit. You’ll call upon a professional if you notice moisture on the walls. 

4. Ease Of Use

Most moisture meters available on the market need just point and click, but some require calibration in regular intervals. In terms of calibration, you can just click the calibrate button after placing the cover, while it can be a complicated process in some units. 

In addition, moisture is indicated by simple low, medium, or high in some while color-changing sounds and screens in others, making it harder to determine the moisture percentage. 

Unless you’re a professional, we’d recommend you go for ones that are simple to use and calibrate. It will let you monitor the moisture levels quickly and easily. 

Best Wood Moisture Meter FAQ

Q1. How is excess moisture bad for wood?

Just as a drying wood shrinks, one with excess moisture will swell in size. It might cause wood to lose its durability and strength, even crowing or buckling in some woodworking projects, making the client agitated.

 

Q2. What is the standard moisture level?

The standard acceptable moisture content of wood ranges from 7% to 14%, depending on the RH (Relative Humidity) of the air.

 

Q3. What’s the sensing depth of a pin vs. pinless model? What is the maximum thickness for which these meters can be used?

A pin-type meter measures moisture at the surface or as deep as the pin penetrates. Whereas, a pinless type penetrates deeper for a more accurate value. Generally, both these models can be for wood measuring between ½-inch and ¾-inch.

Best Wood Moisture Meter

Final Verdict

With that, we’ve reached the end of our review-based guide. The detailed reviews of the best wood moisture meter available and a buyer’s guide will help you have an ideal product for yourself. 

But, before we go, we’d like to mention some of our personal favorites. The General Tools ‎is one of the best moisture meters on our list, suitable for anyone irrespective of their requirements. It is easy to use, delivers more accurate readings, and comes at a lower price. 

Another one that caught our eye was the Klein Tools, which you should opt for if you’re a woodworking professional. It does come at a premium pricing, but its features and accuracy compensate for it. 

Now, it’s time to say goodbye. Take care! 

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