RC-SPC1K capacitive rain sensor

  • Contest Winner

    Did any one ever experimented with this rain sensor https://www.radiomodules.eu/en/component/62/capacitive-rain-sensor?

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    It doesn't oxidize like the normal rain sensors and has a builtin temperature sensor and heater. The heating seems like a good thing for during the winters. So you can melt away any snow. Although I assume you have to turn it on whenever you measure any rain, so the water can vaporize. Because I think that might give a false positive. But that would be something to test.

    On the product site there's also the schematics for an Arduino Uno Shield and a sketch you can upload to operate the Sensor. I didn't have time yet to check those out.

    I think the sensor is also used in a lot in the more expensive commercial rain sensors. Although they only trigger a rain detection signal not the amount of falling rain. According to the production site, you should also be able to detect the amount of rain, which is indicated by the capacitance you measure on the sensor.

    Schermafbeelding 2021-10-22 om 14.41.31.png

    I'm pretty sure Kemo uses this sensor in their product.

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    The RC-SPC1K seems like a decent sensor for rain detection. But I can't find many Arduino projects. So wondering if any one of you has any experience with this sensor. Because a commercially available solution costs 50 euro. Although the sensor itself also costs 18 euros, 9 for the sensor and 9 shipping costs. And you still need some components - opto coupler and resistor - to hook it up to the Arduino and a water resistant casing.

    I can imagine more projects then only a rain sensor for closing the sunscreens. Maybe something like a small water basin for birds during those hot summer days, that gets refilled when it's empty.

  • Hello @TheoL

    I have not good experiences with rain sensors,
    the only one that "works", does not cost an arm and relatively simple to make it to use a rain bucket counter.

    I have found that wireless ones (radioà433Mhz) were twice cheaper than "wired" one,
    and you can easily "wirefy" by juste soldering two wires on the "magnetic switch" and cutting a trace or two. cf: bad picture from years ago https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Jodaille/LyceeDesAndaines/master/JaugePluieInterruption/Soldered_wires_for_contact.jpg

  • Contest Winner

    @Jodaille The buckets are nice for measuring the amount of rain that has fallen over a period. But with light rains changes are the bucket won't tip. The normal rain sensors are useful for closing sun screens when it rains. Because they will always give a signal when it rains. Regarding the amount of rain that is falling.

    For the weather sensors I use an Alecto one. I can connect it Domoticz using an RFXtrx433E transceiver. But it's still on my bucket list to replace all of those with a mysensor version. For the wind direction and speed I'll be using a AMS AS5600 since they are very precise and don't need interrupts. So I can use one arduino for the complete weather station.

    But currently a real rain sensor is higher on my todo list, as we will get a new motorized sunscreen xd

  • Hello @TheoL ,
    I better understand now, you are right this kind of sensor could be useful 🙂
    I imagine that you have already found this page: https://www.avdweb.nl/arduino/measurement/rain-detector
    It seems to use the same sensor. Reading it, I have just understand that the bottom was for heating, nice.

  • I have just found that another kind of detection exists: optical

    cf: https://www.yoctopuce.com/EN/article/how-to-build-a-rain-sensor

    I wonder how hard is it to be able to reproduce it.

  • Contest Winner

    @Jodaille Thanx for the link to the project. I think I'll order one of those sensors this weekend. As I hope it can also send the amount of rain that is falling.

    I do have to check the optical sensor. But I really like the heating in the controlli sensor

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