With over 110 hours used to perform the evaluation including research to testing, the Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester is our top choice from our top five-grain moisture testers. This device gives an efficient combination of handheld and benchtop measuring device giving you 250 grams for sampling. It caters to several kinds of grains making it a valuable product for large growers. The device also comes with computer connectivity enabling users to several data to back the numerous grain capacity.
A grain, no matter how minuscule is an integral part of our daily diet. And equally important is keeping them in good and healthy quality from the laborious planting, growing to grain sowing.
Even in the storing and packing, its quality should be optimum, especially when distributed to the general public. With this, growers and vendors alike will require more than just labor, skills and knowledge.
What you might also need is a reliable tool to keep our grains in their absolute best. This is a big part where grain moisture testers come in to serve its users.
So, in this review, we sifted and ranked the Grain Moisture Testers in the market based on the benefits and advantages it can provide in accordance with different user needs.
Read on to find out.
|Grain Moisture Tester||Portability||Variable Grains||Display|
|Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester||Handheld||Yes||LCD Screen|
|Sensor-1 MTC-999-ES Grain Moisture Analyzer||Tabletop||Yes||LCD Screen|
|YD-640 Portable Digital Grain Moisture Meter||Handheld||Yes||LCD Screen|
|Hanchen Lab Fast Halogen Moisture Analyzer||Tabletop||Yes (Include other raw materials)||LCD Screen|
|CTI DX-101G Digital Moisture Meter||Handheld||Yes (Up to 5)||Digital|
How Do Grain Moisture Testers Work?
Moisture in grain can define the quality of your grain as you store or pack them. According to the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), improperly dried grains such as rice can cause low-quality grains. When grain has inaccurate moisture content when stored, it can generate heat and will become a breeding ground for mold, attract insects, or generally cause non-standard grains. Consequently, farmers or growers, even vendors require an accurate determination of grain moisture— hence, the grain moisture tester. Depending on whether it is tabletop, handheld or with a reading probe, you have to set the tester to the kind of grain you are testing. Then pour in the sample on the pan or stick the probe into a pan of sample grain and then its moisture content will be displayed. There are different means to determine moisture content. But, testers usually use the electric conductivity of the moisture to rate moisture percentage.
One of the important benefits you can have from grain moisture meter is helping minimize wastage because of accurate data guiding the entire grain processing. It also helps speed-up identifying moisture. With a single button and a few seconds, the meter will display the moisture of the grain. Hence, work can proceed seamlessly. Also, this can help in the accurate weighing of the grain. You would know that the weight of the grain is the actual weight and not of the water in it.
Whether you’re a first time user or has been a veteran in grain moisture testing, here are a few prerequisites to remember when using (especially new) grain moisture tester:
- Be sure that you understand the functions of your grain moisture tester. It might help to know how the adjustments and settings work through the manual to get an accurate reading (i.e. temperature)
- When preparing the grain, let it set and cool before starting with the testing especially when these grains are newly harvested.
- Know the different moisture margins and standard percentage for the kinds of grain you’re testing. Always keep a record every after testing to ensure that you don’t mix up data.
You can choose to have a tabletop/benchtop or handheld or those with probes. It is, however, dependent on your usage and comfort. Tabletops are relatively heavier and bulkier, which is meant to be stationary inside your lab or storage. So if you want a tester that you can bring in the field, you can have the handheld ones. The difference between these two kinds is that the tabletop can accommodate more grains than the handheld.
The very purpose of getting a grain moisture meter is accurate. Thus, the tester should be able to provide the accurate moisture content of the grains to ensure that the grains are healthy and of good quality as it is stored and packed. As I have pointed out earlier inaccurate moisture in storage can cause the grains to degrade.
3. Probe and pans
Handheld grain moisture testers can further be categorized with pans or probes. Pans are the container in the tester where you will fill-in with grain, and from which the meter will test the moisture. Tabletops have bigger pans than the handheld ones. Meanwhile, Probes are two poles or bard connected to the tester that will be stuck on the grains to read the moisture. It is easier, but some users contend that probes are not as accurate.
How We Assessed & Evaluated These Grain Moisture Testers
Grain moisture testers are quite specific testers and are not very common household items as these have very specific usage. Thus, it took us quite some time to research the product.
It was a challenge to do the hands-on testing as we need to find different kinds of grains and are under different stages of processes. We first visited online pages like forums, online vendors and product website to supplement or limited knowledge regarding the product. We came up with summarized information from our online research as the starting point for our offline research.
For our offline data gathering, we talked to some growers and vendors about grain moisture testing, what they are using, its importance and how their grain moisture meters work. From this, we created a list of important considerations to weed out some of the low performing grain moisture meters.
At first, we have around 15-grain moisture meters. To cut it to five (5), we ranked them based on their features and benefits.
Once we had our top 5, we then called on a diverse group of testers from beginners to experts for the hands-on testing. We have spent five days to do the testing, one meter for each day with different kinds of grains that has undergone various stages prior to its storage and packing.
1. Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester (Editor’s Choice)
The Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester, Handheld is one of the less intimidating-looking meters from among the five. It is considered or marketed as handheld because of its compact design. But, it is not as portable as the meters with probes.
On testing, our testers initially thought that you would simply be pouring in the grain. However, it is more complicated as you have to turn the container upside-down and pull the stopper at the bottom for the grains to fall into the pan or chamber that can fit in 250 grams of grain. Some of the testers think that the complexity served a purpose, allowing the user to control the amount of grain without having to pour repeatedly manually.
This grain moisture meter also performs well in the accuracy testing. Our testers used it in with different kinds of grains which are under various stages. It shows fairly accurate results that are very close to the pre-identified content moisture of the grains.
I have mentioned earlier that it looks simple, but its operations are a bit complex even for our expert testers. The challenge with the Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester, Handheld is how to operate the product and to connect it to a computer or other device.
According to our testers reading through the manual and installation took time even with the testers working together. However, once it is completed. It makes the working with the diagnostics and data from the testing easier and more convenient. This feature is useful for recording when you have several grains to test.
Since the product is also a handheld type, the display screen is a bit small. Thus, you need always to examine and cross-check your data for accuracy.
What We Liked
What We Didn’t Like
2. Sensor-1 MTC-999-ES Grain Moisture Analyzer (First Runner-Up)
If you are looking for heavy duty grain moisture tester, the Sensor-1 MTC-999-ES Grain Moisture Analyzer Table Top with Built-in Printer might do the job. Unlike other meters, this tester has a tube feature to contain the grain instead of a pan.
Our testers think that it is more complicated than the Hanchen Lab Fast Halogen Moisture Analyzer Tester For Grain, Chemical Raw Materials, Mineral, Biological Product, Food, Pharmaceutical Raw Materials, Paper. But, you can quickly get the device working when you read through its operating functions.
The testers believe that this product is heavy-duty considering that it can accommodate 250 kinds of grains as provided in its description. We were not able to test these many grains during the testing. However, this grain moisture tester was able to provide precise results from the sample grains that we have.
Our testers are of the opinion that this device can be an excellent tool for those having large quantities of grains to process. As it is a tabletop device, it has a larger screen display. Additionally, its buttons are powered through the touchscreen. Some of our testers think that this feature is fine as most devices have this capacity.
However, during the testing, there are issues with the sensitivity, where the testers have to press several times to make it work. They deemed that you just have to be familiar with the meter. Like the Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester, Handheld it can also be connected to the PC, or you can even have a USB/flash drive device to transfer and store data. If you will be measuring several kinds of grains or if you are working on big batches, this can help with proper data management and organization.
What We Liked
What We Didn’t Like
3. YD-640 Portable Digital Grain Moisture Meter (Second Runner-Up)
The third on the list is the YD-640 Portable Digital Grain Moisture Meter with Measuring Probe LCD Display Tester for Corn Wheat Rice Bean Wheat Hygrometer, which is one of handheld meters with measuring probes like the CTI DX-101G Digital Moisture Meter handheld Portable Grain Moisture tester for corn, wheat, rice, beans, wheat flour humidity analyzer.
The most apparent difference is that this grain moisture tester has a block-like body instead of a thin handle. Its probe is connected to a wire and not directly to the body. Our testers think that this is useful when you want to test big piles of grain. Thus, making work faster and easier.
It also has bigger screens and buttons so you can easily manage data from this device. The bigger buttons allow the users to operate the device conveniently as these also have clear functions and labels. These two are also similar to their functions having 5 to 30 percent measuring range, and with the kinds of grains, it can measure. Therefore, this product is likewise valuable as it can measure the basic grains, but at the same time limited since some users have more grains to measure.
This YD-640 Portable Digital Grain Moisture Meter with Measuring Probe LCD Display Tester for Corn Wheat Rice Bean Wheat Hygrometer also accurate in providing the moisture content of the sample grains we have based on the standards and initially determined data. What also sets it apart from the other grain moisture tester is that it has an automatic shutdown ability. It helps you save battery as you work over time.
What We Liked
What We Didn’t Like
4. Hanchen Lab Fast Halogen Moisture Analyzer
Next on our list is the Hanchen Lab Fast Halogen Moisture Analyzer Tester For Grain, Chemical Raw Materials, Mineral, Biological Product, Food, Pharmaceutical Raw Materials, Paper, a tabletop halogen grain moisture tester.
This grain moisture tester performs more than just metering grain, but can also be used to determine the moisture content of other materials such as food, paper, and other raw materials. Some of the testers think that this feature makes the product more valuable for users who have other raw materials to work on.
As to its functions, it provides halogen heating with about 50 to 80 degrees temperature. With grain moisture tester, halogen heating pertains to a type of heating process using halogen gas making direct and effective compared to other heaters (such as infrared). This can provide more accurate results helping alter temperature.
Throughout the testing, this meter provides data that are accurate with the predetermined moisture content of the sample grains. Our testers observed that it has a large pan that can fit in about half a kilogram (0.5) of grain, which they think is good sample size. They further said that with this size, you could have the opportunity to truly determine moisture. Thus, our testers believed that it could be suited to those who work with large quantities of grain.
The buttons are quite simple and understandable to use even for the first-timers. It also packs a decent LCD size, where users can easily see through the display. The testers think that it might take me a trivial part, but this can make a difference when you are working on different kinds of grain and in large quantities.
What some of the testers find time-consuming is how they have to pour in the grain. It departs from those with probes that you can immediately put through the grain.
What We Liked
What We Didn’t Like
The last on our the CTI DX-101G Digital Moisture Meter handheld Portable Grain Moisture tester for corn, wheat, rice, beans, wheat flour humidity analyzer. This grain moisture tester is two of the lightest and is one of the handheld tools in the review.
With its weight and type, our testers deemed that it can be beneficial when you want to do testing on the field as it can easily be carried around. One of the expert testers also noted that this could be used for preliminary testing especially during the early stage of the grain processing.
The LCD screen is considered too small for convenient display as well as the buttons. These proved to be somehow difficult to operate. It is advantageous that this tool can accommodate the common types of grain such as wheat, rice corn, rice, and beans. On the other hand, this feature is comparatively limited in contrast to the other testers which can accommodate even a hundred kinds of grains and other materials on top of it. Hence, the testers see this as ‘very limited’ if you have other grains that need testing.
The CTI DX-101G Digital Moisture Meter handheld Portable Grain Moisture tester for corn, wheat, rice, beans, wheat flour humidity analyzer uses probes for testing. So you can simply stick your meter on to a bowl or pile of sample grains without the hassle of transferring grains into the meter’s pan like the other grain moisture tester.
We have noted earlier that some users and even our expert testers presume that it is less accurate. However, during the testing, this tool seems to be accurate considering that its measurements are similar or close to the tabletop and other handheld meters.
What We Liked
What We Didn’t Like
Editor’s Choice: Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester
From the 5-grain moisture testers, we have chosen the Dickey-John Grain Moisture Tester as the Editor’s Choice. This grain moisture tester combines portability and tabletop measuring device. It is equipped with accurate testing meter catering to various kinds of grains that you can fill in a fairly representative bowl with 250 grams capacity. Though challenging upon the first installation, its computer connectivity feature gave the users more control and secured management of the data recorded by the tester. However, you will have a good reference when you need to reexamine the results.
First Runner-Up: Sensor-1 MTC-999-ES Grain Moisture Analyzer
Our First Runner-Up is the Sensor-1 MTC-999-ES Grain Moisture Analyzer. It is a tabletop grain moisture tester that is capable of measuring about 250 kinds of grains. It is a powerful device with a large touchscreen display and buttons. This can also be connected to a computer flash drive for you to manage information easily. It was not able to make it as the Editor’s Choice by a minimal point due to its portability, where users cannot easily bring it on the field.
Second Runner-Up: YD-640 Portable Digital Grain Moisture Meter
The Second Runner-Up for this review is the YD-640 Portable Digital Grain Moisture Meter with Measuring Probe LCD Display Tester for Corn Wheat Rice Bean Wheat Hygrometer. It uses reading probes to determine moisture content. This device is expected to be less accurate, but it proved wrong with its precision. Despite being packed as a handheld device, this grain moisture tester has decent size screen and buttons. It also has an auto-shutdown feature for battery saving.