Weather Tips

When it comes to Weather, we've been there, done that, now serving 138 tips in 15 categories ranging from All About Clouds to Weather Products.

How does a tornado form?

Tornado Formation

A tornado is formed when warm air that is holding a lot of moisture comes in contact with air that is dryer and cooler.

Warm air rises, so there is a sharp updraft in some thunderstorms. When a tornado forms, the warm moist air meeting with cooler air sometimes causes a "spin." When there is visible rotation, a wall cloud is formed.

A tornado is not always formed with this rotation, but about 30% of the time a tornado will be produced.

What is a weather radio?

Weather radios

Weather radios are many times the key to surviving severe storms!

Weather radios provide you with advance warning when severe weather such as hurricanes, tornados, floods or snow and ice threatens your area. Weather radios are critical tools to have available in the home, office, or when traveling.

Battery operated portable weather radios are also available for boaters, campers, hikers and anyone on the go who may be affected by sudden severe weather.

Many weather radios feature Specific Area Messaging Encoding (SAME) that allows you to program the weather radio to monitor only local counties, eliminating distant, non-threatening alerts.

Weather radios monitor the seven emergency frequencies operated by the National Weather Service – a public service by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The system includes more than 900 transmitters located throughout the U.S..

Weather radios are available from quality manufacturers such as Oregon Scientific, Midland, First Alert, WeatherOne and Reecom.

Are barometers expensive?

New Heights

The height to which the mercury rises in the glass tube of a barometer is directly proportional to the atmospheric pressure. This is usually measured in inches of mercury.

Are barometers expensive?

Where Does It Go?

Many people believe a barometer must be placed on an inside wall to obtain accurate readings. However, it really makes no difference where the barometer is placed – there may be a slight temperature difference but air pressure is the same inside as well as outside.

What is air pressure?

Measuring up ....

Barometers use a measurement method termed millibars. To convert millibars to inches, multiply by 0.02953. To convert inches to millibars, multiply by 33.86.

How do I find where to buy a barometer?

Sticks and Dials

Mercury barometers include the “stick” version where you read the mercury height by looking at the top of the column inside the glass tube. A dial barometer (sometimes known as wheel or banjo barometers) has a hand pointing to numbers on a dial.

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