Best Moisture Meter for Woodworking
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7 Best Moisture Meters for Woodworking (Manually Tested!)

Moisture meters can be extremely helpful when it comes to woodworking.

If your wood is too wet – this can lead to come serious problems when it comes to your projects.

That’s why I put together this list of the best moisture meters for woodworking so you can find the best one for your needs. Let’s dive in!

In a hurry? The General Tools 4-in-1 Pin/Pinless Combo Moisture Meter is the best wood moisture meter overall because it’s always accurate, relatively easy to use, and equipped with many useful features.

Best Moisture Meters for Woodworking

Compare the Top Deck Sanders

1. General Tools 4-in-1 Pin/Pinless Combo Moisture Meter – #1 Best Overall

General Tools 4-in-1 Combo Moisture Meter
General Tools MMH800 Pin/Pinless Moisture Meter w/Temp and Humidity
  • HUMIDITY SENSOR: Our combo meter tool can quickly determine what level of remediation is needed to keep your…
  • WATER LEAK DETECTOR: Finding the moisture content in your floors, plastered walls, and wood is the first step…
  • MOISTURE READER: The mold test features 2 dedicated displays, moisture percentage, ambient temperature, and…

The General Tools 4-in-1 Pin/Pinless Combo Moisture Meter does everything a moisture meter is supposed to do and more, and that’s why it’s worthy of the much sought-after “#1 Best Overall” title.

This digital moisture meter is 7.13 x 2.17 x 1.57”, and it weighs just about 4 oz, so it’s definitely one of the lightest and most compact moisture meters available today. Love that!

A pin-pinless moisture meter, its standard pins are 0.28” long, but it also comes with longer, deep-penetrating pins.

Its relative humidity (RH) measurement range is 25-95%, and its temperature measurement range is 32-140°F.

Its moisture measurement ranges are 5-50% WME and 1.5-33% for building materials.

Now that the most important specs are out of the way, let’s get into the features the put this moisture meter in a class of its own.

First, it’s a two-screen system, with one screen displaying moisture level (%) and the other displaying humidity (%) and temperature (°F or °C).

And I love that it has a backlit, LCD display—this way you can use it in spaces with minimal lighting.

It’s easy to grip because the grip is made of rubber, and it stores data—like recently measured humidity—so it can be viewed later. Brilliant!

There’s a moisture content guide on the back, and I can’t tell you how many times this has come in handy.

And it doesn’t just give visual readings but audio too!

Finally, it has an auto-diagnostic feature, a pin cover that doubles as a calibration checker, and a power-off feature that’ll kick in after three minutes of inactivity.

Now, regarding what this moisture meter comes with, you’ll get the following with your purchase:

  • Molded case
  • 9-volt battery
  • Test pins (standard & deep-penetrating)
  • Manual
  • One-year limited warranty

What I Liked:

  • It won’t just show you but tell you readings, which is great when the display is hard to see.
  • Since it’s a pinless moisture meter, you don’t have to penetrate to use it.
  • There’s a battery life bar so you always know how much power you have.
  • The moisture content guide on the back is helpful to pros and amateurs alike.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Somewhat complicated for the inexperienced because it displays so much.
  • Pin cap can be hard to remove, especially in tight spaces.

My Thoughts

All things considered, I’m a big, big fan of the General Tools 4-in-1 Pin/Pinless Combo Moisture Meter, mainly because it’s consistently reliable, compact, and relatively easy to use once you get the hang of it. It’s a pin-pinless moisture meter, so you can use it without ever damaging a surface. Plus it has a range of unique features that collectively ensure accuracy and efficiency. Granted, it’s a little complicated for someone who’s NEVER used a moisture meter, but the truth is anyone can master this superb digital moisture meter.

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2. Wagner Meters Orion 930 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter – Best Quality

Wagner Meters Orion 930 Wood Moisture Meter
Wagner Meters Orion® 930 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter | Backlit Screen,…
  • ✔️ UNPARALLELED ACCURACY: Say goodbye to uncertainty. Achieve pinpoint accuracy and know the precise…
  • ✔️NON-DAMAGING: The non-damaging pinless sensor helps you preserve your craftsmanship. Obtain accurate…
  • ✔️ DUAL DEPTH MEASUREMENT: Measures both ¼’’ depth and ¾” depth

Need extremely accurate moisture content readings consistently? Look no further than the Wagner Meters Orion 930 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter, a product that can detect moisture percentage in virtually all wood species and wood-based materials.

Another compact and lightweight moisture meter, this one is 5.75 x 3.0 x 1.0”, and it weighs about 7.2 oz.

Its scanning range is 2-2.5”, and its scanning depth on “Shallow” is 0.25”, while its scanning depth on “Deep” is 0.75”. Impressive!

Its moisture measurement range is 4-32%, while its RH measurement range is 0-100%. Also impressive!

And like other pinless moisture meters, it has a backlit display, a rubber grip, and an auto-shutdown feature (60 seconds of inactivity).

But unlike other pinless moisture meters, this one can be calibrated on demand because it comes with an easy-to-use, portable calibrator.

And to ensure accurate readings, you can select the wood species you’re measuring. Love that!

Lastly, a lot comes with this moisture meter, including a seven-year warranty, a foam-lined ABS plastic carrying case, the calibrator, a 9-volt battery, an instruction manual, and some very helpful reference materials.

What I Liked:

  • Well-designed and free of bells and whistles, so it’s easy to use.
  • The species selection feature helps the meter detect moisture percentage better.
  • You can calibrate this moisture meter anywhere to ensure consistently accurate readings.
  • No pins means you don’t have to damage the material to gauge the level of moisture content.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Price may be a little too steep for those who don’t need to measure moisture content often.
  • The push-buttons are relatively sensitive, so pushing too hard could break them.

My Thoughts

Use the Wagner Meters Orion 930 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter for just five minutes and you’ll see right away that it was designed with some pretty high standards in mind. It’s easily one of the best pinless moisture meters on the market right now, and unlike other highly capable products it’s pretty easy to use. And whereas other systems just detect surface-level moisture, this one can scan deep without harming the material at all. If it wasn’t so expensive, I could see this spectacular moisture meter commanding the top spot on my list.

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3. Proster Digital Wood Moisture Meter – Best Value

Proster Digital Wood Moisture Meter
Proster Digital Wood Moisture Meter Handheld LCD Moisture Tester Damp…
  • 【Wide Use】 This Digital Moisture Meter is perfect for wood, firewood, logs, cardboard, paper and so on.
  • 【High Accurate Measure】 Measuring wood by sensitive electrode pins at the range of 0-99.9% and accuracy is…
  • 【4 Modes】 You can switch different modes according to 4 wood groups, including approximately 50 species of…

Anyone who doesn’t want to spend an arm and a leg for a moisture meter is making a smart move purchasing the Proster Digital Wood Moisture Meter, as it’s accurate, easy to use, and attractively cheap when compared with its peers.

Its RH measuring scale is 0-99.9%, and it can scan 0.4” deep because its pins are that long.

Like other moisture meters, it has an LCD display, and it can store data so it’s easy to access later. Also, is has a battery display so you always know the battery’s life.

As far as settings go, it has four:

  • A is for teak, afrormosia, and walnut.
  • B is for white poplar and keruing.
  • C is for lauan, ash, and elm.
  • D is for basswood, larch, and pine.

Finally, it has an auto-shutoff feature that kicks in after 15 minutes of inactivity, and it comes with a battery, manual, and an eighteen-month warranty.

What I Liked:

  • Buttons are responsive, so you don’t have to push them firmly.
  • The colorless LCD-screen is always easy to see and the digits are nice and bold.
  • The pin cover is sturdy, so you can count on the pins being accurate for a long time.
  • All the common wood species are covered, making this moisture meter highly versatile.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Auto shutoff takes 15 minutes to kick in, so a lot of battery life is lost during inactivity.
  • Not the easiest to grip since the case is free of finger grooves.

My Thoughts

If you gave me the Proster Digital Wood Moisture Meter and didn’t tell me its price, I wouldn’t think for a second that it’s one of the most affordable pin moisture meters out there, but this is the beautiful truth! And because it has 0.4” pins, it’ll go deep to detect more than just surface moisture. Sure, its auto-shutdown feature is somewhat ineffective, but this is the only downside I could come up with, which should tell you just how awesome this product is!

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4. LONVOX Pin-type Digital Moisture Detector – Best Readout

LONVOX Wood Moisture Meter
Wood Moisture Meter, LONVOX Pin-type Digital Moisture Detector with Backlit…
  • [Broad Measuring Range & High-precision Sensors] – The wood moisture meter has a broad measuring range of 6%…
  • [Pocket-sized & Ergonomic Design] – The wood moisture meter is light in weight and compact in size, ensuring…
  • [Backlit LCD & Pin-type Design] – The LONVOX water leak detector features an easy-to-read backlit LCD…

The LONVOX Pin-type Digital Moisture Detector’s digital readout is by far its best quality, but it excels in other meaningful respects as well.

This 3.68 x 1.69 x 0.96”, 3 oz, pin-type moisture meter runs on two AAA batteries, and its general moisture measuring range for wood is 6-65%; 0-15.6% for other materials.

It fits easily in pants and jacket pockets—which I like a lot—and it can display readings in both Fahrenheit and Celsius.

There are seven settings to ensure this moisture content meter works on a wide variety of materials; the first four cover numerous wood species, while five, six, and seven are for cement, drywall, and masonry respectively.

The LCD screen is bright green and readable whether ambient lighting is good or bad. Regarding what’s on the screen, you can clearly see moisture content (%), temperature, and battery status.

There’s also a reading lock to ensure you don’t have to keep taking measurements, and a padlock icon makes it easy to know when the lock is on or not.

And, of course, it has an auto-shutoff feature that activates after 10 minutes of inactivity.

Finally, you get the following with your purchase: two AAA batteries, the manual, and a one-year limited warranty.

What I Liked:

  • The neon-green backlit display ensures you can see a reading in both bright and dark areas.
  • It’s small, compact, and lightweight, so it’s extremely portable.
  • Can measure temperature in both Fahrenheit and Celsius, so it’s more versatile.
  • The big padlock makes it clear that the current reading was saved from earlier.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Doesn’t have a pinless backup reader to ensure damage-free readings.
  • The pin cap comes off, but attached pin caps are more convenient.

My Thoughts

The LONVOX Pin-type Digital Moisture Detector is a terrific wood moisture meter for anyone who values convenience, mainly because it has the best digital readout. Basically, the screen is neither too crowded nor difficult to understand, and it’s viewable in all kinds of lighting conditions. I know, it’s not a pinless moisture meter, but it’s reliable and capable of getting accurate readings consistently, and these are the things that matter most to me.

5. Klein Tools ET140 Pinless Moisture Meter – Best Design

Klein Tools Moisture Meter
Klein Tools ET140 Pinless Moisture Meter for Non-Destructive Moisture…
  • WATER LEAK DETECTOR detects relative moisture content from leaks and flooding
  • PINLESS MOISTURE METER measures relative moisture content in building materials
  • NONDESRUCTIVE DETECTION up to 3/4-Inch deep using Electromagnetic field (EMF) technology

The Klein Tools ET140 Pinless Moisture Meter is a totally pinless moisture meter, and it’s actually one of the best in its class because it’s expertly designed and equipped with all the features high-quality moisture meters have.

It’s 6 x 2.5 x 1” and weighs just 7 oz, and it can withstand a six foot drop because it’s made of ABS plastic. Impressive!

And like other pin-free systems, this product uses electromagnet field (EMF) technology to detect how much moisture is in a material, and its measuring range is 0-100%; scanning depth 3/4”.

There are four modes (hardwood, softwood, masonry, drywall) to ensure accurate moisture readings, and a 9-bar LED display gives you a visual idea of how moist the material is.

And just like on other systems, you’ll get low-battery alerts, and there’s an auto-shutdown feature. Past readings save too, of course!

Finally, it comes with a 9-volt battery, the manual, and a one-year warranty.

What I Liked:

  • LED bars make the moisture reading easier to understand.
  • Reinforced plastic shell makes this moisture meter pretty resistant to impact damage.
  • Has considerable scanning depth for a pinless system, so it works on denser materials.
  • Auto-shutdown feature activates after just a few minutes, saving battery power.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Moisture reader is sensitive, so keep it protected.
  • Its digital readout is somewhat basic and hard to see when there’s little ambient light.

My Thoughts

The Klein Tools ET140 Pinless Moisture Meter is a testament to the reality that good design is the key to any tool’s success. This moisture meter was definitely designed with convenience and efficiency in mind, but it’s also consistently accurate without employing pins. And for a pinless system, it has a pretty deep scanning range, so you can scan materials from hardwood to concrete without issue. Just wish the digital readout was better, otherwise it’s phenomenal!

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6. mini-Ligno E/D Moisture Meter – Best for Beginners

mini-Ligno E/D Moisture Meter
mini-Ligno E/D moisture meter pin type moisture meter. Accurate, reliable,…
  • wood moisture range: 6-45%
  • 2 wood groups for softwood and hardwood
  • measuring depth of 3/16″ and 7/16″

If you’ve never used a moisture meter before, I can’t recommend the mini-Ligno E/D Moisture Meter enough, as it’s incredibly straightforward and by far the easiest to use if you have no idea how a moisture meter works.

It’s a pin-type moisture meter that runs on a 9-volt battery, and it weighs just 5.6 oz.

It’s compact too (6 x 3 x 2”), and it has a decent moisture measuring range: 6-45%.

How far it scans in wet wood depends on the pins being used. The standard pins scan 3/16”, while the longer pins scan 7/16”.

And here’s something I really like—it self-calibrates before every moisture reading to ensure 100% accuracy.

Its digital readout is definitely minimalist, but it’s bright-red so it’s easily seen in both bright and dim areas.

Finally, it comes with a carrying case and a two-year warranty.

What I Liked:

  • You can count on this moisture meter being accurate because it calibrates before each reading.
  • Its simplicity makes it ideal for those who’ve never measured moisture content before.
  • The pin cover can be used as a handle when you insert the pins.
  • A small rope ensures it can be easily taken out of your pocket when you need it.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Digital readout only shows moisture content.
  • No data-save feature.

My Thoughts

Basic is sometimes best, and the mini-Ligno E/D Moisture Meter proves this every time I use it. It’s a pin-type system, but these pins only turn on once engaged—love that! And because they self-calibrate before each reading, they’re unbelievably accurate, whether you’re measuring wood moisture content or the moisture levels in other building materials. Of course, a data-save feature would’ve been nice, but this product is first-rate overall.

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7. Bessemeter D300 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter – Best for Dense Wood

Bessemeter Moisture Meter
Bessemeter Pinless Wood Moisture Meters (D300 – Deep Scan Wood Moisture…
  • 💧 DEEP-DEPTH MEASUREMENT: Quickly and easily takes deep depth 0. 75″ (1. 9cm) readings
  • 💧 PROFESSIONAL-GRADE ACCURACY: Bessemeter meters provide exceptional accuracy, ensuring peace of mind for both professionals and hobbyists.
  • 💧 LARGE MOISTURE CONTENT RANGE: Measure moisture levels quickly and accurately from 6% to 32%.

The Bessemeter D300 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter is the best pinless moisture meter for deep-scanning wood and other materials, and it’s also one of the most durable moisture meters I’ve come across.

To start, this product is pocket-friendly at 5.6 x 2.8 x 0.86”, and it weighs just 1.17 lbs. Plus, like other systems, it’s powered by a 9-volt battery.

Its scan depth is 0.75”, and its moisture measuring range is 6-32%. Other systems can scan as deep, of course, but this is one of the only moisture meters that scans deep without pins.

There are different wood species settings, and it’ll display its findings as well as speak them.

And since this product comes with a calibrater, you never have to worry about it being inaccurate.

Also, it’s protected by a hard shell, so it resists impact damage better than other wood moisture meters.

And since its auto-shutdown feature kicks in after 60 seconds of inactivity, this device conserves battery well.

Finally, it’s backed by a two-year warranty and comes with a pretty reliable carrying case.

What I Liked:

  • Can be calibrated anywhere because it comes with a simple and portable calibrator.
  • Its durability makes it a good buy for those who routinely work in harsh environments.
  • It can deep-scan in dense wood without defacing the surface.
  • The species setting is easy to change, so you’ll spend more time measuring and less time adjusting.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Can’t take atmospheric temperature.
  • A brighter LCD screen is needed.

My Thoughts

If you’re always working with dense, moist woods—and trust me, there are plenty out there—then you need the Bessemeter D300 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter. This pinless meter is one of the all-around best, but what really shines is its ability to scan deep. It’s also designed for heavy-duty use, yet it’s still lightweight and compact; a perfect combination if you ask me! If it had a better digital readout, I could see it being the top dog—it’s that good!

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What to Consider When Buying a Wood Moisture Meter

Pinless vs Pin-Type Meters

Pinless and pin moisture meters have more in common than they do differences, but the differences are usually enough to make someone choose one kind of moisture meter over the other.

Basically, pinless meters won’t deface a material’s surface because you’re not sticking anything in.

But pin meters do tend to have more scanning depth and better accuracy. That said, plenty of pinless meters can outperform your standard pin meter—it’s just that these meters tend to be more expensive.

Moisture Measuring Range

A moisture meter’s ability to gauge how much moisture content is in a surface is the whole reason why this tool is used, so make sure you get a product that has a decent moisture measuring range.

What’s a decent moisture measuring range? 6-36% is great, but it wouldn’t hurt to get something that detect upwards of 50% moisture. 0-20% non-wood building materials is good too.

Looking for other woodworking gear? Check out the tools I use in my workshop here!

Features

The best wood moisture meters are equipped with a handful of common features to ensure they’re always precise and efficient. Some excellent features to be on the lookout for are:

  • Wood species/material settings
  • Auto-shutoff
  • Data-saving
  • Temperature & humidity reader
  • Backlit LED readout

Price & Warranty

You can find decent wood moisture meters between $40-$60, but the top-of-the-line models can run you $200-$400.

Honestly, if you’re not measuring moisture routinely, a wood moisture meter sub $100 will do just fine.

And make sure your product is backed by at least a year-long warranty. If it’s a multi-hundred-dollar system, it should be a three-year warranty at least.

Are you curious about the difference between cheap and expensive moisture meters? Check out the video below!

Final Thoughts

To recap, the General Tools 4-in-1 Pin/Pinless Combo Moisture Meter is best at measuring moisture because it’s a pin-pinless system that’s consistently accurate and built to last.

The Wagner Meters Orion 930 Pinless Wood Moisture Meter is the best wood moisture meter for professionals because it always comes back with precise readings and has a deep scanning range.

Last but not least is the Proster Digital Wood Moisture Meter, a budget-friendly option that’s well-equipped and great at measuring moisture in all kinds of building materials.