How's your boat doing?
This season is different for most of us. Usually we have quick and easy access to check/use our boats 24/7, but few are experiencing that this year. There are a few different monitoring options out there for boats -most in 'boat buck' pricing, and if one is looking at a long term solution, that may be a reasonable way to go. But if you're only looking for (hopefully) short term solution.... till we can resume regular PR access, a simpler (less expensive) solution to your peace of mind sure would be nice.
I was conversing with P/Cmdr Don and he brought up a solution that fit his needs and situation. I think I'll be exploring it further for our boat as well, and so I asked him if he'd be willing to write up a little summary of his experience and he agreed to, so here it is. No, it's not marine rated, not it's not a bunch of things, but if it looks interesting to you; check it out. Remember, Don nor the Club take any responsibility for anything (some may say that's just the norm anyways, but hopefully that's sufficient for a legal release. Don? -Shane
Ecowitt is a company that produces a number of weather monitors. It’s simplest configuration consists of the gateway monitor pictured below, which sells for $41.00. As a standalone unit, it will monitor temperature, humidity and barometric pressure. I put one on Sosueme in Otter Bay and connected it to Otter Bay’s Wifi. I don’t recall the connection procedure, but it was very simple. I then downloaded the Ecowitt app to my phone, and with that I can monitor the conditions on Sosueme. The second image is the first page of the monitor on my phone. The second page (not shown) gives you graphs showing the last 24 hours. The information is updated every minute.
The Ecowitt App has a number of alarm settings. I have programmed two alarms: one is when the temperature on board falls below 5 degrees, and the other is when there is a power outage for more than 1 hour. The power outage alarm has worked well thus far. The temperature hasn’t fallen below the threshold yet.
There are many additional monitors that can be added to the Gateway. I mistakenly thought that the Gateway was just that, and didn’t have any monitoring capabilities, so I bought a separate monitor for an additional $20. I didn’t need to do that, because the Gateway is also a monitor. I put it elsewhere in the boat, so I have two separate monitoring points. That is really unnecessary, but I already bought the second monitor. There is also a “water leak” monitor that I plan to purchase for $15.00, and put in the bilge. I just discovered it recently, but before I can purchase it I need to go to the boat and record the frequency of my Gateway to ensure a match. If you go to Ecowitt.com you can see their full range of weather monitoring devices.
Having a boat that isn’t within a short drive is something new to me, so this device gives me peace of mind.