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The REOTEMP Moisture Meter (MM17) measures the moisture content of your soil or compost pile by means of a sensor at the bottom of the probe. While composting or gardening you often may wonder: How wet's your soil?TM Now you will know and be able to more efficiently compost, garden or simply know if your plants need more water. The 0 to 10 scale of the MM17 indicates a relative "wetter" or "dryer". Note: the probe will not display a percent moisture. The probe is sensitive only at the tip. Calibration instructions are conveniently printed on the side of the meter head and included on the back of the box. The MM17 has a 1-year limited warranty.
The meter must first be calibrated by taking a sample of your compost or soil and adding water to the sample until it's at your "ideal" moisture level. Then you must adjust the calibration screw on the back of the dial until it reaches "5" on the 0-10 scale. Now that your meter is calibrated, when you come back again to check your compost or soil you'll know if it's too dry or too wet. If the reading is above "5" it's too wet, if it's below "5" it's too dry.
A NOTE ON SALT CONTENT
The meter reads "wetness" by measuring electrical conductivity, which is sensitive to salt content. If the salt content of your compost varies between testing locations, it could result in inconsistent readings. The meter is intended to give you a good idea of whether or not the center of your pile is too dry or too wet without having to dig deep into the pile for a "squeeze test".