Best emergency weather radio

 

Top rated emergency weather radios in 2018

 

Most people are in a hurry so if you’re one of them and don’t have the time to go through the buying advice and reviews prepared by our team of researchers, you could stop for a short paragraph that captures the essentials about the best emergency weather radios. To spot the perfect one we looked at product popularity, feedback from the owners and some expert reviews. It turns out the best model out there is the Kaito KA500. This highly appreciated model can be powered in so multiple ways. It works with a crank generator, solar panel, batteries and others. Another great thing is that it can be used as a charger for your devices when there’s a power outage. And finally, it’s a great radio that provides great AM, FM and SW coverage and keeps you posted with PEAS and weather channel updates. If the Kaito KA500 is unavailable, you could turn to the Sangean MMR-88, which offers similar performance.

 

A.1 Emergency weather radio

The top features of an emergency weather radio

Being prepared includes owning an emergency weather radio, and there are several models to choose from. In this buying guide you will find informative tips and brief reviews that will help you choose the best weather radio of 2018 so you always know when a storm is approaching.

 

Power Source

The best emergency weather radio will never run out of power. While most models feature a hand crank, there are some that include convenient solar panels that let you store energy until you need it and others have the added advantage of also using batteries.

 

Construction

You want the emergency radio to feature a lightweight and durable construction so it can last through any type of weather. Water resistant housings are always convenient, and sturdy casings can withstand occasional falls. The best weather radio will also include a handy strap so you can easily carry it with you wherever you go.

 

Features

Along with ensuring that the radio can receive national weather alerts, there are some other features to consider. AM/FM capabilities are always nice to have, along with bright flashlights and LED displays. Preset stations are also convenient, and some weather radios include a convenient phone charger.

Even though we can’t choose a weather radio for you, we can show some of the top rated models.

 

 

Our top choices

 

 

Kaito KA500

 

If you’re in the market for a reliable weather radio that gets the job done and doesn’t cost a fortune, it’s high time you checked out the specs of the Kaito KA500. It’s one of the most highly spoken of models we’ve come across, and it seems to be worth the appreciation it has gathered.

On the one hand, it’s extremely convenient because you can utilize a variety of methods to give it the power it requires. The unit can be powered by using the hand crank that it has been outfitted with, the solar panel that’s part of its construction, a set of standard batteries, and much more.

You can even plug it into a typical outlet or rely on the USB input that has been built into the alternative. Also, it’s worth noting that you can utilize this weather radio as a flashlight, cell charger, or reading lamp. It has even been equipped with a LED SOS beacon light.

As for whether or not this choice will withstand the test of time, you might want to know that it boasts a rugged and impact-resistant construction and has been made out of water-resistant ABS material. Therefore, you can safely rely on its services when you’re out hiking.

 

Pros

Despite being one of the most affordable choices in this line, the Kaito KA500 comes with pretty much every feature you might have been looking for in such a device.

It can be powered using six methods. As such, you might be interested to know that the unit boasts a solar panel, has a compartment for three standard batteries, can be powered with a typical USB cable, and can even be plugged into an outlet.

Also, there’s a crank generator and a built-in battery that you can use conveniently.

When it comes to efficiency, this model is a net winner as it will broadcast the 7 NOAA weather channels and allow you to have a bit of fun thanks to the AM and FM bands, as well as the 2-band shortwaves.

 

Cons

There isn’t a USB to USB connector, so you can’t hook this radio to a computer USB port and charge it that way.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($49.99)

 

 

 

 

Sangean MMR-88

 

2.Sangean MMR-88One of the first aspects you’ll notice is the sturdy and durable construction, along with the backlit display that is easy to see in any lighting. It features AM/FM capabilities, and includes 19 preset stations along with a digital tuner. Certified as a Public Alert Radio, you can rest assured that you will always have access to the latest weather updates. Along with bulletins and updates, the radio will also sound an audible alert that will ensure you are aware of any weather threats.

The included clock and headphone jack are convenient extras, and you will appreciate being able to use the radio to keep your phone charged. The included LED flashlight is always helpful in power failures, and will even use Morse code to signal an emergency. It is capable of running off of battery, manual and solar power so you never have to worry about missing an important alert. It will also shut off automatically after 90 minutes to help conserve power.

Lightweight and easily portable you can take this emergency weather radio virtually anywhere and always stay up to date on any approaching storms.

 

Pros

Unlike many of its competitors, this Sangean model is quite sturdy and will likely withstand the test of time. So, you’ll be able to benefit enhanced durability as the model will put up with a lot of abuse.

The unit has been certified as a public alert radio, si it will broadcast all the updates you might require to feel reassured that you and your family will be able to stay out of harm’s way.

In the event of a power failure, this model will prove to be a friend in need as it has been outfitted with a LED flashlight that you can use to find your way around an unknown environment.

Since it’s quite lightweight, it won’t be a burden in your knapsack or backpack. So, you can use it when you go out hiking, as well.

 

Cons

Some owners have complained about the fact that the MMR-88 isn’t as affordable as other choices available in the same line.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($47.57)

 

 

 

 

iRonsnow IS-088

 

3.iRonsnow IS-088

The bright LED flashlight will help keep you safe during power outages, and can even be used to signal your location during an emergency.

The large dials make it easy to tune in the local stations and control the volume. Along with the standard hand crank, this emergency radio can also run off of battery or solar power.

There is also a convenient charger for your cell phone so you can stay connected with family and emergency personnel.

Listed as a top seller on Amazon, this emergency weather radio might be exactly what you need to be prepared for the next storm.

 

Pros

This compact alternative is one of the most budget-friendly units we were able to track down, so you won’t have to waste a lot of money to get an entirely functional weather radio that delivers excellent performance every time, with no exception.

The unit can be utilized as a cell phone charger given that it has been outfitted with a USB output. Also, you can charge the radio by using the hand crank or just rely on sunlight as the model comes with a solar panel.

The lightweight design of this alternative enables owners to carry it with ease and as such, use it under many circumstances.

It receives all of the NOAA channels currently available in North America. It can also be employed as a LED flashlight.

 

Cons

In order for it to offer enough power to your smartphone, you’ll have to do quite a bit of cranking.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($19.9)

 

 

 

 

Midland Consumer ER310

 

An affordable alternative equipped with an extremely bright Cree LED flashlight of 130 lumens, this radio can make sure that you receive all the useful information even in dark environments and thus can preserve your safety.

The AM/FM NOAA, emergency crank model, also has a solar power panel for saving energy and protecting the environment as well. It runs on a replaceable 2600 mAh rechargeable lithium-ion battery, but the solar panel can be used for emergency situations or solely for economic reasons.

This option has a USB output that can be used for charging portable devices, meaning that, in case of an emergency, you can count on the batteries of this radio to keep you connected to reality. It’s good to know that there is always a means of communication available.

To assist search and rescue teams, this item has an incorporated ultrasonic dog whistle that can help control a search party. Despite seeming a rather peculiar characteristic, it would undoubtedly prove to be useful given the right circumstances.

Last but not least, an SOS flashlight beacon that flashes Morse code is the final feature designed to help you manage in case of a natural disaster or any hazardous situation.

 

Pros

This model offers complete solutions for any power outage. Given that it’s built with emergency situations in mind, it can provide both light and a means of charging your other devices.

The controls are easy to use and do not require any specific instructions.

A memory setting allows you to find the last station that you were listening to immediately, on any o the three bands (AM, FM, and NOAA).

It can take up to six hours to completely charge the battery, either by using a USB to connect it to another device or by using the solar charger. This feature can prove to be useful in hazardous situations.

Another useful characteristic is the fact that the radio and the flashlight can be used simultaneously, unlike other options that don’t work like that.

 

Cons

A few users have complained that the antenna of this item feels a little sloppy, and despite not causing any real trouble it feels unstable.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($59.99)

 

 

 

 

iRonsnow Real IS-388

 

This affordable alternative is designed to automatically activate the alarm in case there is a need to inform the customer regarding disaster weather conditions or warning emitted by the local authorities.

All you need to do to get this service is to set your product on the “Alert” mode, and you’ll get all the necessary information immediately.

It has a wide range of broadcast bands, from AM and FM to SW1, SW2, and NOAA weather channels, which is more than enough if you want to be well informed when it comes to news regarding tornadoes, thunderstorms, floods or other types of disaster weather.

Hazardous situations aren’t all that this item is built for. It also offers better entertainment, given that by using the support micro SD card it can work as an MP3 player. If you don’t feel like picking out your music, there’s no need to worry, since you’ve got enough channels to keep you busy.

The IS-388 also has a high capacity that can prove to be useful in some cases. For example, it has a 2300mAh power bank that can be used to charge most types of iPhones, and the battery itself can be charged by micro USB port, hand crank, and solar panel, so there’s always a means of communication available to you.

 

Pros

Given this item’s size, the sound is crystal clear and allows you to catch every single word of the weather forecast. This way, you’ll always be prepared in case of a dangerous situation.

For the affordable price that it’s available for, it offers many great features, such as the fact that it has a solar panel included. Its solar cells provide more than enough power to recharge the battery when there’s a power outage.

The size of this product is great since it can fit well in any emergency kit and it is also easy to operate by any user.

It can endure severe weather conditions such as below freezing temperatures without showing any real damage.

 

Cons

There have been some complaints stating that there is no power source selection switch. What this means is that the radio chooses on its own where the battery power should come from, leaving you clueless as to which the source is.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($36.99)

 

 

 

 

RunningSnail Solar Crank

 

This alternative is a must for any emergency situation. It can keep your household safe and prepared in case of weather hazards since it intercepts both AM and FM frequencies and thus offers you a wide range of channels that can deliver valuable information.

Broadcast emergency weather alerts for hurricanes, tornadoes and severe storms that have been emitted for your area will immediately be available to you so that you can have time to make the proper decisions.

It also features a table lamp, and a 1W LED flashlight in case the electrical outlets do not work anymore. It can be used to light up dark spaces and to keep your house bright and well-lit after the power was cut off.

If you’re concerned about battery life, you should know that this model works with a hand crank self-charge for an outage. It has a 2000mAh rechargeable battery that can provide up to twelve hours of light or four to six hours of radio time.

A flashing red light signals the SOS alarm that allows you to ask for help in case of an emergency or if you wish to warn somebody that they might be in a dangerous situation.

 

Pros

This model’s size is excellent for people looking for a radio that can fit in the palm of their hand, but that also has crisp sound quality.

A light indicator shows you when this product is charging by flashing red light, and a green one when it has completed the process.

It picks up a lot of stations on both AM and FM bands, and also several weather stations as well, keeping you well-informed when it comes to local forecasts.

The LED light is great for reading or, in case of an emergency, for keeping your room lit when there’s a power outage.

Since this item uses triple A batteries, it’s safe to say that it will be easy to find replacements. Other means of battery charging will prove to be useful in case of an emergency.

 

Cons

A few customers have stated that the FM tuning is a little weak since it’s difficult to tune in to less powerful channels on this band.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($32.9)

 

 

 

 

Midland ER-210 Emergency

 

This model from Midland is designed to intercept both AM and FM frequencies to deliver useful information and weather reports in case of a hazardous event that can put the safety of its owners at risk.

It also features an incredibly bright Cree LED flashlight of 130 Lumens that can prove to be very useful once the power supply is cut off. It can help you keep your house sparkling and well-lit and also shed light on particular corners where you might hold other useful items.

A USB output helps you charge other portable devices such as phones, giving you a way of maintaining communication regardless the unfavorable conditions.

If you’re worried about battery power, you should know that this item features a rechargeable 2000mAh lithium-ion battery that can also be used to charge other electrical appliances. You can rely on this radio to be your source of energy during a power cut, which may naturally happen in case of a hurricane or a tornado.

To offer one more method of communicating with other parties, this alternative has a built-in SOS flashlight beacon that flashes the Morse code and helps you get in touch, whether you need help or you want to warn others.

 

Pros

Customers have stated that the construction quality is good for this product; it has a sturdy build and is likely to last in harsh conditions.

The flashlight is bright enough to shed light on dark corners and to keep your house well-lit during a power outage in the middle of the storm. Having a light warm up the place can hold everybody’s mood up.

Given that this product uses a LED light, the battery can operate for many hours after it has been unplugged, and it can be used for more than one purpose.

It charges with solar energy, and you can see this since it shows you the charging progress via a LED light. Other means of supplying power include a crank for cloudy days or any phone charger/power bank.

 

Cons

It’s inconvenient to use it as a regular radio given that this model can’t store radio stations. What this means is that you’ll have to waste time to find them every time you use this device.

Click to see the price on Amazon!

 

 

 

 

Eton American Red Cross FRX3

 

An affordable model with a large ergonomic hand crank that doesn’t require much effort to generate power, this radio delivers a superior combination of sound quality, reception and playback time and also manages to keep the users informed regarding the weather forecast in case of a hazardous situation.

Given that it has superior audio quality, it can provide a clear, crisp sound that allows the customers to distinguish every single word from a local weather forecast and thus not miss out on any relevant information. You might find that other models produce a distorted sound and are a little hard to follow.

It has a superior battery that provides an 8.7 times longer playback time than other alternatives, meaning you can rest assured that it won’t run out when you need it the most. An easy-to-adjust digital tuner that receives radio stations is the feature that helps you keep in touch with local news and forecasts.

This model also includes a LED flashlight for lightening your house in case the electrical power is cut and a USB port for charging other portable devices when the outlets don’t work anymore. A built-in solar panel can supplement the battery power, which is of course in case the weather is sunny.

 

Pros

This radio feels sturdy and well-built, and it has a medium size, which is suitable for fitting in an emergency kit but will work well as a countertop piece to complete your kitchenware collection.

It has good reception of all the weather channels locally available, and the same can be said for AM and FM frequencies as well.

If the battery is fully charged, you could use it to charge a cell phone or other electrical devices that can be used as a means of communication in case of a natural hazard.

The radio can resist harsh weather conditions, and every function will work fine.

Sunlight charging only takes a few hours, so if you’re reluctant to use the crank, then you can rely on the weather conditions.

 

Cons

Some customers have stated that there’s a design flaw that can become annoying. More specifically, the solar cell is in the way of the carrying handle, and handprints can stain it at any time.

Buy from Amazon.com for ($48)

 

 

 

 

Unavailable products

 

 

Midland ER300

 

1.Midland ER300 Emergency SolarYou never have to worry about missing an important weather alert with this durable weather radio. It features a sturdy construction that is designed to withstand any storm, and it is also easy to use in emergency situations. The large buttons are clearly labeled, and you will appreciate the large bright screen which is easy to read in any lighting.

This emergency radio will receive any alerts and updates from the national weather service, even if you are listening to your favorite station. It includes AM/FM capabilities so you can enjoy music and your favorite programs, even during a strong thunderstorm.

You will appreciate the bright LED flashlight during power failures, especially since it is designed to flash Morse code in emergencies. As an added bonus the weather radio also includes an ultrasonic whistle that can help aid search and rescue teams after the storm has passed. With the ability to run off of batteries, solar or hand cranked power this weather radio will always be ready to go.

 

 

 

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