Keep your hub out of the elements!

James J. Oatman

My weather station was starting to act funny. Occasionally sensor reading would stop arriving, or bizarre inaccurate readings would result. Assuming it was a mechanical problem, I tried jiggling all of the connectors and it usually fixed the difficulties. Each time, jiggling the plugs on the hub (the little black box where the main WX200 cable branches off to the sensor cables) fixed the problem. Until one time it didn't.... (!)

I decided to take it down and have a look. Upon examining the hub, there was a substantial amount of corrosion inside the phone jacks and on the phone plugs on the cables themselves. The whole thing was covered with a blue residue (copper sulphate?). This required a great deal of cleaning to get it off. I ended up using some electronic parts cleaner, a soft write brush, and numerous paper wipes to get the stuff out.

This all appears to have happened because the tape I'd used to mount the hub had softened, allowing the hub to come loose from the wall and catch a significant of roof water in the current "El Nino" storms that've been hitting this region. I ended up moving the hub well under the rafters to give it some additional protection, as well as securing it down with some decent screws.

The moral of the story, make sure the hub is well isolated from adverse conditions! It is in no way waterproof and the little phone plug connectors will corrode very quickly (I estimate it's only been exposed for a week or two) when exposed to water.

[Editor's Note: The WX200 docs do specify that the connection box (i.e. hub) should be mounted indoors. If you absolutely must locate your box outdoors, then it would probably be best to secure the box and all connections inside a weatherproof housing. A double-wide weatherproof outlet box with cover, available at most hardware stores, is probably big enough to hold it.You'll still need some way to waterproof where the cables enter the outlet box, maybe silicone glue (also available at most hardware stores) would work.]

Click here to return to user submissions page.