This Old-School Weather-Predicting Device Looks Cool and Is “Surprisingly Accurate”

published Feb 18, 2020
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Credit: StormGlass

Before the weather app or the Weather Channel, back in the 1800s, people used to use storm glasses to predict the weather. While these devices may no longer be cutting-edge, they still look cool, particularly a modern, teardrop-shaped one sold as The StormGlass.

Here’s the history of the tool, according to, the website that sells it:

“The Storm Glass was first invented in the mid-1700s, and soon made its way onto ships and harbors around Europe to help give warning of approaching bad weather. It gained the most fame through Admiral FitzRoy who used a Storm Glass on the voyage during which he and Darwin traveled to the Galápagos Islands. As such, the instrument is sometimes called a ‘FitzRoy Storm Glass.’”

So what information the glass tell you about the weather? According to the website again, here’s what the different appearances of the glass mean:

“Clear liquid: Bright weather incoming.
Crystals at the bottom: Thick air, frost in winter.
Dim liquid with small stars: Thunderstorms.
Large flakes: Heavy air, overcast sky, snow in winter.” calls the device “surprisingly accurate,” so don’t delete your weather app if you buy it. Customers are divided about whether or not it really works to predict the weather, but they appear not to mind either way.

“This is really nice the packaging tells you that it’s more for a decorative piece than actual weather prediction but I think it’s really neat,” one wrote. “My three year old has autism and absolutely loves the color changing lights and the floating crystals inside. This would make a great housewarming or wedding present.”

“This is such a cool idea!” wrote another. “It works almost all the time and my wife loves it (which is rare haha)! It also makes our kitchen look a whole lot better, it was well worth it!”

The StormGlass costs $29.95 for one or $69.95 for three. Learn more or buy one for yourself here.