So you got yourself a DJI Mini 3 or a Mini 3 Pro and you have been enjoying sunny cloudless skies.
That’s all fun and safe, but what happens when the weather takes a turn for the worse and rain starts pouring down? Can drones be flown in the rain? Is your DJI Mini 3 water-resistant?!
The DJI Mini 3 and Mini 3 Pro are not waterproof and should generally not be flown in the rain. Flying in the rain can be dangerous for the drone’s battery, as the wet conditions can cause it to overheat. Rain can also affect the durability of a drone’s battery, causing it to corrode over time.
This article will explore the risks and safety considerations of flying drones in wet weather conditions.
We’ll also discuss the potential reasons you might need to fly your drone in the rain and provide tips for doing so safely.
So, if you’re wondering if you can take your drone out for a spin in the rain, read on to find out!
Are the DJI Mini 3 and Mini 3 Pro Waterproof?
Although drones are generally not considered to be waterproof, their use in the rain can be a tricky consideration. Drones, like most electronics, can be negatively impacted by water.
Rain can cause water seepage into the drone’s electronics, causing irreversible damage and leading to the failure of the drone’s vital components.
It is important to note that flying in the rain can be dangerous for the drone’s battery, as the wet conditions can cause it to overheat.
Rain can also affect the durability of a drone’s battery. If the battery isn’t waterproof, it will likely begin to corrode when exposed to water.
This can cause permanent damage and lead to the failure of the drone’s various components.
Therefore, it is important to check the battery specifications beforehand to ensure it is waterproof and will function correctly in wet conditions.
Furthermore, showers can reduce visibility and make it difficult to control the drone, offsetting flight motions and trajectory.
The DJI Mini 3 and Mini 3 Pro are not waterproof and have no water resistance rating given by DJI, according to the website’s FAQ page.
It is clearly stated that should you encounter rain during the flight, return to land as soon as possible and wait until your drone is “fully dry inside and out before using it again.“
The DJI Mini 3 and DJI Mini 3 Pro are two of the most advanced drones on the market and are designed with features that enable them to withstand many adverse environmental factors.
However, water can get into the electronics and sensors through the open ports and short-circuit the electronics.
From research, it can be seen that the DJI Mini 3’s motors are actually resistant to damage due to water as the wiring used in the brushless DC motors is insulated and can work even if they get wet.
Rainwater, though, contains salts and particles which can seep into the motor, clog, and damage it.
Ensure you thoroughly clean your drone motor if you get caught in rain.
Optional equipment for flying in wet weather
Regardless of its specifications, it is prudent to invoke some obligatory precautions when using a drone in the rain including:
Wetsuits are special suits or seals made from rubber, designed to cover vulnerable areas like the battery port, power button, and the rear of the drone.
The aim is to provide the drone with an air-tight seal on the open ports when you fly and greatly minimize the risk of damage when you fly in the rain.
These rubber suits create a pressure seal that provides excellent water protection even in very high rain.
They make quality products and have developed a loyal following in the DJI community.
Landing gear floats
Landing gear floats are floatation devices that fit on the underside of your drone, mind you these are not foolproof by any means and although the aim is to allow drones to take off and land over bodies of water.
It is recommended to refrain from doing that and only using them when occasionally flying in rain as a way to prevent water and debris from damaging the sensors at the bottom of the drone.
Wet weather precautions
Below are a few precautions to consider and steps to follow should you decide to fly in rain with your DJI Mini 3/Pro:
- Ensure flying in the rain is legal and you have the right permits.
- Check all weather reports before flights, including wind speed and gusts, to determine if flying is safe.
- Ensure the drone and all accessories, such as the remote controller, batteries, and propellers are checked for any visible signs of water or other liquids.
- If using a wetsuit, inspect the wetsuit seals on the drone’s body to ensure there are no worn spots, holes, or obstructed areas.
- Make sure you are flying in an open area away from trees or other obstructions that can cause turbulence or impact during flight.
- Ensure the drone has a low power output to minimize the risks of accidentally flying into thunderstorms or strong wind gusts.
- Reduce the payload on the drone to reduce overall weight, if possible.
- Shorten the flight distance while staying within eyesight to better control the drone.
- Avoid flying near water sources, such as streams and rivers.
- If thunder and lightning are present, make sure to go indoors and wait until these stormy conditions clear up before attempting to fly.
- Steer clear of high-voltage power lines.
- Avoid collision with other aircraft.
- In the event that the drone does get wet, wipe it off and as soon as possible.
Wet weather benefits
As much as flying in the rain comes with its fair share of risks, it also offers some benefits to drone operators.
Here are a few ways flying drones in wet weather conditions can help in flight-related activities:
- Improved Visibility – Flying a drone in the rain can help to improve visibility. Rain can help to reduce the glare of the sun, making it easier to see the drone and its surroundings.
- Refined Photography and Video Quality – Flying a drone in the rain can help to improve the quality of photographs taken. Rain can help diminish the sun’s glare, making capturing clear and vibrant images and videos easier.
- Enhanced Flight Time – Flying a drone in the rain can help extend the drone’s flight time. Rain can help reduce wind speed, making it easier for the drone to stay airborne for longer periods.
Words of caution
It is generally not recommended to fly a DJI Mini 3 or Mini 3 Pro in the rain in Canada, the US, or anywhere else in general, since the weather conditions and resultant moisture can cause the unit to malfunction and cause damage to the unit or to those around it.
Additionally, the batteries used on these aircraft are not waterproof and can be permanently damaged if exposed to too much moisture or rain.
Therefore, to avoid potential damage or issues, it is best not to fly a DJI Mini 3 or Mini 3 Pro in the rain in general.
Should you happen to by mistake, follow the steps prescribed by DJI and see a DJI-authorized technician should there be further issues.
If you plan to fly in rain purposefully, make it a well-planned, short flight and follow all the precautions stated above.
Flying the DJI Mini 3/ Mini 3 Pro in the rain is not recommended but is possible. It is not designed to withstand extreme rain and stormy winds.
We suggest avoiding flying the drone in the rain and waiting until the weather is clear and dry.