Best Emergency Radios and Weather Radios of 2022

Weather radios from Midland, Sangean, Eton, and others battle for the top spot

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For More: Emergency Weather Radio Buyers Guide and Test Results

You want the best weather alert radio you can buy if you live in an area prone to severe storms. It might keep you safe before, during, and after a natural disaster. Emergency and weather radios are a far better way to stay on top of weather alerts and often warn you ahead of any weather app on your mobile phone. This is especially important in quickly changing weather conditions, all too common in dangerous weather. That’s why we’ve written this guide to help you choose the right one.

How To Make a Simple Emergency Radi...

These weather radios help keep you informed about what is going on in your area and warn you of dangerous weather conditions before they happen. They are also affordable, cost-effective ways to prepare yourself for emergencies.

The best weather radios can sound an alarm when weather alerts are received during a severe weather event, even if the radio is off. These radios come in different forms, whether as part of an emergency radio, an additional band, or a standalone unit. Some even display the type of alert received — and can store multiple warnings if issued. So, which models made our rankings for the Best Weather Radio of 2022? Keep reading to find out.

Editor’s Note: On June 1, 2022, we changed how we calculate our ratings for our reviews to limit subjectivity and judge all products equally. As a result, our ratings have significantly changed across the site. We’ve added further analysis below to help you decide which is best for you based on our rating factors. Learn more about how we test and our new rating system. Transitioning the site over to these new ratings will take some time, so you may find some of our old ratings listed in places. We’re working to address those issues.

Top Rated Weather Radios

Editor's Choice
Best Value
Editor's Choice
Best Value
N/A
$39.99$29.99
$129.99$93.01
$39.99
AM/FM Radio:
Yes
AM/FM Radio:
No
AM/FM Radio:
Yes
AM/FM Radio:
Yes
SAME Support:
Yes
SAME Support:
Yes
SAME Support:
Yes
SAME Support:
No
Power Supply:
AC, 4 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
Power Supply:
AC, 3 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
Power Supply:
Solar, Hand Crank, 2600mAh rechargeable battery
Power Supply:
AC, solar, hand crank, 3 'AAA' batteries, 5000mAh replaceable Battery
Additional Features:
Additional Features:
Additional Features:
Bluetooth, three lighting options
Additional Features:
3 light settings
Editor's Choice
N/A
AM/FM Radio:
Yes
SAME Support:
Yes
Power Supply:
AC, 4 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
Additional Features:
Best Value
$39.99$29.99
AM/FM Radio:
No
SAME Support:
Yes
Power Supply:
AC, 3 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
Additional Features:
Editor's Choice
$129.99$93.01
AM/FM Radio:
Yes
SAME Support:
Yes
Power Supply:
Solar, Hand Crank, 2600mAh rechargeable battery
Additional Features:
Bluetooth, three lighting options
Best Value
$39.99
AM/FM Radio:
Yes
SAME Support:
No
Power Supply:
AC, solar, hand crank, 3 'AAA' batteries, 5000mAh replaceable Battery
Additional Features:
3 light settings
11/26/2022 12:02 am GMT

Weather Radio Reviews

Editor's Choice
Midland WR300 Weather Radio with SAME

Midland's mid-range weather radio adds a six-memory channel AM/FM radio that switches over automatically when an alert is received, and better overall performance.

Note: this model is currently out of stock at all retailers. Used models are available on eBay.

SAME Support: Yes
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: AC, 4 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
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It might be one of the market’s most expensive desktop weather radios, but the Midland WR300 is one of the company’s top-end models and the best weather radio out there. We own the WR400, and it doesn’t do much more — the WR300 would be just as good and cheaper, still includes an alarm clock, and can tune into AM and FM radio stations, too. If an alert comes through while you’re listening to an AM or FM station, the WR300 automatically switches to the broadcast allow you to hear it.

The Midland WR300 is Public Alert certified, meaning it can receive the standard SAME alerts and newer ones, including non-weather alerts. A large, easy-to-read display tells you exactly what the warning is so you can react accordingly. The WR300 depends on 4 AA batteries for emergency power, but battery life will be an issue during long term power outages (see our emergency radio options further down this guide).

Best Value
Midland WR120 Weather Radio
$39.99 $29.99

Midland's best-selling weather radio offers SAME support and decent performance at a price that anyone can afford.

SAME Support: Yes
AM/FM Radio: No
Power Supply: AC, 3 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
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11/26/2022 12:02 am GMT

To our understanding, the Midland WR120B is the company’s best-selling model. If you can’t afford the WR300, you can still find a radio that supports all the features we think are critical, including SAME technology in the Midland WR120. It’s also Public Alert certified.

It’s not as easy to use as the WR300, but with a bit of extra work, you should be able to set up the alerts for your location. It even features a built-in clock with an alarm and snooze so you can wake up to the latest weather report each morning. The biggest issue with the WR120B is that there is no battery backup, so when the power’s out, the radio doesn’t work. We’d recommend the WR300 or the ER310 over this model.

Sangean CL-100 SAME Weather Radio
$60.23

While Sangean isn't that well known in the United States, its radios are known for their quality worldwide. the CL-100 is no exception.

SAME Support: Yes
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: AC, 4 'AA' Batteries (Backup)
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11/25/2022 10:45 pm GMT

Sangean isn’t a name well known to the US market but better known overseas. Their shortwave radios are high quality, and the CL-100 SAME weather radio is no exception. The radio is Public Alert certified, which means it meets specific requirements (full SAME support is one) to warn of severe weather adequately. While the radio is bulky, the CL-100’s design hasn’t changed much in the two decades (yes, you read that right) it’s been out.

Verified purchasers report that the alarm is loud and the overall performance of the radio is good. However, the battery backup doesn’t last as long as the Midland radios, which scored higher in our tests. However, the overall quality of this radio is excellent, with 70% of ratings on Amazon five stars.

Best for the Outdoors
Midland ER10VP Emergency Alert Radio
$37.14

The ultra-portable (and cheap) ER10VP is perfect for hikers, boaters, or anybody who needs a portable weather radio.

SAME Support: No
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: 3 'AA' Batteries
Additional Features: Flashlight
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11/26/2022 12:15 am GMT

The Midland ER10VP looks like an emergency radio, but it’s more like a weather radio since it requires 3 ‘AAA’ batteries to power it and has no hand crank. The biggest feature is its size, meant to fit in your pocket. We could see this being useful for outdoor activities especially. While the Midland ER10VP doesn’t support SAME alerts, it automatically turns on when an alert is detected. Also included is an AM/FM radio and a flashlight.

(Note: this hasn’t been tested by us yet, but we hope to include this in an update later this year.)

Emergency Weather Radio Reviews

Best Performance
Midland ER310 Emergency Radio
$37.14

Midland's top-of-the-line emergency radio is rugged and well-reviewed.

SAME Support: No
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: Solar, Hand Crank, 2600mAh Battery
Additional Features: 1400 lux flashlight, SOS beacon
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11/26/2022 12:03 am GMT

An emergency radio serves a different purpose than our other suggestions. These devices are often compact and have a method to generate power to keep the radio working when traditional power sources fail. We think this model is perfect for areas where power outages are frequent due to severe weather. The Midland ER310 features not only a hand crank but solar panels as well, with a 2600mAh internal battery. The included USB port is great for charging a device (like the phone pictured above).

While the Midland ER310 does not include SAME technology, it does have the same scan and alert function when on standby. The radio monitors all seven channels for weather alerts and automatically signals when a warning is broadcast on the strongest frequency. In addition to the weather, AM and FM bands are supported, including a USB port to charge your devices, a LED flashlight, and even a dog whistle.

Midland ER210 Emergency Weather AM/FM Radio
$37.14

The Midland ER310's smaller brother, the ER210 has a smaller capacity battery and overall smaller size, but still as fully-functioned as the ER310.

SAME Support: No
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: Solar, hand crank, or 2000mAh rechargeable battery
Additional Features: 1400 lux flashlight, SOS beacon
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11/26/2022 12:02 am GMT

Think of the ER210 as the ER310’s “younger brother.” It’s smaller and a bit sleeker, but also cheaper. But in exchange for a more affordable price, you’re getting a significantly smaller battery, which might be a pain as it will require much more cranking to keep it charged.

Editor's Choice
Eton Sidekick Emergency Radio with SAME
$129.99 $93.01

eton's SIDEKICK is the only emergency radio we know with SAME capabilities, and has Bluetooth support, too.

SAME Support: Yes
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: Solar, Hand Crank, 2600mAh rechargeable battery
Additional Features: Bluetooth, three lighting options
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11/26/2022 12:02 am GMT

Outside of Midland, we think there aren’t many other brands that deserve a “best” rating. However, Eton makes an excellent camping radio that includes the weather radio bands and SAME technology — in a radio that never needs its batteries replaced, thanks to solar power and an internal rechargeable battery.

If you spend a lot of time in the Great Outdoors, the solar-powered Eton Sidekick is for you. You can charge it using the hand crank or the integrated solar panel. Other features include a bright LED flashlight, a red emergency beacon & huge ambient light with a dimmer. There are even USB ports to charge your devices.

Eton American Red Cross FRX3+ Emergency Radio
$69.99 $55.27

The eton American Red Cross Emergency Radio is a great device to have in emergencies, and you're supporting the ARC, too.

SAME Support: No
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: Hand crank, solar, 2600 mAh rechargeable battery
Additional Features: Auxillary input, LED flashlight, blinking red light
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11/26/2022 12:30 am GMT

The Eton American Red Cross FRX 3+ Emergency Radio is a rebranded Eton radio. It is very similar to the Sidekick. However, it lacks Bluetooth connectivity, SAME support, and doesn’t have the large light found on the backside of the Sidekick (an antenna replaces it). However, other features, like the 2600mAh rechargeable battery and flashlight. And it’s also considerably cheaper — and you’re supporting the American Red Cross.

Best Value
Mesqool Emergency Radio
$39.99

This emergency radio is one of the best-selling models on Amazon at the moment, and unlike the Tenroop, has a digital display.

SAME Support: No
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: AC, solar, hand crank, 3 'AAA' batteries, 5000mAh replaceable Battery
Additional Features: 3 light settings
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11/26/2022 01:01 am GMT

There are a lot of Midland look-alikes on Amazon, but few of them are worth buying. This Mesqool Emergency Radio is one of them. With a 5000 mAh battery, it has a higher capacity than either Midland radio. Another neat feature is the capability to power the radio either via hand crack and the internal battery, but also 3 ‘AAA’ batteries which can be used as a backup. Oh, and it works on AC power too.

While the Mesqool is cheap, we’re always cautious of off-brands due to often unclear or difficult-to-contact support and warranty. That doesn’t seem to be the issue here, and our tests and Amazon reviews (66% of which are five stars) make this a contender.

Also Consider
TENROOP Solar Hand Crank Emergency Radio
$42.99 $29.99

Tenroop's emergency radio has an old analog look to it, but its 5000mAh rechargeable battery makes up for that.

SAME Support: No
AM/FM Radio: Yes
Power Supply: Hand crank, solar panel, 3 'AAA' batteries, or USB charging
Additional Features: 5000mAh battery, SOS alarm, reading lamp
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11/26/2022 12:02 am GMT

An emergency weather radio with exceptional portability, the TENROOP weather radio is durable and built for the outdoors, coming with a solar panel. The TENROOP can tune in to all seven NOAA Weather Radio stations with information about your area’s hurricanes, tornadoes, and other weather warnings. This emergency weather radio is powered in four ways: a 5000mAh Li-ion battery, a hand crank, three AAA batteries, and a solar panel.

How Our Weather and Emergency Radio Reviews are Different

Unlike many sites, we test the products we recommend or have direct experience with the company. We test select weather and emergency weather radios for several weeks, giving us critical insight into long-term reliability, something a quick review cannot. You can see our testing protocol here and our rating formula here.

We’ve also developed a 100-point rating system that judges each weather radio and emergency radio are tested on the same metrics. We judge accuracy (or performance), affordability, durability, feature set, and ease of use. These categories are weighted to emphasize accuracy and affordability, making up half of a WiFi thermometer’s score.

However, candidates for the Best Weather Radios of 2022 or Best Emergency Radios of 2022 can’t only be a great value: they must perform well, receive alerts correctly, be user-friendly, and have excellent build quality. Our review staff has years of experience using weather and emergency weather radios: some of us are degreed meteorologists and scientists. Our writers independently research each device: we do not recommend a device simply because a manufacturer sends it to us.

Weather Radio FAQ

Here are some of the most often-asked questions by readers.

What is a weather radio?

A set of frequencies has been set aside for use by each nation’s weather bureaus in the US and Canada. Stations broadcast weather information, warnings, and forecasts 24 hours a day. A radio capable of receiving the weather band or a separate radio is needed to hear the broadcast.

What frequencies are used for weather radio broadcasts?

In the US and Canada, listeners can find National Weather Service broadcasts on seven NOAA weather channels: 162.400 MHz, 162.425 MHz, 162.450 MHz, 162.475 MHz, 162.500 MHz, 162.525 MHz, and 162.550 MHz. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation carries rebroadcasts on a standard AM or FM frequency in Canada’s remote areas.

What is SAME?

SAME stands for Specific Area Message Encoding. It is an enhanced technology that allows transmitting critical weather alerts across all radio stations in a specific area. The SAME code, a five-digit number assigned to your county, will be issued along with any warnings or watches. This way, you can only hear the alerts that are relevant to you. This technology allows broadcasters to attach information to a voice broadcast, such as the type of event, the area affected, and how long the alert is valid. This prevents the alarm from sounding for warnings outside the affected area, reducing false alarms.

Who produces the broadcast I hear on my weather radio?

In the US, broadcasts originate from the National Weather Service, part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and Canada by the Meteorological Service of Canada.

Why should I buy a weather radio?

A weather radio always listens for alerts and will sound an alarm to alert you of incoming severe weather. While many of us already have easy access to weather information thanks to notifications from our favorite weather apps, this isn’t a perfect system. You can easily miss an important notification, or worse yet, it might not come at all.

Should I buy a weather or emergency radio?

Weather radios are not cheap and have limited functionality. On the other hand, the best emergency weather radios have multiple uses, can sometimes receive alerts, and use a hand crank to keep the batteries charged in the event of a power outage — making them perfect for emergency kits. Either type of radio is a good choice, though; all weather radios on our list have backup power options.

Are Midland weather radios good?

Yes, we’d strongly recommend you purchase a Midland weather radio over other brands as they are some of the best available. However, other companies like Eton make solid alternatives. But few match Midland, however.

Can I tune to these frequencies with a scanner?

Yes. Any police or fire scanner can tune into NOAA weather radio broadcasts. Some may already come with these frequencies preset. If they don’t, tune into the clearest broadcast from the following seven NOAA weather radio stations: 162.400 MHz, 162.425 MHz, 162.450 MHz, 162.475 MHz, 162.500 MHz, 162.525 MHz, or 162.550 MHz.

I have an app that sends me weather alerts. Why should I buy a weather radio?

While notifications for weather alerts are now sent to our mobile phones through the EAS system, not all alerts are transmitted. With a weather radio, you’ll receive every alert. In many severe weather situations, you’ll have much more time to prepare for what’s coming. Weather radio alerts are also far more detailed (and typically much more accurate).

Weather Radio Alerts You’ll Hear

The purpose of a weather radio is to get immediate notification of NOAA weather alerts. But you might not know what these alerts mean. Here are some of the NOAA weather radio alerts you may receive.

Wrapping Up

If there’s a chance of severe storms in your area, it’s essential to have an weather radio. It is the best way to stay informed and protect yourself. You can’t leave everything up to local authorities or TV/radio stations since they may not always be broadcasting the most urgent warnings. With a weather radio, you’ll never have to worry about missing an alert or being caught off guard by severe conditions.

The best weather radio manufacturer, in our opinion, is Midland. But the Eton camping radio is different from the traditional emergency radio, and we could see plenty of uses for that bright ambient light around the fire at night.

But any of these models will do a great job in keeping you safe.

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