Top 5 Best Infrared Thermometers 2020:
When looking for an infrared thermometer, we’re sure you’ve stumbled upon ads trying to sell you some.
Beware of them – many of the models advertised online are cheap, plastic toys that won’t do you any good.
You’ll lose money and gain nothing but frustration once you realize what a useless product you bought.
With this in mind, we decided to find and review what we feel are the best infrared thermometers on the interwebs.
We dug deep and managed to select five quality models that won’t leave you disappointed.
Besides this, we also cooked up a little guide on how to choose the ideal thermometer for your specific needs.
Like what you’ve read so far?
Read on to find out more!
What To Know Before Buying An Infrared Thermometer
As promised, we now deliver you the infrared thermometer buying guide.
In the next few paragraphs, you can learn about the most essential features of these products.
We’ll show you what to look for, what to avoid, and, hopefully, help you make up your mind on which model to purchase.
Let’s get into it.
What in the world is emissivity?
Don’t worry; we won’t get all scientific on you.
Emissivity refers to the level of reflectiveness of a given surface. Ok, we lied; this sounded very scientific, but please bear with us.
In other words, emissivity is the capability of an object to emit thermal energy. This means that different objects emit different levels of thermal energy, so to get an accurate reading each time, your thermometer should have adjustable emissivity settings.
Now get this: not all thermometers have this option.
The models that do allow you to set the value anywhere from 0.10 to 1.00, and you should choose the adequate number for the object you’re measuring.
The ones that don’t have adjustable emissivity, usually have this value locked at 0.95 or so.
To put this into perspective, higher emissivity value allows you to take measurements from solid objects like walls, metals, plastic, and so on, while lower values are used for liquids and glass.
So, if you plan to measure temperatures of solids only, you won’t be needing the adjustable emissivity option. However, if you can, our advice is to get a model that includes this feature.
2. Accuracy And Speed The Readings
If you’ve never used an IR thermometer, you probably don’t realize the importance of speedy and accurate readings.
For example, when cooking meat, you need to check its temperature to determine if it’s safe to be eaten. In this case, a wrong thermometer reading can mean food poisoning or stomach issues!
Here’s another situation.
Folks who work with expensive machines, and have to check them for overheating, need precise measurements at all times or else it can spell disaster.
The importance of speed and accuracy cannot be overstated.
To everyone’s great disappointment, there isn’t an IR thermometer that delivers 100% correct readings. All of them have a margin of error, and the better the thermometer’s quality, the lower the margin.
Top-notch models have an accuracy of ±1%, while those of lesser quality can have variations within ±2%.
3. DS Ratio
Oh boy, we’ve got to use them big words again.
DS ratio is short for distance-to-spot ratio, and it is expressed in numbers like 12:1.
So what do these numbers mean?
Number 12 refers to the distance (in inches) between the thermometer and the object you’re measuring, while 1 (inch) describes the diameter of the area being measured.
This also means that holding the thermometer 12 inches away from the object will give you the most accurate results.
If you pull the device away from the measuring surface, it will increase the diameter of the laser dot and negatively impact the accuracy.
With this information in mind, think about the distance that you’ll be measuring from and choose a thermometer accordingly.
4. Temperature Range
This one is self-explanatory, and it talks about the range of temperatures (from lowest to highest) that the thermometer is able to read.
The ranges significantly vary from model to model, so pay attention to this when shopping. Of course, the range that you’re going to need depends on what you want to measure.
For the common, everyday measurements, you should be okay with a device that can do -58 to 1022 ℉.
On the other hand, those working with machines and very high temperatures will be able to find models able to measure well over 2500 ℉.
The price of a product should reflect its value, but you know that this isn’t entirely true.
In most cases, more money means a better infrared thermometer. However, there’s always that overpriced model that claims to be better than it actually is.
We’ll tell you what you should do.
Compare prices of all the leading brands and see what each thermometer can do. If you come across a model that has fewer options or worse reviews than the rest, do not buy it.
This simple elimination method will eventually lead you to a pool of products that you can choose from.
Warranty is a factor that people often overlook, and we want to make sure that you don’t do this.
It’s crucial to find out what kind of warranty the manufacturer offers because this can be a significant indicator of the product’s quality.
If a company is willing to replace a malfunctioning thermometer free of charge for 2-3 years since the date of purchase, it means that they’re confident about what they’re selling.
As far as IR thermometers go, you can expect anything from 1-year limited warranties to those lasting up to 10 years.
Of course, the longer, the better, so do not spend your hard-earned money without first checking out this feature.
5 Best Infrared Thermometers In 2020: Detailed Reviews
Ok, now it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty – the reviews.
In the next section, you will be able to read about five infrared thermometers from leading brands on the market.
We inspected each one of them very carefully and composed detailed reviews.
We did the hard work, so all you have to do is sit back and get to reading.
If you’re looking for a reliable, high-quality thermometer that can be used for a wide array of purposes, BTMETER BT-1500 might be what you need.
This product has all that you could want from an infrared thermometer.
First off, it has a fantastic temperature range that goes from -58 to 2,732 degrees Fahrenheit.
Do you want to use it in the kitchen? Feel free. Need it for industrial purposes? Go ahead.
There’s almost nothing that this thermometer won’t be able to measure.
Second, another thing that adds to its versatility is the adjustable emissivity setting. Select a number between 0.1 and 1.00 to get the most accurate reading from all kinds of surfaces, including solids and liquids.
Third, this model has an enormous distance to spot ratio, 30:1 to be precise. This means that when holding the device 30 inches away from the measuring surface, you’ll get the most precise results.
But wait, it gets even better!
The manufacturer offers a 1-year warranty on BT-1500, which isn’t the best out there but can still give you peace of mind that you’re buying a reliable product.
Last, the thermometer is super easy to operate even if you’ve never used one before. However, the instructions are poorly written, so you might have some trouble figuring them out.
- Very accurate
- Amazing temperature range
- Excellent price
- Poorly written instructions
Here’s another model that we often bumped into when making our list. EnnoLogic’s eT1050 is a highly-praised, close-to-immaculate thermometer, and now we’re going to take a closer look at it.
Let’s begin with the temperature range. The eT1050 can pick up temperatures from -58 to 1,922 degrees Fahrenheit, which isn’t the best we’ve seen, but it’s, nevertheless, excellent.
This range doesn’t limit the use of the thermometer and thus makes it fairly versatile.
The distance to spot ratio is 10:1, so your hand has to be around 10 inches away from the surface want to measure. This is a bit less than average, which isn’t necessarily bad, but might be too short for some users.
As expected, this model features adjustable emissivity so you can measure different kinds of materials with greater accuracy.
One other exciting thing about this device is the Scan feature, which gives you the ability to take readings from an entire surface instead of a single dot. It records the min/max values over the whole area and gives you the average temperature reading.
This thermometer comes with a 10-year warranty, which really gives you an idea of how much faith the company has in this product.
- Very long warranty
- Includes the “Scan” feature
- Good temperature range
- A bit pricey
- DTS ratio below average
Fluke 62 Max Plus has a lot of hype surrounding it, so, as always, we decided to roll up our sleeves and check if it was worth it. Read about what we found out!
At first glance, it looks like a perfectly regular infrared thermometer, which it essentially is. It’s relatively compact, lightweight and sits comfortably in one’s hand, and it has a sturdy construction.
The device has a temperature range of -22 to 1,202, which, frankly, could be a lot better for such a high-end thermometer. To be fair, there are very, very few occasions where you’ll need a greater range, so this one should be enough.
Now, what Fluke’s model owes its fame to its accuracy, which is within 1%, and most users agree that it’s excellent. There’s also the adjustable emissivity option, and you know why it is important.
When it comes to other critical features, Fluke 62 Max performs quite well. It has a distance to spot ratio of 12:1, it’s resistant to dust and water and can last up to 8 hours with new batteries.
Overall, this is a quality thermometer made for engineering purposes, but it goes for a staggeringly high price, which might throw off many potential customers.
- Very accurate
- Ergonomic design
- Durable construction
- Very expensive
- Relatively small temperature range
Folks who are in need of an affordable and straightforward thermometer to use around their home absolutely have to check out Etekcity Lasergrip 744.
This product is every handyman’s dream, so read on to find out why.
If we could use only one word to describe this model, it would be “fuss-free.” Wait, that’s two words. Oh, well!
Lasergrip is just what you need if you plan to use it for grilling meat, fixing stuff around the house, or even using it on your car.
Now, be aware that this device has a rather humble temperature range of -58 to 716 degrees Fahrenheit, but that’s OK because you probably won’t require anything more for at-home use.
However, you will definitely need a more potent model for industrial purposes.
Also, another thing that this thermometer lacks is the adjustable emissivity. This means that it can only take accurate readings from solid, opaque objects, so it isn’t suitable for measuring temperatures of liquids.
Despite its very low price, Etekcity offers a 2-year warranty on Lasergrip 744, which certainly has a positive impact on the company’s credibility.
- Very cheap
- Extremely simple to use
- Auto shut-off
- Small temperature range
- No adjustable emissivity
In case you liked the previous model but need just a bit of extra range, then take a look at
This is another very affordable thermometer that’s perfect for home use. In the package, you’ll get the “main” infrared thermometer as well as an extra meat thermometer with a metal rod.
So yes, we could say that this is a good option for those who need it for cooking. A downside of the meat thermometer is that it is a bit slow and takes a few seconds to show you the readings.
The temperature range of this product is -26 to 1,022 degrees Fahrenheit, and its accuracy is within 2%. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have adjustable emissivity, so this value is locked at 0.95.
AS530’s distance to spot ratio amounts to 12:1, which is the industry standard, so you can take the readings at a comfortable distance from the measuring surface.
Besides the options mentioned above, AS530 also includes useful features such as auto shut-off, it can switch between Celsius and Fahrenheit and has backlighting for the display.
Who is this thermometer for?
It’s for shoppers on a budget looking for the best bang for their buck, as this device will give them just that.
- Decent temperature range
- Extra meat thermometer
- Very simple to use
- Meat thermometer is slow
- No adjustable emissivity
This has been a long and exciting ride, but we’ve come to the end.
As you can see, there are many incredible infrared thermometers, which is good news for you, but it leaves us with the difficult task of picking the best model.
With that being said, our number one pick for today is, without a doubt, BTMETER BT-1500. Like we mentioned in the review, this thermometer has everything that you could possibly want and more.
It’s well-built, accurate, and, most of all, versatile, so you can use it in many ways. Also, this product is reasonably priced, so you won’t have to go bankrupt to be able to afford it.
The competition is fierce in this field, and there are plenty of other models that work remarkably well. As always, feel free to choose the thermometer that suits you the best.