While many of us like to relax the day away outdoors, there is often something on our schedule that we need to get to. Thankfully, there are plenty of great outdoor clocks on the market that will not only elevate your patio or garden decor but reliably tell you the time, temperature, and even humidity level. We made this guide to help you find the perfect outdoor clock for your home.
Why buy an outdoor clock?
Nowadays, most people use their cell phones to check the time. However, if your hands are dirty from doing yard work or tending to the garden, you won’t want to reach into your pocket to check it. Outdoor clocks allow you to add a touch of class to your favorite outdoor space while ensuring the time (and other important information) is just a glance away. Also, unlike the sunrise alarm clock in your bedroom, these rugged products are durably built to withstand the elements.
What should you look for in an outdoor clock?
- Durability: Outdoor clocks should be made from a durable, weatherproof material that won’t rust or corrode due to inclement weather. As such, many outdoor alarm clocks are constructed out of rust-resistant metal, such as stainless steel, powder-coated metal, or even plastic.
- Functions: Obviously, you want an outdoor clock that will accurately give you the time. However, there are other outdoor clock functions worth considering. Weatherproof clocks that measure humidity and temperature can be a great addition to your garden and can even help you decide how to best care for your plants. Some outdoor clocks even have barometers to measure atmospheric pressure. These are great for those who enjoy tracking subtle weather changes.
- Size: Outdoor clocks tend to be larger than indoor clocks with a wide face that can be easily read from a distance. This is very important since outdoor visibility can quickly change based on weather conditions. Not only should the clock itself be quite large, but its numbers must also be big enough to be read from a distance.
What kind of batteries would be best for outdoor clocks?
Lithium-ion batteries are the gold standard when it comes to outdoor clocks due to their ability to keep functioning during extremely cold weather. Zinc-carbon batteries also impress in this regard. Alkaline batteries are used in some outdoor clocks but should generally be avoided since these do not perform as well in the cold. While outdoor clock batteries rarely outlast comparable indoor clock batteries due to contending with the elements, finding a model that utilizes a lithium-ion or zinc-carbon battery will likely give you the best performance and battery life.
45Min Waterproof Wall Clock
This sleek outdoor clock impresses both in terms of accuracy and style.
Pros: Featuring a large face that’s incredibly easy to read from a distance, the 45Min Waterproof Wall Clock benefits from a classic design which is great for matching with a wide variety of outdoor decor. This accurate outdoor clock is also totally silent, so it won’t hamper your enjoyment of a relaxing afternoon on your patio. Factoring in its excellent water resistance and adjustable thermometer, it’s easy to see why this clock is so highly rated.
Cops: This outdoor clock is very light, so extra care has to be taken to secure it to the wall. If it’s not mounted securely, it would be easy to imagine this product falling in a particularly windy storm. Thankfully, its plastic design is fairly robust, so there’s a good chance it will survive the fall if this happens.
Bottom Line: Those seeking an affordable, plastic outdoor clock that can withstand the elements should be pleased by this model from 45Min. While the thermometer on this clock will not wow you in terms of accuracy, it’s easy enough to adjust so that this is not a huge issue. More importantly, this clock can take a beating while continuing to provide accurate time, and it looks stylish while doing it.
SMILEMARY Silent Clock
Sporting a classic appeal, this outdoor clock is very easy to read, thanks to its large numbers.
Pros: Featuring a classic, elegant design and large, easy-to-read numbers, the SMILEMARY Silent Clock really is as quiet as the name implies. This clock silently keeps excellent time and is more accurate in the temperature reading department than many similar products. It’s also very easy to hang, and its plastic frame holds up well with prolonged use.
Cops: While this isn’t the least durable outdoor clock you will come across, it probably isn’t the most weather-resistant either. Thus, if left out in the elements, you’re liable to see some telltale signs of water damage, including slight curling of the clock’s paper elements. That being the case, this product is best utilized in a covered outdoor space.
Bottom Line: Thanks to its classic appeal and great readability, this is a clock that will probably look amazing almost anywhere. While its waterproofing may leave something to be desired, this is still a great clock that should give you plenty of reliable use. It’s also more accurate than most budget-friendly outdoor clocks on the market, making it a smart choice.
Sharp Atomic Clock
This atomic clock sports an effortless setup process and next-level accuracy.
Pros: If you’re looking for a clock that can be mounted on your sliding glass door so that you can know the time, date, and temperature from your patio, the Sharp Atomic Clock is a great choice. This clock distinguishes itself from other digital options, thanks to its effortless setup process and a high degree of accuracy. It also comes with an outdoor temperature sensor so that it can provide accurate temperature readings for both inside and outside your home.
Cops: While the time on this atomic clock is fairly easy to read from outside thanks to its large numbers, some have noted that the lack of contrast between the display numbers and background can make viewing this clock from afar a bit tricky. Thus, if mounting to a door or window, it’s best to situate this device in a shaded location.
Bottom Line: While this isn’t a clock that you’ll want to expose to the elements, its large display and accurate time make it an excellent option for those who don’t mind getting creative in terms of mounting. If you hate setting up new digital clocks and want an easier option, it doesn’t get much easier than this.
SkyNature Outdoor Clock
Featuring rugged metal construction and nice attention to detail, this clock performs well in extreme weather.
Pros: Unlike most outdoor clocks you see these days, the SkyNature Outdoor Clock is durably constructed of metal and sports a bit of extra heft to keep it stationary during a storm. This clock has a much larger face than similar products, making it exceptionally easy to read from a distance. It also sports some nice little details, especially in regards to its accurate hygrometer and thermometer. If you’re looking for something unique that can withstand harsh weather, this is probably your best option.
Cops: Many might be turned away by this clock’s price tag, which is much more expensive than your average outdoor clock. That being said, it’s also easy to imagine this product giving you double or triple the lifetime of plastic models, which usually have to be replaced within a few years.
Bottom Line: While this isn’t a product for everyone, those seeking something a little more rugged than the average outdoor clock will find a lot to love here. However, those looking for a bargain can definitely find something equally functional for at least half the price.
FirsTime & Co. Shiplap Farmhouse Outdoor Wall Clock
This unique outdoor clock is tailor-made for your covered patio or balcony.
Pros: Featuring a unique look with plenty of color options, the FirsTime & Co. Shiplap Farmhouse Outdoor Wall Clock is a great choice for those seeking a touch of style for their favorite outdoor area. This outdoor clock sports an accurate thermometer and hygrometer so that you can keep an eye on the weather while keeping track of time. Speaking of accuracy, this product seems to score better than most, meaning you will have to recalibrate the time less often than with similar models.
Cops: This clock isn’t designed to be exposed to the elements, so those without a covered balcony or patio area to hang it on should probably look elsewhere. Additionally, some versions of this clock are pretty pricey, especially when compared to outdoor clocks that offer superior weather resistance.
Bottom Line: When looking for a new outdoor clock, it’s not uncommon to begin feeling like many of the products you are looking at are pretty much identical. Thankfully, this is definitely not the case with this product. Although superior weatherproofing would add a lot of value here, this is still a great outdoor clock for those who have the perfect covered spot to mount it.
An outdoor clock is an amazing way to add a much-needed touch of class and function to your favorite outdoor space. That being said, finding one that’s durable and accurate enough to justify the investment is not always easy. Be sure to do your research and carefully consider how and where you plan to use your new clock to find the perfect model for your needs.