Do drones fly in the rain? How to dry or make a drone waterproof?

Flying with drones is the most fun when pushing them to the limits. Flying them in winter, night, and even in the rain can provide unforgettable experiences and memories.

Using your drone in such optimal weather conditions as the rain might raise some questions. In many cases, you might think that a reasonably expensive drone has to get through rough landings and sometimes even collisions.

But are they waterproof? Do drones fly in the rain?

The majority of consumer drones are not meant to fly in the rain. The frame of these quadcopters is not sealed with the proper technology to withstand fair contact with water, and any water infiltration might cause severe water damage to electronic parts.

Keep reading if you want to find out how to handle any water damage or make your drone waterproof.

drone fly in the rain waterproof water resistant drone

Do drones fly in the rain?

If you want a direct answer to this question, it’s a yes. Drones are capable of flying in the rain. But for the majority of them, it can cause serious problems. Unfortunately, not even pretty expensive drones are waterproof.

This makes them vulnerable to water infiltrations and even for flying drones in cold weather. The majority of consumer drones are not meant to fly in the rain.

The crucial parts, like the motors, are not waterproof, so even a short exposure to water might cause the spare parts to break down.

Many people might even try if the drone will fly in the rain. If they are lucky, they won’t damage the drone right on the first try, but these drones won’t last too long in every weather condition. 

What happens if a drone gets wet?

On some occasions, flying your drone in bad weather conditions can damage the motor itself. But the main reason to avoid flying your drone in the rain is to protect the internal electronics.

Any water inside your drone can cause severe problems to the circuit board and cable system. There is a fair chance for the speed controller or other similar chips to burn out.

It might cause corrosion in the long run, but the first thing you will experience is that the motors won’t even start.

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Are DJI drones waterproof?

Unfortunately, most consumer and recreational drones from DJI are not waterproof. The main DJI models lines like Mavic, Phantom and Mini are not equipped with frames, electronics, and motors to resist water infiltration.

If you open up a DJI manual for these drones, you will see that they warn you to avoid flying your drone in bad weather conditions. 

The majority of DJI drones are hobby drones, so they are meant to be used by recreational drone pilots. 

These aircraft were manufactured specially to keep their weight and price as low as possible.

Getting a consumer drone waterproof would affect the price and the weight. For example, the beloved Mavic Mini or Mini 2 are only slightly below 250 grams. 

This is the limit in many countries and the EU for beginners. With a weightless than 250 grams, hobby drone pilots won’t need additional licenses or insurance.

Can you dry out a drone?

I hope that most people are asking this only as a precaution. But if your drone landed on water or got water inside from rain, you might save it by drying it out. Acting fast in this situation is a crucial step to success. 

Flying an average drone in the rain is not a good decision, and some people are still making it. But landing it in water is unintentional in most cases. A flyaway incident or a discharged battery can easily cause you to lose control over your aircraft.

After getting water inside your aircraft, you need to take the following steps to dry it out carefully: 

  • The first thing you need to do is disconnect the battery. This way, you are stopping the chance of getting significant damage to internal electronics.
  • If you own a car, you might already know the effects of salt and water on metal surfaces. If your drone landed in salty water, you should carefully flush the surface of electronic parts with distilled water. It might sound strange, but this step can save your aircraft. 
  • You can wipe the inside parts carefully with an ear cleaner or paper towel, but forget to use rice or similar methods.
  • Use a hairdryer on the lowest heat and power setting. If you find it too intense, keep it a little bit further from the drone.
  • Let your quadcopter dry for several days. I would advise not using it for at least 3-4 days.
  • After this period, if you can’t see any sign of moisture, you might try to turn the drone on.

Can an FPV drone survive water?

Most FPV drones have the same water resistance as regular consumer drones. But if you are willing to make it waterproof by coating electronics in silicone or acrylic, you can survive even a fair contact with water. 

Many FPV drones are built as a DIY project at home, and these quadcopters are easy to disassemble. So, even if you didn’t cover these electronic parts previously, you can dry the parts one by one, this way giving a better chance for surviving a drone crash in the water.

Can Mavic mini survive water?

The Mavic Mini from DJI is not waterproof, and using it in the rain or landing it on water might cause severe issues for internal electronics.

However, you can make minor modifications using silicone or acrylic to cover the inner parts of your drone. If you make these modifications, you might have an additional safety net against water.

Can you fly the Mavic mini 2 in the rain?

Unfortunately, the Mavic Mini 2 is not water-resistant. It is a very light recreational quadcopter, and similar to Mavic Mini, it can survive water only if you are making it waterproof yourself.

I don’t advise making these modifications only for flying it in the rain. A minor infiltration might cause circuit shortage.

But if you are using your drone near more extensive water surfaces, a silicone coat on electronic parts can give you peace of mind.

List of DJI drones that are not waterproof:

  • DJI Mavic Air 2 
  • DJI Mavic Pro 2
  • DJI Phantom 3 and 4
  • DJI Mini/Mini2
  • DJI Spark

DJI drones that are water-resistant and might fly in the rain:

  • DJI Agras 1 / 1S
  • DJI Matrice 200 (keep in mind that it is not waterproof, it’s water-resistant only. Water-resistant means it can survive light raining and such, but it’s not waterproof, so landing it in water might cause water infiltration)

Getting water inside your drone by flying it in the rain is not the only source of danger. Find out the rules of flying your drone at night.

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