DJI are the most popular drone brand in the world; the company have made significant strides in revolutionising the market with its exceptional products, which cater to the needs of professionals and hobbyists alike. A frequent inquiry concerning drones is, “Are DJI drones waterproof?” This article aims to address this question by delving into the various aspects of DJI drones, exploring their design features, IP ratings, and real-world performance in relation to water exposure. In doing so, we will assess the capabilities of different DJI drone models and provide insights into their suitability for various environments and applications that may involve water exposure.
Are DJI Drones Waterproof?
The only waterproof DJI drones are those from the Matrice series; these are industrial-grade drones that have been engineered to be used in different weather conditions.
However, it is essential to note that no DJI drone in the Matrice series is considered fully waterproof or submersible, as indicated by their IP ratings.
The best waterproof drones are manufactured by a UK company called SwellPro; all their drones have an IP67 rating, allowing them to be submerged in water for extended periods without the risk of damage.
Related: Best WaterProof Drones
What Is Waterproofing?
Waterproofing is a way to make objects resistant to water, protecting them from damage and helping them last longer when they get wet. There are different levels of waterproofing, from just being able to handle a little water to being completely safe underwater. To find out if a DJI drone is waterproof, we need to look at the details of its design and the features that help protect it from water damage.
Ingress Protection (IP) Ratings
A vital component in assessing a drone’s waterproof capabilities is familiarising oneself with the Ingress Protection (IP) rating system. This globally recognised standard quantifies the extent of protection an electronic device, such as a drone, possesses against solid objects and liquid infiltration. An IP rating comprises two numerical digits, where the first indicates the level of protection against solid particles like dust, and the second represents the degree of protection against water, such as from splashes, sprays, or submersion. The higher each digit, the more robust the protection. By understanding IP ratings, users can understand how well their drone can withstand various environmental challenges, allowing them to make informed decisions on when and where to safely operate their device.
The DJI Matrice Series: Enhanced Water Resistance
The DJI Matrice series, including Matrice 300 RTK, is designed with enhanced water resistance. The Matrice 300 RTK features an IP45 rating, signifying that the drone is protected against dust and low-pressure water jets from any direction. This makes the Matrice 300 RTK suitable for operation in the rain, but it is not intended for total immersion in water.
The Matrice 300 drone is a flagship product from DJI that has gained widespread recognition for its advanced features, robust design, and exceptional versatility.
Compatible with a suite of cutting-edge sensors, a powerful propulsion system, and advanced flight control technology, the Matrice 300 is capable of delivering precise and reliable performance, making it a preferred choice among professionals in industries such as public safety, infrastructure inspection, and agriculture.
The Latest Additions: DJI M30 and M30T Drones
The DJI M30 and M30T drones are the newest additions to the Matrice series and boast an IP55 rating, offering enhanced water and dust resistance compared to previous models. These compact drones come with multi-sensor payloads, providing a versatile aerial solution for various applications.
The primary difference between the M30 and M30T is the M30 drone features a multi-sensor payload with a high-resolution wide-angle camera, a zoom camera, and a laser range finder. In contrast, the M30T also includes a thermal imaging camera, and both drones have an FPV camera at the front with starlight sensors for night vision.
These drones offer a flight time of 42 minutes and a video transmission range of 15km, making them ideal for extended operations and long-range missions.
DJI Consumer Drones
Popular DJI consumer drones, such as the Phantom, Mavic, and Spark series, do not have official IP ratings. These drones are not designed to withstand water exposure, and any contact with moisture may cause irreparable damage to their internal components. Consequently, it is imperative to avoid flying these drones in inclement weather or near bodies of water.
However, there is anecdotal evidence that many of these drones can withstand light rain, and some, like the DJI Mini 2, have even been submerged in water, and no initial damage was observed.
I wouldn’t recommend that DJI drone owners operate their drones in the rain as it goes against the manufacturer’s advice. However, if you do, make sure you have some drone insurance.
Preventive Measures for Safeguarding DJI Drones
To ensure your DJI drone’s longevity and optimal performance, it is essential to take precautionary measures to protect it from water damage.
Some practical steps include monitoring weather conditions before flying, avoiding flights near bodies of water, and promptly landing the drone at the first sign of precipitation. Investing in protective accessories such as waterproof cases or covers can further protect your drone from water damage.
The Importance of Proper Drone Maintenance
Regular maintenance is fundamental to preserving your drone’s performance and preventing potential water damage. This includes inspecting the device for signs of wear or corrosion, cleaning the exterior and propellers, and periodically replacing damaged or worn-out components. Moreover, it’s essential to store the drone in a dry and cool environment to prevent moisture-related issues.
The Future of Waterproof Drones
As drone technology continues to advance, manufacturers are expected to prioritise waterproofing capabilities increasingly. This development will allow for more versatile applications, such as underwater exploration, search and rescue missions, and monitoring marine ecosystems. Furthermore, advancements in materials science and engineering may lead to the creation of drones with enhanced resistance to water, corrosion, and environmental factors.
In summary, while some DJI drones exhibit a degree of water resistance, none are considered fully waterproof or submersible. The Matrice series, including the latest M30 and M30T models, provide enhanced water resistance with their IP55 rating, making them suitable for use in light rain or moist environments.
However, consumer drones like those from the Phantom, Air, Mini and Mavic series have no protection against water. It is vital that you take precautionary measures and conduct proper maintenance to ensure the longevity and performance of your DJI drone. As technology progresses, we can anticipate the introduction of drones with improved waterproof capabilities, expanding their range of applications and versatility.