Soil Monitoring Engineering
Tensiometers for measuring soil water status
Water samplers, lysimeters, porous ceramic cups
Supply information for a quote
Soil Monitoring Engineering -

Tensiometers and Water Samplers

Church End House,
Milton Keynes.
MK17 9DU.
Tel/Fax: +44 (0) 1525 280295

(Est. 1989)


Tensiometers provide a direct measure of the tension at which water is held in soil, and therefore the suction plant roots need to exert in order to extract water.  Tensiometers are based on a tried and tested principle that was developed in the 1920's, and they are now the industry standard by which other soil moisture measuring devices are calibrated.

This instrument comprises a water filled tube which is sealed at one end, with a porous ceramic filter at the other end. The specifications of this filter are such that, when buried in soil, it will allow water to flow freely through it, but not air. The suction of the water within the tube provides a direct measure of the suction at which water is being held in the surrounding soil.

The amount of water required to be applied in order to relieve the suction that has built up in soil differs depending on soil type. To estimate the application required, please activate the Soil Moisture Deficit Calculator.

Soil Moisture Deficit Calculator:

Firstly, Select the soil type for which you would like to calculate your soil moisture deficit:


Soil Monitoring Engineering currently manufactures the following types of 22.5mm diameter tensiometers:

Gauge Tensiometer:

Gauge Tensiometer

These robust stand-alone units are favoured among farmers and comprise a ceramic filter, high strength transparent polycarbonate body, and a precision stainless steel zeroable vacuum gauge. They can be manufactured to any length up to 4m.

Don't forget to fill in your quote sheet if you are interested in this tensiometer.

Septum Tensiometers:

Septum Tensiometer

These systems provide a very cost effective and convenient means of assessing soil moisture status at a large number of sites. The top of the tensiometers is sealed with a replaceable silicone rubber septum, and readings are taken using a hand-held hypodermic transducer unit which is used to pierce the septum to take the readings. The septa automatically re-seal once the transducer unit is removed. Tensiometers can be manufactured to any length up to 4m.

Go to Quote Sheet

Remote Tensiometer Systems:

Remote Tensiometer Systems

This system has been designed specifically for situations where no instrumentation may be visible above the ground, e.g. football pitches, racecourses and golf greens. The buried tensiometers can be located up to 30m away from the control panels that house the vacuum gauges and are connected to panels through nylon tubing.

Go to Quote Sheet

© 2001