In 2017, DJI released its new DJI Spark that became popular in the blink of an eye. This drone is for anyone stepping into the world of photography and flight. Its user-friendly components and affordable price continue to make it a popular choice today. Many pilots are wary of flying their drones in any other weather than clear and sunny. However, when winter comes, they want to record the beautiful winter landscape with their DJI Spark but are not sure if they can do it.
The DJI Spark can fly in the snow, but the manufacturer does not recommend it. If snow comes in contact with the drone, there is a possibility of damaging some parts. You should take your drone out in the snow only if you make appropriate preparations.
The DJI Spark has some prominent features, like gesture controls and self-flying capability. It is a great travel companion for which you can find a lot of accessories. Besides all these qualities, we are interested in how DJI Spark works in less than optimal weather conditions, such as snow.
Can You Fly a DJI Spark Drone in the Snow?
Nowadays, drones play an important role in aerial photography and other industries. They allow us to make remarkable pictures and videos and provide us with an incredible experience. As practical as drones are, they are also fragile, and we need to take proper care of them.
Just as too high temperature affects drones, so does the cold. The manufacturers have designed the drone to work within a safe temperature range. The temperature range refers to the temperatures for optimal usage outside and the temperature of the drone itself. When you use your DJI Spark in temperatures outside its range, you may experience some problems, which we will talk about in a minute.
You can try to fly a DJI Spark drone in snowy conditions if you have experience, but I would not recommend it to beginners. Although every manual says to avoid severe weather conditions, you can exercise some personal discretion if you know your drone and its abilities.
Electronic devices are not compatible with water, so in general it’s best to avoid any situations where your drone runs the risk of getting wet. However, this also depends on the model of your drone. For instance, almost every DJI drone is not waterproof or even water-resistant.
Read the manual before you try flying your DJI Spark in the snow. You will find all the information and warnings. Although the instructions say that the drone should not fly in the snow, users can still deviate a little from this rule. For example, if there is only snow on the ground, or if very light snow is falling, you’re probably safe to go on a short flight and capture some wonderful winter pictures.
Some people have reported flying their DJI Spark in the snow and claimed that they had no problems except for the obstacles warning. The obstacle avoidance system built into the drone tried to avoid snowflakes as obstacles. This system, it seems, is better than in most drones. They suggest you turn off sport mode to double the speed of your Spark. This does not mean your experience will necessarily be exactly the same, so just bear in mind that you need to exercise caution. You can see their experience below.
Winter can be a hassle for flying if you are not properly prepared, but the good thing is that it can make your drone faster. Because cold air is denser, the drone propellers can generate more lift, allowing your drone to fly with more agility while using less power. The catch is that cold can reduce flight time and your battery capacity. The struggle to keep warm during winter flying is an obstacle for every drone owner.
You can fly your DJI Spark as long as you want when you learn how to overcome cold and prevent some other types of winter flying problems.
What Temperature Can the DJI Spark Fly-In?
The recommended operating temperature for DJI Spark is 32° to 104° F (0° to 40° C). There is no doubt cold weather and snow will affect the performance of your drone and flight time.
If you fly your drone outside this range, you can damage the drone and its components, and you do not want to waste a bunch of money on another drone.
When flying at lower temperatures, pay special attention to your drone’s battery. The DJI Spark has an intelligent lithium polymer battery. One thing this means is that it hates cold temperatures. Since batteries drain faster in cold temperatures, always keep an eye on the battery status during flight. A good idea is to use a battery heater if it is available for your drone. Be ready to invest in equipment and ensure the safety of your drone if you plan to do a lot of cold weather flying.
When flying in the cold, you will probably get a warning that the temperature is too low when flying in the snow, or you may even see the battery run out all of a sudden. Thus, prepare well. Pre-heat the batteries before use and hover for a minute to warm the drone up. I recommend you not fly in sports mode, as this will drain the battery even faster.
Also, moisture is bad for your drone and motors, so try to avoid it as much as possible. If your drone comes in contact with condensation, it can begin to form ice on your propellers, which will cause an inability to create lift. Also, keep away from fog and mist.
Can the DJI Spark Fly-in Rain?
Knowing your drone’s limits and abilities can have a significant impact on how long it will continue to perform well for you. You must have once wondered if you could fly your DJI Spark on a rainy day. The truth is drones work best in sunny weather, and warm temperatures with minimal winds.
As mentioned, electronics and rain do not go well together. Because of that, you probably think there is no chance drones can fly in rain. Well, they can. It depends on the type of drone and the amount of rain. Drones have different capabilities, and they behave differently in different conditions. For example, some waterproof drones function without any trouble in rain.
Unfortunately, most drones, including the DJI Spark, are not waterproof. It is possible to fly it in the rain, but I do not recommend it, as heavy rain can easily ruin your drone. The most important thing is to get to know your drone and how it reacts to water. For instance, some drones have large air vents to help flight control. If water enters such drones, it can come in contact with the copper windings in the motor. If the water gets into the flight control and receiver, your drone will become uncontrollable.
Drones such as the DJI Spark can easily suffer these types of consequences if they get wet. As mentioned before, it can fly in light snow, but even there it is still a risk. The same goes for rain, but only more so. Keep that in mind every time you consider whether to fly a drone in heavier rain. It is better to keep your drone dry until the sun comes out.
However if you really need to fly the drone whatever the weather, you can protect your drone and make it water-resistant (not waterproof) with some products, such as silicone and acrylic coating.
What to do If Your Drone Gets Wet
If your drone gets wet, you can do this:
- Disconnect the power supply of the drone immediately and find some dry place.
- Shake your drone in every direction so that water can get out of it.
- Take out the battery. Check out for any damage. If there is damage, dispose of your battery safely.
- After wiping water from the surface, take your drone to a repair shop for a checkup. If your drone is under warranty, do not open it before taking it to the supplier of the repair shop. You should be able to get a refund if the drone got wet due to a device malfunction.
If you decide to risk it and fly your drone in the rain, do not do it for the sake of photography. Once the camera lens comes in contact with a drop of water, your pictures will not come out with clarity.
Be smart, and do not go far from your location if you know there is a chance of rain. Then you’ll be able to quickly fly your Spark back home if it should start to rain, and prevent problems. Do prepare for any scenario. If a light drizzle should start up, get your drone back to land, and keep the drone in a dry place and remove the battery. If it ends up flying through heavy rain, follow the steps above.
Consider using a landing pad for safer take off and landing near water, dirt, or anything else that is not good for your drone. You can find a landing pad on Amazon for a reasonable price.
Visibility is another potential problem with flying in rainy conditions. Try to keep your drone in sight. But if you do lose sight of your drone, simply use the return home button to have it land back where you started.
I hope you now have all the information about flying your Spark in snow and rain. If you still want to fly your drone in such conditions, do not forget that you’re taking a risk and that means there is always a chance that your drone could end up damaged. Be sure to read and follow the manual for a safer flight.