Hay Moisture Calculator
The microwave offers another way to test moisture content. You'll also
- A kitchen scale (accurate to 1 gram)
- Paper bag or plate
- Small glass of water
- A calculator (optional)
- Take a representative sample of forage from your swaths and cut into
1/4" to 1/2" (6-12 mm) pieces. Prevent them from drying between
collection and initial weighing.
- Mix sample. Weigh out approximately 100 grams (wet weight), excluding
the container weight.
- Put the sample in paper bag or spread thinly on the paper plate. Place
in the microwave along with a glass of water: The water will prevent the
sample from catching fire.
- Microwave on high for 3-4 minutes.
- Re-weigh the sample and record its weight. Stir to remove hot spots.
- Place the sample back ii, the microwave and reheat for 1 - 2 minutes.
Record the weight and stir the sample again.
- Repeat Step 6 until the sample loses less than 1 gram between heatings.
When this occurs it will be dry (dry weight). A slightly charred sample
should not affect the accuracy of the moisture determination. If the
sample burns, however, repeat the test.
When the sample is dry, calculate the moisture content
(Wet weight) - (dry weight) x
100 = moisture content
100 grams - 86 grams x
100 = 14% moisture
Instructions as above, but the calculator should be