Whether you’re a seasoned drone hobbyist, new to the flight arena or a grandparent looking to purchase a child his first RC flying device, considering a waterproof drone is a great idea.
The waterproof features on the models below allow freedom of flight beyond fields and backyards to rivers, oceans and lakes. You can also get awesome underwater shots, and the fun need not end if it starts to sprinkle.
Here´s the thing:
The selection of drones that can handle water is still quite small.
We found some Really Cool Water-Resistant Drones in different price classes.
Check out our reviews of water resistant quadcopters below or click on one in our list below to check the price.
In a hurry? We put together this list of the 5 best choices of 2023:
- Best Pro Choice – SwellPRO Spry+ Plus Waterproof Drone
- Runner Up, Best Pro Choice – SwellPro Fisherman Drone FD1
- Best Surface Drone – PowerVision Powerdolphin
- Best Underwater Drone – CHASING Dory Underwater Drone
- PowerVision PowerEgg X Wizard Waterproof Drone
Key Features to Look for in a Waterproof Drone
When looking for a waterproof drone, there are several key features that I always consider.
I listed them here for you:
The waterproof rating, like a shield protecting the drone, determines its ability to withstand water damage. Durability standards for waterproof drones vary depending on the intended use, but generally, a waterproof rating of IP67 or higher is recommended for drone enthusiasts who plan to fly their drones in challenging weather conditions.
It’s important to understand the difference between water resistance and waterproof when shopping for a drone.
A water-resistant drone may be able to withstand light rain or splashes of water, but it won’t be able to survive immersion in water. On the other hand, a waterproof drone is designed to be completely submersible and can even continue to function underwater.
With a longer flight time, pilots can soar through the clouds and capture stunning aerial footage without interruption.
Most waterproof drones have a battery life of around 15-30 minutes, but it is important to note that the flight time can be affected by various factors such as the weather conditions, the payload capacity, and the charging methods used.
To ensure you get the most out of your drone’s battery life, there are a few tips to keep in mind.
Firstly, it’s recommended to charge the battery fully before each flight. Secondly, avoid flying in extreme weather conditions such as high winds or heavy rain, as this can significantly impact the flight time.
Lastly, consider the payload capacity of your drone and avoid carrying any unnecessary weight that can drain the battery faster.
Capturing breathtaking footage from above is a piece of cake with a camera that packs a punch and is a cut above the rest. Here are some of the key factors to consider when it comes to the camera:
- Underwater photography: If you plan on using your drone for underwater photography, make sure the camera is specifically designed for this purpose. Look for drones that come with waterproof housings or accessories that can protect the camera from water damage.
- Video quality: The video quality of your drone’s camera is crucial for capturing stunning footage. Look for drones that offer high-resolution video and the ability to shoot in different modes such as slow-motion or time-lapse.
- Stability control and image stabilization: To ensure that your footage is smooth and stable, look for drones that come with gimbal and image stabilization features. These features can help reduce camera shake and ensure that your footage is clear and crisp.
The range of your drone is crucial as it determines how far you can go with your drone and what you can achieve with it. The range of a drone is measured in remote control distance, which is the maximum distance between the drone and the remote control.
As with any other drone, there are budget options and high-end models available for those willing to pay a premium. However, it’s important to note that waterproof drone pricing tends to be higher than non-waterproof models due to the added technology and complexity required to make them water-resistant.
|Battery Life||High||Choose a drone with a long battery life to explore more areas.|
|Remote Control Distance||High||Choose a drone with a long remote control distance to explore further areas.|
|Water Resistance Level||High||Choose a drone with a high water resistance level to withstand harsh ocean conditions.|
The 7 Best Waterproof Drones of 2023
As someone who’s been researching waterproof drones for a while, I can confidently say that the SwellPRO Spry+ Plus and the SwellPro Fisherman Drone FD1 are two of the best options out there. Both are equipped with impressive features, like strong waterproofing and long battery life, making them ideal for fishing or water sports.
What else is there on the market right now?
Here are my top 7 Choices:
Imagine being able to capture stunning underwater footage without worrying about damaging your drone – that’s where the SwellPRO Spry+ Plus Fisherman Bundle comes in.
As a drone enthusiast and avid fisherman, I was thrilled to discover this waterproof drone that not only takes off and lands in water, but also captures up to 4K video and 12MP images.
The corrosion-resistant motor coating ensures durability, even in saltwater environments, making it perfect for fishing trips and ocean adventures.
One of the standout features of the SwellPRO Spry+ Plus Fisherman Bundle is its ability to place bait and lures further out from shore, making it an ideal tool for avid fishermen.
- Waterproof and buoyant
- Corrosion-resistant motor coating
- 4K video and 12MP images
- Real flight time of 20 minutes
- Range of up to 800 meters
- Top speed of 65 km/h
- Can take off and land in water
- Perfect for fishing trips and ocean adventures
- Includes a waterproof remote controller, two batteries, and a carrying case
- Some customers have experienced malfunctions and water damage despite the product being advertised as waterproof
- May not have enough lifting power for some users’ needs
You’ll love the SwellPro Fisherman Drone FD1 for its impressive range and ability to deliver multiple baits up to 2kg at once. With a maximum range of 1.6km, this waterproof fishing drone is a great choice for shore-based anglers who want to reach the best coastal fishing spots without the need for a boat.
The SwellPro Fisherman Drone FD1 features a video capture resolution of 1080p, and it weighs just 2 kilograms, making it easy to transport to your favorite fishing spots.
The drone can carry pretty heavy payloads even in heavy wind, and it can fly in winds that are gusting up to 20mph, carrying approximately 3 pounds without issue.
- Waterproof fishing drone designed to deliver baits and long lines up to 1.6 km
- Video capture resolution of 1080p
- Weighs 2 kilograms
- Maximum range is 1.6 Kilometers
- Can carry heavy payloads even in heavy wind
- Easy to connect to the remote control
- Can fly in winds that are gusting up to 20mph, carrying approximately 3 pounds without issue
- Some users have reported GPS issues
If you’re looking for a drone that can capture stunning aerial and ground footage with dual-mode functionality, the PowerVision PowerEgg X Wizard is the way to go.
This waterproof drone can shoot footage in any weather condition, thanks to its waterproof kit that can withstand snowstorms and powder snow.
It has a 6 kilometers range with wind resistance up to level 5, making it a good choice for outdoor adventures.
The PowerEgg has advanced obstacle avoidance and landing protection with visual sensors, ensuring that your drone is safe from any potential accidents. Also, it has intelligent features for creative shooting, including slow-motion and time-lapse effects.
Its intelligent app editor makes it easy to create and share videos, making it perfect for content creators.
- Dual-mode functionality: handheld gimbal mode for stabilized shots on the ground and drone mode for aerial footage
- 4K60FPS footage with crystal-clear detail and smooth motion
- Advanced obstacle avoidance and landing protection with visual sensors
- Long-range transmission and flight control up to 6 kilometers away with wind resistance up to level 5
- Intelligent app editor for easy video creation and sharing
- Waterproof kit works great in snowstorms with landing and taking off in powder snow
- Handles wind up to 20 to 25 mph
- Parts and accessories may be difficult to find and expensive
- Some users reported tech support may not be helpful in resolving issues
With its advanced AI features and dual-camera system, the PowerVision PowerDolphin Wizard is like having a personal aquatic assistant at your fingertips. This drone is designed with a bionic structure inspired by dolphins, allowing it to reach a top speed of 4.5m/s while maintaining an efficient energy system.
The dual-camera system includes a 4K UHD camera and a ultra-wide-angle lens, providing stunning underwater footage and allowing for dual-angle shooting above and below the water surface. This drone is perfect for fishing enthusiasts, with a remote-controlled bait drop mechanism that allows for more efficient exploration and fishing.
The PowerDolphin Wizard also comes with advanced AI capabilities, like autonomous path planning, terrain mapping, auto-flip, and intelligent return-home functions.
The PowerDolphin Wizard is also expandable, with functions such as a portable fish finder and bait dropper that enhance the underwater exploration and fishing experience. The FHD digital transmission system allows for remote control up to 800m away.
- Dual-camera system with a 4K UHD camera and ultra-wide-angle lens
- Remote-controlled bait drop mechanism
- Advanced AI capabilities, including autonomous path planning and terrain mapping
- Expandable functions such as a portable fish finder and bait dropper
- FHD digital transmission system for remote control up to 800m away
- Dual-joint camera system for versatile above and below-water shooting
- Auto-flip and intelligent return-home functions for added convenience
- 2 hour battery life
- Maximum range is 0.5 miles, and that could be better
Now, let’s dive into another impressive waterproof drone: the CHASING Dory Underwater Drone.
This palm-sized drone is perfect for exploring reefs, searching for lost objects, and capturing underwater footage. The CHASING Dory can dive up to 49ft and provide real-time observation of the underwater world.
With its HD camera, two 250-lumen headlights, and built-in true color restoration algorithm, capturing photos and videos is easy. The 1080p f/1.6 camera shoots high-quality footage, and the two headlights provide ample lighting to ensure that everything is visible.
The built-in true color restoration algorithm ensures that colors are restored to their natural state when viewed underwater.
With a battery life of around 1 hour and the ability to live-stream and share on social media platforms, the CHASING Dory makes underwater exploration accessible and fun.
- Can dive up to 49ft with an HD camera for real-time observation and shooting photos and videos
- 1080p f/1.6 camera with two 250-lumen headlights
- Built-in true color restoration algorithm
- Portable and palm-sized, weighs less than 2.5 lb
- 4800 mAh battery life of approximately 1 hour
- Dual play mode to operate with a friend or family
- Live-streaming and sharing on social media platforms
- Portable and easy to transport
- Dual play mode for shared exploration
- Live-streaming and sharing on social media platforms
- Can restore true colors underwater
- Brief manual with online videos relied on for instructions
- Tether length may be limiting for some exploration purposes
- Limited battery life compared to some other underwater drones
The QUADH2O will set you back around $2800 for the ready to fly variant, but you get a drone that will land on water and shoot great videos.
It has an included FPV mini camera, but you can also use your favorite action camera, like GoPro Hero 3, 3+ or 4.
It can reach speeds of up to 45 mph and has GPS positioning.
You get FPV to the controller and the 7″ color monitor.
There is an optional waterproof gimbal that you can get. This will reduce the flight time though, to around 7 or 8 minutes from the normal 12 minutes.
7. ProDrone PD4-AW
PRODRONE is a Japanese drone manufacturer, that has developed a pretty wide range of commercial drones.
Their ProDrone PD4-AW is a quadcopter that can make water surface landings. It has a payload of 3.5 kilos.
The quadcopter is waterproof and capable of amphibious landing.
You can actually connect a cable to the quadcopter which can keep it flying for an unlimited time.
You can customize it for laying cables and land surveying.
They dont seem to have a shop and obviously target businesses more than consumers with their drones. For more info check out their website.
Benefits of Waterproof Drones
Waterproof technology advancements have made it possible to develop drones that can safely operate in wet environments, opening up new applications in industries like search and rescue, ocean research, and film-making.
The durability of waterproof drones also means they can be used in harsh environments, such as saltwater or sandy beaches, without the risk of damage to the drone’s components.
They do have limitations though. For instance, they may not be able to fly as high as non-waterproof drones due to the added weight of the waterproof housing. They also cost more.
Understanding Waterproof Certification in Drones
As a drone user, you may have encountered the terms IPX7 or IPX8 when it comes to waterproof certification. These terms are essential to understand to ensure that your drone can handle specific water depths and durations of exposure.
The IPX7 certification means that the drone can withstand immersion in water up to 1 meter deep for 30 minutes, while the IPX8 certification means that the drone can withstand immersion in water deeper than 1 meter and for longer durations.
How to Maintain a Waterproof Drone
To keep your waterproof drone in top condition, you should regularly inspect and clean the waterproof seals, as well as avoid exposing the drone to extreme weather conditions. Here are some tips for maintaining your waterproof drone:
- Inspect the waterproof seals: Check for any cracks or damage to the seals that could allow water to seep in. If you find any damage, replace the seals immediately.
- Avoid extreme weather conditions: While waterproof drones are designed to withstand some rain and moisture, it’s still important to avoid flying in heavy rain or strong winds. These conditions can damage your drone’s motors and electronics.
- Store your drone properly: When you’re not using your waterproof drone, store it in a dry, cool place. Avoid leaving it in direct sunlight or in a place where it could get wet.
- Clean your drone after each use: Use a soft cloth to wipe down your drone and remove any dirt or debris. Pay special attention to the waterproof seals and make sure they’re clean and free from any debris or dirt.
By following these tips, you can prevent water damage and keep your waterproof drone in top condition.
Read more about drone maintenance at DJI.
FAQs about Waterproof Drones
1. What is the best waterproof drone on the market? The Swellpro Splash 4 Drone is one of the best waterproof drones on the market. It is a modular, all-weather waterproof drone and can land and float on both fresh and salt water. It can fly in any weather conditions and has a number of modules that can be switched out for various tasks.
2. How does the Swellpro Splash 4 Drone compare to other drones? The Swellpro Splash 4 Drone is quite unique in its ability to withstand all weather conditions and even land or float on water. It also has a boat mode and can sail on the surface. It also has a range of features such as Position Holding, Auto Landing, Auto Return to Home, One Key Takeoff, Waypoints, Mission Planning, Follow Me, and Tap to Fly.
You can read more about SwellPro here.
3. What should I consider when choosing the best waterproof drone? When choosing the best waterproof drone, consider factors such as the drone’s ability to withstand different weather conditions, its flight time, the quality of its camera, and its ease of use. Also, consider whether it has features like a 3-axis gimbal for stable footage, intelligent flight modes for easy flying, and the ability to land on water.
4. What is the advantage of a drone with a 3-axis gimbal and a good camera? A drone with a 3-axis gimbal and a good camera can provide smooth and stable footage, making it ideal for aerial photography and videography. The 3-axis gimbal stabilizes the camera during flight, ensuring that the footage is not shaky or blurred.
5. Are there any waterproof drones designed for fishing? Yes, some waterproof drones, like the Swellpro Splash 4 Drone, and the SwellPro Fisherman Drone FD1 are designed with fishing in mind. They can have a release mechanism for a fishing line or bait, and some even have the ability to drop equipment for emergencies.
6. What is the one-key return function in drones? The one-key return function is a feature in many drones that allows the drone to automatically return to its takeoff point with the press of a single button. This can be particularly useful if the drone is out of sight or if the user is having difficulty controlling it.
7. What is FPV in the context of drones? FPV stands for First Person View. In the context of drones, it refers to the ability to control the drone and view its flight from the perspective of the drone itself, typically through a live video feed to a screen on the controller or a smartphone.
8. What is advanced obstacle avoidance technology in drones? Advanced obstacle avoidance technology in drones refers to systems that allow the drone to detect and avoid obstacles in its flight path. This can help prevent crashes and collisions, making the drone safer and easier to fly.
9. What is the significance of a drone’s weight? The weight of a drone can affect its flight performance and the regulations it falls under. Heavier drones may require more power to fly and may be subject to different regulations compared to lighter drones. For example, in many countries, drones above a certain weight must be registered with a relevant authority. You can read more about the rules in the US here.
10. What is a commercial drone? A commercial drone is a drone used for commercial purposes, such as aerial photography and videography for real estate, inspections of infrastructure, agricultural monitoring, and more. These drones often come with advanced features and capabilities to support these tasks.
11. What is the Swellpro Spry? Swellpro Spry is a drone model from Swellpro known for its waterproof capabilities. It is compact, agile, and capable of both aerial and underwater photography.
12. What does it mean for a drone to be easy to fly? A drone that is easy to fly typically has user-friendly controls and may also have features like automatic takeoff and landing, GPS-assisted flight, obstacle avoidance, and more. These features can make the drone more accessible to beginners or less experienced pilots.
So there you have it, the best waterproof drones in the market today. I hope this article has given you a comprehensive understanding of what to look for in a waterproof drone, as well as its benefits and how to maintain it.
With the right waterproof drone, you can safely fly your drone over water bodies, capture stunning shots in the rain, and even explore underwater environments.
Remember, when choosing a waterproof drone, it’s essential to consider its waterproof certification, flight time, range, camera quality, and overall durability.
So go ahead, invest in a waterproof drone, and let your imagination soar!
- Pilot´s Picks: 7 Best Drones with Obstacle Avoidance 2023 - November 16, 2023
- How High Can You Fly a Drone? (FAA Reglations & Exceptions) - November 7, 2023
- Drone Photography Prices in 2023 (And How Much To Charge) - October 22, 2023