Wind testing - inconsistencies throughout

In an effort to give this issue more visibility, and greater importance for addressing. Did a test of (6) different airports to show that the wind depiction issues go well beyond the 223/3 knots winds aloft bug we all know about.

For this test, I chose the airport because they all had wind speeds over 10 knots depicted on the flight setup map. I wasn’t comparing against actual METARS since we know the sim doesn’t use them. Rather, these comparisons are between what the map view, initial flight loading, and final PFD display showed for the winds, both at ground level, and once climbing. Didn’t focus on winds aloft since that’s been discussed at length.

Test setup was as follows:
Airplane - Carenado 182T
Weather / time - Live
Live Traffic
No multiplayer
Server - Automatic (north america)

Every airport had inconsistencies, but the common problem was that the wind speeds once in the sim were lower than what the map and flight start said they should be. Windsock issue was seen at every airport (straight line from distance, drooped when I got closer).

CYYT: Winds in the sim DID NOT match what was on the map and flight loading page.
CYYT #1 map view

ESSA: Winds in the sim DID NOT match what was on the map and flight loading page.
ESSA #1 map view

GMMT: Wind direction was correct, but wind speed on the ground was much less than what the map said it should be. Once I climbed up to 1000’, the wind speed increased to where it should have been.

KNGP: Winds in the sim DID NOT match what was on the map and flight loading page.

KNGP #1 map view

LICJ: Wind direction was slightly off, and speed slightly less, but generally in agreement with the map and flight start window. The shift in direction above (which occurred at 200’ AGL) was actually depicted on the map. Generally, this airport had the most accurate depiction.

LICJ #1 map view

SBNT: Wind direction was correct, but wind speed on the ground was much less than what the map said it should be. Once I climbed up to 1000’, the wind speed increased to where it should have been.

SBNT #1 map view

I have yet to find anywhere where live weather gives over 10 knots of actual wind ON THE GROUND. Free beer to whomever can figure out this pattern or find an airport that does. In the meantime, despite loving the clouds, visibility, icing, etc., this is a critical missing part of the simulator. Flying in heavy winds is one of the flight training and realism basics. Am hoping the team can address this soon, they’ve done such a wonderful job on everything else!

Yeah, I can’t for the life of me understand why they haven’t modeled the wind correctly.

I’ve reached out to Meteoblue directly and they are aware of the issue and are working with MS/Asobo on a fix, for both surface level and high altitude winds.

“Thank you very much for your feedback. We are also very pleased that the cooperation with Microsoft/Asobo has been so successful. Unfortunately, we have had the problem with the live datafeed several times and are working with Microsoft to solve the problem. Unfortunately we cannot tell you more about this topic yet.”


It is important to understand that the winds given in a real (or simulated) METAR report are referenced to true north. The winds given by the airport ATIS or directly by the ATC controller in the tower, will be referenced to local magnetic north.

The magnetic variation at St. John’s airport is 19 degrees West. When the variation is West, you add the variation to a true bearing to get a magnetic bearing, so if the METAR wind was reporting 244 degrees, the magnetic wind should be 244 + 19, which equals 263 degrees. That is what you would measure if standing on the ground with a wind vane calibrated to local magnetic north.

In your example, the wind in-game was 224 degrees (but the speed was the same) so it appears there is a bug where variation is being subtracted where it should actually be added.

In other words, seeing a difference in the wind on the live map vs. in-game is to be expected - but in your example the difference appears to be a calculation error in the Asobo weather system.

It would be interesting to see the difference in the wind between the live map and an airport where the variation is EAST. In that case the surface wind direction in-game should be less than the live weather map. I would suggest Seattle, where the variation is 16 degrees East, but since the live weather wind is currently not working in the US, that probably won’t work at the moment.

On the other hand, your example in Brazil was for an airport with a variation of 22 degrees west , but the live map direction vs. in-game was much closer, so perhaps there is something else going on.

That is interesting. Wonder if something similar is going on with the speed calculation.

WInds are just plain broken. I have never had them match real conditions and landings are always calm, not matter where I am or what the weather is reported to be like.

I do hope this is solved quickly, otherwise it is really embarassing for both MS and MB.

Interestingly, I had the usual wind issue in reverse today flying in South Africa: the map showed the infamous 3 kts of wind, as did the loading screen. On the runway, local ATIS reported “winds calm” but the wind socket right next to me was fully horizontal and actual winds were indeed 100/20 with strong gusts (as they were supposed to be). Winds aloft were also correct (strong gusty winds from the east with heavy turbulence and requiring a significant heading offset to maintain track).
I guess, having live winds unannounced is better than the sim promising winds with the plane remaining in a calm bubble, but still the range of possible mismatches does not cease to impress. Has the simulation become self-aware and is evolving? Does it sense we are onto its 225/3 scheme and is now trying to throw us off the scent?

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I am starting to suspect the winds are powered by a random number generator. A poor one at that.

Im like 90% sure the Garmin isn’t going to show a proper wind value on the ground since it uses GPS coords and indicated airspeed to calculate the wind direction and speed. It’s not like the plane has a wind vane on the roof telling it the exact velocity and direction…

I guess it could in the sim tho… In addition to all the other inaccuracies.

That may be true in real life, but for the purpose of pointing out this bug in the sim, it’s the best indicator we’ve got.

What about the wind sock? Does that differ from the garmin in terms of direction and rough speed?

Pretty sure the windsock has other issues. Has been widely reported now that from the distance, the windsock will appear near horizontal and then go limp as you get near to it. I wouldn’t look at that as good means to test this right now.

The plane itself can tell the story. Easy enough to tell on the takeoff off roll the difference between a 3 knot crosswind and 10 knot crosswind. In every example in my test, the plane behaved how you think it would from the winds indicated in the Garmin.

I am not 100% sure what your point is?
Do u want a 100% consistent wind indication in your Garmin from the actual metar?

I am not aware of how accurate or detailed the wind is generated, but I reality you wouldnt expect a 100% consistent wind from the metar, thats why the ATC gives you wind directions before TO/Landing. So maybe its just the local variation due to terrain etc. or the way the Garmin is modeled to indicate the wind?

I guess the big point is that everything in the game (Garmin, windsock, plane behaviour) indicate that wind is calm (3 kts at 255!) whereas Metar and the game map (and IRL maps) will indicate something entirely different.

In other words: Wind in the game world is broken.

Ah okey. But did you guys select live weather before selecting a depature? I notice that the default selection is preset. When switching to live weather the wind displayed is the consistent with the metar, as the garmin. At least in europe :slight_smile:

Yes, in every test above live weather and time are selected first.

To take this a step further, if you can find me anywhere on the planet where the wind is blowing at more than 20 knots, at ground level, measured by the Garmin or plane behavior, than I would concede that this is a location only issue. In my view based on the evidence I’ve seen so far, it is not.

A friend of mine reported that winds are accurate at his home airport (in the US) for the first time after this most recent update.

Anyone else reporting the same thing? Maybe they snuck some weather related things into this patch?

So another quick test at KLWT (Lewistown, MT) and EGNS (Isle of Man, UK). Used live weather and time. Grounds winds at both were not working, winds aloft working at EGNS once above 1500’ AGL. In both places, plane behavior on the takeoff roll matched what the PFD showed. So, similar findings as before the patch. Will be making another Zendesk ticket per their reply to my last one.

One thing to note, at KLWT, took the drone away from the plane. The grass around the airport clearly moves like the wind is blowing at 28 knots, and you can clearly hear the wind. This certainly points to some kind of bubble placed around the airplane.

KLWT #2 flight start

EGNS #1 map view
EGNS #2 flight start


Looks very strange. So the wind around the airport is correct but not on ground?