Frequently Asked Questions:

Where can I get my own API key?

To receive your own API key, please contact our sales department at sales@accuweather.com to hear about all of our convenient options and opportunities to help your business grow using AccuWeather APIs.

What is GZIP compression? Why should I use it?

GZIP compression is a file format used for file compression and decompression. The use of GZIP greatly reduces the size of data being transmitted, which helps lower data usage for some devices. It also helps to increase the speed of data requests. Examples of how to enable GZIP compression can be found on our Best Practices page here: http://apidev.accuweather.com/developers/best-practices

Why do I receive an “Unauthorized” response when trying to test an API endpoint?

If you try to access an area that your API key is not specifically authorized for, you will receive an “unauthorized” message. If access to this endpoint is required, please contact your sales representative at AccuWeather, or our sales department at sales@accuweather.com.

Why is my location not available in some languages?

We make it a priority to make locations available in languages that are native to that area first, then add supplemental non-native language support if available. All locations are always available in English as a default option.

Why does the Auto Complete function of the Locations API not return my location?

Auto Complete works best for Latin based languages, and when 3 or more characters are entered into the search request. The more characters entered, the more accurate your results. Auto Complete returns the top 10 global locations, ordered by rank. Auto Complete does NOT work for postal codes.

Why do some Location keys end in “_AL”, “_PC”, or “_POI”?

“_AL” is a database code to denote an alias location. This means it is an alternative name for a location. A “_PC” code denotes a location key for a postal code. And a “_POI” code stands for a point of interest. More information about each Location type can be found here: http://apidev.accuweather.com/developers/locations

Is there a way to link to an extended daily forecast?

Yes. Links to our extended daily forecast are available at the beginning of our Daily Forecast API response, within the “Headline” section.

Why are both metric and English units not returned in the Forecast API?

This is by design to help reduce payload sizes of the Daily and Hourly Forecast responses. In addition to specific parameters, unit notations can also be found in forecast phrases. Therefore, returning both unit values in the Forecast response would require duplicating many parameters – which is not always preferred by developers. For this reason, to help reduce payload sizes and allow more developer options, units were separated to be more efficient for users only wishing to make use of one specific unit.

Where can I find Air Quality and Pollen Forecasts?

This information can be found in the Daily Forecast API response, but only when “details=true” is properly appended onto the API URL.

Can I simply hard code location keys or links from the API response into my code to reduce API calls?

Hard coding any information, such as location keys or links to our mobile or traditional sites, is strongly discouraged. Instead, we recommend using the data within the API response and consistently updating this information to ensure any potential updates or changes are seamlessly received by your product. This helps to prevent any “breaking changes” caused by AccuWeather updates to improve the end user experience.

How can I find out when new updates are released for the API?

We provided change logs for both our Locations database and overall APIs in our documentation. Locations Change Log: http://apidev.accuweather.com/developers/LocationsChangeLog API Change Log: http://apidev.accuweather.com/developers/changeLog

In the Climo API, why do some locations not return records data?

Not all climatology stations report “records” data. Therefore, it is not uncommon to come across a location that does not have records information.

What is the difference between the Alerts API and the Weather Alarms API?

The Weather Alarms API is an AccuWeather-created product based on the AccuWeather forecast, and provides a response when a location has a forecasted weather condition that exceeds a specific threshold. The full list of thresholds is available here. For example, if a location is forecasted to receive more than a half inch of rain, a weather alarm will exist for that location. AccuWeather provides this weather alarm information for all global locations.

The Alerts API is a product to return official weather alerts issued by a government meteorological agency or global weather alert provider. AccuWeather currently has coverage for many countries due to direct agreements with multiple global government meteorological agencies, and we continue to expand our coverage. With these government agencies, AccuWeather has worked to process all the different alert formats and context in one normalized API response that is consistent no matter the source—making it easier for developers. Alert details are supported in all AccuWeather languages, with official text returned in the native language of the issuing provider. Some current examples of an alert are, “Blizzard Warning,” “Dense Fog Advisory,” “Flood Watch,” “Tornado Warning,” “Tsunami Advisory,” and “Hurricane Watch.”

What is the difference between the Imagery API and Maps API?

The Imagery API provides non-interactive static radar and satellite images for a specific part of the world in three resolutions (480 x 480, 640 x 480 and 1024 x 1024). Our Maps API offers high-resolution interactive mapping content in a series of 256 x 256 graphic tiles for layering on top of a developer chosen map to illustrate weather conditions.

What historical data does AccuWeather offer?

AccuWeather currently has three main sources for historical climatology data. The first is our Climo API, which offers daily values for key weather parameters. The next is our Historical Current Conditions content via our Current Conditions API. It offers top-of-the-hour observations for the previous 6 or 24 hours, providing all content returned in a Current Conditions API response. Finally our Historical Weather API will provide daily historical data for any lat/lon value dating back to 2006. For more details, please be sure to review the specific API pages.