User Defined Continuous Rainfall File for SWMM

Hi There 

I have a rainfall file that had been modified by the City (attached).

For each row, there is 24 numbers for each hour of that day.

It is so big containing every hourly record for 30 years.


How to make it acceptable by SWMM? Actually I am sure what kind of format would be acceptable by SWMM.

Thank you in advance.


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  • Hello Jim,
    It looks like the data in the spreadsheet is 24 hours a day temperature data, Do you want to convert this to a user defined format in SWMM 5?

    Here is the user defined format for SWMM 5 rainfall

    SWMM's rain gage objects can utilize rainfall data stored in external Rainfall Files. The program currently recognizes the following formats for storing such data:

    · Hourly and fifteen minute precipitation data from over 5,500 reporting stations retrieved using NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) Climate Data Online service ( (space delimited format only).

    · The older DS-3240 and related formats used for hourly precipitation by NCDC.

    · The older DS-3260 and related formats used for fifteen minute precipitation by NCDC.

    · HLY03 and HLY21 formats for hourly rainfall at Canadian stations, available from Environment Canada at

    · FIF21 format for fifteen minute rainfall at Canadian stations, also available from Environment Canada.

    · a standard user-prepared format where each line of the file contains the station ID, year, month, day, hour, minute, and non-zero precipitation reading, all separated by one or more spaces.

    When requesting data from NCDC’s online service, be sure to specify the TEXT format option, make sure that the data flags are included, and, for 15-minute data, select the QPCP option and not the QGAG one.

    An excerpt from the user-prepared format might look as follows:

    STA01 2004 6 12 00 00 0.12

    STA01 2004 6 12 01 00 0.04

    STA01 2004 6 22 16 00 0.07

    This format can also accept multiple stations within the same file.

    When a rain gage is designated as receiving its rainfall data from a file, the user must supply the name of the file and the name of the recording station referenced in the file. For the standard user-prepared format, the rainfall type (e.g., intensity or volume), recording time interval, and depth units must also be supplied as rain gage properties. For the other file types these properties are defined by their respective file format and are automatically recognized by SWMM.

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