Temperature readings are accurate, and work well for the specific purpose for which I purchased it (reading temperatures of foods cooking in pots and pans), as well as checking temps in refrigerators and freezers. As mentioned in other reviews, the optimal readings are taken at a distance of one foot or less, while focusing on a spot about the diameter of a nickle. However, readings taken from a longer distance seem accurate as well as long as you are pointing the laser beam at a large enough surface area like a wall, ceiling, window, etc. My only disappointment is that, contrary to my hope when purchasing, the laser dot does NOT scare marauding squirrels away from our bird feeder. Also, don't buy this if you are planning on using it to check the body temperatures of humans/animals. I highly recommend this item for its intended putposes, as well as the fact that it's a lot of fun to play with.