Step By Step Tips On How To Use Multimeter

A multimeter remains a device used to check for direct current or AC voltages, continuity and resistance of electrical components. In circuits, a multimeter can as well be used to check for small amounts of current. A multimeter can help on a plethora of amazing tasks in the likes of measuring amps, volts, and ohms. The three major uses of a multimeter are to test for resistance, voltage and continuity. Is your quest for tips on how to use multimeter? This content will show you step-by-step tips on how to use multimeter basic functions.

Testing For Continuity:

If you want to know if two things are connected electrically, then a continuity test is required. There will be a free flow of electric current from one environment to another if something remains continuous. When there is a break in the circuit, then you will not experience any continuity of current or electric flow. The break of electric flow can be caused by an incorrectly wired circuit, bad solder joint or a blown fuse. For electronics repair, continuity remains one of the most important tests.

Step 1:

To get started, it is important to ensure that the component or circuit you want to test does not have any current flow. Unplug the component from the wall, switch it off and get rid of any batteries. On your multimeter, ensure that the black probe is plugged into the COM port. The red probe should be connected to the VΩmA port.

Step 2:

Set the dial of your multimeter to continuity mode after switching on. The continuity mode looks like a symbol of a sound wave. Studies have shown that all multimeters may not be designed with a committed continuity setting. If you are using a multimeter without this feature, your testing will also be accurate. Simply move to step five to use another method for your continuity test.

Step 3:

By sending a little current, the multimeter will be able to test for continuity. This can be done by sending current via one of the probes and confirming if the other probe gets a signal. If the probes are connected by touch each other directly or a continuous circuit, current will flow during the test. The multimeter will beep and a value of zero will be displayed on the screen. There is no continuity if the test current connoted be detected. In this case, you will discover OL or 1 on the screen display.

Step 4:

One probe should be positioned at each end of the component or circuit that you want to test in completing your continuity test. As mentioned above, there is a value of zero on the screen display if the circuit remains continuous and the multimeter will also beep. There is no route for electric current to flow between the probes, then your screen displays OL or 1. It is expedient to know that continuity remains non-directional. This implies that irrespective of the position of the probes, you can always get a great result. In a situation where a diode is within the circuit, then continuity may be directional. A diode is a way directional source for electricity. This means that a diode has the capability of displaying continuity in a single direction.

Step 5:

A continuity test can always be achieved even if your multimeter does not have a committed setting. In the resistance mode, you will have to move the dial in the smallest value or setting. Resistance is indicated by the sign of Ω and measured in ohms.

Step 6:

With this method, the device can send a small amount of current via a probe and at the receiving end measure the output on the other probe. Current will flow through if the problems are connected by touch each other directly or a continuous circuit. In the case of using a resistance mode, the device will display 0.8 or near zero value. If the resistance is low, it implies that you have continuity. There will be no continuity if current fails to flow in the circuit or component you want to test. The value will either be OL or 1.

Step 7:

Position one probe at every end of the component or circuit you want to test to complete your continuity test. As mentioned above, continuity remains non-directional. This means that you can position the problems anywhere. Remember that a near or zero value will display if there is continuity. If the screen displays OL or 1, then you do not have continuity.

Testing For Resistance:

Step 1:

As with continuity, testing for resistance requires you to remove any batteries, unplug the device from the wall and switch it off. At this juncture, you will have to check for the entire circuit resistance. Testing a separate component will require you to perform an individual test without soldering the items in the circuit. On your multimeter, go ahead to position the black probe into the COM port. In the VΩmA port, ensure that the red probe is correctly plugged.

Step 2:

Set the dial to the resistance mode after switching on the multimeter. Resistance is denoted by Ω and measured in ohms. It is important to know that some multimeters may not by autoraging. This implies that the right range for the resistance you want to measure should be set.

Step 3:

On the component or circuit you want to test, ensure to position a probe at each end. Resistance is also non-directional, meaning that you can position the problem anywhere. The range is placed too high for a good measurement if the multimeter reads near zero. Go ahead to position the dial to a reduced setting. The multimeter will read OL or 1 if the range setting is too low. This indicates that that setting is out of range or overloaded. The dial should be positioned to a higher range for better result. If there is no continuity in the component or circuit you are testing, then the multimeter will read OL or 1. It also means that the component you are testing has infinite resistance. On a resistance test, a non continuous component will display OL or 1.

Step 4:

Users will get a slightly higher value of ohms if the device is positioned to a usable range.

Testing For Voltage:

Step 1:

Position the red probe into the VΩmA port while the black remains in the COM port.

Step 2:

Set the dial to DC voltage mode after switching on the multimeter. The DC voltage id indicated with the symbol or a V carrying a straight line. The DC voltage operates on almost all consumer electronic devices. The kind of voltage that operates in your home is called AC and can be dangerous if proper care isn’t taken.

It is expedient to know that most available multimeters may not display autoranging feature. This implies that the perfect range for the voltage you want to measure should set. The maximum voltage that can be measured is found on every setting of the dial lists. For instance, it is a good idea to make use of the twenty volt setting if you want to measure above two volts. Starting with the highest setting remains a great technique if you are not sure of the way to go.

Step 3:

The black probe should be positioned on the negative terminal while the red option adheres to the positive end. There is every possibility not to get a perfect reading if the range remains too high. For better reading, you can always maintain a lower range setting. The device will read OL or 1 if the range setting is too low. This means that the device is out of range or overloaded. While the device may not be damaged, it is better to position the dial to a higher range setting.

Step 4:

A slightly higher reading will be detected if the range is set correctly. If the probes are reversed, it will not cause any damage to the multimeter, but display a negative value.


How do you read a multimeter?

Multimeters can come either in a digital or analogue reading method. Depending on the reading model of your multimeter, it is important to know the symbols of DC, AC and resistance. AC stands for alternating current, while R simply represents resistance. DC is the direct current flowing in the component you want to test.

How does a digital multimeter work?

The voltage measurement remains the main process occurring within a digital multimeter. This basic measuring technique will help you for other measurement in a digital multimeter. Understanding this simple strategy will help you understand how a digital multimeter works.

how does a digital multimeter work

how does a digital multimeter work

How do you test a switch with a multimeter?

The first step to take is by connecting your multimeter to the pins of the switch. Press the switch in the direction of your testing after setting the multimeter to audible continuity.

How do you test a capacitor with a multimeter?

The capacitor should be discharged by placing a wire or screwdriver across the leads. This procedure is important to prevent the damage of your multimeter. Set the device in the resistance mode to read between ten thousand and one million ohms range. Go ahead to position the probes on the capacitor’s terminals. The capacitor is normal if the device reads in the range of ten thousand ohms and later increase to infinity. The capacitor is defective if the reading shows no or low value.

How do I use a multimeter to check for power?

Set the device to the Volts AC setting if you want to check for power. The symbol of voltage if V ~ with more than a single setting within range. In any case, ensure that the voltage setting you select is higher than what you expect. Position the red probe to the VΩmA port and the black into the COM port.

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Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 2 comments
chris jones - March 20, 2018

nice informative article

Vivian Black - October 18, 2019

I never knew that you can set the dial to continuity mode for a test. My husband and I have been looking for ways to test currents in our home. We will keep these tips in mind in our search for a professional to buy from.


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