A multimeter is a measurement device that is commonly used to test voltage of different electronic and electrical connections or automotive components. It provides you with fairly precise readings and lets you know which part or circuit is faulty. It can also read other electrical values like Current (A), resistance (ohms), continuity, capacitance or test diodes, etc. depending on its type and design. This equipment is extremely easy to use and is fairly inexpensive ranging from $10 to $30. High-end models might be highly priced above $100 of price and are offered with some exceptional safety and accuracy features. As per your budget, you can pick any model. Following buying guide and top 6 multimeter reviews will provide you with better insights as regards to their capability and features.
Things to consider before buying a Multimeter:
- Types: Basically there are two types of Multimeters- Analog and Digital. Analog multimeter features a movable pointer that shows readings on the integrated mini ammeter. It is generally limited in their functionality and mostly can just measure resistance, current, and voltage whereas the Modern Digital Multimeters can measure several other values like capacitance, continuity, frequency, temperature, etc. as well as test diodes.This unit shows readings in numeric values on LCD or LED screen. Analog multimeters are easier to read in terms of visuals and you can see the fluctuations as well. Digital Multimeters are much preferred nowadays due to their high functionality.
- Ranging: Auto-Ranging Multimeters will automatically recognize what measurement you are willing to take without you having to manually dial the range. Hence, such multimeters can save a lot of time and are easy to use. Manual ranging Multimeter has predetermined ranges into it, the user has to manually input the range of value under which the measuring electronic part falls into, then the multimeter gives the readings.
- Precision: Some low-end models will not provide highly accurate readings but can be utilized for testing household appliances or checking automotive faults. Multimeters having too low input impedance might not give very accurate measurement values for voltage. For highly precise readings, you can opt for high-end models with amply high input impedance. A multimeter that allows for calibration might also be ideal.
- Safety Features: Make sure to check whether the multimeter is provided with ample safety features like insulation on test leads, textured grip for firm handling, overload protection, isolation slots provided on the PCB for protection against arc-over, UL safety certification, etc., especially while measuring circuits with more than 20-40V.
- Durability and Build: Multimeter that comes with a rubber casing or holster will certainly provide durability and rugged use. Also, some other aspects to consider while purchasing a multimeter is the Warranty period, high-quality insulation on the test probes like silicon instead of PVC.
Top 6 Best Multimeters for 2017
Klein Tools MM200 Auto Ranging Multimeter
Klein Tools MM200 Auto-ranging Multimeter can efficiently measure AC/DC Voltages up to 600V as well as AC/DC current up to 10 Amps. The frame of this Multimeter is incorporated with a backlit display screen to make it easy for you to read the measurements. It can be also used for measuring other values like capacitance, resistance, frequency and temperature. With just 0.51 lbs. of weight, this Auto-Ranging Multimeter unit can be carried around anywhere effortlessly. Klein MM200 can be utilized for testing diodes and continuity, as well. It has been designed with cutting-edge innovative technology and time-saving features for your convenient use. The product has been backed with 2 years of the warranty period and comes with a 9V battery for quick use.
Craftsman 34-82141 Digital Multimeter
This Craftsman 2000 count Digital Multimeter features an LCD screen, a continuity beeper for checking correct wiring or shorts (below 30 ohms) and a diode test mode to test distinct electrical and electronic equipment. It can measure 600V of AC and 10Amps of AC for electrical connections, home appliances repairing purposes, etc. Also, it can measure 600V DC and 10 Amps DC for auto marine, repairing issues, other electronic fittings, etc. It comes included with a 1.5V and 9V battery test for your suitability. It is offered with a holster constructed from rubber for highly securing the fuse system and also a tilt stand for your suitable use. This Digital Multimeter comes with 8 functions and 18 ranges; is also backed with a 1-year warranty. With just under $20 of price, it is one of most cheap multimeter amongst all.
INNOVA 3320 Auto-Ranging Digital Multimeter
INNOVA 3320 Digital automotive multimeter features a resistance function with single-setting for easily and conveniently measuring AC and DC voltage. With color-coded LED illuminations, this test battery multimeter allows you to quickly check the condition of the household batteries. Its Auto-Ranging capability does not require you to manually dial accurate range while performing electronic measurements, thus making it easier to use. The unit is integrated with a large digital screen and all of its corners are reinforced with rubber guards for protecting it against damage if dropped. The design of this unit is UL certified to safely and precisely use it for different household or automotive electrical issues. The product comes included with removable test leads, a stand and wrist straps for hands-free use. Thanks to its petite form, you can also use it as a pocket multimeter.
Etekcity MSR-R500 Digital Multimeter
Etekcity MSR-R500 can securely and precisely detect various automotive as well as household electrical issues. It can accurately measure voltage, resistance, current and continuity, making it one of the perfect units to use for testing electrical installations. MSR-R500 features a ‘Hold’ button function that holds the measurement data on the screen while you write down or record the readings. The large screen LCD with large readings makes it easier for you to read them and its backlight helps you to take measurements in dark or low light areas.Rubber sleeve reinforced with the unit will protect it from accidental drops. The product comes included with a kickstand for hands-free use and is backed with 1 year warranty period as well.
Etekcity MSR-C600 Digital Multimeter
By far the Best multimeter for entry-level use, the Etekcity MSR-C600 is optimum to use for testing any household electricity connections. It can safely and precisely measure AC/DC voltage up to 600V, continuity, resistance as well as test diodes. With the inbuilt clamp, you can also measure AC current up to 400 Amps; it can be extended to test cords or wires having 28mm of diameter without actually disturbing the connection or breaking the circuit. This Auto-Ranging Digital Multimeter comes included with test probes that are insulated and have plastic grip for extreme safety while measuring. After the measurements are displayed, you can use ‘Hold’ function and the readings will be locked on the LCD for you to record them. It also comes with a pouch for easy portability and handy storage. The unit automatically shuts off after 15 minutes of idleness, hence saving power. The MSR-C600 is backed with 1 year of warranty. All these exceptional features make MSR-C600 the best multimeter under 50.
Fluke 117 True RMS Multimeter
Featuring VoltAlert technology, the Fluke 117 Multimeter is capable of non-contact voltage detection to make the whole process super-fast and much easier. It can also measure resistance, capacitance, continuity, frequency and current (10 Amps). With its True RMS technology; it provides precise measurements even for non-linear loads. Integrated with white backlit LED screen, the Fluke 117 makes it easy for you to read the measurements, even in dimmed lights or dark settings. Ergonomically designed, the unit is very compact and easily allows for one-handed operation. Some of its remarkable features include AutoVolt for automatic selection of AC/DC voltage, compatibility with Magnetic hanger (optional accessory) for hands-free usage, CAT III 600V of rating for safety and low input impedance to prevent the unit from taking false readings caused by ghost voltage. All these power-packed features certainly make it the best digital multimeter from all the mentioned ones.