How to use a multimeter

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How do I test a 9-volt battery with a multimeter?

Touch the red multimeter probe to the positive terminal of the 9-volt battery. Touch the black multimeter probe to the negative terminal of the 9-volt battery. The voltage of the battery will appear on the multimeter screen. If the measured voltage is not at least eight volts, replace the battery.

What voltage should a 9V battery read?

A nine volt battery has six cells, so a new would have an open circuit voltage of 9.48V. A reading of 9V indicates a battery with no to less than 10% discharge. FWIW they do self discharge at about 2% a year. It is always a good idea to check the date on the package to get the freshest ones available.

What setting do you use on a multimeter to test a battery?

For testing the electrical output from a vehicle battery, the multimeter dial should be turned to the “20 volts” setting. But before the multimeter can be used, all surface charge from the battery must be removed to allow for an accurate reading.

How do you connect a voltmeter to a battery?

Take the black wire, or negative terminal, of the voltmeter and connect it to the negative terminal of the strip or resistor. Take the red wire, or positive terminal, of the voltmeter and connect it to the positive terminal of the terminal strip or the positive end of the resistor where the positive terminal of the battery is also connected.

How do you test a battery tester?

Place the watch to the Battery tester. Place the smart-watch to be tested by the crystal face up on the tester panel or tester board in the region designated. Quickly after the watch case offers contact with the testing cover, the tester should start beeping if the battery of the watch is in great condition.

Does analog voltmeter require battery?

If your multimeter is digital, it will require a small battery to operate. If it is analog, it does not need a battery to measure voltage. Some digital multimeters are autoranging.

What is normal battery volt reading?

If your battery is in good condition, the voltage should be between 12.4 and 12.7 volts. A reading lower than 12.4 volts means that your battery needs to be charged. If the reading is lower than 12.2 volts, “trickle charge” the battery, which is a slow charge.

If you’re doing any kind of electrical work, no matter what the application is; one of the best tools you can have at your disposal is a multimeter. If you’re just getting started, here’s how to use one and what all those confusing symbols mean. In this guide, we will show the basics of a multimeter and the uses of a multimeter.

What is a Multimeter?

A multimeter is a measurement tool undeniably necessary in electrical work. It combines three important features: a voltmeter, ohmmeter, and ammeter, and in some cases continuity. A multimeter allows you to know what is going on in your circuits. Whenever your circuit isn’t working, the multimeter will help you troubleshooting.

Different Parts of a Multimeter

If you are a beginner and this is your first time using a multimeter then it’s very important to know the parts of a multimeter. A multimeter has three parts:

  • Display
  • Selection Knob
  • Ports

The display usually has four digits and it has the ability to display a negative sign. Some multimeters have illuminated displays for better viewing in low light situations. The selection knob allows the user to set the multimeter to read different things such as milliamps (mA) of current, voltage (V) and resistance (Ω).

How to use a multimeter

The COM port stands for Common, and the black probe will always plug into this port. The VΩmA port sometimes denoted as mAVΩ is simply an acronym for voltage, resistance, and current (in milliamps). This is where the red probe will plug into if you’re measuring voltage, resistance, continuity, and currently less than 200mA. The 10ADC port sometimes denoted as just 10A. It is used whenever you’re measuring the current that’s more than 200mA.

Multimeter Symbols and Meaning

There’s a lot symbol available at the selection knob on a multimeter. But if you’re only going to do some basic stuff then you won’t even need to use half of all the settings. In any case, here’s a rundown of what each symbol means on my multimeter:

  • Direct Current Voltage (DCV): Sometimes it will be denoted with a V– instead. This setting is used to measure direct current (DC) voltage in things like batteries.
  • Alternating Current Voltage (ACV): Sometimes it will be denoted with a V

instead. This setting is used to measure the voltage from alternating current sources, which is pretty much anything that plugs into an outlet, as well as the power coming from the outlet itself.

  • Resistance (Ω): This measure how much resistance there is in the circuit. The lower the number, the easier it is for the current to flow through, and vice versa.
  • Continuity: Usually denoted by a wave or diode symbol. This simply tests whether or not a circuit is completed by sending a very small amount of current through the circuit and seeing if it makes it out the other end. If not, then there’s something along the circuit that’s causing a problem—find it!
  • Direct Current Amperage (DCA): Similar to DCV, but instead of giving you a voltage reading, it will tell you the amperage.
  • Direct Current Gain (hFE): This setting is to test transistors and their DC gain, but it’s mostly useless since most electricians and hobbyists will use the continuity check instead.
  • How to Use a Multimeter?

    A multimeter is used for different purpose like measuring voltage (volts), current (amps) and resistance (ohms). Now we will show you how you can measure current, voltage, resistance using a multimeter.

    Measuring Voltage

    You can measure DC voltage or AC voltage. The V with a straight line means DC voltage. The V with the wavy line means AC voltage. To measure voltage:

    • Set the mode to V with a wavy line if you’re measuring AC voltage or to the V with a straight line if you’re measuring DC voltage.
    • Make sure the red probe is connected to the port with a V next to it.
    • Connect the red probe to the positive side of your component, which is where the current is coming from.
    • Connect the COM probe to the other side of your component.
    • Read the value on the display.

    Measuring Current

    To measure current you need to bear in mind that components in series share a current. So, you need to connect your multimeter in series with your circuit. Before measuring the current, be sure that you’ve plugged in the red probe in the right port, in this case, µAmA. In the example below, the same circuit of the previous example is used. The multimeter is part of the circuit.

    Measuring Resistance

    Plug the red probe into the right port and turn the selection knob to the resistance section. Then, connect the probes to the resistor leads. The way you connect the leads doesn’t matter, the result is the same.

    Checking Continuity

    Continuity testing is the act of testing the resistance between two points. If there is very low resistance (less than a few Ωs), the two points are connected electrically, and a tone is emitted. If there is more than a few Ωs of resistance than the circuit is open, and no tone is emitted. This test helps ensure that connections are made correctly between two points. This test also helps us detect if two points are connected that should not be.

    Bottom Line

    A multimeter is an important tool in any electronics lab. In this Beginner’s Guide, we’ve shown you the basics of multimeter and uses. This guide is meant to be a starting point to get you up and running, and it’s very possible that some things shown above are different from your particular model.

    HVAC is for Heating, Ventilation, and Air conditioning system performance test. We are going to use, FLUKE 116 HVAC Multimeter to learn to test the HVAC system. And we also required a clamp meter.

    Table of Contents

    What is an HVAC system?

    An HVAC system is the technology of the device and processes the system that provides heat, cool and ventilates a commercial or residential property. In terms of heating, most of the homes will be built in furnace heating. The home furnaces come in different types and can use other fuel sources like natural gas, electricity, propane and heating equipment.

    Generally, it includes a blower motor, which moves the air throughout the home in cooling an HVAC system. Traditionally it consists of an air conditioner or heat pump; an air conditioner only cools the home, whereas a heat pump can cool and provide heat for a home.

    How to use a multimeter

    How to test an HVAC system with Fluke 116 HVAC?

    Fluke 116 digital multimeter is made explicitly for engineers who work in the HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) industries.

    The Fluke 116 includes exclusive functions such as a built-in thermometer for measuring temperature and a microamp mode designed for testing flame sensors. It can also test all standard electrical parameters, including resistance, continuity, frequency, capacitance and voltage.

    The key features of Fluke 116 HVAC

    • Fluke 116 specifically designed for HVAC technicians
    • A/C, D/C voltage measures up to 600mV
    • D/C millivolts measures up to 600mV
    • Continuity, Diode test
    • Resistance 40M Ohms
    • Capacitance 1000uF
    • Micro amps mode made for testing flame sensors
    • Frequency measure up to 50Hz
    • True RMS when testing an irregular A/C circuits
    • LoZ low input impedance eliminates false readings caused by ghost voltage
    • CAT iii 600V

    How to use an HVAC multimeter for HVAC system

    Multimeters are used to do voltage A/C, D/C and Ohms some do Amps. For that purpose, we used the best HVAC digital multimeter, which is a True RMS meter means the meter is a little more accurate.

    To test an HVAC system, in this article we will describe to you what to look for in a digital multimeter, when you are planning to apply it to HVAC appliances, and which features will make the biggest implement. Most of these features can be found in many digital multimeters.

    All the test done with a digital multimeter are :

    • How to test voltage with a multimeter?
    • How to test A/C voltage D/C voltage with a multimeter?
    • How to test capacitance with a multimeter?
    • How to test resistance, continuity frequency and diode test with a multimeter?
    • How to test true RMS with a digital multimeter?
    • How to test amps and micro amps with a digital multimeter?

    Features a Digital Multimeter must need to work with HVAC Appliances

    Voltage Meter

    Almost all digital meters can check voltage. For HVAC, you required a multimeter that can measure A/C voltage up to 600V and D/C voltage up to 300V.

    Resistance Meter

    Resistance is measured in Ohms, which can tell you the performance of a circuit or a component how well it is. The multimeter should at least measure up to 5M Ohms (5 megaohms) in increments of 1/10 Ohms.

    Amperage Meter

    The multimeter should measure A/C amps up to 300A. The minimum amperage measurement should be at least 1/100A with an increase of 1/10 Ohms.


    For the microamps measurements, your digital meter should read as little as 1/10 of microamps.

    Continuity test

    The continuity test detects an electric circuit is open or close. This feature is also present in every digital multimeter, and the function is performed with a beeping buzzer.

    Capacitance test

    The most important and common problem in HVAC compressors is the failure of a capacitor to start, which results in a trip-breaker. You should have a multimeter that can test for capacitance to diagnose certain problems.

    A True RMS meter

    A true RMS meter will tell you to read distorted or non-sine waves, and this will be carried in bigger appliances with very high voltage, such as HVAC appliances.

    Ghost Voltage

    Other than all these features, ghost voltage detection also plays a false role; you also need a multimeter to detect ghost voltage to eliminate these faults.


    There is a list of features, all in one, to consider buying a multimeter. That can be held into one multimeter. There are some manufacturers, they have designed their multimeters specifically for HVAC technicians.

    All the features mentioned above are present in one best multimeter; the Fluke 116 HVAC is the best quality digital multimeter you can buy. The durability and quality of fluke 116 are beyond the market, and you will need a piece of equipment like this for best results.

    If you are not a certified electrician then you should not use multimeters before getting complete training and knowledge about the basic functions and safety of multi meters. Otherwise, either your or your meter’s safety would be at risk.

    Using a fluke digital multimeter is not much different from using other company multimeters except for some extra features that are specifically included in fluke meters. Also, its unique design, function buttons on the interface require some learning before doing a test. In this guide, we’ll tell you how to use a fluke multimeter, its functionalities, and other important factors.

    As an electrician you need to work frequently on electronic equipment, you have to perform calibration testing, fault finding for electric loops and panel circuits. In order to correctly perform all these technical tasks, one should be an expert at basic multimeter usages like voltage, current, resistance, and continuity testing.

    In fluke multimeter, we got several buttons that are specific for a task depending on mode selection and range. First of all, we should learn about primary function buttons on meter’s interface marked as hold, min/max, range, rel, etc.

    Here we took fluke 117 as an example to tell you fluke multimeter basic operations and functions. Because fluke 117 is no doubt a most reliable and common industrial multimeter.


    It’s the most common button we found in digital multimeters. Its basic purpose is to freeze meter’s screen to show you a static reading. For example, while working alone you can freeze readings to note them down somewhere like a notepad or a paper.


    Signal behavior is an important thing for analyzing faults and setbacks in a circuit or machinery. You’ll need to know peak current, torque load, locked rotor current, average load and voltage while troubleshooting a problem.

    Min/max feature of fluke multimeters will record highest, lowest and average reading since you turned it on.


    Range button shows the flexibility of a fluke multimeter range options, you’ll get benefit of both auto and manual ranging options while using it. In most cases auto range is better as it will automatically set range for you, also it is good for multimeter safety.

    Yellow button

    In most fluke multimeters a prominent yellow button is placed with other functions buttons. It’s for alternative functionality. If you see at selector dial you’ll notice some of symbols are in yellow colors like dc voltage, frequency this button is for utilizing these alternative functions.

    Test lead port selection

    In fluke multimeters like other meters, there is a total of three sockets, two red colored sockets are dedicated to different functions and one is black which is for the common or black probe. One of red sockets is for voltage, resistance, continuity, and capacitance checking while another one is dedicated only for amperes testing.

    How to do basic tasks

    Voltage test

    To check ac or dc voltage with a fluke multimeter first analyze the physical condition of multimeter, either test leads are in good condition and insulation is fine? Now turn the meter dial to V function, if there is a range button in your multimeter you can select range as per your choice between auto and manual ranging.

    After that insert black lead into comm socket and red one socket having VΩ indications. Now if you want to check ac voltage or dc volts set mode and range according to it, connect red test lead to phase and black to neutral or earth. For testing three phase voltage you may connect red and black probes with any of two phases in any order. There’s another option to check phase to neutral voltage in 3 phase, in that case, a black probe will be attached to neutral.

    Note results and turn off the multimeter carefully.

    Current test

    Digital fluke multimeter normally comes with ac/dc amp testing range between 10 to 20 amps. For checking higher current value clamp meters are a best and safer option. In order to check loads of supply circuits with fluke digital multimeter, we’ll have to isolate the circuit first to connect the multimeter with it in series.

    For that cut of circuit from somewhere but we’ll recommend do not let conductors be exposed freely to avoid any shock and misfortune. You can use a connector block for this purpose and reconnect the circuit once the test is done.

    For dc current switch the yellow button to turn it to dc amp mode. Another process is same for ac amps, isolating the loop and going in series with circuit.

    Don’t ever try to test a circuit with more load than multimeter capacity, otherwise meter fuse will be blown or an arc flash could be produced.

    Resistance test

    Resistance is actually opposition of current, as resistance highers, current will be lowered and vice versa. For checking resistance with fluke multimeter turn of the circuit first and discharge capacitors if present in the circuit. For resistance and other parameters always use a calibrated multimeter.

    Now turn the meter dial to resistance or ohm point. Best practice is to remove components to be tested from the circuit entirely, otherwise, other components of the circuit may affect readings. Be sure that leads are inserted at the right jack, for resistance red probe should be at Volt-ohm jack and black probe at comm jack.

    Connect multimeter’s lead to component or circuit endpoints to check ohms value. Make sure that contact between leads and components is intact.

    How to measure duty cycles with a Fluke Multimeter

    Duty cycle is actually a ratio of time a signal or load is on to the time it was off. We have many circuits like actuators in industrial automation circuits like a programable logic controller or dcs that receive impulse signals on and off several times in a minute. For these types of applications electricians often need to count duty cycle.

    Almost all fluke meters are equipped with a duty cycle measurement function. Usually, it’s operated by dc volt point on meter dial switch when Hz button is pressed. After switching to dc v and pressing hz button a % sign will appear on screen, which indicates that now fluke multimeter is ready to measure duty cycles.

    First step is to insert black probe into comm jack and red one into volt-ohm jack. Now connect meter leads to the circuit that has to be tested and read results. If a positive symbol appears it shows a positive time-percent measurement, similarly negative means a negative time-percent value.