Multimeter: The digital measuring device is so versatile
A multimeter is part of the standard equipment of every professional electrician, but the handy measuring device can also bring enormous added value with regard to IoT projects or repairs in the private sector. It is versatile, easy to use and generally affordable. We tell you what exactly is meant by a multimeter, which variants there are and what you should definitely bear in mind when using it.
What is a multimeter used for?
For numerous projects in the field of electrical engineering, it is necessary to measure the voltage and current of the respective device. In the past, separate measuring devices were required for each of the individual measurement processes until a universal solution was developed in the form of the multimeter. This functions as a measuring device for several electrical variables and is therefore a particularly practical and flexible tool. It serves not only as an ammeter, but also as a voltmeter - and incidentally impresses with a very high measuring accuracy. You can also use a multimeter to measure the condition and properties of batteries and rechargeable batteries.
However, the range of functions often goes far beyond this: Many models are even able to additionally measure electrical resistance, capacity, frequency, temperature or other physical values. In addition, many multimeters are suitable for continuity and diode testing.
What you should consider when buying
Before you buy a device, you should always read the item description carefully, so that you know whether the respective multimeter can "only" measure current and voltage or can also measure other electrical quantities. Only in this way can you be sure that the product is suitable for its intended purpose.
Another crucial indicator is the measurement category. This tells you what type of electrical device the meter can be used for. For example, CAT I multimeters are suitable for circuits where there is no direct connection to the mains (e.g. battery-powered devices). CAT II multimeters can measure devices that are connected to the low-voltage mains (e.g., household appliances). CAT III modules can be used to make measurements inside building installations, while CAT IV multimeters are used for low-voltage overhead lines and meters, among other applications.
Incidentally, the multimeter has undergone a significant transformation in recent decades. While for a long time an analog version of the universal measuring device was used, nowadays almost only digital multimeters are available. Also at Berrybase you will find only modern devices with digital display. The advantage of these models is that the measured values can be read particularly well. These are displayed on a modern LCD screen. In addition, all modern multimeters come in a practical pocket format.
What should I pay attention to during use?
Regardless of whether your multimeter is used as a voltmeter, ammeter or for another purpose, the use of the respective device is basically very simple and therefore does not require any in-depth knowledge. Using a rotary switch, you can determine in seconds whether the multimeter should measure the resistance, the amperage, the voltage or another electrical quantity. If you want to check the latter, it does not matter whether the direct current or the alternating current and their respective voltages are to be measured - the device proves to be a reliable voltmeter in both cases. Information about the technical functions of an ammeter and voltmeter can also be obtained from the circuit symbols on the device.
Important: Before you start measuring, you should determine which electrical quantity is to be measured using the rotary knob. If you have already started the measurement and the wrong electrical quantity was set, the device to be measured can be damaged.
Most of the multimeters available today are used in a similar way. The devices are usually equipped with two connection sockets, which have a different color (usually red and black). You plug the matching colored test lead into each of the two sockets. At the other end of this cable there are test probes which must be applied to the area to be measured. However, there are some important differences with regard to the exact application - depending on whether you want your multimeter to function as an electrical ammeter, voltmeter or resistance meter. Therefore, you should always refer to the enclosed instructions for use for exact information on the measuring procedure. The measuring leads mentioned are usually part of the scope of delivery.
By the way, in addition to this classic version with socket and cables, there are also several other variants, such as voltage testers in pen format, USB multimeters or ammeters.
Buy multimeters online: At Berrybase you will find top products at a low price
If you want to buy a multimeter for your upcoming IoT projects, Berrybase is the right place for you. Our range includes various high-quality measuring devices from renowned manufacturers such as UNI-T, McPower and PCWork. In addition to classic multimeters, you will also find other useful measuring modules in our store, such as classic voltage meters and socket testers. Many models are already available for less than 30 euros and are therefore affordable even for tinkerers with a smaller budget. If you have any questions, our competent service team will be happy to help you.