How To Test Electrical & Electronics Components with Multimeter?
Troubleshooting with Multimeter
We all know the rule and importance of “Troubleshooting” in Electrical and Electronics Engineering. Most EE components and elements used in Electrical and Electronics equipments, devices and instruments are common in their functions and operations.
To be a good analyzer and troubleshooter, you must know the following basic techniques and has good skills in Electrical and Electronics troubleshooting, design and analyzing electric / electronic circuits. For this purpose, we have started a multimerer tutorial where we will use DMM (Digital Multimeter) and AVO Meter (Ampere-Voltage-Resistance Meter) or Multimeter (Digital/Analog) to test different electrical / electronics devices, instruments and components to find their terminals and condition such as are are they short, open, good or faulty.
In this basic multimeter tutorial, We will use digital and analog multimeter to check the following electrical and electronic components, devices, tools and instruments:
- Cable and Wires
- Switch/Push Buttons
- Capacitors & Inductors
- Resistors & Burnt resistors
- Diodes and LED
In troubleshooting, we use different kinds of basic Electrical and Electronics Engineering Tools but the main and important tool is Multimeter. Now we will check the above mentioned components and devices with this tool one by one.
Cable and Wires
To check if the cable and wires are in good condition or broken before sizing the proper cable & wire for Electrical Wiring installation, we perform the continuity test. For this purpose, take AVO meter (or Digital Multimeter) and select “Resistance” (in AVO meter…Rotate the knob to the “Ω” or Resistance).
Now connect both terminals, i.e. both naked ends of the cable/wire with the AVO or Digital Multimeter Terminals. If the meter reading shown “0 Ω”, it means Cable/Wire is in “Good Condition”. On the other hand, if meter reading is “Infinite”, it shows the cable/wire may be defected or broken. So you need to replace it with a new one.
Use the same method (mentioned above for checking the cable and wires)…to perform this method correctly, you will need to apply this method in both cases (ON & OFF positions) on switches and push buttons…In other words, first apply this method on switches/push buttons and then “Push” the push button and perform the same method again.
At first attempt, if meter reading is “Zero” and in the second attempt, the meter reading is infinite, it means Switch/Push button is in good condition. If Multimeter reading is “Zero” or “infinite” in both attempts, it means switch is in short circuit or continuity connection is broken and you should replace it with a new one.
To verify Fuse condition, i.e. is “Fuse” in good condition or damaged? … We perform the same method I.e. continuity test as mentioned above. In short, if the meter reading is “Zero” it means Fuse is in good condition. If Multimeter reading is infinite, it means Fuse continuity may be broken or blown. So you should replace it with a new one immediately.
We have already discussed the topic “How to Check a Capacitor with Digital (Multimeter) and Analog (AVO Meter), By Four (6) Methods with pictorial views.
In this tutorial, you can check with Digital Multimeter or AVO meter if the Capacitor is Good, Short or Open?
Diode & LED
We have updated a detailed post about “How to Test a Diode using Digital & Analog Multimeter” by four methods. In this multimeter tutorial, we have shown different things about diode such as using diode mode in DMM and resistance mode in DMM and AMM to identify the terminals of Diode, LED and Zener diode. In addition, you may also check if the diode is good, bad, short or open.
In another detailed multimeter tutorial about “How to Check a Transistor by Multimeter (DMM+AVO)” you may find the Base, Collector and Emitter of a transistor by using Digital and analog multimeter. Also, There is an easy method to remember the direction of NPN and PNP transistors. In short, in this tutorial, You will be able to use the multimeter in resisatnce mode (Digital + Analog multimeter) or hFE / Beta mode (Only DMM) to test a transistor if is it good, faulty, short or open.
In the basic test meter tutorial about “How to test a battery with Test meter?” you will be able to find if the battery is in good condition, charged, need to be charge, low charge / current, high charge / current or is it faulty and need to be replaced with new one.
Resistor & Burnt Resistors
To check if the Resistor is in good condition or broken, we use a multimeter. For this purpose, take AVO meter (or Digital Multimeter) and select “Resistance” (in AVO meter…Rotate the knob to the “Ω” or Resistance). Now connect both ends of resistor with the AVO or Digital Multimeter Terminals. If the meter reading shows the exact value of resistance or with a percentage tolerance, it means Resistor in “Good Condition”.
For Example, 1kΩ = 1000Ω with a 5% tolerance will show the reading near about 950Ω to 1050Ω. On the other hand, if meter reading is “Infinite”, it shows the Resistor may be defected or broken and open. So you need to replace it with a new one (exact value).
Good to know:
You can also check the value of a burnt resistor with Digital or analog multimer by the following three handy methods.
Relay Coils & SSR Relay
To test an SSR (Solid state relay) and electromechanical relay coils by using multimter, You will have to follow the detailed and step by step guide about “How to Test a Relay? Checking SSR & Coil Relays”
- Disconnect the power source before checking, servicing, repairing or installing electrical equipments and devices.
- Always, Select the higher value in Digital or analog Multimeter, and then, gradually reduce it to the proper valve.
- Never try to work on electricity without proper guidance and care
- Read all instruction and cautions and follow them strictly.
- The author will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information or try any circuit in the wrong format so please! Be careful because it’s all about electricity and electricity is too dangerous
Note: This basic multimeter tutorial has to be updated with new testing method with DMM + AMM…Stay tune.
- How to Find The Suitable Size of Cable & Wire for Electrical Wiring Installation
- How to Perform the Continuity Test with Multimeter?
- How to Calculate the Value of Resistor for LED’s (with different types of LED Circuits)
- How to Test & Fix the Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Defects?
- How to Calculate the Battery Charging Time & Battery Charging Current – Example