Are you Looking for the best HVAC multimeter.
Awesome! You are in the right place.
In this ToolsGaloreHQ.com guide you will learn:
- What to look for in a hvac multimeter
- How multimeter clamps are beneficial
- Different world class options
- And so much more!
Fluke 116/323 HVAC Multimeter Kit
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Fieldpiece HS33 Expandable Manual Ranging Stick Multimeter
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UEI Test Instruments DL479 True RMS HVAC/R
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Klein Tools MM600 HVAC Multimeter
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Fieldpiece LT17A Classic Style Digital Multimeter
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Top 5 Best HVAC multimeter
I understand you might need to rush, no problem - here is a quick summary of the best hvac multimeters. Keep reading for more detailed information.
- Fluke 116/323 HVAC Multimeter
- Fieldpiece HS33 Expandable
- UEI Test Instruments DL479 True RMS
- Klein Tools MM600 HVAC Multimeter
- Fieldpiece LT17A Classic Style Digital Multimeter
What this guide for the best HVAC Multimeter
Your typical multimeter is great for measuring voltage, current and resistance.
However when trying to perform the same task on your HVAC furnace, or digital controller.
You will need a specialized multimeter designed for HVAC systems.
These multimeter will help you get into tight spaces, measure currents with a clamp and provide the necessary safety to ensure that you do not hurt yourself or damage your HVAC system.
A quick search in the market on what to look for when searching for the best hvac meter can often leave one very confused.
No need to worry, I have collated available information online, together with my own experience when dealing with multimeters to provide you a comprehensive selection on the best hvac multimeters.
I also keep this post update regularly. Ensuring that you get the most relevant and up to date information when it comes to hvac multimeters.
What are the important features of the best HVAC multimeter
There are a couple of key considerations that you must consider when using a multimeter on hvac system.
Hvac systems are active components, were hot and cold air flows through the inlet and outlet valves.
It is composed of many components such as the draft inducer motor, the igniter and the gas valve.
Various internal switches such as the vacuum switch, flame rollout limit switch and safety limit switch all play an active role in keeping the furnace and the entire system operational and safe.
The hvac multimeter you use should at absolute minimum have a CAT III (600V) rating. This is important as this will protect the internal circuitry of the multimeter if you were ever to measure a overvoltage.
Also the internal fuse will protect you and the multimeter from overcurrent.
In my experience, if you do not ensure that your hvac multimeter is equipped with CAT III (600V) and sufficient fuse protection you will soon be buying another one.
In this guide, I made sure that you are only getting the best in terms of equipment and personal safety.
This is very important. When working with Hvac applications having the ability to change leads can really be a game changer in helping you measure and get to hard to get to places.
The inside of an hvac furnace for example can be a jungle of wires. Detachable leads really help. There are typically 3 types of leads you will need:
Pointing tip leads - These are great for getting into really tight spaces and measuring voltages between multiple surfaces, bolts and connection points.
This lead is also fantastic when you are measuring the continuity of your limit switches and temperature sensors.
Crocodile clip leads – These leads are fantastic for clipping onto measurement points. They are great when you are looking to measure larger connection points.
Especially when you want to use a certain point (i.e. the metal enclosure) as a reference measurement ground.
Clamps – Sometimes especially when dealing with hvac multimeters and furnaces there is a desire to measure inrush and continuous currents.
hvac clamps are perfect for this. They uses the magnetic field created by the flow of electrons to allow for a non-contact current measurement.
All the multimeters in this guide are equipped with the ability to have the leads detached.
Wide measurement range and precision
The best hvac multimeters have the ability to measure not only current, voltage and resistance, but also temperature and continuity.
As I was writing this guide, you will not believe how many hvac digital multimeters I come across that do not have these basic measurement parameters in place.
Hvac multimeters should also have the ability to provide autoranging capabilities. Personally I prefer autoranging meters because I can focus on measurement rather than being concerned as to manually setting the range.
However this is all personal preference. Manual ranging meters can do the job just as well.
What to avoid when purchasing the best hvac multimeter
Multimeters with poor warranties
Any hvac multimeter that does have a product warranty should not even be considered.
Certain multimeters such as Fluke even provide different CarePlans and certain others provide lifetime warranties.
The reason for this is that when using the tool in a high stress hvac environment, you want to be sure that your component has been tested and approved according to international test standards.
Given any latent defects. Your hvac multimeter manufacturer should replace it.
In my experience going with so called new/”no name” brands often leave many people in a pickle.
All the hvac multimeters in this guide have high quality warranties so you do not have to worry. However if you choose any other hvac meter please be sure to check this before making your purchase.
Poor post purchase support
This is often tricky to get right. But post purchase support can be broken down into two criteria:
- Passive support: Inclusion of user manuals and instruction guides
- Active support: A call from a service agent confirming your satisfaction with your recent purchase, 24 hour customer care etc etc.
I always make sure when looking at purchasing an hvac multimeter that it has these support mechanisms in place. Especially hvac clamp meters were you are measuring higher currents.
You always want to ensure that you have some form of passive/active post purchase support.
When using clamp meters or hvac multimeters that have non contact voltage points. Be sure to check the support mechanisms as well, as these tend to provide many niggling issues.
My review of the Top 5 Best hvac multimeters
Option #1: Fluke 116/323 HVAC Multimeter Kit
up to 600 V
up to 600 V
up to 40MΩ
CAT IV 300 V/CAT III 600 V safety rated
Of all the HVAC multimeters and kits around, the Fluke 116/323 is one of the best in my opinion.
It comes fully equipped with a Fluke 116 digital multimeter that has the additional feature of a thermometer making it great for HVAC applications.
The Fluke 116 multimeter is also designed for a wide operating temperature range making it equipped to handle the stresses of HVAC applications.
One thing I truly like about this kit is that it is also equipped with a true RMS clamp meter. This is fantastic for when you want to test the operation of motors especially during the ramp up period to ensure that they are functioning correctly.
I would recommend that you purchase the Fluke 117 instead of the 116 because the 117 (as shown here) can measure DC micro-amps whilst the alternative cannot.
If you are in the market for a world class HVAC multimeter and Kit, you cannot go wrong with Fluke.
Option #2: Fieldpiece HS33 Expandable Manual Ranging Stick Multimeter
200mV, 2000mV, 200V
200mV, 200V, 600V
200 ohm, 200 k ohm
The Fieldpiece HS33 expandable manual ranging stick multimeter is another one of the really great HVAC multimeters worth considering.
It has great features which bode well for the tough environment of HVAC.
It has a MIN/MAX and Data hold functionality making it great for measuring upper and lower limit transients.
One thing that could definitely be improved about this HVAC multimeter is that it could measure millivolts and microamps. This meter does not do that.
However for the price you will be paying it is definitely worth considering if you are looking for an all round HVAC multimeter.
Option #3: UEI Test Instruments DL479 True RMS HVAC/R
CATIV 600V/CATIII 1000V under IEC 61010-1
The UEI Test Instruments DL479 True RMS HVAC/R Clamp Meter is a really good option when looking for a quality HVAC meter.
This multimeter comes with a current clamp, test lead connections, thermocouple. temperature probe, a pouch to store the meter and batteries.
What I really like about this multimeter is that it is a true RMS digital clamp meter, it can measure the typical things such as frequency, voltage, current, diode test, capacitance and resistance.
Interestingly the temperature measurement with the thermocouple provides for a measurement range from (-10 degrees C to 400 degrees C).
One thing that I believe can definitely improve about this multimeter is that the dial select function is a bit difficult to operate.
It also comes with a magnet, however many people say that the magnet is not as strong as it seems. Worth considering these before making a purchase.
With that being said, this HVAC multimeter provides for DC microamp measurement of 2000 microAmps which is a huge plus.
In my opinion, this is definitely one of the top multimeter options one can buy. UEi is an established test equipment manufacturer with over 50 years experience. It is a definite winner.
Option #4: Klein Tools MM600 HVAC Multimeter
CAT IV 600V / CAT III 1000V
The Klein Tools MM600 HVAC multimeter kit is another one to consider.
The multimeter can easily measure 40 MOhm, 1000V AC/DC current, resistance, temperature, capacitance, frequency, duty cycle and continuity.
It is very sturdily built having the capability to handle the knocks typical of the such measurement tools. in fact it has been tested and verified to be able to withstand a drop of up to 2m.
What I find very impressive about this multimeter as well is it's safety ratings. it is rated for both CAT IV 600V / CAT III 1000V.
One thing a lot of buyers complained about is that the multimeter measures voltage quite well, however the other functions seems to a bit more inaccurate. Worth considering when making the purchase.
However, for the price and the features and additional components that you will be getting, this multimeter is definitely up there with the best HVAC multimeters.
Option #5: Fieldpiece LT17A Classic Style Digital Multimeter
up to 600 Vdc
up to 600 Vac
CAT IV 600V / CAT III 1000V
The Fieldpiece LT17A classic style multimeter is another great HVAC multimeter option.
I like this multimeter because it is equipped with temperature measurement up to 1400F, and it has a n attachable clamp that can measure up to 400A AC.
It has MIX/MAX Hold values as well. Which make it great for measuring motor transients in HVAC applications.
The leads are detachable and can easily be stored in the accompanying pouch.
On thing that could improve about this multimeter is that it is a bit bulky than the other motors and there are no auto-ranging capabilities built into it.
With that being said, The body is made from a durable plastic called ABS which is great for shock absorption.
When it comes to HVAC multimeters, you cannot go wrong with the FieldPiece LT17A Classic HVAC multimeter.
My Overall #1 Top Pick: Fluke 116/323 HVAC Multimeter Kit
After reviewing all the hvac multimeters, this one comes out as my number 1 pick.
It is a great pack overall. The Fluke hvac multimeter has the ability to measure micro amps.
This is great for testing the sensors of an hvac furnace.
It also has an amazing inbuilt thermometer.
Measures true RMS AC Voltage and the clamp meter has a range of up to 400 A.
Final Thoughts on the best hvac multimeter
Heating, ventilation and air-conditioning units are very complex with many electronic components that provide measurement sensors and cooling and heating operations.
Finding a multimeter that can assist you as an electrician, hvac practitioner or DIYer will go a long way in diagnosing any of your hvac issues.
I hope this article has shed some light and provided you with quality options for your next hvac multimeter.