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Old 10-17-2008, 10:04 PM   #1
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Need Recommendation on Multimeter

I am wondering what multimeter I should be looking to obtain for general-around the house- usage. I know that cheap tools are usually junk. However, I don't have a Cadillac and Caviar budget, more like F150 and McDonalds. Any suggestions...I have been asked by family to start a Christmas list...this is going on it.

Thanks in advance


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Old 10-17-2008, 10:20 PM   #2
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I've had a Kelvin 200 SE in my toolbox for about 12 years -- real cheap, but it's taken a lot of abuse and still works. Not terribly feature rich, but great for around-the-house electrical use.

That model isn't made anymore, but this is probably the comparable model:

Although, check out some reviews.. their quality might have declined in the last decade.


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Old 10-17-2008, 11:29 PM   #3
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These days you can get these things for $10 and they are very good. If you don't need real fancy ones get one, or maybe 2 at Harbor Freight.

I have about 5 of them, one is a really nice Fluke that cost $280 and will do all kinds of things that I needed and is RMS. Most people don't need that type of capability.

The one I use the most is a Sears (made in China) for $10 and will even do temperature. It has a resistance mode for doing a load test on AA/AAA batteries which is nice since I use a lot of NiMH batteries and want to see if they are deep charged versus surface charge.

No need to go with a brand name these days.

I prefer the ones that take AA or AAA batteries since I have tons of rechargeable NiMH batteries and use those.
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Old 10-18-2008, 11:14 AM   #4
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For around the house? Are you going to be working on appliances? Electronics?...
If so then get a good multimeter.
If you are only going to check for voltage, get a wiggy type tester, the solenoid type.
A very good and reliable multimeter with many functions can confuse more than help, if you are not familiar. And they can get quite expensive.
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Old 10-18-2008, 07:02 PM   #5
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For around the house, my recommendation:

I think I paid $25 for mine a couple years ago. It may be more now that it's cat 3 rated.
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Old 10-18-2008, 09:05 PM   #6
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First....The quality and safety of a meter should be considered.

After that look at function and options. What you intend to use it for makes a difference in which one to get. I am sold on Fluke, but if they are out of range, I've heard good things about Craftsman. Whatever brand you buy, look for a CAT III, 600V rating
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Old 10-18-2008, 10:04 PM   #7
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You may want to consider a tester such as the Fluke T5-600 or the Ideal 61-096. While they don't have all the capabilities of a full-fledged multimeter, they are very easy to use and should handle most routine electrical measurements. These testers include split-jaw AC current measurement.


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