Whether you’re an amateur or professional electrician, a multimeter is an essential tool in your arsenal. A quick look on the market though shows that most high-end models come at prohibitive prices. If you’re new to the business or on a tight budget, you might be wondering which is the best budget multimeter.
Finding a cheaper tool that lives up to the expectations is often challenging. Entry-level and mid-range multimeters may be less accurate than their high-end counterparts.
Here's a list of Top 5 Best Budget Multimeter
Best Budget Multimeter
However, finding a reliable and cheap tool is not always impossible. In this guide, we’re going to show you which are some of your best options. But before, have a look at what you need to know before buying.
How to Choose a Multimeter
Investing in a multimeter is a first step towards measuring current, but it’s hardly sufficient. To buy the best one, you need to know what to look after.
There are many types of multimeters out there, but your choices will majorly focus around digital and analog instruments.
Digital multimeters are preferred by most amateurs and a lot of professionals. They are easy to use, display measurements on a large screen, and are convenient. Their analog counterpart, however, is still preferred by those to whom accuracy is very important.
You must also decide what type of measurements you want to perform. Standard multimeters will only measure voltage, amperage, and resistance. More performing units can typically measure much more than this.
Multimeters are considered safe instruments, but accidents can always happen. Remember this instrument comes in contact with the current. A short circuit or a fault in the unit could turn into injuries or death through electrocution.
If you don’t want to become a statistic, pay attention to the safety features your unit comes with. Aim to invest in a multimeter that has at least CAT II safety rating. Even better if you get one with CAT III.
Last but not least, check the unit’s features. As mentioned previously, standard multimeters can only provide a limited number of measurements. Other can measure much more than the three standard variables.
A nice perk is also a battery life indicator that lets you know just when to change the battery.
If you work in a specific sector, also check if there are multimeters built specifically for your industry. For instance, there are multimeters more suitable for automotive that households and vice versa.
With this in mind, let’s now have a look at the best budget multimeters in 2019.
Top 5 Best Budget Multimeter
At first glance, the Fluke 117/323 kit may not seem a budget option. However, considering the value of both components, the kit has a more than justified price and is a good choice for people on a budget. This kit comprises a reliable 117 multimeter and a 323 clamp meter, two essential tools for an electrician. Both tools and all their accessories are packed in a convenient carrying case.
Focusing on the multimeter component of this kit, the 117 is renowned for its accurate measurements provided by the true-RMS feature. This multimeter is perfect for measuring non-linear loads as well as AC/DC voltage and amperage.
With a low input impedance and true RMS, the Fluke 117 prevents false readings and returns accurate measurements. Compact size and large screen make this device ideal to have in your toolkit and highly portable. Furthermore, the multimeter comes in a set with a convenient clamp meter that adds further value for money.
Fluke's 117 Multimeter Video Review
AstroAI is a rather new presence on the market, yet their digital multimeter appeals to amateur and professional users alike. The unit comes with built-in ceramic fuse tubes which are explosion proof. These tubes offer protection, are secure, and reliable. Not only they protect you from potential injury, but they also protect the multimeter from overload on all ranges.
Advertised as ideal for commercial settings, this multimeter boasts a broad range of tests including voltage, current, and resistance. Besides, you can also use it to perform diodes transistors tests or to measure continuity, frequency, temperature, and capacitance.
Easy to use and packed with features, the AstroAi digital multimeter brings perfect balance between value and money. The unit has a host of interesting features such as data hold and auto shut-off. A hanging magnet and kickstand allow you to place the unit on a flat surface for free hands operation. Furthermore, the unit boasts excellent accuracy.
Arrow Fastener T50 Video Review
3. Thsinde Digital Multimeter
The Thisnde digital multimeter is designed to satisfy most needs and can measure multiple variables with high accuracy. You can use it to detect AC/DC voltage and current, to measure frequency and resistance, conduct diode transistor tests, and more. The instrument also incorporates a convenient light and buzz alert system.
Ease of Use
Inexpensive and easy to use, this multimeter appeals to amateurs and professionals alike. One of its most praised features is the large and backlit display which is visible in low light. The unit can detect voltage up to 700 volts and benefits of true RMS for accurate returns.
Undoubtedly one of the best budget multimeters, this tool packs a host of interesting features and comes at a price that won’t break the bank. Accurate measurements and compact dimension make it perfect to carry with you at all times, so you’ll always be prepared to check voltage or circuit resistance and more.
4. Etekcity MSR-R500
The Etekcity MSR-R500 is another reliable multimeter you can use to perform quick troubleshooting of all automotive and household electrical issues. This instrument is designed to provide three measurements per second and can measure voltage, resistance, diode continuity, and not only.
This budget multimeter comes with built-in safety measures that make it a great choice. The most important feature is undoubtedly the overload protection on all ranges. Furthermore, the unit has a protective rubber sleeve that adds extra protection when holding it.
Compact enough to fit in the palm of your hand and affordable enough to appeal to those shopping on a budget, this digital multimeter is a great alternative to the units above. It has some limits, in that it only measures resistance and diode continuity for direct current. Despite this minor flaw, the instrument can bring real value and comes at a price that won’t break the bank.
Etekcity Digital Multimeter Video Review
The Klein Tools MM400 is a top mid-range product addressing mainly professionals but also avid amateurs. The most praised feature of this tool is the wide range of measurements it offers. You can use it to measure AC/DC voltage and current amperage, resistance, capacitance, frequency, temperature, duty cycle, test diodes, and more.
A nice feature is the low battery indicator that tells you just when it’s time to replace the battery. The easily accessible battery compartment makes it easy to carry on this operation. you will also like the excellent wear and tear characteristics of this product. The unit withstands drops from 3.3 feet and daily job site wear and tear.
Addressing all needs of an electrician, this is an excellent multimeter to consider if you’re shopping on a budget. You can use it to measure much more than standard voltage and current amperage. It has a compact size, a large screen with oversized digits and is safe to use. Thanks to all its add-ons, the unit also resists wear and tear, delivering long-lasting performance.
Klein Tools MM400 Multimeter Video Review
Finding the best budget multimeter is not always easy, but luckily there are a lot of valid options to consider. Besides knowing what to look for, you now also know which are some of your winning bets. So, all you have to do is pick your favorite and enjoy the benefits of having a cheap yet reliable multimeter.