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Re: DCmA readings of Multimeter

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George Marsh

11-11-2012 17:32:26

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#1. Not saying that one doesn't exist, but I've never seen a mulimeter measure AC ma.

#2. The only reason I would measure DC ma is if I were looking for a leaky load that will slowly drain a battery.

#3. My cheap HF electronic multimeter can measure 10 a DC. Polarity is not critical when you are using an electronic DC ammeter. What you need to remember is electrons out the negative of a battery and returns to the positive post of the battery. So when using any meter, if you connect the negative of the meter on the negative post of the battery, the meter will have the correct polarity. This is also true with measuring DC V.

#4. All EVOM meters are basically the same, so looking for a manual on how to use your old meter isn't important. If you know how to use one EVOM, you should know how to use all them.

5. I have an old analog DC ammeter out of a car that I use to measure larger DC amps, 50 amps.
Still wouldn't try to measure starter amps with it.

6. I use an ammprobe to measure AC amps with. It can't measure AC ma.

7. I recently bought a meter that can measure 15 amp AC, frequency, and power factor. Wasn't impressed with the accuracy of ammeter. However, I was more concerned with measuring frequency of my generator and power factor of a well pump.

8. I wouldn't use an EVOM to measure measure starter amps with. Starter amps will toast an EVOM. Think of it this way. Look at the size of the wires going to the starter. Look at the wires on your EVOM. No way 100's of amps will flow through a small meter.

9. The only way I'm aware of to measure large DC amps is to install a shunt resistor in series with the starter and measure the voltage across it.

10. One tail light will draw 2-5 amps. One head light may draw 4-8 amps, depending on the watts of the bulbs. Sounds like you may need a larger meter. I'm surprised your meter can't measure 10 amps DC. Take the watts of the bulb and divide it by 12v to get your amps.

Hope this helps.

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11-11-2012 17:51:01

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 Re: DCmA readings of Multimeter in reply to George Marsh, 11-11-2012 17:32:26  
I'm surprised your meter can't measure 10 amps DC.

Scale for DCmA is 2, 20, 200 and some lesser (I suppose) number. Scale for ACmA is same except not the lesser number.

Scale for ACV is 2, 20, 200, 2000. Scale for DCV is same, plus the lesser number mentioned above.

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George Marsh

11-11-2012 19:25:35

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 Re: DCmA readings of Multimeter in reply to equeen, 11-11-2012 17:51:01  
Think you are a little confused, 10 amps is equal to 10,000 ma. Your 200 ma is only .2 amps.
I would think your meter can measure more than 200 ma.

Again, I've never seen a multimeter measure ac amps. Not saying yours don't.

Could you post a pic of your meter?

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11-11-2012 19:49:06

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 Re: DCmA readings of Multimeter in reply to George Marsh, 11-11-2012 19:25:35  

George, hope the photo comes thru. Please straighten me out.

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George Marsh

11-12-2012 04:55:18

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 Re: DCmA readings of Multimeter in reply to equeen, 11-11-2012 19:49:06  
Thank you for the pic. This is definately a first for me, a Radio Shack meter that measures AC milla amps, DC milla amps and no 10 amp range. All I would do with this meter is measure resistance, ohms, AC and DC volts. The amps scale, for the average person, is worthless, sorry to say.

HF has a similar meter for little to nothing, yes nothing, they sometimes give them away sometimes. I get them and give to guys at Christmas as stocking stuffers. HF meters are accurate enough for 99% of the guys that work on tractors, trucks and cars. It can measure 10 amps DC. HF also sells an ammprobe for around $20 if you need to measure large AC amps. It too can measure volts and ohms. I keep one in my truck along with HF volt meter.

I also have an old analog radio shack meter in truck, just in case it's very cold. Can't trust a digital meter when left in the cold and you bring it inside to measure voltage. The condensation screws up the meter readings.


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