How to read a Digital Volt Ohm MultiMeter on DC voltages

By Techwalla Contributor

Today one of the most useful tools for trouble shooting electrical issues is the DVOM-Digital Volt Ohm Meter. This versatile device can look into circuits and diagnose trouble. It is capable of measuring AC/DC Voltages, Resistance in Ohms, Amperage, and other functions based on the model owned. This will focus on DC voltage measurements and safety.

Things You'll Need

  • Digital Volt Ohm Meter
  • Something to be tested

Step 1

Look at circuit or device to be tested. Determine voltage to be tested.

Step 2

Turn the meter on and set it for DC Volts, and set the range above what is expect in this test. (Here I chose a 1.5 volt battery. And I chose 20 Volt scale which is the lowest scale above the 1.5 Volts being measured )

Step 3

Inspect probes for damage, look for bare or cracked or wires. Look for cracked probes. If damage is found, dispose of meter lead. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCE DO YOU USE DAMAGED LEADS.

Step 4

grasp probes behind the finger protector (seen in picture)DO NOT GRASP PAST FINGER PROTECTOR, CAN BE FATAL! (here 1.42 Volts left in the battery, showing it still has life left)

Tips & Warnings

  • Rule of thumb, DC is in automobiles, which has 12 not running to 14.2 Volts when it is running and the alternator is running fine. (this may not include hybrid and electric cars)
  • If you do not know what voltage is in the circuit, you have no business measuring it as you would not know if it is good or bad.

References & Resources