Are you the type of person that must go to a mechanic even for routine checkups? If that’s so, you need to get yourself the best multimeter for automotive.
Multimeters are a must-have if you own a car or any other automotive. They can help you troubleshoot simple problems without help. You’ll need to consider several things to get the best.
Comparison Table: Best Multimeter for Automotive
1. Best Overall: Actron CP7677 AutoTroubleShooter
- Actron's professional level meter performs all standard electrical and automotive specific tests for on-car and on-bench...
- Tests starting and charging, ignition and fuel delivery systems, and helps locate faulty wiring and components
- Extra-large, easy-to-read digital LCD display features on-screen test leads connection reminder, automatic reverse polarity...
- UL and ETL listed tool has automatic zero adjust, overload protection on all ranges, 10 MΩ impedance, and is switchable...
- Includes: protective boot, fold-out stand, detachable color-coded test leads, alligator clips, quick start guide, and...
The Actron CP7677 multimeter offers you professional-level performance for all the standard automotive and electric tests. In addition, it will enable you to carry out on-car or on-the-bench troubleshooting any issues. Thanks to the top features it comes with. For instance, it has an LCD and a lead connection reminder.
The low battery prompt tells when you need to charge it to continue using it. In that way, a low battery doesn’t sneak up on you. To retain the already recorded date on display, you press the hold button to give you enough time to see or copy the data.
If you are looking for a versatile multimeter, then this is the one for you. You can use it almost anywhere from the automotive industry to your house. For example, it can test ignition or fuel delivery systems. It also has overload protection for any range that protects it from damage that a current of voltage overloads might bring.
In case you want the hands-free option, the foldable stand enables you to see to that. Also, the quick start guide shows you how to use the multimeter correctly. You wouldn’t need it, though, seeing how simple it is to operate.
Topping it all off is the detachable test leads that are color-coded for a more straightforward diagnosis of problems. Finally, the automatic zero adjustments ensure you save time whenever you want to test something new.
- Large LCD makes for easy reading and simple operation
- The foldable stand enables you to use it hands-free
- The low battery prompt tells you when to charge it
- It might fail to work for Petronix Ignitions systems
2. KAIWEETS Digital Multimeter Auto-Ranging
- Wide Applications-- The HT112B multimeter can accurately measure voltage, resistance, continuity, current, capacitance,...
- Smart Mode-- Default to enter this function directly when opening this multimeter. The SMART mode includes the three most...
- Easy Operation-- The slim multimeter with a large LCD backlit screen and the minimalist button design allows you to easily...
- Safety First-- This multimeter is CE & RoHS Certificated Product and it has overload protection on all ranges. The rubber...
- What You Get-- 1 x HT112B digital multimeter, 1 x tool bag, 1 x test lead(non-standard lead connectors), 4 x button...
Kaiweets HT118A True RMS is the digital multimeter that is best for automotive all the time. For any multimeter, ease of operation should be a clear prerequisite before purchase.
What makes its use that straightforward is the backlit LCD. The LCD lights also ensure you know where to plug in the multimeter before measuring whatever you want to measure. The dual display is also easy to read, as shown in a bar graph.
What you will love with this multimeter is the variety of use you can put. It has 6000 counts that come in handy for measuring AC and DC voltage or current. The wide applications you can put this multimeter to mean you can use it almost anywhere.
The kickstand at the rear of the multimeter ensures you can use it in a hands-free mode as you work. The flashlight at the back means you can use it even in dimly lit surroundings. You will also love some of the innovations on this multimeter.
For instance, when testing a livewire, the screen of the multimeter beams red. It also has a low battery prompt that will ensure you charge it in time to use it. You will also love the automatic on or off function, which means you can save its battery from fast draining.
- It has wide applications whether in the household or for industrial use
- The automatic on and off option enables it to save the battery charge
- The low battery prompt ensures you know when to charge it
- The backlit display makes it easy to do readings
- The temperature measurement can be a bit off
3. Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter
- VoltAlert technology for non-contact voltage detection
- AutoVolt automatic AC/DC voltage selection. DC millivolts - Range : 600.0 mV, Resolution : 0.1 mV
- Low input impedance: helps prevent false readings due to ghost voltage
- Large white LED backlight to work in poorly lit areas
- True RMS for accurate measurements on non-linear loads.Operating temperature:-10°C to +50°C.Battery life:400 hours typical,...
The Fluke 117 multimeter is a godsend to any electrician thanks to the volt-alert technology it comes with that allows for non-contact measuring of voltage. Non-contact testing means that you don’t have to touch the device you are detecting voltage from. As a result, fluke 117 is the best fluke multimeter for automotive use in the market today.
Fluke 117 strength is that it is viable for use in various places such as hospitals or schools. In addition, it is a safe way to test for faults in electric devices at home or in the automotive industry. If you’re working in places with dim light, a few other multimeters will make it easier to see the readings.
The Fluke 117 multimeter is backlit to enable you easily see the readings even in the dark. Fluke 117 is also a highly versatile multimeter since you won’t only use it to detect voltage but also to read resistance, capacitance, diodes, continuity, and frequency. So you won’t be stuck with a gadget with only one use.
A device like this one needs to come with an option for hands-free operation. That is because there are certain situations where you won’t be able to hold it yourself. So the Fluke 117 comes with a magnetic hammer that frees your hands to do other tasks.
- It comes with a magnetic hammer that allows hands-free operation
- The non-contact voltage detection makes it relatively fast
- Its display is backlit to enable readings even in the dark
- The little contrast on the meter makes it quite challenging to read it
4. Innova 3340 Professional Automotive Digital Multimeter
- Designed to pinpoint engine problems; tests alternator diodes, duty cycle, solenoids, breaker points, wiring, switches and...
- Features auto-ranging, auto shut-off and over-load protection
- Measures up to 15 amps for device testing
- 10 MegOhm input impedance; safe for electrical and automotive use; prevents damage to the vehicle’s ECU
- Includes temperature probe, inductive RPM clamp and carrying case
The Innova 3340 is a UL-certified professional digital multimeter that you can use to determine automotive engine issues. It can also measure the temperature, thanks to the temperature probe it comes with.
Innova 3340 comes with test lead holders as well as the ability to operate it hands-free. The hands-free operation often comes in handy whenever you need to see the effect of a particular action on the multimeter. But, unfortunately, it involves you having to place the multimeter out of reach.
A multimeter is a tool you will be using in not ideal surroundings, which means it will be prone to dropping. That’s why Innova 3340 multimeter comes with rugged corners that ensure its protection from damage whenever it falls accidentally.
Innova 3340 multimeter is especially adept at testing duty cycles, solenoids, alternator diodes, wiring switches, and breaker points. In addition, the auto-ranging setting means you don’t have to set it to a specific range each time manually.
Innova 3340 also has automatic reverse polarity protection as well as automatic zero adjustments. The automatic shutoff means you don’t have to stress yourself over switching it off. If it detects no use for some time, it automatically shuts off.
The temperature option will provide you readings in both Celsius and Fahrenheit. Unfortunately, few other multimeters allow you to check the temperature in addition to the other measurements.
With such versatility and quality features, you can see that getting this multimeter would be a win for anyone. The quality and ease of use speak for themselves.
- It has a wide variety of applications and can test temperature as well
- It has a simple design that makes it relatively easy to use
- The rubber corners provide it with drop protection
- It is capable of hands-free operation
- After some time, the LCD becomes very faint, necessitating the need to look at it from an angle
5. Crenova MS8233D Auto-Ranging Multimeter
- 【100% Safety Assurance】Built-in Double Fuse. Overload Protection on all ranges.
- 【Auto-ranging Tester】Accurately measure AC/DC voltage, AC/DC current, resistance, frequency, continuity, diode, etc.
- 【Backlight Display】 Designed with 3 1/2 digit LCD display and 'Backlight', showing the reading clearly in low light...
- 【Special Points】 Data Hold, Maximum Value Hold, Function Switching, Auto Power OFF. Sampling Speed: 3 times per second.
- 【9V Battery】DON'T forget to install the 9V battery before using the digital multimeter, or it will go on strike.
The Crenova MS8233D digital multimeter is a safe gadget with an inbuilt double fuse that provides overload protection for any range you will set. Talking of ranges, this multimeter, the auto-ranging function, means you don’t need to select the range yourself.
The large display means that you will see all this. Suppose you’re working in a dimly lit area. In that case, the backlight will enable you to see the test results without much difficulty at all. The backlight and the 3.5-inch LCD should have read the results as accurately as possible.
Crenova MS8233D has several particular points that allow it to work better and give you more accurate results. These points include the maximum data hold or the usual data hold that record the maximum values or hold the current reading on the display until you reset the multimeter.
With a sampling speed of three seconds, you can get any reading quite fast. That speed will be beneficial if you are on a tight schedule and need to test something fast. If you forget to switch off the multimeter after the hurried use, the automatic power-off will do it for you.
- You can obtain readings fast because of the three-second sampling speed
- It can test different electrical parameters making it quite versatile
- The double fuse makes it relatively safe to use since there is no overload
- The leads aren’t that long
6. Fluke 77-IV Digital Multimeter
- Large display; auto and manual ranging
- Backlight for work in dim areas
- Min/max to record signal fluctuations
- Ergonomic overmolded housing with integrated probe holders
- Free your hands with the optional TPAK magnetic hanger
The Fluke 77-IV multimeter boasts a large display that will ensure you have no issue doing readings in any environment. The backlight ensures you can see the readings even in dark areas.
Together with the extra-large display, the backlight is one of the features you will love about this multimeter. It also comes with a TPAK magnetic hanger that allows you to free your hands for other tasks. It comes in handy whenever you are under a car or something else, but you need the meter to keep working.
The over-molded and ergonomic housing has integrated probe holders that make it easier to use this gadget. In addition, the ergonomic housing isn’t prone to damage like the housing of other multimeters. You will also appreciate that this gadget comes with auto-ranging capabilities.
The automatic range isn’t the only innovation that comes with this multimeter. It also has an auto-shutoff function. So if you forget to turn it off after use, you needn’t worry about it draining its battery since it will switch itself off.
It is normal to want to know the maximum and minimum recordings of whatever you want to detect. Fluke 77-IV multimeter enables you to come back later to the max or min readings since it records them for you to revisit later.
There is no doubt Fluke 77-IV is a versatile meter for use anywhere in the field or the household. With the auto-range setting, you don’t have to manually set up the device to detect current or voltage.
- The max and min reading recording might come in handy later when needed
- The auto-ranging capability saves you the time you would spend setting it
- The backlight makes it easier to use, even in dim areas
- It lacks the true RMS
7. Klein Tools MM600 Multimeter
- Multimeter measures up to 1000V AC/DC voltage, 10A AC/DC current and 40MOhms resistance plus temperature, capacitance,...
- Digital Mulimeter has CAT IV 600V / CAT III 1000V safety rating
- Built to endure a 6.6-foot (2 m) drop and withstand daily wear and tear on the job site
- Low battery indicator and easily accessible battery and fuse replacement compartment
- For use in basic and controlled electromagnetic environments such as residential, business and light-industrial locations
Klein MM600 has a safety rating of CAT III for 1000 volts and CAT IV for 600 V. You can therefore be sure of your safety when using this device. The safety buffer also enables you to work from almost anywhere, as there are no hazards.
You will appreciate how rugged this multimeter is. It can withstand a drop of about 2 meters, thanks to the robust construction. The tough make also means it can withstand the daily wear and tear typical of construction sites.
Klein MM600 also has a simple design that means the battery and fuse are readily accessible whenever you need to make changes. Likewise, you can easily remove and replace the fuse whenever the need arises.
The Klein MM600 multimeter also has a low battery indicator to ensure you know the exact moment to charge it. You can thus plan yourself and enjoy uninterrupted working hours.
You can use Klein MM600 in electromagnetically controlled environments such as business, light industrial locations, and even at home. The wide applications you can put this device to make it quite versatile.
Moreover, this quality would appeal to any user. Klein MM600 comes with a carry pouch, alligator clips, and test leads that will ensure you have an easy time testing.
- The rugged construction means it is resistant to the wear and tear that come with challenging work environments
- The battery indicator shows you whenever you’re about to deplete the battery
- It is a versatile gadget that can have several applications
- Its design is simple for easier operation
- It isn’t powerful enough to test for a continuous current over 6amps properly
Buyer’s Guide For Automotive Multimeter
The reviews have already given you a glimpse of what the best automotive multimeter should be like. However, there are several factors you need to consider first before purchasing an automotive multimeter.
How is the Display?
A good multimeter shouldn’t compromise the quality of its display. However, it would help if you looked at whether it came with an LCD and was backlit. A large display enables you to see the readings without much trouble, which is why you should consider it.
If the display is backlit, it means you can easily see the readings even with dim light. That is a great feature to have on any multimeter since it isn’t always people who work in sunlit places. An excellent display also eliminates the chances of errors in readings. The writing is usually large enough for you to see and be sure of what you saw.
Kickstand/ Handsfree Mode
It is not all the time you will be able to hold the multimeter in your hands. Some situations will demand hands-free operation. That’s where the kickstand comes in. Before you buy the multimeter, it is paramount that you ask yourself whether it can work hands-free.
Picture a situation where you find yourself underneath the car, and you need to read the multimeter. You can’t split yourself into two, which is why you need a gadget that can stand by itself and still give you accurate readings. That’s the reason you need to consider whether it comes with a kickstand or not.
How Safe is it to Use?
There’s no going back and forth on this. A tool should be safe to use. That’s why you need to look at the safety features that come with the multimeter.
For example, would it blow up if you test for an overly powerful current? How would it react when testing for current on heavy household appliances? What is the safety rating? Those are some of the questions you have to ask yourself before buying a multimeter.
All the gadgets on our list are relatively safe to use. They wouldn’t have made our shortlist if they weren’t since safety always is a top priority.
Ruggedness and Resistance to wear and tear
You want a gadget that will serve you for a long time. That is why you need to look at the construction of the multimeter you are purchasing. You will be using it in the harshest of environments, which is why you need it to be tough.
Therefore, you should look for a multimeter with rubber corners to ensure it can survive drops from a significant height. Most have rubber corners that soften the fall from whatever angle to enable them to avoid damage.
Rugged construction will enable you to not only own the gadget for a long. Still, it will also give you the confidence to use it anywhere. You don’t want a device that will only work for some work environments and not others.
A good multimeter should be as accurate as possible. Faulty readings can be not only misleading but also potentially dangerous. That is why you need to consider how accurate the multimeter will be before purchasing it.
FAQs: 5 Questions & Answers
Are analog multimeters less accurate than digital multimeters?
Analog multimeters aren’t as good as their digital counterparts because of several reasons. First, they don’t display their results on an LCD screen, which is usually more accurate.
Secondly, digital multimeters have higher resistance which allows them to offer more accurate results.
Finally, the old order can’t beat technology or digitization. Therefore, digital multimeters are better by them having come later than their analog counterparts.
Are cheap multimeters less accurate?
Although the common perception among many individuals is that cheap products aren’t quality products, there are times when you get an absolute steal. For example, cheap multimeters can also provide you with the accurate readings you seek in their more expensive counterparts.
Don’t snub them since most of them nowadays have an IC chip that makes them entirely accurate at testing voltage.
When does a person need a true RMS multimeter, and Why?
A true RMS multimeter is instrumental when testing for AC or DC waves that aren’t purely sinusoidal. If the waves aren’t pure sine waves, the regular multimeter with the RMS scale won’t accurately read.
That’s where the True RMS multimeter comes in. This scale is up to 60 percent more accurate than the RMS scale. That’s why True RMS multimeters have a higher billing than their counterparts.
What does the count number of a multimeter mean?
The count on a digital multimeter means the resolution by which the multimeter will give results. A higher count means more accurate results when you test for current or voltage.
The typical 6000 count multimeters would be accurate to within 5,999 on display. It would help if you thus went for higher count multimeters.
Should I spend too much on a multimeter?
That would largely depend on how much money you have. You should, however, remember that not everything expensive is of good quality. Since you need a reasonable multimeter, you shouldn’t be willing to spend too much on it. Spending too much on a multimeter could backfire when it gives you the accuracy you were looking for.
With our write-up of the best multimeter for automotive, we hope that you get the necessary information to get the best one for you.
In addition, you will see several features we highlighted that you should look for in any multimeter from our guide.
A good multimeter should also give you the option to operate it in hands-free mode. Most of the ones we have here come with a kickstand that enables them to serve you even with your hands occupied elsewhere.