HVAC techs and contractors need to take accurate measurements of the voltage, current, frequency, and phase angle in a circuit. If you’re an HVAC technician, you know that it’s essential to have the right tools for the job.
It can be hard and dangerous to try and diagnose a problem without having the best HVAC multimeter for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems.
An HVAC multimeter is a tool used in the HVAC industry to measure voltage, current, and resistance. It can help you determine if the problem lies in the wiring or other electrical components like breakers or fuses.
It’s a bit of an oddball device that doesn’t have much brand recognition or visibility. Finding the best multimeter for HVAC can be a daunting task. There are so many different models to choose from, and each model has its pros and cons.
To help you find the best multimeter for HVAC work, we put together this list of the top five multimeters based on their popularity, price point, user reviews, and features.
Top five best multimeters for HVAC
Read this article to learn more about HVAC multimeter reviews before you make your decision.
Dimensions: 6.5 x 2.75 x 11.75 inches
Weight: 1.5 pounds
Fieldpiece’s HS33 multimeter for HVAC is a must-have for technicians who need to measure voltage, current, and capacitance. The non-contact voltage detection of this HVAC meter means you can test live wires without getting shocked. This multimeter also has an auto-ranging feature and 400AAC and capacitance measurements for added convenience.
The data hold function allows users to view the last measurement taken in memory without resetting the HVAC tester. This feature comes in handy when you are troubleshooting multiple circuits or devices. The HS33 also features an easy-to-read display to make it easier to read in dimly lit areas.
The HS33 is a manual-ranging stick multimeter with an automatic hold feature that makes it easy to take readings without needing a third hand. The 400 amp clamp allows you to test up to 400 amps and 1000 volts, making it the best HVAC clamp meter. The short alligator lead extensions will enable you to access hard-to-reach spots easily.
- Easy to use even on batteries
- Extremely capable multimeter
- The meter is adaptable to use other instruments
- No millivolts or micro amps measurement
- Priced a little high
Voltage AC/DC: 660V
Current: 600 μA
Resistance: 40 MΩ
Weight: 1.40 pounds
The Fluke meter 116 is the best meter for HVAC applications. The built-in thermometer helps you quickly and easily check temperatures in ducts, air handlers, or other areas where the temperature is an issue. It can be used as a furnace meter that lets you test flame sensors on gas furnaces without damaging them.
Fluke 116 is the best fluke multimeter for HVAC that has a large, easy-to-read display and an ergonomic design that makes it comfortable to hold. Its Auto Ranging feature eliminates the need for manual range setting, while the Hold function allows you to capture measurements even when the test leads are not attached. A replaceable fuse protects against overcurrent and short circuits in fluke HVAC multimeters.
The Fluke 116 HVAC multimeters can measure AC voltage from 10 V to 6000 V, resistance from 0 Ω to 40 MΩ, capacitance from 0 pF to 10000 μF, and temperature above 400c°. This fluke HVAC meter also features a backlit display with adjustable brightness, a replaceable fuse, and auto power off to save battery life when not in use. It also has an onboard data hold and max/min functionality to help you take readings over time or track changes.
- Backlight to measure in the dark
- High range of voltage, resistance, and capacitance
- Quality made and reliable meter
- It does not come with the magnetic strap
Dimensions: 11 x 7 x 1.75 inches
Weight: 12.8 ounces
Ranges: 19 Measurements
Among the best HVAC test meters, the Triplett Compact CAT II Multimeter is a 19 range multimeter that provides AC/DC Voltage, DC Current, and resistance measurements. This multimeter will make it easy to get accurate measurements, whether you are checking fuses, wiring, or doing simple diagnostics on appliances and cars.
The CAT II includes an hFE test mode for transistor testing to measure from 1 mA to 10 amps. The CAT II has a maximum voltage of 600VAC and a current of 10 amps, making it suitable for most electrical work around your home or office. It also features Type K Temperature measurement in Celsius or Fahrenheit scales.
The Triplett Compact Multimeter is the ideal multimeter for all your basic electrical needs. This multimeter features a 3-1/2 digit, 1999 count backlit display with an easy-to-read digital display. It includes diode and continuity tests so you can quickly check your wiring without having to go through a long process of setting up a circuit with a voltmeter or testing device.
- The nice and larger readout display
- Backlight for nighttime
- Alligator clips to screw on to probes
- It will work by tightening the probes
Dimensions: 11.4 x 7.5 x 3.5 inches
Weight: 1.66 Pounds
The Amprobe AM-520 HVAC Multimeter is the perfect tool for any HVAC technician. This multimeter features a built-in temperature sensor with a range of -20 to 150°C (-4 to 302°F) and an auto-ranging function that quickly and easily tests voltage, current, resistance, and frequency capacitance. You can also use this multimeter as a continuity tester or as a buzzer.
The auto power-off feature saves the battery life of this meter. A non-contact voltage detector helps you locate live wires without having to touch them. This meter also includes an audible continuity checker for testing wiring and cables. It has a built-in flashlight so you can work in dark spaces without holding the light yourself.
The AM-520 is a 5-in-1 digital multimeter that helps you quickly troubleshoot and diagnose problems in residential, commercial, or industrial electrical systems. The multimeter has a large LCD with a backlight for easy viewing. It also features detachable test leads with alligator clips on both ends to make testing more accessible and more convenient.
- Firm dial and solid construction
- Small-sized to fit in compact places
- Low priced comparatively
- The Dc performance is not so good
Dimensions: 6.5 x 3 x 9.75 inches
Weight: 1.65 Pounds
Fieldpiece’s LT17A digital multimeter is a powerful, versatile, and economical meter. The LT17A comes with a built-in tilt stand and magnetic hanger for easy storage on the job or at home. The included clamp makes it easy to attach the multimeter to wires or other objects for hands-free operation.
The fieldpiece HVAC meter is a must-have device for any toolbox. This multimeter measures AC/DC voltage, resistance (ohms), capacitance (uF), frequency (Hz), duty cycle, temperature, and continuity. It also features auto-ranging to make it simple to use without fumbling through multiple settings.
A fieldpiece HVAC multimeter is a true-RMS digital multimeter with microamps and range selection. It features a large, easy-to-read LCD, auto-ranging, low battery indicator, and auto power off. The silicone leads are ideal for high-temperature or wet environments. It also has a continuity beeper and diode test function.
- Measure almost everything in circuits
- Indestructible construction
- It comes with a fuse and backlight
- It’s a little difficult to take the readings in tight areas
What To Consider When Buying A Multimeter For HVAC
When you are looking to buy a multimeter for HVAC, there are many things that you should consider.
Single-phase or three-phase
The first thing to consider is whether or not you want a multimeter that runs on a single-phase, three phases, or both. Single-phase power is the most common type of electrical supply in North America and Europe, while three-phase power has been used in Asia and parts of South America.
Single-phase meters have a single power cord and display readings for both current voltages. Three-phase meters will need to be plugged into three separate cables to work correctly, but they are often more accurate than their single-phase counterparts because of how the circuits are configured.
Handheld or probes
The next thing you should consider is whether you want a handheld multimeter or one with probes. Handheld meters will have all of the components necessary to measure current, voltage, and resistance built into them so they can be held in your hand while readings are taken. Probes require an individual to hold only one probe for those values to be read on the meter, but they are more accurate and easier to use when the circuit is large.
The next thing to consider is whether or not you want a multimeter with an LED backlight. This will allow the meter to be used in darker locations, and it can help make reading values much easier on dimmer circuits.
The last thing to consider is the features of the multimeter. Some may have additional functions like RS-232 interface, PC compatibility, or a thermometer probe, while others are basic meters with no extras. The meter’s features may also affect its price, so it is best to research what you want before purchasing a multimeter.
You must consider what type of work you do before deciding on which multimeter will be best for your needs because they can vary greatly depending on how often it will need to be used, just as with any other piece of equipment. Once you have decided, look at the best multimeters in this blog post to see which one will work for you.
If you’re looking for the best HVAC meter, HVAC test tools, fluke HVAC multimeter, fieldpiece multimeters, or Fluke vs Fieldpiece we hope this article has helped you find the right direction. There are many different models available to meet your specific needs as a professional or DIYer. They each have unique features that may make them better suited for your work environment than others.
We encourage you to consider our buying guide when making your final purchase decision for the best HVAC meters. It can help ensure that you get exactly what is needed without spending too much money in vain.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a true RMS multimeter?
What does RMS stand for on a multimeter?
How do I use a multimeter to check a temperature sensor?
Can we measure temperature with a multimeter?
The analog probe has a round metal tip that will not measure accurately because it picks up too much heat from the measured object, causing an inaccurate reading. You want to use the digital type, which has either one or two flat probes on a wire stem that should touch only one side of the object being measured for accurate readings without picking up any excess heat from other areas nearby.