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9 Best Automotive Multimeters Review 2019

An automotive multimeter is designed to help you test different factors including voltage, current, and resistance. Issues with these things can impact car performance and lead to long-term damage. Hence, it may be a good idea to own the best automotive multimeter so you can identify and solve problems on your own.

Automotive multi meters are easy to use and typically come with guides. You must have seen mechanics using one on your vehicle. This small yet powerful device can be the difference maker when it comes to performance.

Also, do not let the name fool you as most multimeters are versatile and can be used to inspect other electronics as well.

Today, we’ll have a look at some of the best automotive multimeters to help you pick one.

Let’s get started:

Best Automotive Multimeters Comparison Chart

Here is a comparison chart to help you determine which multimeter is the best automotive multimeter:

AstroAI AM33D
AstroAI AM33D
AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000
AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000
Etekcity MSR-R500
Etekcity MSR-R500
Customer Rating
4.54.5 / 5
4.54.5 / 5
4.44.4 / 5
PriceAstroAI AM33D priceAstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000 priceEtekcity MSR-R500 price
Range SelectionManualAuto ManualManual
Type of MultimeterDigitalDigitalDigital
Maximum Display200060002000
Battery1 Lithium metal battery1 Lithium metal battery1 9V batteri
Resistance
Overload Protection
Diode
Weight8.8 ounces1.25 pounds8 ounces

Best Automotive Multimeters Review

  1. AstroAI AM33D
  2. AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000
  3. Etekcity MSR-R500

Below, we have highlighted the nine best automotive multimeters on the market. Let’s have a look at a detailed review of each product:

1. AstroAI AM33D Automotive Multimeter

AstroAI AM33D
AstroAI AM33D Automotive Multimeter
4.54.5 / 5
AstroAI Digital Multimeter is quite easy to use. It offers a sampling speed of 2 times per second, which makes it fast and reliable. Plus, it comes with overload protection.

AstroAI Digital Multimeter is quite easy to use. It offers a sampling speed of 2 times per second, which makes it fast and reliable. Plus, it comes with overload protection.

This incredible device can provide readings for a number of elements including voltage, resistance, DC current, diode, and continuity.

Backlit LCD makes it easy to use even at night. You will not have to look around for a torch as the backlit LCD provides enough light to take readings.

It comes with a kickstand that allows hands-free operation. This is a great feature as you will not need anyone by your side in order to perform a job since your hands will not be constantly busy.

Highly durable thanks to a protective rubber covering that guards the unit against damage in case of drops.

Pros

  • You can use the hold button to freeze data, removing the need to take manual readings
  • Suitable for both household and automotive uses
  • The unit will inform you when the battery is low
  • Quite durable thanks to excellent build
  • The large display makes it easy to read
  • Comes with a battery
  • Comes with a 1-year limited warranty from the company

Cons

  • Cannot test AC current
  • May not be suitable for beginners

A video of AstroAI AM33D.

2. AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000 Digital Multimeter

AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000
AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000 Digital Multimeter
4.54.5 / 5
It’s more powerful than the previous model we have discussed and is said to be suitable for commercial use.

This is another unit from Astro. It’s more powerful than the previous model we have discussed and is said to be suitable for commercial use.

AstroAI WH5000A TRMS 6000 Digital Multimeter, just like the first option, also offers a sampling speed of 2 times per second. It can measure a number of factors including continuity, resistance, frequency, diodes, temperature, transistors, current, and voltage.

You’ll not have to run for a torch as the backlit LCD provides enough light to read what’s displayed on the screen.

WH5000A is quite convenient to use thanks to features like auto-shutoff, hanging magnet. There is also a kickstand so that you can use it without using hands.

It’s an aid to be suitable for pros thanks to features like auto-ranging and True RMS for both AC voltage and current. Plus, thanks to a longer warranty – 3 years – it’s more durable.

Pros

  • You can use the hold button to freeze data, removing the need to take manual readings
  • Made for commercial use, it is also suitable for homes and vehicles
  • Very safe to use thanks to the anti-burn capability
  • Comes with a multi-functional socket
  • This multimeter for cars comes with a battery

Cons

  • The battery does not last long
  • Might be too expensive for some users

A video of AstroAI WH5000A.

3. Etekcity MSR-R500 Digital Automotive Multimeter

Etekcity MSR-R500
Etekcity MSR-R500 Digital Automotive Multimeter
4.44.4 / 5
Etekcity is known to produce reliable products and this unit is no different. It offers a sampling speed of 3 times per second, making it fast and reliable.

Etekcity is known to produce reliable products and this unit is no different. It offers a sampling speed of 3 times per second, making it fast and reliable.

MSR-R500 can measure continuity, diode, resistance, and DC current. There is also a backlit LCD that makes it easy to get to work even at night. You will not have to look around for a torch as the backlit LCD provides enough light to read figures.

A very unique thing about Etekcity is its warranty. They offer an extendable warranty – up to 2 years. You will have to get in touch with the company when you buy the multimeter to get an extension. However, you will not have to worry much about it since this multimeter for automotive is quite durable thanks to a protective rubber covering providing protection against drops.

Etekcity MSR-R500 has almost all the features we have discussed above. It offers hands-free testing. Plus, the design is ergonomic so do not expect to face difficulties when using it.

Pros

  • You can use the hold button to freeze data, removing the need to take manual readings
  • The unit will inform you when the battery is low
  • Quite durable thanks to excellent build
  • Comes with a battery
  • Extendable warranty from the company

Cons

  • Cannot test AC current
  • May not be suitable for beginners

A video of Etekcity MSR-R500.

4. Fluke 117/323  Automotive Multimeter and Clamp Meter Kit

Fluke 117/323
Fluke 117/323  Automotive Multimeter and Clamp Meter Kit
4.54.5 / 5
We haven’t seen many multimeters as affordable and reliable as this multimeter and clamp meter combo kit from Fluke. It can test continuity, resistance, capacitance, and frequency.

We haven’t seen many multimeters as affordable and reliable as this multimeter and clamp meter combo kit from Fluke. It can test continuity, resistance, capacitance, and frequency.

The LCD here is not only backlit but also very large and white, thus easier to read. However, some users may get disappointed due to the short warranty – 90 days. This is very low, especially when you compare it to what other manufacturers offer.

The LCD here is not only backlit but also very large and white, thus easier to read. However, some users may get disappointed due to the short warranty – 90 days. This is very low, especially when you compare it to what other manufacturers offer.

However, we found that this Fluke automotive multimeter is pretty reliable incomes of durability. This best automotive multimeter is rugged but it does not come with a built-in handle. However, you can use a magnetic hanger if you want to keep your hands free.

Pros

  • Ghost voltage feature reduces the risk of false readings
  • The compact design ensures it can reach tight compartments
  • Measures resistance up to 4 kΩ – higher than most similar units.
  • Works quickly thanks to the integrated non-contact voltage detection system
  • Quite safe to use

Cons

  • No built-in stand for hands-free use
  • Might be a little too heavy for some users

A video of Fluke 117/323.

5. INNOVA 3320 Auto-Ranging Digital Automotive Multimeter

INNOVA 3320
INNOVA 3320 Auto-Ranging Digital Automotive Multimeter
4.34.3 / 5
The Innova 3320 Digital Multimeter has everything you’d expect from a multimeter.

The Innova 3320 Digital Multimeter has everything you’d expect from a multimeter. Plus, it is one of the most affordable units on the market, making it the best cheap multimeter and a good choice for people who do not want to spend a lot of money on multimeters.

It can provide readings for a number of elements including voltage, resistance, DC current, diode, and continuity. Each of these elements is important in maintaining your vehicle.

Since it’s an auto-ranging device, you will not have to worry about selecting the right range. Innova 3320 will be ready to measure right away. This is why it is said to be good for new users. We also liked color-coded LEDs that are easy to interpret.

Other than this, it comes with a 1-year limited warranty and a built-in stand. You will also find a wrist strap which makes handling simpler. Overall, the multimeter is highly durable thanks to a protective rubber covering.

Pros

  • The auto-off feature can help extend battery life
  • The LCD screen displays 1 1/2″ numerals, making it easy to read
  • Quite durable thanks to excellent build
  • Comes with a battery
  • Very affordable unit
  • UL certified design

Cons

  • Cannot use it in the dark as the LCD is not backlit
  • Some important features are missing, such as alternator test, RPM reading, and temperature reading

A video of INNOVA 3320.

6. Crenova MS8233D Auto-Ranging Digital Multimeter

Crenova MS8233D
Crenova MS8233D Auto-Ranging Digital Multimeter
4.64.6 / 5
Crenova MS8233D is one of the few units that come with 100% safety assurance. It offers a sampling speed of 3 times per second and is quite quick to perform the job. Hence, it can be a good pick for users with no experience in using multimeters.

Crenova MS8233D is one of the few units that come with 100% safety assurance. It offers a sampling speed of 3 times per second and is quite quick to perform the job. Hence, it can be a good pick for users with no experience in using multimeters.

Crenova MS8233D offers highly accurate results and can measure AC/DC current and voltage, frequency, diode, resistant, and continuity. Its backlit LCD is as good as other LCDs but we liked it slightly more since it displays 3.5 digits.

The overall placement of the buttons is also good. It can get pretty frustrating to look for what you need but there will be no such problems with this Crenova multimeter.

Other features are the same as seen in previous models. It has a rubber covering and stand. But, we do miss a warranty since Crenova current offers no product warranties. This can be a bummer for some users.

Pros

  • Comes with a bag that makes it easy to carry
  • Powers off automatically to save battery
  • You can use the hold button to freeze data, removing the need to take manual readings
  • Highly versatile and can be used at work as well
  • Excellent customer support

Cons

  • Uses a 9V battery that has to be bought separately
  • Cannot test remaining charge

A video of Crenova MS8233D.

7. INNOVA 3340 Automotive Digital Multimeter

INNOVA 3340
INNOVA 3340 Automotive Digital Multimeter
4.34.3 / 5
Another product from INNOVA is here and for all the right reasons. This is said to be the best option for professionals as it is presented as an ‘automotive multimeter’ made to identify engine issues.

Another product from INNOVA is here and for all the right reasons. This is said to be the best option for professionals as it is presented as an ‘automotive multimeter’ made to identify engine issues.

In addition to some basic elements, INNOVA 3340 can test more complicated functions including switches, wiring, breaker points, solenoids, duty cycle, and diodes.

It’s mainly used by professionals since most DIYers will not know what some of the features are used for. This is also why it is more expensive than most other multimeters discussed in this review.

You will notice that it’s perfect for global users as it gives temperature in both Fahrenheit and Celsius. No need to take the calculator out and perform conversions.

All other features of this Innova multimeter are pretty basic including a backlit LCD,  protective rubber covering, stand, and 1-year limited warranty.

Pros

  • UL Certified
  • Auto shut-off feature helps protect the battery
  • Minimum and maximum button to save and retrieve data
  • You can use the hold button to freeze data, removing the need to take manual readings
  • Comes with a carrying case and battery

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • No LED indicators

A video of INNOVA 3340.

8. Fluke 115 Compact True-RMS Digital Multimeter

Fluke 115
Fluke 115 Compact True-RMS Digital Multimeter
4.74.7 / 5
Fluke 115 is a compact unit suitable for various uses. It can measure a number of factors including continuity, resistance, capacitance, and frequency.

Fluke 115 is a compact unit suitable for various uses. It can measure a number of factors including continuity, resistance, capacitance, and frequency.

It offers a wide range of temperature readings – between -10 degrees to +60 degrees Celsius. Hence, you will be able to use it to test other electrical items as well. This is why it’s a reliable automotive voltmeter.

The backlit LCD is easy on the eyes and makes it possible to perform jobs in low light conditions. One of its USPs is a built-in thermometer that removes the need to invest in a separate instrument.

We also liked the labeling system makes it easy to use even for users who have no experience handling a multimeter.

One very unique thing is that unlike some Fluke multimeters, Fluke 115 comes with a 3-year limited warranty. This means you will not have to worry about any issues for a long period of time.

Pros

  • Comes with a holster
  • The screen is big and easy to read
  • Very quick and accurate
  • Suitable for a variety of uses
  • Comes with a battery

Cons

  • Does not have a stand but you can opt for a magnetic hanger
  • The LCD can be hard to read from some angles

A video of Fluke 115.

9. Fluke 88V 1000V Automotive Multimeter

Fluke 88V 1000V
Fluke 88V 1000V Automotive Multimeter
4.54.5 / 5
Fluke 88V is specifically designed for professionals and offers excellent features that will help you troubleshoot problems in no time. According to the company, it’s their most powerful multimeter till date and we seem to agree.

Fluke 88V is specifically designed for professionals and offers excellent features that will help you troubleshoot problems in no time. According to the company, it’s their most powerful multimeter to date and we seem to agree.

It can test diode, resistance, and continuity. Fluke 88V is one of the most powerful units on the market. It can measure pulse width and current – up to 20 A. This makes it a good automobile voltmeter.

Fluke 99V is said to be most suitable for hybrid vehicles and offers up to 200 kHz frequency and 1000 V AC and DC. We find that it works on other vehicles as well but can be a good pick if you have a hybrid or if you work on hybrid vehicles.

Fluke 88V has a built-in thermometer that removes the need to invest in a separate instrument. It comes with a 3-year limited warranty making it the best multimeter for the money.

Pros

  • Very safe to use – rated Category III
  • Offers a large number of features
  • 4.5 digit screen offers high precision
  • The screen is big and easy to read
  • Very quick and accurate
  • Comes with a battery

Cons

  • A little too heavy at 3 pounds
  • Does not have a stand but you can opt for a magnetic hanger

A video of Fluke 88V.

What is Car Multimeter?

A car multimeter is a special instrument made to measure voltage, current, and resistance of a car.

car multimeter
A car multimeter is a special instrument made to measure voltage, current, and resistance of a car.

They are used in different industries but serve a similar purpose. However, automotive multimeters are quite unique. They are highly versatile and can let you check capacitance and some other elements as well.

Most advanced multimeters for cars can show multiple readings making it possible to easily see and interpret the outcome.

They can provide true numbers – up to five decimal points. Hence, the results are very accurate. This is of huge importance because when it comes to factors like resistance and current, a difference of even a few points can be of huge importance.

Other than this, they are powerful enough to read negative values, especially in the case of voltage. You only need to get the best automotive multimeter.

Also known as a multitester and a VOM, these devices are small and hand-held. You must have often seen a mechanic holding one while working on a car. They can be quite important in identifying and solving issues.

Types of Multimeters

There are many types of multimeters available on the market. While they do the same job, they greatly differ in terms of use and benefits.

The two most popular types are analog and digital multimeters. Let’s discuss them in detail:

Analog Multimeters

If you have used watches, you must know the differences between analog and digital devices. Pretty much the same differences are here.

Analog multimeters were invented before digital multimeters. They do not contain electronic parts and use a pointer and moving coil meter to do the job.

Despite being older, analog devices are still used, especially by professionals as they make it easy to measure fluctuations. Plus, they do not require electricity or power to work.

In addition to this, they are cheaper. However, the readings may not always be very accurate or easy to read, especially for someone with no experience in handling multimeters.

Digital Multimeters

Unlike analog multimeters, digital units need power in order to work. This power may be supplied by a battery or plug. Multimeter analogs are typically smaller in size and hence easier to handle. They also have an LCD screen that shows the readings. For some, they are the best automotive multimeters.

Most units come with their own probes and have plugs and a knob. They offer higher reliability than analog devices and are also quicker to provide results.

These days, most people, especially DIYers, prefer to use digital multimeters as they are easier to use. However, they may be a little more expensive.

Digital units can be further divided into three types:

Fluke Digital Multimeter

Fluke multimeters are among the most popular choice. They have a large screen and additional features. Some units may allow you to measure frequency, humidity, pressure, and temperature.

Autoranging Multimeter

This is the most expensive type of multimeter out there but it’s also the easiest to use. The knob of an auto-ranging multimeter has fewer positions and it does not need to be switched to what you intend to measure.

Clamp Digital Multimeter

This device is generally used to measure the flow of power or electricity. The clamp measures amps and the probes work to measure volts so you can get a complete picture in front of you. Watts or power consumption is calibrated by multiplying the two numbers.

Clamp multimeters need to be set to what you intend to measure, otherwise, you will not get correct results. This can be complicated for new users.

What Does a Multimeter Do?

A multimeter combines a number of measurement functions to help you measure different electronic functions including voltage, resistance, and current. This is also why they are called automotive voltmeters.

Since cars use batteries, they involve current that is used to run different parts. Issues with the flow of current can lead to trouble. A multimeter helps to know where the problem lies.

How Does a Multimeter Work?

It depends on which unit you have.

Analog multimeters use magnets to create a magnetic field that is induced in the coil. This forces the pointer to move in a specific direction, indicating the calculated reading.

On the other hand, digital units use power and knobs to take a reading. Once you plug the probes where required, current will begin to pass and the resultant output will appear on the screen.

How to Use a Multimeter?

It is best to refer to the guide to be sure since the process may differ based on which unit you have.

In most cases, you will first have to:

  • Place the black probe into the common terminal and the red one into the ohms and volts terminal.
  • Next, choose settings based on what you want to measure.
  • Take the other end of the probe to the circuit you want to measure and place as directed.
  • See the results.

How to Read a Multimeter?

Analog multimeters can be hard to read. Pay attention to the dial and see the number it gives you. Take this number and calculate the output. For example, if the unit is set to Rx100 and the screen gives you the output of 50 ohms, you will have to multiply the two figures to get the actual resistance.

It will be 100(x)50= 5,000.

It can be a bit complicated if you do not know all the symbols so make sure to get accustomed to ’em.

On the other hand, you will have to understand the knob system to read digital multimeters.

Multimeter Symbols

If you inspect a multimeter, you will notice that it has a number of symbols. They all mean specific things. We have explained some of the most common ones, however, remember you may not find all the symbols on one unit.

  • Hold: Pressing this button will hold the screen so you can perform tasks and then come back to it.
  • AC Voltage (V with a wave): is used to test voltages.
  • Hertz (V with a straight line): is used to measure frequency.
  • Continuity: This is represented in the form of sound waves )))). The unit will emit a tone (audible) when it detects continuity.
  • Jack: There are two jacks on the unit – one for current and the other for every other unit.

For clarity, it is best to refer to the manual.

The Final Thoughts

These were some of the best automotive multimeters on the market. Make sure to compare all the options and pick one that suits you the best.

Our personal favorite is the INNOVA 3340 Automotive Digital Multimeter but it is quite expensive. If you want a cheaper product then consider the Fluke 117/323  Automotive Multimeter and Clamp Meter Kit.

At the end of the day, pick a multimeter according to your requirements.

Read more: Honest Review of The Best Digital Multimeter 2019.

Tim MillerFounderOBD Advisor

I’m Tim Miller from Denver, Colorado. I’m the founder of obdadvisor.com, an automotive blog about "Diagnostic Tools and Auto Repair". My fan page is facebook.com/autozikcom. I've been working as an automotive mechanic and blogger for over 10 years writing articles to share my experiences and expertise.

Web: https://www.obdadvisor.comEmail: [email protected]
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