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One of the essential components of digital scale systems is load cells. But do you actually know what load cells are? If not, you’ve come to the right page. You would know what’s a load cell, its types, and how to check the load cell with multimeter and more.
If you’re a technician, you need to know what a multimeter is. A multimeter or digital multimeter (DMM) is a measurement device that allows you to read voltage, resistance, and continuity of electrical components. Also, a multimeter gives you information about the problem of a wire or fuse. In this article, I’ll talk about using a multimeter to check a load cell.
But you’ll know that later. Let’s first talk about the load cell.
A load cell is a transducer or sensor that converts a force that acts on it into an electronic signal. We can describe this signal as current change, voltage change, or frequency change. The signal depends on the load cell type and the circuitry you’re using. Signals from a load cell are converted by a digital indicator to numeric values that you can read.
These load cell types work on the piezo-resistivity principle. For example, the load cell changes resistance when stress or force is applied to the cell. The change in resistance results to an output voltage change once the input voltage is used.
In these load cells, the change of the capacitance principle is applied. (The principle means that a system has the ability to hold a specific charge If voltage is used to it.) Let’s take parallel plate capacitors as an example.
In these capacitors, capacitance is directly proportional to the plates and dielectric between plates. Also, the capacitors are inversely proportional between the plates.
A load cell can give an inaccurate scale reading if it’s affected by corrosion or partially damaged. When this happens, it’s best that you replace or repair the load cell.
Here are easy to follow steps on how to check load cells with a multimeter and find out if it’s a bad cell or not.
If you see different readings other than the once I’ve mentioned, call a licensed technician right away. Your load cell needs repair and replacement.
But what If the load cell is okay, and you want to measure the cell’s resistance?
Follow the steps below and see the reading on the display of the multimeter:
Using A Multimeter in Measuring Load Cells Voltage
If you want to measure the voltage of a load cell, here the following steps to follow:
Take note: Exercise safety precautions in checking the load cell with a multimeter. You might suffer a severe electrical shock if you’re not careful. The multimeter is an electrical device, so an electrical shock is possible. Even so, you need to be aware of it.
A multimeter is a handy tool that lets you check if the load cell is damaged or not. So, make sure to check it regularly. Clean the outer part of the test meter to prevent dust and another hazardous element to damage it. If you’re not using it, store the unit in a safe and secure place.
Be responsible and cautious when you’re working with electrical components. Remember that safety is always a priority in using electrical devices or tools such as the multimeter. Follow the instructions mentioned in this article and ask tips from licensed technicians.
Experts can offer a big help to make your checking and troubleshooting successful. Don’t work alone if you’re a beginner in using a multimeter. Accidents or injuries might happen if there’s no expert to guide you.
Lastly, observe and don’t ignore warnings you might see on the test meter’s manual because these can keep you safe.
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