How to Use Fluke 117 True RMS Multimeter

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The famous saying “necessity is the mother of invention” has been well understood by those who have widely accepted the inventions of new era technology. You might have heard about fluke 117 multimeters, but not many know how to use the fluke 117 true RMS. Before we proceed, you must first know what multimeters are and their many uses!

What is a Multimeter?

A multimeter is an electronic instrument, which has been widely accepted by technicians and engineers all over the world. The test equipment is used to measure voltage current and resistance in an electrical circuit. A multimeter checks the continuity in an electrical circuit between two points. It comprises of an ammeter, an ohmmeter, and a voltmeter. The handheld device has a numerical digital display, which has two indicator needles- positive and negative. Multimeters are used to test batteries and electric motors. Multimeters are also used for power supplies and household wiring.

Multimeter finds its application for a variety of purposes like electronic and electrical projects. An ammeter is used for different measurements in the multimeter. Some of the applications are listed here.

The Best Uses

  • Environmental applications
  • At weather stations
  • DMM internal temperature
  • DC measurements of high and low values
  • Peak to peak measurements
  • DC average measurements
  • DC current measurements
  • True RMS AC current
  • Measure resistance with constant voltage or constant current
  • Time and fast frequency measurement
  • Micro ohmmeter

The Various Types

The different types of multimeters are digital analog and fluke multimeters. Fluke 117 true RMS multimeter is a type of fluke multimeter. Before we proceed on how to use this multimeter, let us first know the different types of multimeters to get a basic idea.

Digital Multimeters

The most commonly used multimeters are Digital Multimeters (DMM). The digital multimeters perform various functions. The two probes with red and black color on digital multimeter are positive and negative ends. The red probe measures ohm, volt, and amperes. The black probe is connected to COM JACK test a diode along with measuring voltage and resistance. High accuracy and its ability to read positive, as well as negative values, are its biggest advantages.

Analog Multimeters

The Analog Multimeters are also called Volt-Ohm-Milliammeters or VOM. It is constructed with the help of a moving coil meter. The pointer indicates the readings on the scale. Multirange current measurement can also be done with the help of a meter. The instrument is connected in series with the unknown source for current measurement. A resistor is connected with the meter in series for DC Voltage measurements. Different resistors can be used for multirange measurement. The unknown resistance is connected with the meter for measuring the resistance. Its affordability and measurement of fluctuations in the readings are its biggest advantages.

Fluke Multimeters

Fluke Multimeters are the portable multimeters. It tests diode along with measuring current and voltage. It has multiple selectors to choose a particular function. To select most measurements, it has automatic ranging. If the magnitude of the signal is unknown, it can record accurate reading. The fuse is protected to avoid damage when connected to the wrong port.

What does “True-RMS” mean?


Firstly, RMS is the root mean square. The three tools that measure an AC voltage comprise True-RMS as one of them. Average responding digital multimeter and oscilloscope are the other two tools. Except for oscilloscopes, the other two can measure pure AC waveforms. Moreover, True-RMS is preferred over the other as it can measure sinusoidal and non-sinusoidal; both the waveforms. The DC equivalent of an AC waveform is calculated by RMS. The various areas where RMS fined its applications are:

  • Computers and electronic ballasts
  • Solid-state environments
  • HVAC
  • Variable-speed motor drives

True-RMS also takes measurements on the power lines where there are unknown AC characteristics. Fluke 117, a part of 117 series of multimeters, has a maximum current of 10A DC and 10A AC. It has a 6000V AC while the DC voltage is 0.0006V. It measures capacitance and frequency measurement and has a maximum resistance of 6. It is a battery-powered model and has a 6000 count display.

How to use fluke 117 true RMS multimeter

You first have to connect the probes to the multimeter. The red probe is plugged into the positive end and the black probe into the negative terminal. Next, switch the multimeter on to select the resistance function. The red and black probes must be made to contact to assure that the multimeter is working. Ideally, a low resistance must be seen on the LCD display. It may be around 0.5 ohms or even less than that.

The central dial is to be used next. It allows you to switch to the function you want. “V” must be selected for voltage if you want to measure the voltage. “I” has to be selected if you want to measure the current, and “R” has to be selected for measuring the resistance. The LCD display will finally show the measured value that the multimeter has recorded. If you want to measure voltage, you need to insert the black probes in COM Jack. The red probe is inserted into the V Jack.

The test leads are then connected to the circuit to be checked in the order of black first and then the red. The measurements can be read on display. The RANGE button allows you to fix a range prior to the measurements. The MIN/MAX button allows you to know the highest and the lowest values, and the multimeter beeps upon recording a new measurement. The REL button allows you to set the multimeter.

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