How to measure resistors value using multimeter

How can I use multimeter to measure the value of resistors? This article will put you through how to measure resistor’s value using multimeter. In this post, we will use digital multimeter. The post provides you with five (5) steps (step by step)  how to measure resistor’s value using multimeter with photos.

Before we do this, we make sure that the resistor isn’t connected to a circuit. Why should we disconnect the resistor before testing it? We do this because in most cases, a resistor’s value varies when connected to a circuit due to some effects of other components in the network. Sometimes they result to be in parallel configuration and thus you may not get the real value.

Alright, let’s take the steps below to help us how to measure resistor’s value using multimeter. See the RED CIRCLE on the meter.

Step 1 of 5: How to measure resistor’s value using multimeter

Turn your meter selector to the Resistor Testing Range. See red colour circled on the meter. In this range you will notice some figures with or without an alphabet as its coefficient. Something like: “200, 2K, 200K, 2M, 20M,” etc. The “200” means resistance value from 200Ω and below, “2K” 2KΩ (2 Kilo-Ohms) and below, “2M” 2MΩ (2 Mega-Ohms) and below, etc.

setting multimeter to measure resistor's value

Step 2 of 5: How to measure resistor’s value using multimeter

Connect the meter’s testing probes i.e. the cables in this form – Black probe to “COM” and the Red probe to “VΩ” sockets respectively.

Connecting the multimeter probes to measure resistor's value

Step 3 of 5: How to measure resistors value using multimeter

Join or connect the two probes (red and black) together first for about 30 to 60sec until the readings on the screen become steady. This trick is to measure the resistance of the cables or testing probes (the red and black cables). The value you obtained will be subtracted from the value of the last step ( step 5)

measuring the probes' resistance

Step 4 of 5: How to measure resistor’s value using multimeter

Hold one of the ends (terminals) of the resistor together with one of the probes between any of your two fingers. Touch the other terminal of the resistor whose value is to be measured with the other probe without your finger touching the both terminal. (Do not let your finger(s) touch both terminals of the resistor while testing it. This is because some low resistance may appear from your fingers).

measure the resistor's value using multimeter


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Step 5 of 5: How to measure resistor’s value using multimeter

Read the value displayed on the screen and subtract the value you obtained in (step 3) above from this result, the answer you get is the resistance. That’s all! how to measure resistor’s value using multimeter.

(From the tests above – step 1 to 5) The resistance of the resistor is: 75-7=68Ω

  • If the range you set has no coefficient, for instance “200”, the value you obtained is in Ohms (Ω).
  • Also, if set to a range having “K”, for instance “200K”, your answer will be in Kilo Ohms (KΩ).
  • If the range has “M” for instance “20M”, your answer will be in Mega Ohms (MΩ).

Important notes

  • When measuring the resistor’s value using multimeter, start by turning the resistor testing ranges to the least range of the meter.
  • If the meter did not read any value, it means that the resistor’s resistance is higher compare to the testing range. Adjust the range to the higher range until the meter starts reading.
  • If the meter starts reading and immediately stops, it means the resistor’s resistance is lower to be tested in that range. Adjust the range to the lower range until the meter reads the resistance.

Apart from using this method, you can also check on this method: How to read Resistor Colour Codes

READ ALSO THESE

Resistors and Types Resistors / Ohm’s Law and its Limitations / Resistors in Series Calculations / Resistors in Parallel Calculations / Determining Unknown Resistors Values /


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