A multimeter is able to let you know how much electricity is flowing through a wall outlet. Though it generally is not a good idea to insert objects into a wall outlet, a multimeter only works when you insert its probes into an outlet. There is a safe way to do this.Know More
Set the dial on the multimeter to "AC Voltage." Digital multimeters may have a button you should press to select "AC Voltage." This may be indicated by "VAC," "AC V" or "V" accompanied with a wavy line.
Hold on to the insulated portions at the bottom of the probes. Place a probe into each terminal of the wall outlet. You do not need to press hard, but you should thoroughly insert the probes. Do not touch the metal portion of the probes while testing.
Look at the reading listed on the multimeter. For a wall outlet, this reading should be about 110 or 120 volts. A reading of 110 or 120 volts indicates the wall outlet is working properly. If the multimeter has no reading, this is an indication that the wall outlet is not properly connected to an electrical source.
Do not touch the metal parts of the probes as you remove them.
Using a multimeter, insert one of the probes from the multimeter into one of the parallel slots in the 240-volt outlet and insert the other probe into the other parallel slot to test if the outlet is indeed carrying 240 volts. If the voltage does not add up to 240 volts, check the slots individually to see which one is carrying less voltage.Full Answer >
In the United States, home wall outlets carry a voltage of 120 VAC, or voltage from alternating current. This is the standard amount, but some heavy-duty appliances require higher voltages.Full Answer >
Lights in a house can become dim because major appliances are pulling too much electricity from the same electrical circuit as the lights. Other causes of lights dimming include neighborhood-wide problems with the power grid or serious issues with the house's electrical panel.Full Answer >
To test a household electrical circuit for short circuits or places where the circuit deviates from its path, use a multimeter. Set the multimeter to measure resistance, and test any electrical outlets that are suspected of having short circuits.Full Answer >