I cannot remember how but recently I blew the fuse on my multimeter.

All I remember was the car was running when it happened.

Can I attach the multimeter to battery terminals to check voltage while it is trying to be jump started, while it is running, and while charging battery directly on terminals from another car? Or would any of these scenarios cause the multimeter to blow its fuse and you should switch cars off first?


2 Answers 2


Yes, obviously, otherwise how would you measure the charging voltage.

The most likely error was having the multimeter leads connected to the current measuring terminals on the multimeter, when they should be connected to the voltage measuring terminals on the multimeter.

Make sure the leads are corrected to the correct terminals and select the desired range - unless you have one of the higher quality (ie more expensive auto-ranging meters), then measure the voltage as normal.

  • Sorry what’s the difference between the ‘current measuring terminals’ and the ‘voltage measuring terminals’? The battery has two terminals only. By current do you mean the clamps that go on the battery? Please clarify. Thanks. Commented Dec 29, 2020 at 12:43
  • @JamesWilson the terminals on the multimeter... or if it only has two, then choosing the incorrect range will blow the fuse - as you said you did.
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Dec 29, 2020 at 13:00
  • 1
    @JamesWilson - It will blow the fuse if you have it on the Ohm setting while trying to measure voltage. This is the surest way I know to kill your multimeter. Commented Dec 29, 2020 at 14:06

Yes you can multimeters have high input resistance , so their load is insignificant on the battery/car.Also if you trying to measure voltage note not all DMM's are the same , some are slower so it may not register transient voltage data fast enough.

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