Best Clamp Meters for Contactless Measurement

Review & Comparison, Last Update October 12, 2018
The electrical and mechanical systems can be quite complicated, thus it's often difficult to measure the voltage or amperage on the specific cables. In past, the engineers had to shut off whole systems in order to measure the current, but with a clamp meter at your disposal, the current testing will be as easy as a pie. Depending on the complexity of the electrical grid you are dealing with, you may need a specific meter, that’s why we've found the top meter models available for you to pick the right one. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2018
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Measurement Type
Measurement Limits
Range Selection
Display
Features
Safety
Convenience
Warranty
 
PROS

One of the few models that allow for measuring the temperature in a range of minus 14°F to 1000°F with minimal deviation. Additionally, the device comes together with a thermocouple that will ease the measurement process significantly.

CONS

2 AAA batteries discharge quite quickly so you will have to change them often.

OUR VERDICT

This model from Klein Tools features the CAT III (1000V) and CAT IV (600V) safety ratings, which makes it perfect for professional use. Suffice to say,  this device will be a great gift for any electrician or engineer, thanks to its multimeter capabilities.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Non-contact: jaws (up to 1.375 inch)

Contact: Test Leads

Measurement Limits

AC voltage: up to 1000V

DC voltage: up to 1000V

AC current: up to 600A

DC current: up to 600A

Resistance: up to 60MΩ

Capacitance: up to 6000 μF

Frequency: up to 500kHz

Temperature: -14°F - 1000°F

Range Selection

Auto / manual ranging

Display

LCD-display with backlight, 6000 counts

Features

Diode and continuity test

Safety

CAT III 1000V, CAT IV 600V

Convenience

Data Hold, Min/Max Reading, Auto shut-off, Carrying pouch

Warranty

2 years

PROS

A brightly lit display in combination with a powerful LED flashlight makes the current measurements in the dark an easy task. Though the flashlight is quite powerful, it consumes little energy, which prolongs the service life of the batteries.

CONS

Trigger that opens the jaws might seem a bit tight at first. 

OUR VERDICT

If you are looking for a highly functional measurement tool which will make the troubleshooting of the electrical grids a much easier task, look no further - the Meterk MK06 model is the right pick for you.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Non-contact: jaws (up to 1-inch)

Contact: Test Leads

Measurement Limits

AC voltage: up to 600V

DC voltage: up to 600V

AC current: up to 400A

DC current: up to 400A

Resistance: up to 40MΩ

Capacitance: up to 100 μF

Frequency: up to 100kHz

Range Selection

Auto ranging

Display

LCD-display with backlight, 4000 counts

Features

Diode and continuity test

Safety

CAT II 1000V, CAT III 600V

Convenience

Data Hold, Auto shut-off, Built-in LED-flashlight, Carrying pouch

Warranty

1 year

PROS

All grids and marks on the housing of the device are printed using a special paint that doesn't wear off throughout the entire service life of the tool. The meter also comes with a handy carry bag.

CONS

The quality of the test leads leaves a bit more to be desired.

OUR VERDICT

An affordable and efficient clamp meter that has a lot of features is a rare sight on the market today. Fortunately, the MSR-C600 from Etekcity has all of it and will allow you to handle and fix all electrical devices at your house with ease.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Non-contact: jaws (up to 1-inch)

Contact: Test Leads

Measurement Limits

AC voltage: up to 600V

DC voltage: up to 600V

AC current: up to 400A

Resistance: up to 20MΩ

Range Selection

Auto ranging

Display

LCD-display, 2000 counts

Features

Diode and continuity test

Safety

CAT II 600V, CAT III 300V

Convenience

Data Hold, Max Reading, Auto shut-off, Carrying pouch

Warranty

1 year

PROS

The manufacturer made sure to include a pair of reliable test leads specifically for contact measurements. The leads feature high-quality insulation and sensible contact leads, which contribute to the overall safety of the device.

CONS

The jaws' diameter is somewhat short compared to other similar models.

OUR VERDICT

Despite its modest size and incredibly small weight, this model from UNI-T will prove to be an irreplaceable assistant when it comes to accurate detection of current and voltage levels in electrical grids or various devices.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Non-contact: jaws (up to 0.67-inch)

Contact: Test Leads

Measurement Limits

AC voltage: up to 600V

DC voltage: up to 600V

AC current: up to 100A

DC current: up to 100A

Resistance: up to 20MΩ

Capacitance: up to 20mF

Range Selection

Auto ranging

Display

LCD-display with backlight, 2000 counts

Features

Diode and continuity test

Safety

CAT II 600V, CAT III 300V

Convenience

Data Hold, Auto shut-off, Carrying pouch

Warranty

1 year

PROS

The ability to automatically detect the current, voltage, and resistance makes the measurement process as simple as it can possibly be, especially when you don't know what is the approximate current level in the grid.

CONS

The display is hard to see in bright sunlight.

OUR VERDICT

The digital clamp meter from AstroAI is an essential tool for those who need to measure a DC current or voltage without completely turning off the appliances or electrical grids.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Non-contact: jaws (up to 1-inch)

Contact: Test Leads

Measurement Limits

AC voltage: up to 600V

DC voltage: up to 600V

AC current: up to 400A

Resistance: up to 20MΩ

Range Selection

Auto ranging

Display

LCD-display, 2000 counts

Features

Diode and continuity test

Safety

CAT II 600V, CAT III 300V

Convenience

Data Hold, Max Reading, Auto shut-off, Carrying pouch

Warranty

3 years

Klein Tools CL800

The Easiest Way to Measure

The CL800 from Klein Tools is one of those models that could serve as a perfect example of a good clamp meter. The device that can show the amperage, voltage, and ohm level without even touching the source, which is convenient enough, but the fact that it can display those numbers accurately makes this model even more compelling.

The non-contact jaws allow for performing measurements on wires and cables with the diameter of up to 1.375 inches, which is slightly bigger than the standard electric cables. Which is why the task of detecting the AC/DC current and voltage on the irregular cables is much easier with this model. Although the two AAA batteries discharge fairly quickly, a special low-battery indicator will show you when it is time to replace them so you'll get a chance to buy a new set in advance. 

The LCD is backlit and can be turned on by a single press of the button, which makes it highly convenient to read in a badly lit environment. Aside from that, the rubber padding on the sides and the dial make it much easier to operate the meter even in gloves.

Suitable for both professional electricians and those who just don’t want to spend a fortune on expensive multimeters, the Klein Tools CL 800 will be your best companion in detecting various problems in your electric grid.

Review of Klein Tools CL800 Digital Clamp Meter

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Meterk MK06

Accurate Enough

The Meterk MK06 has a rigid, industrial-grade housing that will prevent any physical damage, making it a perfect choice for daily heavy-duty use at various facilities that include working with the electrical grids.

This current clamp meter will allow you to measure the voltage without cable contact in order to prevent an electrical shock. That is achieved thanks to the special test leads that provide the possibility of determining the AC and DC power and voltage in the radius of 1 inch between the clamps of the device as well as detecting the voltage on clamps that are hard to reach (batteries, power sockets, etc).

This meter from Meterk will be an excellent choice for those struggling to detect neutral and hot wires in their electric systems, as well as measuring the capacitance and frequency. Additionally, the device comes with a built-in flashlight that really helps when it comes to measuring in dark places. Speaking of which, the high-definition LCD screen can be lit up by a single press of the button to see the measurement results.

In order to prevent any measurement inaccuracies and deviations, we strongly recommend using high-quality alkaline batteries to maximize the precision of the meter in low power situations. So, despite some minor deviations of the current clamp, the Meterk MK06 model is perhaps one of the best budget non-contact multimeter devices out there.

Review of Meterk MK06 Digital Clamp Meter

 

Etekcity MSR-C600

Safety Above Everything Else

The ability of the clamp meters to effectively measure AC current, voltage, and the resistance in the electrical systems and grids make them highly versatile and affordable devices. And the MSR-C600 model from Etekcity is a great example of such a device.

The plastic housing of the tool can protect you from the electrical discharge of up to 600V of AC/DC voltage and 400A of AC current. That being said, you should never use the tool without reading and following the instructions or without wearing protective gear when it is necessary. This is extremely important since the discharge of the electrical grid or electric device can hurt you and cause long-term damage to your health.

Moving on, the clamp meter comes equipped with 35.2-inch banana plug testing leads that will make detecting the current on the electric clips accurately an almost effortless task. On top of that, the device comes equipped with a set of batteries so you won’t have to purchase them beforehand.

Even without the testing leads attached, the device can manage any basic task quite effectively and, most importantly, accurately. Finally, after the initial testing, the MSR-C600 clamp meter proved to be a solid device that can be a great addition to your toolbox in case you are looking for a reliable and accurate measuring tool.

Review of Etekcity MSR-C600 With Clamp Meter & AC / DC Voltage Test

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


What customers say about this product

Key Specs

I have used this tool several times, from 24 vdc to 220 ac. It is very accurate and reliable and easy to use

Features

Easy to read the display as well. Even comes in a nice organized carrying case.

Measurements

I've tested it with my boss's fluke meters and it can hold its ground. There is slight variance in readings across everything but for an apprentice like me its more than good enough.
 

UNI-T UT210E

Tiny Yet Capable

The UNI-T UT210 mini clamp multimeter can be a real lifesaver when it comes to the accurate measurements of AC/DC current and voltage as well as resistance and capacitance up to 600V, 100A, 20MΩ, and 20mF, respectively. Thanks to its rather modest size, the tool is quite convenient to use and hold since it weighs only 5.9 ounces.

While the jaw capacity of 17 mm may prove to be a bit limited in terms of current detection in bigger cables and circuits, the multimeter can handle all the standard electrical grid system measurements quite well.

As for the comfort of use, the housing of the tool features rubber padding on the sides, which makes it really nice to the touch and reduces the chances of you accidentally dropping the tool. As you would imagine, that is achieved with the help of a non-slip coating on the padding.

As for the detection features, the UT210E might not show the greatest results in frequency response, but it will display pretty accurate current detection even for much lower ranges of 5-10 mA with little to none deviation, and that is quite impressive for a budget model. With the capabilities that are more commonly associated with premium models, the UT210E from UNI-T is a bargain that you simply cannot miss if you are looking for a small and capable clamp meter.

Review of UNI-T UT210E Mini Clamp Multimeter

Additional Info

User Manual


 

AstroAI DT202

A Perfect Budget Model for Professionals

Being one of the most affordable digital clamp meters on the market, the DT202 model from AstroAI is still capable of competing in the accurate detection aspect with models that are much more expensive.

First things first, the detector has all of the features that can be found in premium models: data hold, reading of maximum detection ranges, and an automatic shut-off system that increases the battery life of the device. With this tiny tool at your disposal, you will be able to easily determine the current voltage and current in various AC/DC electric systems, grids, or devices. Nevertheless, it doesn’t end there. Besides the detection of the regular current, continuity, and resistance levels, you can also test various diodes with this tool.

Although this AC/DC clamp meter has a fairly simple design, that first impression can be deceiving. The plastic body of the DT202 is sturdy enough to withstand the hard hits or fall from height in case you accidentally dropped the tool, while the transformer jaws open and close easily even after periods of long and intensive use.

All in all, the DT202 is a well-built and fairly accurate clamp meter model from AstroAI that can be a tad difficult to operate from the get-go, meaning it will be more suitable for experienced electricians and engineers.

Review of AstroAI DT202 Digital Clamp Meter

 

What Is a Clamp Meter?

Although clamp meters can be somewhat comparable to the all-purpose multimeters in some aspects, they are meant for complicated jobs. These devices are generally used in electrical or electronic engineering, where workers have to deal with cables, pins, diodes, and clips of various sizes and diameters. The ability to quickly check the amperage, voltage or resistance of a specific current can be crucial, especially when it affects the manufacturing process of various devices. In simpler terms, the amp probes allow for bypassing the cable housing in order to measure the current power. This is achieved thanks to magnetic induction that makes the non-contact measuring possible.

Of course, every single meter will deviate from the actual current or voltage level. Nevertheless, the deviation range of the clamp meters is quite small compared to other multimeter types and doesn’t reach 10-15 mA on average. Used primarily for maintenance, installation, and testing of the electrical circuits, they are perfect for non-contact measurements and troubleshooting.

If you are a keen electrician, you may also be interested in multimeters or laser thermometers that will help you check the temperature of the electrical equipment.

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Publish Date: 2018-08-14 13:29:48