Best Clamp Meters for HVAC

Clamp meters are essential measuring instruments to add to your toolbox if working in HVAC. They come in handy when measuring currents and voltages anywhere in the system. However, you cannot just buy any clamp meter you find in the market because such products have varying capabilities.

The modern-day clamp meters do more than just measuring voltages and currents in HVAC systems. They are nowadays full-fledged multimeters capable of multiple functions. Some come with additional features such as flashlights to enhance their usability in poorly-lit areas. The accuracy, reliability, and durability have also improved over time and are primary factors to consider before buying.

The main feature of a clamp meter is that it is non-contact. You don’t have to connect to the circuit to measure current or voltages at different sections. Instead, this instrument works by determining the strength of a magnetic field generated around the conductor when electrical current flows through it. That enhances the safety and convenience of using a clamp meter for HVAC service.

You are in the right place if you are looking for the best clamp meters for HVAC. We have researched and compiled a list of the most reliable products we could find under different price ranges. Read on for our full review and a buying guide.

ProductImageClamp RangeAccuracySafety RatingPrice
1. UEi DL489 Digital Clamp Meter600A (AC & DC)
Not specified
CAT III 600VCheck Price!
2. Fluke 376FC Clamp Meter1000A (AC & DC)2% ±5 digits (10 Hz to 100 Hz)
2.5% ±5 digits (100-500 Hz)
CAT III 1000 V
CAT IV 600 V

Check Price!
3. Klein Tools CL800 Digital Clamp Meter
600A
(AC & DC)
2% +/- 5 digits
(50/60 Hz)
CAT III 1000V
CAT IV 600V
Check Price!
4. Fieldpiece SC440 True RMS Clamp Meter
400A (AC & DC)
Not specifiedCAT III 600V or aboveCheck Price!
5. IDEAL INDUSTRIES INC. 61-744 Clamp Meter
600 A
(AC only)
1.7% +/- 6 digits
(50/60 Hz)
CAT III 600V
Check Price!
6. Etekcity MSR-C600 Digital Clamp Meter400A (AC only)
1.5% +/- 5 digits
(50/60 Hz)
CAT II 600V
CAT III 300V
Check Price!

Top 6 Best Clamp Meters for HVAC in 2022

Clamp meters for HVAC vary in their features and functions. And since different brands and models exist, making the right decision on what to buy can be challenging. This review of the best clamp meters for HVAC makes it easier for you. You can choose any of the following:

1. UEi DL489 Digital Clamp Meter for HVAC [Best Overall]

UEi DL489 tops our list as the best and multi-functional clamp tester for HVAC testing and troubleshooting. It offers contractors and technicians the best features and functions, which reduce the need to staff multiple measuring tools in your toolbox. This is a complete clamp meter with true RMS and all functionalities you need at any job site.

UEi DL489 clamp meter measures AC/DC currents of up to 600A and low DC currents in the order of microamps. It reliably handles voltage measurements of 750V AC and 1000V DC, making it a perfect tool for professionals working in HVAC systems. You can additionally use it to measure resistance and capacitance, diode testing, continuity testing, duty cycle measurement, and other functions.

Specifications:

  • Max AC Volts: 750V
  • Max DC Volts: 1000V
  • Max AC current (amps): 600A
  • Max DC current (amps): 600A
  • AC microcurrent (amps): 2000µA
  • DC microcurrent (amps): 2000µA
  • Resistance (Ohms): 60MΩ
  • Capacitance (Farads): 2000µF
  • Frequency (Hertz): 99.99Hz – 99.99kHz
  • Temperature: -328°F to 2462°F

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Pros:

  • Has an easy-to-read backlit dual display
  • Magnetic mount for hands-free operation
  • Multi-functional True RMS clamp meter
  • Increased safety with a 600V CAT III safety rating
  • Wide voltage and current measuring ranges
  • Auto power shutoff and low battery indicator

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive
  • Not easy to use

2. Fluke 376FC Clamp Meter

Next on this list of the best clamp meters for HVAC is Fluke 376FC. This is also a True RMS clamp meter with stunning features and functions. If you can afford it, go for it for reliability, accuracy, and durability. It guarantees an accurate measurement of non-linear signals in an electrical circuit.

Fluke 376FC clamp meter is an advanced measuring instrument with unique features. With an accompanying mobile application, you can log data and share the data with your team members or ask for help when troubleshooting a network. In other words, you get an enhanced collaboration. You can also take measurements remotely, which shortens the time you take on maintenance tasks.

Fluke 376FC clamp meter has a wide measuring range. It is rated for a DC and AC current of up to 1000A but can also achieve a 2500A range with an iFlex flexible current probe. You can also use it to measure resistance, frequency, temperature, and inrush measurements.

Specifications:

  • AC/DC Current: 999.9 A via jaw and 2500 A via flexible current probe
  • Resolution: 0.1A
  • AC/DC voltage: 1000 V (resolution: 0.1V)
  • Frequency range: 5.0 Hz to 500.0 Hz (Resolution: 0.1 Hz)
  • Resistance range: 60 kΩ (resolution: 0.1 Ω)
  • Capacitance range: 1000 μF (Resolution: 0.1 μF)

buy now!

Pros:

  • Bluetooth connectivity and data logging and sharing through a mobile app
  • Remotely takes measurements
  • Captures intermittent faults
  • Measures True RMS voltage and current, including non-linear signals
  • iFlex measurement probe makes it possible to take readings in tight spaces
  • real-time reporting and data sharing

Cons:

  • Unusable in the dark
  • Expensive

3. Klein Tools CL800 Digital Clamp Meter

The third measuring instrument on the list is the Klein Tools CL800 clamp meter. Like the previous two products, CL800 is also a True RMS voltage and current meter with high accuracy. But you can also use it for resistance, continuity, diode, frequency, and capacitance measurements.

Klein Tool CL800 clamp meter also comes with a thermocouple probe for measuring temperature.

This measuring instrument has a wide range of parameters that it can measure. For example, it reads AC and DC currents of up to 600A. It also has a high impedance mode for identifying and removing voltage noise. That enhances its accuracy and suitability for use on high voltage lines.

Other features of the CL800 clamp meter for HVAC include a low battery indicator, auto power shutoff, and a 6000 Count LCD screen for easy data reading. It is also ruggedly built to withstand a 2-meter fall.

Specifications:

  • Resistance range: 0-60MΩ
  • AC/DC voltage range: 1000V
  • AC/DC current range: 600A
  • Capacitance range: 6000µF
  • Temperature Range: -14° – 1000°F (-26° – 538°C)

buy now!

Pros:

  • Multi-functional clamp meter
  • Very reliable and accurate
  • Low impedance mode to filter voltage noise
  • 6000-count LCD display
  • Ruggedly built and durable
  • High safety rating
  • Low battery indicator and auto power shutoff

Cons:

  • Limited warranty offered by the manufacturer
  • Does not support smartphones for data logging

4. Fieldpiece SC440 True RMS Clamp Meter

Fieldpiece SC440 is a True RMS clamp meter with temperature, Inrush current, capacitance, resistance, and frequency measurement capability. This all-in-one tool is specifically designed for HVAC field service. It has features and functions that give it an edge over the competing models.

Features of this clamp meter include a high-voltage LED and a beeper, a continuity warning, a lead holder, a non-contact voltage push button, and alligator probe tips. These make it suitable for measuring frequencies, capacitances, microamps from flame diode tests, and other applications in HVAC service. It is also a manual and auto ranger for all the parameters it measures.

Fieldpiece SC440 is one of the most durable and portable clamp meters available in the market, though a little bit expensive.

Specifications:

  • Display: 5000-count dual display
  • Resistance range: 0-50MΩ with 0.1 resolution
  • AC/DC voltage range: 600V
  • AC/DC current range: 400A
  • Capacitance range: 6000µF

buy now!

Pros:

  • High battery capacity
  • Multi-functional clamp meter
  • Non-contact voltage measurement
  • High-voltage warning
  • Auto power off
  • Overload protection features

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive
  • Limited warranty

5. IDEAL INDUSTRIES INC. 61-744 Clamp Meter

The second last on our list is a product from a brand with over 100 years of history behind it. Ideal Industries 61-744 Clamp Meter is a medium-duty measuring instrument rated for 600A current measurements. It features a compact tapered jaw design for use on hard-to-read surfaces.

This clamp meter for HVAC applications can measure both DC and AC currents and voltages of up to 600A and 600V. You can set the reading to manual or auto to save time when taking measurements. Other features include a low battery indicator and auto power shutoff after 10 minutes of inactivity.

Specifications:

  • AC/DC voltage range: 600V
  • AC/DC current range: 600A

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Pros:

  • Two years limited warranty
  • Relatively affordable
  • Auto power shutoff and low-level battery indicator
  • CAT III safety compliant
  • High build quality

Cons:

  • Limited features and functions

6. MSR-C600 Digital Clamp Meter

The last clamp meter on the list is also the most affordable product. Etekcity MSR-C600 is the best among all non-contact voltage and current measuring instruments within this price range.

Despite the low price, Etekcity MSR-C600 has many functions and stunning features that made it appear on this list. You can use it to measure AC and DC voltages, AC currents, resistance, continuity, and diode tests.

This affordable clamp meter for HVAC also has a data hold, max reading, and an easy-to-read display screen. Etekcity MSR-C600 also goes into sleep mode after 15 minutes of inactivity to reduce power usage.

Specifications:

  • Display: 5000-count dual display
  • Resistance range: 0-20MΩ
  • AC/DC voltage range: 600V
  • AC current range: 400A

buy now!

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Simple design and safe
  • Auto power off
  • Compact and portable

Cons:

  • Limited functions and range
  • No DC current measurements
  • Manual range selection

What to Consider When Buying the Best Clamp Meter for HVAC

You cannot go to the market and randomly choose a clamp meter for HVAC services. You need background information to make the best decision and get the value for your money. That is the [aim of this buying guide. We provide the specifications and factors to consider in every clamp meter you want to buy before concluding the purchase. They include the following:

1. Type of Clamp Meter

Clamp meters are classified according to the sensor or method they use to detect current in a conductor. We have a current transformer, hall effect, and Rogowski coil clamp meters. Current transformer clamp meters are commonly available in the market but can only measure AC currents. The same applies to Rogowski coil units.

But if you want a clamp meter for AC and DC current and voltage measurements, buy a unit that uses the hall effect.

2. Range

Clamp meters for HVAC mainly measure currents and voltages in high voltage systems. You want the range to be as high as possible to make it versatile. A meter that measures AC/DC currents of about 600A is appropriate for many applications. But you can go for higher values if it fits your budget. The same applies to other parameters such as resistance, frequency, capacitance, and temperature if it is a multi-functional meter.

3. Accuracy

Your clamp meter should give you accurate voltage and current readings. Erratic measurements can be disastrous when dealing with high voltage lines.

4. Other Features

Apart from the primary functions and features, you may consider other capabilities and add-ons of the clamp meter you buy. Can it measure non-linear voltages? Or can you use it to test diodes and continuity? These additional functions make the difference.

Other clamp meters for HVAC have low-power indication and auto power shut off features. Don’t just look at the battery capacity and ignore these two.

5. Safety

Working on high-voltage lines and panels is dangerous. Without a clamp meter rated for the purpose, you can be putting your life on the line. Go for the one rated CAT III if you intend to use it on the electrical distribution panel or CAT IV for use in an electrical utility connection.

Final Remarks

Like all other products you buy, your budget determines the clamp meter for HVAC you will go for. The best may be too expensive for you. Fortunately, there are cheaper options that are equally reliable. Check out the following recommendations:

UEi DL489 is the best clamp meter for HVAC if it fits your budget. It features an easy-to-read backlight dual display and a magnetic mount for hands-free operation. This instrument also has a high safety rating for electrical distribution panel use.

Fluke 376FC is another ideal option for industrial use though a bit pricey. It is an advanced measuring instrument suitable for collaborating with team members. You can log and share data using a mobile application and remotely take voltage readings. This is the best option for maintenance.

The last recommendation is Klein Tools CL800 clamp meter. This tool is relatively easy on your budget and offers the best features. It is multi-functional and has a wide range of all parameters.

If our choices in this page are not matching your preference, you may want to check out our other choices of best clamp meters here. We collect them based on the brand name (reputation). Maybe, they will suit your need and preference.