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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    3

    Default Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Hi fellas. I am looking for a solid/dependable clamp meter. From the many HI forums, I have found Fluke and Fieldpiece to be the most popular. Any suggestions?

    Thanks from a newb.

    Similar Threads:
    Inspection Referral

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    77

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    I use fieldpiece. Fluke just had a recall. Not sure where I read it.

    sm


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
    Posts
    3,177

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    I have a clamp meter but find myself usually using the Sperry open-jaw current sensor because it fits into places a clamp meter won't. See the model at the top of this webpage:

    Sperry Instruments - DIGISNAP-AV

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  4. #4
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    I do not see a need for an inspector to use a clamp-on meter.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    77

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    I agrree. If you start determining over current and such, you may be working as an electrician or hvac guy. I thought I would use mine, as well as the Megometer for testing motor insulation, but I sold them the other day. Never been used.


  6. #6
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Meyer View Post
    I agrree. If you start determining over current and such, you may be working as an electrician or hvac guy. I thought I would use mine, as well as the Megometer for testing motor insulation, but I sold them the other day. Never been used.
    SM: Agreed. The purchase and use of "special tools" can be a slipperly slope from which there is no return.


  7. #7
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    SM: Agreed. The purchase and use of "special tools" can be a slipperly slope from which there is no return.
    GD spell check did not catch "slipperly". Worthless software.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Chicago IL
    Posts
    1,984

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Fieldpiece all the way. Good base unit and great assortment of Acc heads. Clamp meter came with base unit, never used it for HI. If you do adverse insp the acc heads are very helpful.

    www.aic-chicago.com
    773/844-4AIC
    "The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Thanks guys.

    I see both sides of the argument about using specialized equipment to delve too deep. I will be using it satisfy my own curiosity from time to time.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    South-West Michigan
    Posts
    469

    Post Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    The Fieldpiece looks just like Ideal. Ideal equipment has been around a long time, and is dependable. Clamp meters are useful for two quick and easy checks: stray voltage and to confirm excess load when a hot breaker is spotted.

    The former is a fast and easy test that should always be done, for safety reasons. The later, not really necessary and some times precluded by too many conductors in a panel to allow safe access (from a home inspector standpoint).

    I use Ideal meters. With Fluke, you are paying for the meter, and then the name.


    Randall Aldering GHI BAOM MSM
    Housesmithe Inspection
    www.housesmithe.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    77

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    I was a Facility Director for a large hospital system in SA, so we were always inspecting electrical distribution systems, hvac, chillers, high voltage and safety checks. Make sure your meter is rated for the use you are dong. Fluke has a good safety article, unbiased on the category of the "class of meters". If you need a safety training documentation, they also will send you a cd. I have used in for training with control companies and hvac training. Not all meters are created equal and several have caused the technicians to get electrocuted. To top your heart it only take a few microvolts.

    sm


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    South-West Michigan
    Posts
    469

    Post Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Stephen makes a good point. The meter should always be rated above the current ranges in the area you are working. Do not rule out the possibility that there may be excessively high voltage or current present as the result of a malfunction or damage. Always check for equipment grounding before touching the equipment. Never place both hands on the equipment.

    On another note, I see that the Fieldpiece meter is manual ranging instead of auto ranging. More work for the fingers, and the selector switch will wear out faster. Another thing to consider is customer service. I have had only to make a call to Ideal for a damaged part or replacement leads, and they are shipped out right away without more than 10 minutes on the telephone. That is customer service.

    Something that is rare in today's environment.


    Randall Aldering GHI BAOM MSM
    Housesmithe Inspection
    www.housesmithe.com

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Thanks for the safety advice. Its great to know that some of you experienced guys are willing to take the time and teach those new to the industry. I look forward to learning from everyone here. God Bless.


  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Barrington, IL
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    I use a Fluke clamp on and am very satisfied with it. Stephan is correct, there is a recall on some meters. I have found the clamp on meter exceptionally useful. I've also found that some "electricians" have no idea about what causes some of the conditions that I find with it.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  15. #15
    Cobra Cook's Avatar
    Cobra Cook Guest

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Very few professional electricians use other than fluke equipment. Pick up an Ideal or other lesser brand and you can feel the difference. Fluke has been around longer than any of the others with the exception of amprobe of which I use as a professional HVAC mechanic. Both cost a little more but what is your life worth?
    When a professional whatever goes to do a job they want the best and most reliable piece of equipment to do whatever it is they do. Home inspections are visual non invasive type inspections. If you are not an electrician or other service professional who spent a minimum of four years in school to get a journeyman’s card you have no business poking your hands inside of a panel box or a control panel. Lets just say you get electrocuted or just get a good shock and your customer is standing behind you looking and if you are lucky your hand gets knocked off and flies back and cold cocks your customer, What a mess that will become! Thank that is funny, supposed your hand does not get knocked off and you get fried and your customer sees all this happening. What a mess that will be. Just say none of that happened and you got your amp reading are you sure you would know what it means? Stay safe and if you are not a licensed service provider please do not make the other Home Inspectors insurance keep going up.


  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,251

    Default Re: Clamp Meter Suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobra Cook View Post
    Home inspections are visual non invasive type inspections. If you are not an electrician or other service professional who spent a minimum of four years in school to get a journeyman’s card you have no business poking your hands inside of a panel box or a control panel. Lets just say you get electrocuted or just get a good shock and your customer is standing behind you looking and if you are lucky your hand gets knocked off and flies back and cold cocks your customer, What a mess that will become! Thank that is funny, supposed your hand does not get knocked off and you get fried and your customer sees all this happening. What a mess that will be. Just say none of that happened and you got your amp reading are you sure you would know what it means? Stay safe and if you are not a licensed service provider please do not make the other Home Inspectors insurance keep going up.
    Another tradesperson who does not understand what Home Inspections are.

    And what an ego too.

    Just keep safe and "please do not make the other" tradesperson's "insurance keep going up." WE would appreciate it.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

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