Digital multimeters today are one of the most useful practical tools which are needed for safe usage around electronic modules. Digital multimeters are used not only by licensed technicians and electricians but also by DIY enthusiasts and beginners.
As a result, digital multimeters have become much more user friendly and improved for those without technical electrical knowledge while providing everything a professional technician needs. All this for much cheaper than the multimeters of the past.
In the market today, there are hundreds of manufacturers producing thousands of such electronic gadgets. One brand which has established itself as the leading provider of premium digital multimeters is Fluke – a brand that never disappoints.
But even then, how do you choose from the many available models by Fluke?
Well, we have come to your rescue!
In our review today, we will compare the most popular Fluke models 115 vs 116 vs 117 thoroughly so that you can choose the right one.
Fluke Digital Multimeters are an amazing addition to any tool belts. They are designed for durability against drops, shock absorption, humidity& more. With every Fluke Digital Multimeter, you are ensured of accurate measurements, consistent & reliable performance and a valuable warranty.
Let’s get started.
Fluke 115 vs 116 vs 117 – Comparison Table
Individual Product Reviews
The Fluke 115 is an accurate and user-friendly digital multimeter for everyday use.
Despite being a lower-end model of Fluke’s line-up of measuring devices, it is one of the easiest carry-on digital test meters which will easily fit in the palm of your hands.
If you’re looking for a digital multimeter that appeals to trainees and home electrical enthusiasts to field service technicians to auto electricians and just about everyone else in between – the Fluke 115 is your most appropriate choice!
The Fluke 115 has a compact ergonomic design which is both rugged in construction and easily fits into overall pockets, kitchen drawers, and toolboxes. The unit has a large 6000-count display with a backlight for dim working conditions such as in control panels or tight, dark, roof spaces. The digits, unit icons, and responsive bar graphs have excellent clarity making it easy to read in all situations.
The Function button can be used for frequency and capacitance measurements. As for connectivity, this unit has three input jacks: voltage, resistance and continuity. However, the milli/micro-amp jack socket is missing, which is a bummer as it is often found on most other multimeters.
Fluke 115 is also easy to use thanks to its simple operation. It can accurately measure current, voltage, resistance, frequency, continuity, and capacitance. It also features a proper diode check function. This unit can measure up to 600V AC and DC, and continuous amperage to 10A. It can measure resistance up to 40MΩ resistance, and frequencies up to 50 kHz as well.
The Fluke 115 Digital Multimeter has been tested independently for safe use in CAT III 600V environments. The meter features a standard rotary input selector dial with nine positions, including millivolts, DC/AC amps and volts, resistance, and diode check. The dial is small, making it easy to operate with the thumb of the left hand and the response time is quick and reliable.
The Fluke 115 comes with a durable case and holster, and both the unit and the case are resistant to drops, humidity, and general wear and tear. The unit is recommended for use under temperatures ranging from as low as 14 degrees to as high as 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
Overall, the Fluke 115 True RMS digital multimeter is a well-rounded multimeter for general electrical and electronic testing tasks.
- Compact & rugged design
- Easy one hand operation
- Accurate readings
- Tracks signal fluctuations
- Auto power-off
- Smooth, responsive bar graph display
- Well-performing continuity tester
- The battery can be easily replaced
- Mediocre display resolution
- No milliamp or micro-amp range
- No ‘Touch Hold’ mode
The Fluke 116 is a specialized digital multimeter designed for HVAC professionals.
The Fluke 116 is the tool of choice for all commercial and residential HVAC measurement needs, maintenance and installation troubleshooting. So, it has all the features for HVAC technicians and professionals to quickly ascertain troubleshoots with any HVAC equipment and flame sensors.
A feature which makes the Fluke 116 special compared to other multimeters is the inclusion of the built-in thermometer for HVAC applications. Unlike Fluke’s other digital multimeters such as the Fluke 115 or 117, this unit includes a built-in thermometer that is capable of measuring temperatures up to 400°C (752°F). It also features a low input impedance that prevents false readings resulting from ghost voltage. It has two sensitivity modes: Hi and Lo, and it works effectively for roughly one inch and five inches.
The Fluke 116 also comes with microamps to test flame sensors. Other typical functions include measuring the frequency, resistance, continuity, and capacitance. It also provides min, max&average to record signal fluctuations. The large, white LED backlight makes it easy for users to read the measurement information even in poorly lit areas. As usual, the Fluke 116 multimeters too have been independently tested for safe use in CAT III 600 V environments.
The Fluke 116 is relatively small and compact and quite beautifully designed compared to other multimeters by Fluke. It’s also reasonably light yet it is sturdy and very durable. The contoured case and raised input dial selector make it easy to use and operate with just one hand. The dial is adjustable by your thumb when held in the left side.
The battery compartment design is also innovative and can be accessed by just a single screw without removing the holster. This unit fits seamlessly into the optional ToolPak magnetic hanger for hands-free operation.
Overall, the Fluke 116is a complete technician’s kit but it is well-rounded for those with slightly above average general electrical knowledge as well. It is backed by the manufacturer’s warranty of 3 years.
- Compact & ergonomic design
- Small & portable
- Superb build quality
- Large backlit display
- Min&Max modes
- non-contact voltage detection & auto-volt settings
- Measures non-linear loads
- Accurate frequency check to 50KHz
- Built-in thermometer
- Easy to access battery compartment
- Responsive bar graph
- CAT III 600 V safety rated
- Does not have milliamp/micro-amp range
- Mediocre Display resolution
- Flimsy ‘hold’ function
The Fluke 117 is a high-quality digital multimeter that is ideal for applications in commercial environments such as in buildings, schools and hospitals.
Fluke has been designing great electrical multimeters and the Fluke 117 is no exception. It is compact& small in size, which makes it easy to carry and store in small spaces such as kitchen drawers or a car’s glove compartment. It’s also lightweight making it easy to use and handle. The raised input dial selector which is adjustable using your thumb.
Despite its small size, this unit packs a bunch of impressive features including auto-ranging, True RMS, and Auto-Volts. Also, it has integrated contactless voltage detection capability, which means it will prevent false readings due to ghost voltage. This clever multimeter also comes with automated shut off for amperage overload and the device will turn off automatically if exposed to over 10A for more than thirty seconds keeping you and the meter safe from harm.
The Fluke 117 also comes with min/max/average readings and can measures capacitance, frequency, current, voltage, resistance, and continuity. It has an accurate and easy-to-use interface, which will save you time and get your tests done in no time, as well as enable you to move from job to job more quickly.
Other standard features of the 117 are the large, white LED backlight screen that displays reading in an easy-to-read format, even in dimly lit areas. You can use this fantastic multimeter for hours as it comes with great battery backup and comes with both a magnetic hanger and a holster.
Overall, the Fluke 117 is not designed for heavy-duty use but it is still accurate and sturdy enough for commercial and standard electrical work, including for DIY electricians. It is one of the most reliable models on offer by Fluke and is an excellent choice for hobbyists and enthusiasts.
- Easy to read, bright display
- Compact and ergonomic design
- Easy battery access
- Auto-volt settings
- Responsive bar graph
- Lightweight but excellent great build quality
- CATIII rated to 600V
- VoltAlert technology for accurate non-contact voltage detection
- Min&Max modes
- True RMS for accurate non-linear loads measurements
- Precise frequency checks up to 50 kHz
- Includes both a magnetic hanger and a holster
- Not CAT-IV protected
- No milliamp/micro-amp range
- Mediocre display resolution
- No built-in temperature measurement capability
Similarities Between Fluke 115 vs 116 vs 117
Apart from a few differences, there’s a lot of similarities among the top 3 models by Fluke between the 115 vs 116 vs 117.
Before we look at any of the specific similarities limited to just these three models, it is useful to know that all Fluke digital multimeters in the Fluke 11x series come with some features such as the following:
- True-RMS digital multimeters
- Handheld style multimeters
- A big 3.5-digit display showing 6000 counts
- A bright white LED-backlit screen
- The capability of measuring voltage up to 600V AC/DC
- Backed by 3 years of warranty by Fluke
Now, let’s discuss the similarities among the Fluke 115 vs 116 vs 117, specifically.
All three of these True RMS digital multimeters by Fluke support both manual and auto ranging features. They accurately show analog bar graph on their displays. They have measuring capability for resistance, frequency, continuity, capacitances and also allow diode testing.
In addition to this, they are all rated CAT III rated for CAT voltage support of 600 v with a built-in overload protector. They are IP42 rated and have safety approval from CSA and UL. The measurements taken by these digital multimeters have 0.5% accuracy.
All three models have used a 9-v battery and they all come with factory pre-calibration from their country of origin – China. They all weigh less than approximately 2 pounds. In terms of the size of the digital multimeters, they have the exact dimensions such as the height, length and width.
Overall, the Fluke 115 vs 116 vs 117 are similar because they are all premium handheld digital multimeters offered by a very well-reputed brand for both beginners and professionals to be used with assurance for accurate readings, safe testing and durable performance.
Fluke 115 vs 116: The Differences
The Fluke 115 is the most basic version of the 11x series of digital multimeters by Fluke. So, when compared with the Fluke 117 or the 116, it has a few features which are missing while most other features are the same.
The significant differences between the two handheld digital multimeters are that the Fluke 116 comes with the ghost voltage detection technology. The Fluke 116 also has a thermometer built-in for measuring the temperature. For recording signal fluctuations, there is a mode for measuring the Min, Max&Average function with elapsed time feature. Also, it includes the micro-amps function to test the flame sensors.
The Fluke 115 does not include any of these features since it is a basic multimeter while the Fluke 116 is specifically designed HVAC technicians and professionals. In that sense, the Fluke 115 is designed to more suitable for field service technicians and home users.
Fluke 116 vs 117: The Differences
The Fluke 116 and Fluke 117 are basically the same multimeters since both have almost the same specifications – almost being the keyword.
The Fluke 116 is specifically designed for HVAC technicians and professionals and the Fluke 117 is an Electricians’ Multimeter which is built with the intention of use in environments such as in schools, hospitals and commercial buildings.
The major takeaway between the head to head comparison of the 117 and 116 is 2 key things. The 117 has the VoltAlert non-contact voltage detection which the Fluke 116 is not equipped with. The Fluke 116 has temperature measuring capability which the Fluke 117 does not have, even though it is the top-end version by Fluke
Fluke 115 vs 117: The Differences
This difference although very similar, is comparable to David vs Goliath in respect to our review. Because we are comparing the top-end Fluke 117 against the lower end 115.
The Fluke 117 is known as the ‘Electricians Multimeter’ because it is designed with the purpose of working on demanding environments such as hospitals, schools, and commercial buildings. But the Fluke 115 is designed for field support technicians for general testing, measuring and troubleshooting.
The Fluke 117 has the VoltAlert™ non-contact voltage detection and LoZ ghost voltage detection feature. Both of which are not found in the Fluke 115. So, if you want a somewhat affordable, multimeter for general purpose troubleshooting work, then 115 is just fine. But for more demanding environment the 117 is more suitable.
As we have previously mentioned, you will agree that digital multimeters are one of the most essential devices not just for professionally licensed technicians, but also for home users or electronics hobbyists & enthusiasts.
It is no secret that in the market of digital multimeters, Fluke is a manufacturer that stands out with its premium products on offer.
This is why, we reviewed the top 3 digital multimeters by Fluke and even compared each of them against the other. So, now you know what each is good for and their value for your money. We have touched in detail about the measuring devices and their aspects such as build quality, accuracy, safety, battery life and much more.
So, which is your choice from these top models by Fluke?
Keeping in mind the pros and cons we have discussed, pick out the model which is most suitable to your needs and share your choice with our readers.
Remember to always take all necessary precautionary measures before approaching any hazardous environment when working with electronics.