how to test audio jack using multimeter

Are you confused What does OL mean on a multimeter??. That’s not only you, many peoples don’t have an idea about OL on multimeter. After reading many articles I was not satisfied. So, I have decided to write in detail on OL in multimeter fluke.

Before we start first of all let me answer the most frequent question

What is Multimeter?

What does OL mean on a multimeter?

A  multimeter is a tool for measuring electrical quantities like resistance, voltage, and current. All these meters (ohmmeter, voltmeter, and ammeter) that measures those quantities are combined to a single meter is known as a multimeter.

​The advancement in technology is being made so rapidly. Electric and Electronic circuits are used in every field. During Installing, troubleshooting, or repairing these devices we need accurate and precise data. A multimeter is that tool that gives us all the required data.

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What does OL mean on a multimeter?

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While using a multimeter, one has to measure different readings. Newbies often find it difficult to take a reading. One of those is OL. The meaning of OL can be different while taking different readings. We will discuss them one by one in detail

  • Testing Voltage  

while testing the voltage if your screen is showing 1 or OL it means the range you have selected from the knob is very low. It won’t damage your multimeter but keep in mind always keep the knob at a higher range from the measured voltage

  • Testing Continuity

While performing the continuity test you might come across that screen showing 1 or OL (open loop). This is showing that the circuit is broken and there is no continuity.

  • Testing Resistance

While resistance testing if the screen shows 1 or OL. It means that the component or circuit you’re testing does not have continuity.

What is Infinite Resistance on a Multimeter?

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Most people are confused that what is Infinite resistance on a multimeter?. You might have seen these types of terms in engineering. To explain this term let me give you an example

Water needs a pipe to flow from one place to another. If the pipe is blocked no water will flow. The same goes for electric current. Electric current needed a close path to flow. In the broken or damaged conductor, no current will flow. So that meter will show 1 or OL on display.

Difference between OL and 0 in Measuring Resistance

There are three types of materials conductor, semiconductor, and insulator

Conductors: From the name, this material shows no resistance in the flow of current. Example of conductors is silver, gold, copper, etc.

Semiconductor: Semiconductors are materials whose conductivity lies between conductors and insulators. Example of semiconductors is silicon, germanium, etc.

Insulator: Insulators are the poor conductor of electricity or they do not allow the flow of current. Example of the insulator is plastic, rubber, etc.

While taking reading for conductors the multimeter will show 0 because they provide negligible small resistance. While on other hand for Insulator meter will show OL that means (open circuit or very high resistance). But keep in mind that performing a continuity test on the conductor meter can show OL  if the conductor or circuit is broken.

How to test VFD with a multimeter?


How to use a  multimeter?

oL in fluke multimeter

A   multimeter has three important sections

  • Display

The display is used to display the measurements or data.

  • Selection Knob

Likewise, a selection knob is used to selects what you want to measure. You can measure electrical quantities on a multimeter by rotating the knob and moving to the symbol want to measure.

  • Ports

In Ports, probes will be plugged in. There are four ports in the fluke multimeter

  1. Com Port: In the “COM” or ““ port black probe should be connected.
  2. 10A: This port is used while measuring large currents, greater than 200mA
  3. µA mA: is used to measure small current
  4. : This port is used to measure voltage and resistance and continuity.

After reading this article “What does OL mean on a multimeter?” you will have an idea about OL in meters. We have tried to cover each aspect of the fluke multimeter and will look for more and try to add those in the next update. How was this article? Let us know in the comments section below.

Frequently Ask Questions

Is OL a good reading on a multimeter?

While measuring with a multimeter if the meter reads “OL” then the voltage you’re measuring is too high for your meter to read. Set the multimeter knob to a higher value.

Does OL mean no continuity?

If the meter shows 0L or it’s mean an open circuit or no continuity. It shows that the voltage you are measuring is too high for the meter.

What does OL mean on a capacitor?

OL or “overload”  means the capacitance is too high for the multimeter to measure. Also, after getting this reading change the multimeter range to a higher value. This can happen if the capacitor is damaged.

What does 1 mean on a multimeter?

When the meter will show 1 or OL its means Overload. Set the multimeter knob to a higher value and take the reading again. For example, If you are measuring the resistance of 1K ohm you have to set the knob greater than 1K Ohm.

What does OFL mean on a multimeter?

OFL means “overflow” which shows that the reading you want to take is greater than the range of the meter. For example, if you want to measure the voltage of 100V, and you have selected the knob position at less than 100V then the meter will show OFL.
There are a lot of things that can confuse you while measuring resistance. I hope this article will help you while taking measurement. OL or 1 means open and 0 means short.






By inham

Inhamullah Jadoon is an Electrical Engineer and Co Founder of He has vast amount of experience in the field of Engineering and in assisting Engineers on Software and Hardware issues.

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