The Process of Testing A Capacitor

The Process of Testing A Capacitor

A capacitor is a device necessary in many electrical appliances. Whether you need a high voltage capacitor will depend on the type of electrical connection therein. Testing a capacitor is very simple when you have a multimeter. The process is what we have explained in this guide.

Remove the capacitor from its connection

Capacitors are in almost every machine you have, as long as there is an electric circuit and the need for an electrical connection. The purpose and function of the capacitor are to store the voltage in that circuit. The main types of appliances that capacitors are needed include heating appliances, air conditioners, and compressors, among others. If you want to test the capacitor, you will need to remove the device from the connection in the circuit. The size of the capacitor may be different, but the installation process follows the same rule; hence removal should be easy. Some circuits may, however, be confusing, so you may need to call an expert.

Check the body for a value of capacitance

On every capacitor, there is an inscription of the capacitance it carries. This figure is important because it will guide you on what to expect when you check the capacitance. Capacitance has its measurement unit in Farads, and its symbol is F. To measure a Farad is a bit hard, so you may not exactly have a capacitor measurement in that figure. The measurement mostly used is microfarad, symbolized with "µF." A Farad is a million times higher than a microfarad.

Get a multimeter tester

The multimeter tester is a device used to measure various items in electric circuits. It has different measurements on it, so you need to know how to use the multimeter first. It's also crucial that you purchase a multimeter from a brand you can trust. Some multimeters give wrong readings, especially if you do not have the right one.

Set your multimeter to check for capacitance

On the multimeter, there are different measurements, so the first thing you need to do is set it to the capacitance measurement. You will see the same microfarad measure on the device, but it may be with another function. Please do not bother about that, as it will measure it right.

Connect the capacitor to the multimeter

This is the most crucial part that remains if you have followed the steps from above. The multimeter will come with its leads that will connect to the capacitor. The positive lead, usually in red, will connect to the negative side of the capacitor and vice versa. If you get this connection wrong, you may not get any reasonable reading. If you get it, all you need to do is check the reading on the multimeter for the right reading.


Testing a capacitor for its capacitance may require different methods. If it is a new capacitor, you can easily use the inscription on the body of the capacitor to get the measurement. You can use an analog meter to get the measurements. It all depends on the process you go through and the device you know. The best strategy to go through is using the digital multimeter, as explained in this guide. You can call on an expert, but it is usually an unnecessary expense.