How is a shorting test done on a meter with a BNC connector?

Document ID

Document ID TE5202

Published Date

Published Date 07/12/2021
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Question
How is a shorting test done on a meter with a BNC connector?
Summary
BNC connector shorting test
Answer
In some cases with meters that have a BNC connector, it can be difficult to identify if an issue is being caused by the probe or the meter. Doing a shorting test on the meter can be a useful test to determine if the problem is being caused by the meter.

1) To do the shorting test, have the meter set to display results in mV.
2) Put the shorting cap on or use a paper clip to create the short if the shorting cap is missing.
To use a paper clip, straighten it and make a U shape with it. With the paper clip make a connection between the inside of the center of the BNC connector and with the outside ring of the BNC connector like in the picture below.  Note: If using a paper clip, make sure good, solid contact is made between the BNC connector and the paper clip, or readings may drift/bounce which could make it look like there is a problem with the meter.
3) Note what mV display while the connector is shorted. Should be 0.0 ± 0.2 mV and stable. If the mV reads outside of this tolerance or bounces around (double check note above) then this is an indication that there is a problem with the meter.

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