What is an indicator screwdriver for?

Screwdriver with neon indicator

The tip of such a screwdriver is connected to a resistor that reduces the voltage, making it safe for humans. The resistor is connected to the neon lamp contact inside the screwdriver body, the second lamp contact is connected to the contact plate on the device body. You must put your finger on this plate, touching the wire with the tip of a screwdriver or inserting it into an outlet. Thus, the electrical circuit is closed and, if voltage is present, the lamp will light up. If it does not light up, then the cable is not energized.

This screwdriver is only suitable for detecting the presence of voltage and locating the phase conductor. The sensitivity of such a screwdriver starts at about 60 V. With its help, it will also not be possible to determine the place of an open in the circuit.

To check if the device works, you need to plug the extension cord into the outlet and insert a screwdriver into its holes, putting your finger on the opposite end of it. In the holes corresponding to the phases, the light should light up.

What is an indicator screwdriver for and how to use it

An indicator screwdriver is a tool that everyone who deals with equipment, electrical appliances, and wiring should have. It is used to determine the presence of an electric current charge in wires, sockets. To ensure safety when working with wires that can be charged, it is worth figuring out how to use an indicator screwdriver. It will help you understand which wires and elements should not be touched, since they are not de-energized. Also, such a screwdriver is useful for motorists to determine the health of some parts of the car, which should be energized.

Led indicator

This option can be considered optimal for home purposes. It’s affordable and easy to use. With its help, you can solve a fairly wide range of tasks:

Индикаторная отвертка 2: НОВЫЕ ВОЗМОЖНОСТИ! Indicator screwdriver.

  • Check the presence of voltage by contact and non-contact methods;
  • Check the performance of light bulbs;
  • Determine the places where the circuit is broken. damage to wires, cables, fuses;
  • Find places for wiring in the walls when work is needed.

The device of such a screwdriver is similar to the previous version, but it uses an LED light bulb, and to determine the presence of current, it is not necessary to touch the end of the handle. A tester screwdriver with LED indicator can detect the presence of current even if the voltage is less than 60 V. It can also detect wiring hidden up to 1.5 cm thick under the floor or in the wall, which will help to avoid damage to the wire during repair work. To detect the wiring, you need to run the handle of a screwdriver along the surface under which it is to be found. If the light comes on, it means that a live wire or cable has been laid in this place.

There is a very simple way to test the LED indicator screwdriver. If you touch its tip with one hand, and put your finger on the contact pad from the end, the light will light up. This means that the screwdriver works.

When you bring the screwdriver handle to the cable (it is not necessary to touch it with the screwdriver), the light will light up if there is voltage in it. Thus, you can determine where the outages in the network are if the current has ceased to flow to the outlet. To find out if a light bulb for a lamp or chandelier works, you can place the tip of a screwdriver on the socket or contact on its end and place your finger on the end of the screwdriver handle. If the LED lights up, then the light is working.

How the indicator screwdriver works?

It is impossible to use a tester screwdriver like a regular screwdriver, as this can lead to damage to the mechanism. To understand how an indicator screwdriver works, you need to study its design. If you have at least basic ideas about what electricity is and how it works in devices and wires, then it will not be difficult to understand the principle of operation of a screwdriver.

If it is necessary to understand the wiring, the reason for the malfunction of the electrical device, check the operability of the outlet, there is a need to determine the purpose of the conductors. the wires that ensure the operation of the electrical circuit. For the correct connection of the circuit or troubleshooting, you need to find the phases. the conductors that supply electricity to the outlet, the device. They are always energized. The neutral wires (“zero”) carry current back to the generator, while they have zero voltage. Also in the circuit there are grounding, protective conductors, in which there is also no voltage. According to the approved standards, all of these wires must have a different color. The phases can have a winding of any color, while the zero, or neutral wire, should be blue, and the ground wire should be yellow-green.

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The principle of operation of such screwdrivers differs depending on the type of device. Now on the market you can find the following types of tester screwdrivers:

  • A screwdriver with a neon indicator is the simplest and cheapest kind;
  • LED screwdriver. its cost is slightly higher, but it is more sensitive and performs more functions than the previous one;
  • Digital screwdrivers are even more sensitive, multifunctional. They show the magnitude of the voltage, but their cost is quite high and they are unlikely to be needed by an ordinary user, but rather a tool of professional electricians.

Having figured out how the indicator screwdriver of each type works, you can choose the most suitable for yourself.

Digital screwdriver testers

These devices have many additional functions. they indicate the presence of voltage with an audible signal, often have a window in which the voltage value is displayed.

The disadvantages of such a screwdriver for an ordinary user, not a professional, are the complexity of the device and operation on batteries, which must be changed in a timely manner. An electrician who constantly uses the device in work easily remembers all its functions and method of use. If the device is needed for home use, then every time it is needed, you will have to refer to the instructions.

The sensitivity of the instrument is significantly higher than that of previous types and is believed to be able to detect wires and cables at a depth of 3 cm (if they are energized).

To learn how to use the indicator screwdriver, you need to carefully read the instructions attached to it, which should be sold with the device. Typically, such devices operate in several modes:

  • Contact mode, when the tip of the device must be applied to the source to determine the presence of charge;
  • Non-contact mode (it can be subdivided into several modes with varying degrees of sensitivity).

Switching is usually done with a button or switch. Depending on the availability of the tested conductor, the tester operating mode is selected. If this conductor is in the public domain (a bare wire, stripped of insulation, an outlet, another open surface), then you need to use the contact mode and apply the tip of a screwdriver to the conductor to determine the presence of current. For sealed and hard-to-reach sources (cables in thick insulation, hidden wiring), a contactless method is used, when the contact present in the device’s case detects the presence of voltage when the handle is brought a short distance to the intended location of the phase.

Checking the performance of the screwdriver is carried out similarly to the previous options. you need to attach the tip of the device in contact mode to the holes of the extension cord that is known to be working and connected to the network.

Only after carefully studying the question of how to use a tester screwdriver can you use it to solve problems with electrical appliances and house wiring. When using any type of device, you should remember the safety rules. Never touch live conductors with your hands. Also, do not touch the tip of the screwdriver when it is attached to the conductor or is in close proximity to it.

Indicator screwdriver without batteries

The simplest screwdriver, without batteries, works quite simply. The current passes through the sting, then through a limiting resistor and a light indicator, after which it closes on a person. If the metal contact on the handle is not clamped, the circuit will not be closed. The device will not work this way. The advantage of such a device: low cost, simple design and no need to replace the power supply. Disadvantages: the LED has a weak backlight level, it can only check the voltage of more than 60 V. In addition, it is impossible to determine the presence of an open circuit with such a screwdriver.

Indicator screwdriver

In everyday life, we constantly have to contact with electrical appliances or with electricity. It is unnecessary to talk about the fact that it is unsafe for humans. Therefore, in every house there should be a simple device with which it would be possible to easily determine the presence of current in some conductor, outlet or switchboard. This is necessary when replacing any wire, electrical equipment, when troubleshooting electrical circuits. An indicator screwdriver serves this purpose. With its help, you can determine the presence of “phase” and “zero”, find a wire break, check the performance of the circuit breaker or plug.

Indicator screwdriver. Where are the phase, zero and point of wire break?

Before starting to use it is necessary to make sure that the indicator device is in good working order. The battery that powers the device allows for a quick test. To do this, it is enough to touch simultaneously the metal contact on the handle and the tip. The indicator light should come on. To test a non-battery device, touch the live wire and the metal on the handle. The LED will also light up if the instrument is healthy.

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indicator, screwdriver

checking the battery on the indicator screwdriver

The screwdriver signals only the presence of a phase in the conductor or its absence. In this case, the indicator light is activated. If the indicator is off, then the wire is either disconnected from the network, or “zero” is supplied to it.

Battery-operated indicator screwdriver

It is a more advanced instrument with a bright bulb. The convenience of work lies in the fact that to check the presence of current, it is enough just to touch the wire with a sting, without touching the metal contact on the handle. With this indicator, you can easily check for broken wiring. To do this, you need to clamp the metal contact, and touch the de-energized wire with a sting. With the other hand, you need to touch the other end of this wire. In the event of a break, the indicator will not show anything, and with a whole wire, the LED will light up.

battery-operated indicator screwdrivers

This way you can check any wires. For example, to test an extension cord, you must disconnect it from the network and make a metal jumper from a piece of bare wire. Insert the jumper into one of the sockets of the extension cord to short-circuit its wires. Take the extension plug by hand and hold one contact with your fingers, and touch the second contact with a screwdriver with a clamped metal top. If the wire is intact, then the indicator of the screwdriver will glow.

sound and light signal of indicator screwdriver 2

This model can be used as an indicator of live wiring. That is, the device allows you to identify live insulated wires located on the surface of the wall or embedded shallowly into the wall. To search for a wire, you need to grasp the tip of the screwdriver with your hand, and guide its handle along the wiring or wall. Illumination of the light bulb will indicate the presence of current in the wire or the presence of powered wires in the wall. This function can be extremely useful in the case of repairs, when it is necessary to break through the wall, and the location of the hidden wiring in it is unknown.

How the different models of indicator screwdrivers work?

The screwdriver consists of a plastic body, a metal tip and a conductive contact on the handle. A limiting resistor, a neon or LED type indicator light is built into the housing. There may also be batteries and a spring to hold them.

varieties of indicator screwdrivers

Indicator screwdrivers with display

These are newfangled instruments, equipped not only with an LCD display showing the voltage in the network, but also with an audible alarm. On the body of the device there is a button for switching operating modes. The increased functionality allows the device to be used as a simple tester. However, a real tester is needed for full-fledged work, and a screwdriver with tester functions is not entirely convenient for full-fledged measurements. And its price is too big.

lcd indicator screwdriver

Purchase indicator probes according to your purpose. The most versatile option for the home is a battery-operated screwdriver. With occasional use, the batteries last for a long time.

Screwdriver voltage indicator for home

It should be said right away that the indicator screwdriver is a very important tool, which, along with pliers and a hammer, should be in any house and apartment.

Almost every person had to get into such an unpleasant situation. suddenly the light goes out in the apartment. What happened? Why did this happen? Most people immediately ask the question: “Was the light turned off only for me or was it everywhere?” Well, if you have an indicator screwdriver at hand, you can find the answer to this question very quickly. over, having a minimal set of skills, in some cases, you can even fix the malfunction yourself.

For example, if contact was simply lost in a switch or outlet, you can fix the breakdown very quickly. you just need to find the problem area. But how to do that? Use special, bulky, complex and rather expensive devices? No, if you have a screwdriver indicator at hand. over, if you use it, then you do not have to disassemble the wall to get to the wiring.

A serious plus is that no one needs to be taught how to use the indicator with a screwdriver. it is as easy to use as possible. And at the same time, it allows you to instantly determine the absence or presence of voltage at the switch or in the outlet.

In this article, we will consider what a screwdriver is an indicator, their main varieties and design, as well as how to use a screwdriver indicator.

How does a screwdriver indicator work

To use any device, you need to figure out how it works. Of course, this fully applies to the indicator screwdriver. If you know at least roughly how it works, this will give you the ability to easily use it, and at the same time not make any mistakes.

Universal indicator screwdriver STAYER 4520-48

But today on sale you can find special screwdrivers-indicators, when working with which you can test the fishing line both contact and non-contact methods. It also allows you to “ring out” the wiring for a short circuit or breaks.

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Such an indicator screwdriver is the STAYER 4520-48. It is perfect if you need to test the elements of AC and DC circuits in vehicles, household appliances and other devices. With its help, you can easily determine the polarity and carry out a continuity by the method of sound or light indication.

This indicator compares favorably with most analogs by the presence of not only light, but also sound notification. This makes the work of checking the presence of voltage even easier, more comfortable and safe.

If the voltage is normal, then the user hears a sound signal, accompanied by the lighting of the green indicator. Alas, this indicator screwdriver also has a serious disadvantage. The fact is that it runs on a battery that runs out faster than we would like.

Indicator screwdriver with LED. great functionality

The LED indicator screwdriver has a lot in common with the model described above. Their principle of operation is the same. But there is still a difference. LED probes are suitable for working with electrical networks in which the voltage is much less than 60 V.

Another factor that distinguishes the LED indicator from the usual one is the presence of its own, autonomous power source. a battery. They are also distinguished by the presence of a transistor, most often a bipolar.

Therefore, this type of indicator screwdrivers can already be called multifunctional. With its help, you can not only check the presence or absence of a phase with a contact, as well as contactless method, but also check the integrity of circuits. fuses, wires and cables.

The pointer consists of two working parts. The first looks like a flat screwdriver. It is used when working with direct contact with live elements.

The second part is suitable if it is necessary to determine the presence of voltage without contact. When used with the first part, it also allows you to determine the integrity of the network.

An insulated handle made of transparent material contains an LED, which indicates the presence of voltage in the network.

How to use the LED indicator screwdriver

As mentioned above, these indicators are distinguished by the presence of the function of not only contact, but also contactless use in the presence of a light warning.

If you use the classic contact method, and you need to find out where the phase is, it is enough to bring the working part closer to both contacts of the circuit breaker. By bringing the device to the zero contact, you will not notice any changes. When you check the phase, the signal light will immediately light up, which will allow you to immediately find out that there is voltage on this contact.

To determine the presence of a phase using the non-contact method, it is sufficient to use the second working part, also known as the heel. It must be brought to the cable insulation. You don’t even need to touch it. if there is a phase, the diode will light up at a short distance from the cable.

A serious plus is the ease of dialing (identifying breaks in the circuit). It is necessary to connect one working part to the first end of the circuit that is being tested, and the other to the second. If the circuit is good, then the LED will light up. Otherwise nothing will happen.

If the contact is energized, the indicator will immediately signal this. a red light will light up in it. If you bring the voltage indicator to the zero contact, no signal will follow.

How to use a screwdriver indicator

Well, we examined three types of indicator screwdrivers, now we will consider how to use the indicator screwdriver and check them in operation.

An ordinary screwdriver indicator is the simplest solution

The simplest and most common probes are equipped with neon lamps. The principle of their operation is as simple as possible.

When you check the voltage in the outlet, the electric current passes through the resistor installed inside the indicator (this resistor limits the current, its rating is at least 0.5 mΩ) and is transmitted to the first contact of the neon lamp.

In this case, the second contact of the light is closed on the user through the contact located on the handle.

With these screwdrivers, the resistance of the human body and the capacitance are part of the light bulb circuit. In other words, when you touch the contact with your fingers, and the sting. the strained wire, you will see the light bulb glow (provided that there is voltage in the network).

If there is no contact with the user, the lamp will not light up. The main disadvantage of this type of screwdriver is a rather high voltage threshold. at least 60 V.

Therefore, they are only suitable for detecting phase presence and voltage. It will not help to determine if the chain is open. So, this indicator screwdriver is not multifunctional. it only allows you to determine the absence or presence of voltage in the network.