One of the multimeters I have is a cheap Craftsman 82140 65EA. Today I was using it and it was giving wildly high readings for everything. A battery that measured around 9V on a working multimeter read over 13V on this one and fluctuated. I also tried measuring a few other things. A batter reading 1.2V on other multimeters read over 1.5V. A 82ohm carbon film resistor registered around 94ohm and measured 81.2ohm on another multimeter.
I was wondering what might be wrong. I changed the battery and that didn't fix it. I tried swapping out the leads with another brand multimeter that was working and then the Craftsman started giving the correct readings. This doesn't make any sense. I know wires break, but why would it read higher values for voltage ? I would only expect higher readings on Ohms.