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I'm having laptop battery problems, and the hardware manual gave diagnostic instructions involving measuring the voltage in the battery. So I bought a multimeter (never used one before in my life) and had a go... but the probes are too big. The pins on the battery are tucked into little slots that the probes can't fit into.

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What should I do to measure the voltage?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ anything moderately conductive will do. \$\endgroup\$ – PlasmaHH Oct 9 '18 at 13:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PlasmaHH That's not very helpful advice for someone who's never used a multimeter before, as I said. What does that mean? Should I just wrap foil around the pins? Do I need to buy a soldering iron? Those little alligator clip things? \$\endgroup\$ – Jack M Oct 9 '18 at 13:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ I find it quite helpful for electronics and electrical engineering professionals, students, and enthusiasts \$\endgroup\$ – PlasmaHH Oct 9 '18 at 13:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @JackM Have you got any paperclips? You could "adjust" them to fit onto the probes with one end pointing out. Make sure that they do not touch each other. \$\endgroup\$ – Andrew Morton Oct 9 '18 at 13:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ The application of common sense.... \$\endgroup\$ – Solar Mike Oct 9 '18 at 14:01
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Do you have a small piece of electrical wire, like loudspeaker cable or telephone cable? You only need about 5 cm.

Strip the isolation to reveal the copper strands inside. Take two of those strands and wrap one around each probe tip. Do not wind the last centimeter but bend it so that it's an extension to the probes. Now you have very thin probes.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Managed it using the wire from some of those twist ties you get. Thanks. \$\endgroup\$ – Jack M Oct 9 '18 at 14:34
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Many multimeters come with fine probes, and spare probes can also be purchased separately.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Made some like this, as the job needed doing "now" and waiting for the post was too long... but good answer \$\endgroup\$ – Solar Mike Oct 9 '18 at 14:49

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