Monday, August 19, 2019

How to build a zener and LED diode tester using a 555 timer DIY

If you have a bunch of salvaged zener diodes you need a quick way to sort them. In this article I describe how to build a simple test equipment that can be used to measure the breakdown voltage of a Zener diode. It can also be used to test LEDs and their color, since sometime a color LED can look white when not lit. This Zener tester is powered from a 9V battery so it doesn't involve dangerous mains voltage and can measure diodes up to 90V with the help of a 555 timer boost converter.

Zener and LED diode tester

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