Is there a way to use common/cheap components to put the 3.3V and 5V pins on an Arduino under load, in order to measure if they are giving a correct and stable voltage? Can I calculate a certain load to test?

Something keeps happening to my boards which causes the 3.3V pin to measure the correct voltage when idle, but to spike when put under load, which kills the component I was powering (XBees, which are previously tested working).

  • 2
    resistors are as cheap as you are going to get. – ratchet freak Jan 16 '19 at 15:37
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    Arduino 3.3V source is only good for 150mA. The 5V source for 500mA from USB source, and maybe 700-800mA from the barrel jack if the source voltage is up to about 7.5V, and less current as you get up to 9V, and even less with 12V, the poor 5V regulator will heat up and shut down. – CrossRoads Jan 16 '19 at 17:36
  • When putting too much load on a power source, the voltage will only dip down (to lower voltages). How can this kill other components? More likely it will stop working, until the voltage is sufficient again. Or are you also having motors or such connected to it without proper protection? – chrisl Jan 16 '19 at 19:42
  • why would you power the XBee from an Arduino I/O pin? – jsotola Jan 17 '19 at 3:28
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    solenoids and relays can create spikes. The easiest way to mitigate them is using a flyback diode. Though most boards will additionally opto-isolate them from the control pins. – ratchet freak Jan 17 '19 at 10:27

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