Breadboard help

I’m having trouble with my breadboard which I purchased here according to sales support I’m not wiring it correctly.

Hi Ronan,

We’re here to help! Can you send me through a picture of your breadboard circuit - lets figure this out today.

Hi @Ronan23040,

We were talking via email yesterday. Breadboards can be a little tricky to get used to at first, but I could see from your picture that you were writing it up incorrectly.

For this exact reason, I’ve put together a tutorial on How To Use Breadboards. I recommend that you go and take a look at that because from the sounds of it your breadboard is functioning as intended, and I’d hate to see an awesome project go unfinished because of some confusion :slight_smile:

With that in mind, I’ve put together a quick summary of the important points for you below which will hopefully help you get back on track.


With breadboards, there are rows of 5 0.1" (2.54mm) spaced holes which are connected. And every row is isolated from each other. Now with the power rails, as you quite rightly observed, they are connected all the way down, and this connection runs at a right angle to the direction that the rest of the rows are connected to each other. The divider down the middle also isolates either side to allow for IC chips to be mounted on it. This is as per the pictures below.

The one with the big red cross is how you were wiring it in your picture, which is incorrect, and your breadboard was behaving correctly by not conducting. The other one shows the correct orientation of how the breadboard connects.



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I also remember you saying that your Arduino was getting warm when you tried connecting it another way. That is a sure sign that something is shorting out and the power pins from your board are sourcing too much current. You could have accidently connected your 5V and Ground pins together, but I also saw from one of the pictures that you sent via email that to test you had a LED connected directly across the power rails.


What you are doing there is allowing your LED to pull as much current as it wants, which will cause your Arduino to get warm, and if not straight away, eventually destroy that LED.

We’ve created entire categories of tutorials in our Knowledge Base specifically on prototyping and circuitry and understanding the basics of electronics and components. I’ll again refer you to to important tutorials which will help with your electronic adventures; All About LEDs which walks through how to safely and properly use LEDs, and Analogue Electronics Crash Course. Don’t worry if you don’t understand everything, or some of the maths (although it’s written as simply as possible). The concepts will help with the issue you’re having.

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Do you have any diagrams of how to correctly wire the breadboard.

I’m not really sure what you mean by ‘how to correctly wire’ sorry. I described in the tutorial and images above how the different rows are connected to each other. You can use those connections however you want to create your circuit. I suggest reading through some more of our tutorials, which contain images of various circuits in a breadboard layout.