Thursday, November 29, 2012

Infrared Survey

An infrared survey makes use of a state of the art infrared camera or thermal imager to scan walls, floors, ducts, doors and windows to determine minute temperature differences. Essentially, it converts heat power into a visible picture. Moisture inside a wall or under the roof covering shows up as a result of the slight temperature differences. Cold or warm air is visible flowing from cracks or holes in walls and ducts. Missing or inadequate insulation is evident from the temperature distinction or surrounding locations.

Energy Efficiency

  • An infrared survey locates places of missing or inadequate insulation is walls and ceilings.
  • An infrared survey locates locations of air leakage at doors, windows and wall penetrations.
  • An infrared survey pinpoints areas of air leakage within the ductwork.
Building Envelope Leaks

  • An infrared survey can pinpoint water leakage in walls and roofs too as identify the source area in the leak.
  • Mold will be the outcome of moisture entry. Mold remediation alone will not address the trigger. 
  • A survey prior to remediation will help decide where moisture is entering so that the trigger could be corrected, tremendously lowering or eliminating re-infection.
  • A second survey is advised right after remediation to become certain the repairs had been effective.
  • With mold remediation costing a huge number of dollars, a survey is low-cost insurance coverage.
Electrical System
  • An infrared survey locates "hot spots" in wiring and breaker panels due to overloaded circuits, improper splices and poor connections. 
  • An appropriate survey can tremendously reduce the risk of a residence fire.
Plumbing System

  • An infrared survey can locate breaks or leaks in water lines below the concrete slab.

In numerous circumstances I'm called out to look into a specific item like a roof or wall leak. When you have a single issue that you simply have identified or attempted to right, a single item survey might be all  you want or want. This really is particularly recommended in mold remediation where I may have to return a number of times to become positive the issue has been effectively corrected.

Some issues, like a leak at a window frame could indicate a construction defect. In these cases, I recommend checking all windows, not just those where an issue has become visible. If a single window is improperly flashed, it really is probably that all are improperly flashed.

I, by no means know ahead of time what exactly will be involved in surveying a certain home or the eventual complexity of each job, as a result infrared surveys are conducted on an hourly rate. 


In some cases, a great deal. Here are some examples:
  • The leaking flat roof that no roofer appears to be able to repair. At some point they throw up their hands and suggest replacing the roof. I can often pinpoint the water entry point allowing repairs and saving at times tens of a huge number of dollars.
  • The costly mold remediation that only had to be done once  since the underlying problem was properly identified and addressed.
  • The leaking window frames that were identified and repaired before a mold issue developed.
  • The overheating wiring splices under the drywall that were repaired just before there was a fire.
  • The hot water piping leaking below the slab, caught just before there was major foundation damage.

These are just several examples of the sorts of issues discovered routinely with thermography. 

1 comment:

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