Infrared For Every Inspection
The value of IR is predicated on it's ability to see heat signature differences in the ultraviolet spectrum emanating from different materials with different levels of emissivity. We can infer from the image below that, while not necessarily hot to the touch, the bright area in the middle is significantly warmer than the surrounding area. Our concern in this sense is to note what is called the "Apparent" difference in temperature, not he actual difference. What we are really doing is searching for the anomalies.
Without my glasses
With my glasses
What the camera see's
Wind driven rain, poor flashing details and reverse sill slope can all contribute to water entry around windows. These clues would lead us to perform an infrared examination of this window from the inside. The infrared does not diagnose water intrusion, but it does show cool areas. If cool areas are noted, confirmation of water entry is confirmed with a moisture meter. In most cases this type of damage would not be visible to the naked eye.
Leaky toilet gaskets are a common problem when a toilet base has not been properly secured to the floor. Repeated movement of the toilet over time can damage the wax gasket which forms the water tight seal between the toilet and the toilet drain. If the toilet feels loose, further examination with the infrared camera is indicated. Again, water finding it's way somewhere it is not supposed to be is confirmed with a moisture meter.
When used with a quality moisture meter, the infrared camera can be a powerful diagnostic tool when searching for suspected moisture intrusion in the basement. Thermal imaging however, should not be viewed as a guarantee that no water has entered the basement, but rather, a significant increase in the odds of finding water if it is there.
Other areas where we chase water and heat
- plumbing leaks hidden behind drywall
- roof leaks
- condensation damage from leaky air conditioning ducts
- condensation damage from uninsulated attic ducts
- damaged plumbing buried under a slab
- cold walls with missing insulation
- heat loss or, heat intrusion from poor weatherstripping
See our service and pricing page for more details about infrared imaging as a stand alone service for homeowners.
* Although infrared thermal imaging is a far superior diagnostic tool to the naked eye when looking for hidden water, 100% verification of moisture problems can only be achieved through the invasive removal of finishes to facilitate visual verification. To the extent that a water penetration issue has been validated with a moisture meter at a single point in time, the possibility that conditions may change and cause a reading to be different at a future date should be considered. Conditions at the time of inspection may also reduce the ability of the camera to take accurate measurements.
BDS Home Inspections ltd. Delivering professional inspections and professional reports for the informed home buyer. Inspected Once, Inspected Right!
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