INFRARED THERMAL IMAGING
Thermal Imaging scan with every Home Inspection
How is Thermal Imaging relevant to a Home Inspection?
The use of Thermography or Thermal Imaging in The Greater Ottawa Area, as it relates to building science, increases the Inspector’s ability to perform a Home Inspection, by helping to find conditions that might otherwise go undetected.
Thermal Imaging can be used to help detect issues such as; the presence of moisture in building materials, overheating electrical circuits, locating damaged in-floor heating, locate missing or loose insulation and identifying air leaks around windows, doors or attic hatches for example.
What is Thermal Imaging exactly?
Thermal Imaging or Thermography is the science of “seeing” temperatures by use of an Infrared Camera.
The Thermal Imaging camera can measure infrared radiation, which is simply invisible light that exists in a lower frequency range of the electromagnetic spectrum, than visible light.
Heat energy emitted as invisible infrared light from an objects surface is detected by the Thermal Imaging Camera. The data is reconstructed into an image that can be viewed by the human eye. Thermal imaging cameras measure the surface temperature of objects.
The image is displayed on the cameras' viewing screen and interpreted and diagnosed by the Home Inspector. The image can be captured in digital format to be stored and used later in an inspection report for example.
Infrared radiation is emitted by all objects. The amount of radiation increases with temperature.
Are there limitations to Thermal Imaging as part of a Home Inspection?
Yes, there are some limitations to Thermal Imaging that you should be aware of.
Thermal Imaging is not X-Ray technology.
A Thermal Imaging camera cannot allow you to see through walls or any other building materials.
Thermal imaging cameras measure the apparent surface temperature of objects only and do not confirm the presence of moisture. A great Home Inspector will follow up on any suspected moisture problem areas identified by the Infrared camera and verify them using a moisture meter.
The effectiveness of collecting usable data using a Thermal imaging camera is dependent heavily on the optimal temperature conditions of the building material and the ambient environment at the time of the Home Inspection. For this reason Thermal Imaging may not always be able to find what we're looking for, and may not always be employed.