Infrared Inspections « CanSpec Inspection Services

By: Canspec Inspection  09-12-2011
Keywords: Inspection Services, Air Leaks, Blower Door

Infrared Inspections « CanSpec Inspection Services

Thermography, or infrared scans, can locate the source of potential problems in buildings related to heat, air or moisture without having to tear apart walls or floors, saving building and home owners thousands of dollars. Potential problems such as moisture behind surfaces, cold spots due to missing or damaged insulation, water leaks in roofs or in-floor heating pipes, air leaks through exterior walls, windows and ducts, potential electrical problems, abnormal operation of appliances (i.e. motors) and insects and pests behind walls may all be diagnosed with the use of infrared cameras. CanSpec has a Certified Thermographer (American Society for Non-Destructive Testing) on staff.  Our infrared inspections also include a blower door or air pressure test by a Certified Energy Advisor.

Below you can see some examples of infrared photographs.

We’ve helped homeowners and businesses find problems such as a leaky pipe in an in-floor heating system, locating a small hole in a roof where moisture was coming into the house, and determining why one wall in the house is so cold. These are just a few examples of what thermography can do.

The cost of the assessment varies, but you’ll save money if you combine your infrared  inspection with a full energy assessment.  However, our basic infrared inspection also includes a blower door, or air pressure test, making it the most comprensive infrared inspection available.

This service is only available in the Sudbury area.

FAQs

What can infrared scans do?

Infrared scans inspections diagnose the following:

  • missing, misplaced, and poorly performing insulation
  • air infiltration and exfiltration (showing where there are drafts in the building)
  • moisture, revealing patterns of moisture that could lead to mold
  • heating, ventilation and air conditioning duct leakage and verification of supply (in heating)
  • pests
  • abnormal operation of appliances (i.e. worn bearings, slipping belts)

What are the benefits of an infrared scan?

Infrared scans are non-destructive and non-invasive. No walls or floors or roofs have to be torn apart to locate the source of potential problems. If you are suspicious of a defect in your home, office or small commercial building, infrared technology can save you time, energy and money by helping to determine the location and nature of the problem. In addition, these scans are an excellent preventative maintenance measure, identifying issues before they become more serious and costly.

CanSpec provides quality infrared inspections by merging technologies to diagnose your property more effectively. Every residential infrared inspection is performed in combination with an air pressure test, which means we can locate air leakage much more easily, as well as determine the impact of other related factors (i.e. lack of ventilation, pressurizing due to unbalanced HVAC systems, etc.) and how those factors will affect your home.

How is CanSpec qualified to take these scans?

As a new and upcoming technology, the infrared industry has become increasingly regulated. CanSpec has trained staff conforming to the current industry standard prescribed by the American Society for Non-Destructive Testing (ASNT SNT-TC-1A (2006)).  Our certified Thermographer uses a highly sensitive, high resolution FLIR T-300 radiometer to conduct the tests.  Our Thermographer is also a federally Certified Energy Advisor with a background in building science.

I’ve heard you can find mold – is that true?

Not exactly.  While infrared technology cannot detect mold, it is able to detect a temperature difference that may be a thermal property of moisture, which is necessary for mold to form. Throughout our infrared inspections we are constantly applying our knowledge of building science to interpret our findings. By using other tools, such as a hygrometer, in combination with our radiometer, we’re able to diagnose areas of concern more accurately and with more confidence to confirm our interpretations.

Does the test depend on the weather outside?

Weather is always changing and does have an impact on the effectiveness of our infrared inspections.  Homeowners are given a set of simple preparation instructions when booking an appointment with us, in order to maximize the effectiveness of our inspection. Factors such as relative humidity, temperature, precipitation, sun, clouds, shading and wind all have an effect on any infrared inspection.  A proper understanding of how these factors and various conditions affect your home is critical in order to deliver quality service in the infrared industry. We take pride in our quality service.

How do I prepare for an infrared scan in my home?

In the winter:

  • Woodstoves must be cold and extinguished at least two hours prior to our arrival.
  • Your home must be heated to at least room temperature (68 degrees F or 20 degrees C).
  • All windows and doors must be closed two hours prior to our arrival.
  • Large furniture should be moved at least two feet away from exterior walls (otherwise, walls covered by furniture can be misssed).
  • If you have in-floor heating, it must be off and cool at least 12 hours before we arrive.

In the summer:

  • All windows and doors must be closed two hours prior to our arrival.
  • Large furniture should be moved at least two feet away from exterior walls (otherwise, walls covered by furniture can be misssed).
  • If you use air conditioning in your home, cool your home to increase the effectiveness of the infrared scan. Ideally, maintain a 10 degree C temperature difference between the inside and the outside.
  • If you are concerned about a moisture problem, please run your dehumidifier as much as possible prior to the scan.

Keywords: Air Leaks, Blower Door, Inspection Services

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