Thermography scanners measure surface temperatures with infrared cameras – video and still. These devices can see light in a heat spectrum. The images show temperature fluctuations of a building’s “skin,” ranging from black for cooler areas to white for warm areas.
The images help teams conducting condition assessments to determine if insulation is required or not. They also act as a tool for quality control to make sure that insulation has been correctly installed. Thermographic inspections are either exterior or interior surveys. The person in charge of condition assessments will decide which method is going to give the best results in specific weather conditions.
When warm air escapes from a building, it doesn’t always go through walls in a straight line, so interior scans are more common. Heat loss that’s detected in an outside wall may originate at a different location on the inside of the wall. It’s more difficult to detect temperature fluctuations on the exterior surface of a building when wind is blowing. Due to this, an interior survey is typically more accurate because it benefits from reduced air movement.
Infrared scanning also allows the team conducting condition assessments to check how effective existing insulation in a building is. If insulation hasn’t been installed, the thermograms help to determine where it should go. Since dry insulation conducts heat slower than wet insulation, scans of roofs can even detect leaks.
At Belanger Engineering, our team of building science engineers is involved with performance improvement and repair. Our experience with electrical, mechanical and structural projects involves both restorative and new construction.