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What is a Home Inspection?
Thermal imaging question  XML
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scottlseaton
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Joined: 06/19/2014 09:39 AM EDT
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Location: Bourbonnais, Il
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Agent asked me yesterday about a thermal inspection that was done for her son in Florida. Her ? was about the wording the inspector used. He told her that a wall behind the tub showed a higher density than the other walls and so this meant it was full of water. I am not a thermal imager but I always thought that it measured "thermal" properties, not mass density properties.
They tore open the wall, found a small section to seal up, but to do it had to remove the shower drain pan. Whole lot of work, but no where near what the image was supposedly showing.
So, is the term [density] used in TI inspections or is it thermal imaging? Thanks

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Touchstone1
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Scott,
I am a level 2 infrared thermographer and I would never use terminology relating to density or mass. The camera sees temperature differences which can be caused by elevated moisture content. In my home inspections I will use my camera IF I see water stains that I check with the moisture meter and if the meter shows an elevated moisture level I then use the camera to determine how far the moisture has spread. I will include the photographs of the wet areas in my report. In talking with the buyers I will always explain that the camera works on temperature differences to dispel any misconceptions they may have picked up from other sources. You were right in your thinking of the "thermal" aspect of the camera.

David Ritchie
Touchstone Home Inspection Services, Inc.
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scottlseaton
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Thanks David, I know this agent will be interested in this info.

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Jeremiah Anderson
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Joined: 08/02/2014 01:45 PM EDT
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Yep, that's not how this IR thing works. In a building inspection the camera is being used to detect temperature anomalies that are consistent with elevated moisture or conditioned air leakage. That is why a good Moisture Meter or Blower Door should be used to validate the qualitative measurement with the IR camera with an actual moisture % number or CFM50 leakage number.

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Bensoelberg
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Joined: 10/21/2014 06:14 PM EDT
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Jeremiah, do you use a blower door in your inspections? I recently became a HERS Rater in California and purchased a blower door, but I haven't really incorporated it into my inspections yet. Do you find that it is that beneficial? Any info on using it would be greatly appreciated.

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greenvalley
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Bensoelberg wrote:Jeremiah, do you use a blower door in your inspections? I recently became a HERS Rater in California and purchased a blower door, but I haven't really incorporated it into my inspections yet. Do you find that it is that beneficial? Any info on using it would be greatly appreciated.


What did the equipment and HERS cert cost you

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JimZ
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Joined: 10/21/2014 06:18 PM EDT
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Thermal imaging can be a great tool but can be very dangerous if you don't know what your doing. Any time I believe moisture is detected, I verify with moisture meter devices. Outside out shooting the distribution panel for temperature, I am a firm believer that's second form of checking is your best bet. I have already detected a tree shading an exterior wall that looked just like moisture.

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Bensoelberg
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Eric, the short answer is too much.

HERS training was about $2000

Blower door/Duct Blaster was $4000
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Pete Campbell
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Bensoelberg wrote:Eric, the short answer is too much.

HERS training was about $2000

Blower door/Duct Blaster was $4000


What is your plan to make that money back?
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Kevin Moore
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Joined: 06/18/2014 08:58 PM EDT
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Location: Buffalo NY
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Seems like a large upfront cost

Kevin Moore
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Orirosen
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Joined: 02/19/2021 08:51 PM EST
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Location: Philadelphia, PA
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I get people here and there call me with cold drafts uncomfortable room etc
. I recommend the blower door test with a thermal imager. Once you depressurize the house with the blower door the air enters more forcefully
I'll walk around with the thermal imager find the issues and provide a written report. They are generally very happy with the service. The cost is $390

I think it's actually really useful for the customer.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 02/19/2021 09:05 PM EST


Ori Rosen
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