Infrared Thermography

May/June 2010
A version of this article appears in the May/June 2010 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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May 03, 2010
An expert explains how to get high quality and helpful thermographs when conditions are not ideal.
The sun on the exterior is deadly—and instantly so! The dark body color of this house absorbs the sun’s energy readily while the lighter color trim does less so. (Image credit: ©2010 The Snell Group) I find that most building thermographers who have basic training—and qualifying experience—get good results most of the time. They tend to get less-than-stellar results when conditions are marginal or when the building has some challenging features. Less-than-fully-qualified thermographers will quickly experience frustration with the technology. Since the cameras are so easy to use, it seems as though  finding problems in buildings must be easy also. With a few successes under their belts, they soon find out it ain’t always easy! Problems usually fall into one of three buckets: inadequate inspection conditions, unskilled use of the imaging system, and misinterpretation of the image. Conditions for the Inspection If you understand what is necessary to do a good inspection, you can choose the right time and circumstances for the inspection and proceed with confidence that you will many, if not all, problems in the building you are examining. Without this basic knowledge and experience, however, you ...

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