What can be detected?

• Air Leaks    • Weather Drafts    • Insulation    • Ductwork    • Water Intrusion    • Underfloor Heating

Typical reasons for Thermal Exceptions.

  • Missing or Damaged Insulation

  • Doors or Windows not properly sealed

  • External Cladding Damaged - Convection by Fluid

  • Ineffective ducting

  • Air leakage infiltration - Natural or Forced

A thermographic inspection is either an interior or exterior survey. The energy auditor decides which method would give the best results under certain weather conditions. Interior scans are more common, because warm air escaping from a building does not always move through the walls in a straight line. Heat loss detected in one area of the outside wall might originate at some other location on the inside of the wall. Also, it is harder to detect temperature differences on the outside surface of the building during windy weather. Because of this difficulty, interior surveys are generally more accurate because they benefit from reduced air movement.

Preparing for a Thermographic Inspection

To prepare for an interior thermal scan, the customer should take steps to ensure an accurate result. This may include moving furniture away from exterior walls and removing drapes. The most accurate thermographic images usually occur when there is a large temperature difference (at least 14°C [20°F]) between inside and outside air temperatures. In southern states, thermographic scans are generally done in the winter. In northern states, however, scans are usually conducted during warm weather with the air conditioner on.

Some times of the year, because of a phenomenon known as “thermal loading, to create and maintain a specific inside/outside temperature difference for a period of up to four hours before the test will be performed. Running the air conditioner in cooling climates or the central heat in heating climates can do this. Ask the auditor prior to the test if this will be necessary

Energy Loss Problems

Thermal Imaging for Building Energy Loss Detection

Below shows thermal exceptions found on different building envelopes

Draft Under Cupboards
A) Draft Under Cupboards
Ceiling Insulation Missing
B) Ceiling Insulation Missing
Wall Insulation Missing
C) Wall Insulation Missing

All these examples contribute to a major energy loss.

Surface Temperatures Only.

Infrared cameras cannot see through walls and cielings. Whenever possible a visual inspection will need to conducted on the results of the audit.


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