Heat loss Inspection in a home or office can not only be very uncomfortable but also very expensive. Before taring up the walls or floors to try to find the issue, get us in there to do a thorough infrared thermographic heat loss inspection to determine the problem for you.
Residential and Commercial Heat Loss Inspection
Heat flow is an essential aspect of any residential or commercial building. As such, a heating/cooling system is very essential. All buildings must also have a properly functioning insulation system. The insulation ensures the heat conditions in the building are maintained as needed. These systems should be working at all times, to ensure everyone in the building remains comfortable.
A faulty HVAC system will not maintain the desired temperature. Furthermore, a faulty insulation system will interfere with the temperature condition in the building, even if the HVAC system is working properly. You’ll end up paying hefty energy bills, without really getting the ultimate benefit from your HVAC system. It’s not easy to know when a building’s insulation is leaking. The best way to capture insulation leaks it to commission a heat loss inspection.
That’s where we come in. We are one of the best residential and commercial building heat loss inspectors in the industry. We use the infrared thermographic heat loss Inspection technology to find these leaks. It is the latest and best technology in the business. The technology is able to detect heat loss spots all over the building.
Below, we explore how we use the infrared thermographic inspection technology to identify heat loss spots in various parts of a building.
Most of us consider the attic to be more of a storage area. They don’t realize that the attic has an air conditioning function. In cold climates, the attic holds cold temperature in order to mitigate the ice dams made by melting snow. In warm climates, warm moist air rises to the attic. The attic has to be properly insulated and ventilated at all times. A poorly ventilated attic will cause the warm air to start flowing back into the house, hence increasing your cooling bills. Also, the moisture going up will get absorbed by wooden parts in the roof, and they start to rot. In the case of cold climates, it will cause ice dams which affect shingle life.
Infrared thermographic heat loss inspections can help find out whether an attic is functioning properly. The idea is to ensure hot and moist air does not get trapped in there. The infrared thermographic inspection technology features an infrared imaging camera that scans spaces and captures thermal variations. Thermal variations on various objects cause the production of infrared radiation. The emissions are captured by the imaging camera and depicted on its screen as different colors of the wavelength spectrum.
You need to have your attic inspected periodically, to ensure any faults are caught and repaired early on. Our inspectors will be looking for huge variations between the air in the building, the attic, and outside. If the air inside the attic is significantly warmer than that inside the building, it means warm air is not getting out. They will also be looking for moist parts in the wooden spaces in the attic. Moist spots tend to absorb more of the heat around them. They will appear warmer than the surrounding areas. Our experienced infrared thermographic inspection specialists are able to easily deduce all these aspects from the images and footage captured by the infrared camera.
Windows and Doors
Window and door frames are notorious with heat loss as well. You might have all your insulation and HVAC intact, but heat is getting lost through windows and doors. Heat loss through doors and windows in most instances as a result of poor installation. The windows and doors should not be letting air in or out when they are closed.
Window panes are much thinner than concrete walls. They also cause a lot of heat loss from the house. You’ve probably noticed how your window panes get misty when it’s very cold outside. Unlike walls, the panes let out warm air quite rapidly. Panes do not absorb moisture like wood or concrete surfaces though. The moisture condenses and hence the misty appearance on the windows.
All these aspects could be causing your heating bills to balloon, especially during the winter. You should probably be getting your windows and doors heat loss inspection before winter. The infrared thermographic inspection technology, while inspecting windows, still involves checking for heat differences.
Spots around the windows or doors that are losing heat rapidly will appear different on the infrared imaging camera. These spots are easily indefinable during very cold weather. Any leak spots will show as a jet of warm air. The window panes will also be different because they’ll be warmer from the outside, and colder from the inside.
Our infrared thermographic inspectors will inspect your home both from the inside and the outside. They record footage and images of heat differences on either side of the door or window. The images and footage are then analyzed to determine how much energy gets lost through either leaks, faults, or panes on the doors and windows. Leaks and faults can be repaired. Panes cannot be completely heat proof, but a pelmet and some thick curtains will do the trick.
Lack of Proper Insulation
Insulating your home involves ensuring there is no open space where there is not supposed to be. Structures made of wood and metal are often prone to air leaks, which lead to loss of heat. When pieces of wood or metal are joined together, there should be some kind of cover, so as to make the structure air proof.
Insulation is essential in the attic, on doors, windows, and any other surface that is made of non-continuous materials such as wood and metal. Open cell spray foam, cellulose, and fiberglass are just some of the materials that are used for insulation.
Poor insulation causes air leaks and hence the heat loss. Infrared thermographic heat loss inspections can easily identify where your building’s insulation is leaking. Our experienced inspectors know everywhere a building should be insulated, and the notorious leak spots. The infrared thermographic imaging technology helps them to capture images of thermal variations in the air around the house.
Images and footage are captured from inside and outside the building. Spots that are leaking will often show a jet of warm air from the outside or cold air from the inside. The heat loss inspection is best done when the is a significant difference in the temperature inside the house, from that of outside. Inspecting the insulation system involves scanning every surface, joint, and space in and around the building with the infrared thermographic imaging camera.
These images are carefully analyzed to determine where the leaking spots are. It is always a qualitative process, that is based on comparison from expected images from the various sections of the house. Once all the leaking spots have been identified, we will offer some recommendations on what needs to be done to ensure your building is properly insulated. It will then be easier to conduct repairs.
Glass and Window Sealings
Any part of your house that is made of glass, has the glass supported by some sort of frame. It would not be enough to just fit the glass into the frame. Some sort of insulation is needed to ensure those edges are airtight. Polyurethane caulk is a kind of thick paste that is used to seal the area where the glass meets the sliding window frame. The same case applies to the windows. There is the edge where the window meets the frame when it closes. If it’s just left as two pieces of metal or wood lying on each other, it will of course leak out the warm air inside the building. As mentioned earlier, rubber is used to make these edges airtight in most cases.
Infrared thermographic inspections can identify leaks on such parts of the building as well. The windows and glass parts need to be scanned closely with the infrared imaging camera to identify any leaking spots. Just like in other cases, leak spots along these areas will show on the infrared thermographic imaging camera, due to the significant temperature difference between the air coming out through these leaks and the air outside.
Again, it is always an intricate process of analyzing the images and footage captured. Our experts seek to ensure they can trace where each leak is. Note that there could be a leak both along the edge where the glass meets the window frame, adjacent to another leak where the window frame meets the wall. Our expert inspectors are always keen to ensure they catch each and every leak spot in the building. Broken window seals could be costing you a lot in energy bills, when you can easily get them repaired when you know where they are.
Duct Work Temperature
Different buildings have various types of ducts for different reasons. Some have heating systems that have water ducts. The HVAC systems also consist of a system of ducts. These ducts are responsible for taking air in and out of the building. They are therefore largely responsible for the temperature of the air inside the building. The duct must not have leaks for them to be able to carry in or out air with the right temperatures.
Depending on the desired conditions in the house, these ducts are supposed to carry a certain temperature. Their surface temperature is often taken to be the same as the temperature of the air inside them. If they have leaks, this temperature will be affected by the temperature conditions inside the building. It is essential that these ducts are periodically inspected for leaks.
The infrared thermographic inspection technology will easily capture any leaks on the ducts. Often times, the ducts will have very different temperatures as compared to the surrounding area. A duct carrying hot air will be warmer and vice versa. Any leak will cause a jet of warm or cold air, which will be easily caught by the infrared imaging camera.
Our infrared thermographic inspection experts know how to scan the HVAC ducts in your home. They will scan the entire system, and capture relevant images and footage. These images and footage will reveal if there are any leaks, and where exactly they are. Duct leaks cause your HVAC system to not function optimally. You cannot catch them easily because the ducts are often above the ceilings or behinds the walls.
The best part of the infrared thermographic inspection is that our inspectors will never have to go behind the walls or into the ceilings. There are no demolitions needed since the infrared camera will scan everything inside those ceilings or behind those walls. It also helps to avoid unnecessary demolitions during repairs. Your repair technician will just go directly to the problematic parts.
Cracks in Exposed Concrete
Concrete walls, when built properly, plastered and given a smooth finish, are often airtight. However, they may develop cracks for one reason or another over time. These cracks will easily let air in and out. This will interfere with the temperature conditions in the building. The crack would be causing the air inside the building to cool during cold weather.
It does not take a large crack on the wall for there to be an air leak. The crack might not even be visible to your eye. A cracking wall is a sign of a bigger structural problem. It is best that any crack is detected early before it becomes more problematic.
Infrared thermographic inspections will clearly reveal any cracks that might be present on your walls. When there is a significant temperature difference in the air outside and the air inside the building, the infrared thermographic inspection camera will capture the crack quite simply.
Some of the cracks are embedded within the wall. They will hold a bubble of air inside the wall. This bubble will always have a different temperature than the concrete around it. That’s the basis upon which even the tiniest of cracks are captured.
Cracks in concrete walls often continue to grow bigger. The crack will certainly cause more air leak problems as it grows bigger. Also, it will be a lot more expensive to repair a small crack than a big one. Our inspection experts scan all your walls looking for any discrepancies that might be there. A properly constructed wall with no cracks should be uniform.
Images and footage of the wall scans are then analyzed to identify where the cracks are. If there is a series of cracks, we will try and identify the cause of the cracks as well. We also provide appropriate recommendations on how best to repair the cracks.
Air Infiltration Leakage
Air infiltration is often used to refer to an accidental or unintentional entry of outside air into a building. All types of leakages discussed above cause air infiltration into the building. Air infiltration should not be confused with ventilation. Ventilation systems allow air into the house in a controlled manner. To put it into perspective, the air that comes in through the ventilation system is wanted air. If it comes in through any other spot, it is unwanted and therefore a leak.
While air infiltration is not such a bad thing when you need the building to remain cool during hot weather, it is bad when it gets extremely cold. This infiltration causes the air inside the building to cool, why you are struggling to heat it up. You end up paying huge energy bills. The infrared thermographic inspection technology helps to identify such infiltrations in both residential and commercial buildings.
Our experts are able to identify the exact spot of the infiltrations and what kind of infiltration they are. This enables us to make appropriate recommendations on what should be done to remedy the situation. Infrared thermographic imaging technology has simplified what would otherwise be a very difficult task, and in some cases even impossible.
Knowing exactly what the problem is, and what ought to be done gives you leverage when it comes to negotiation with repairmen. Many homeowners or businessmen will get duped by repairmen because they do not understand the scope of the work. You will also be able to ascertain that the repairman has indeed done the work that the repairman is supposed to do.
Many people often run to turn up their heaters when the building feels cold. Others will rush to turn on their fans and air conditioners when it gets too hot. Many do not know about the kinds of air infiltrations mentioned above, and they wouldn’t care to check why their systems are malfunctioning. These infiltrations will certainly add to the cost on energy bills each month. Commissioning a simple, quick and effective infrared thermographic inspection could save you all the trouble. Get in touch with us today if you need your residential or commercial building inspected for any of the above air infiltrations.