Hi to all,
this is without doubt the future of the inspection business, here is the link to FLIR’s seminars BOOK NOW!
Oh heck, just what I need, a new toy!
Jerry P. and Robert Z. saw it coming.
How many hour class is it? 8 to 5 or what?
OK - so you guys who are in the know on IR technology. What are the key features to look for in a camera? I am sure that Flir will be hawking their camera, and I would like to compare and contrast to others, but I do not know the key and most critical features in perferming these types of tests. (distance, range, field of view, sensitivity, clarity of image, etc?)
I would like to have some independent input before getting their (probably biased) version of what I need.
Finally, can any IR camera help find moisture leaking and areas of heat loss, or are there specfic features that are needed for this?
Thanks for any help/opinions!
I’ll be attending the Flir Seminar this Thursday in Boston.
I’ll give you all some feedback on this type of inspection when I return.
This is an interesting post that Rob Z. posted several months ago. It may answer some of your questions.
I have seen Steve Ramos use this technology on the house detective show He uses two different ones and the cost is about 10-12K each.
Steve is a fellow Nachi member and I have emailed him a few times and one was about all the tools he uses.
He stated that he receives more per inspection and has justified the price for utilizing these tools.
I bet the inferred technology detectes hidden problems that may be hidden.
I wonder if they can be used on drain tiles?
Any way I signed up for the Cleveland course.
David V. - I will be very interested to hear your feedback on the Flir seminar. I am particularly interested in what they can do and what limitations they (and other cameras) have.
Dave M. - I am sure that you can charge more if you are giving more value (by offering this technology), but I don’t want to bet that it detects hidden problems - I want to ***know ***it does, and at what range, in what temperatures (outdoors) and to what degreee of accuracy.
For example, if it can only work between say 50-80 degrees, I can only use it 6-8 months a year. That seriously cuts into the cost effectiveness of the technology.
Also, if it can only rarely find hidden moisture problems or if it is only good at distances of less than 10 feet (where I would have to hold it against nearly every part of the house) then that also makes it less useful than I would hope.
I hope to learn a good deal more and then (ideally) I will know what are the important questions to ask when I go to buy one.
we had an inspection co. come out to some of our buildings and do a heat efficiancy test. he used an i.r. camara and had to shut all the windows, set up a box fan sealed all the way around in the door, run the fan with meters on the in and out (for air movement) and then look at all the window, outlets, switches, and plumbing access holes for thermal leaks. in a 2 bedroom 750sq’ apt. it took about 30 min. to set up and 30 min. to test. then he took all the info back to his “lab” for calculations and printed a report. cost: $150 pr unit. he did 3 units and one building (common areas). $600 for about 3.4hrs work. not bad i guess. but he had about $25,000 worth of gear set up for it. i guess it would depend on the need for this service to justify the cost. but his was not an “inspection” business, it was stricly heat serveys.
Here are a couple of sites (in no particular order or manufacturer) that contain a lot of information pertaining to infrared thermography, that you may be interested in.
I know of two guys up here that are having a hard go of it. Demand compared to cost of equipment I guess just isn’t there in some areas
Check out this guys presentation…makes me wonder how good of a job someone w/out XRAY VISION CAN DO???
They claim to hear termites…hmmmm. I have to think that this guy cannot afford to EVER miss an item. If anything ever goes wring with a home he inspects, he seems to be opening the door to huge liability by claiming to find hidden problems.
I am also not wild about the black and white images…for that much cash, I was expecting color. And the items he found seem really easy to find with the naked eye and a little experience. If that is the standard for the IR cameras, I am not impressed…at least not more than $10,000 worth.
Is there a big demand for this service? Will the average home buyer be willing to pay $500-$800 for an inspection on a three bedroom home even with this added benefit?
I think it can be marketed to more than just home buyers if done properly. I think this has significant markting potenetial, but I am not impressed by what I have seen so far and I really would like more specific info - especially about each brand of camera’s limitations…
It could very well could be used for energy saving inspections (people are really energy cost conscious anymore), and possibly for mold inspections or other specialty inspections.
The real value though, may be in adding only $50 - $100 per inspection for the added service. If you do the average of 220 inspections, that adds up to the cost of the camera right there.
If you have any success marketing the other inspections, it is gravy.
Since I’m in such an inquisitive mood…
If this tool is used during a home inspection, is the inspection still considered a limited visual inspection? What adverse affects if any, would this have on our liability? We are now using a tool that sees through walls. Are we liable for concealed defects?
Pretending he knows what he’s talking about.
Like I said with the guy who claims to find hidden defects, I think liablity can be a concern.
It is all in the wording of the necessary disclosures and the inspection agreement, I would think. This is an area that I think could be navigated if it is made clear to the client that this is a tool that may help find hidden defects, but also has limitations and is not a guarantee to find ***all ***hidden defects.
I would suspect that the IR sellers have some language and training in this regard already prepared…
These devices do not see through walls. They measure surface temperature only.
*Thermography is the use of an infrared imaging and measurement camera to “see” and “measure” thermal energy emitted from an object. Thermal, or infrared energy, is light that is not visible because its wavelength is too long to be detected by the human eye; it’s the part of the electromagnetic spectrum that we perceive as heat. Unlike visible light, in the infrared world, everything with a temperature above absolute zero emits heat. Even very cold objects, like ice cubes, emit infrared. The higher the object’s temperature, the greater the IR radiation emitted. Infrared allows us to see what our eyes cannot. Infrared thermography cameras produce images of invisible infrared or “heat” radiation and provide precise non-contact temperature measurement capabilities. Nearly everything gets hot before it fails, making infrared cameras extremely cost-effective, valuable diagnostic tools in many diverse applications. *