On-line IR course -Building IR Basics

This (Building IR Basics) course is coming in March.
Infracam Basics, is available now as well as BCAM Basics.

InfraCAM Basics


Not to be critical, just to add some “constructive criticism”.

Look, IR is new to the construction trades.

Most of the courses are being done by “vendors” who align themselves with the camera companies. They want to sell the cameras to people who don’t already have them.

Then, there is the Home Inspector market.

Check out this detail in one of the offerings:

“**Prerequisites: **To get the most out of this course, we highly recommend that you have completed another course of study in infrared thermography before joining this course (e.g. Level I, BCAM Basics, or InfraCAM Basics).”

So, in order to take this course, you are “highly recommed(ed)” to have already taken either LEVEL I (a good, national standard course, but one that is only about 20% applicable to what you actually do for a living) or BCAM Basics or InfraCAM basics (both, on-line, minimal courses, not really teaching much more than how to turn the thing on and make pretty pictures). How can any credible educator put these two types of course in the same prerequisite?

Do you see the difference?

What I have always belived is that Home Inspectors are a “special” breed of students.

  1. Many come from the trades. There is nothing wrong with this. But the “tradesman” has not been known for their “academic” book learning. A good course has to be able to communicate the theory to people who have been, traditionally, practically minded.

  2. Being “qualified” to do IR, within the home inspections community, has special requirements. We (if we are good :mrgreen: ) look at the WHOLE house, not just electrical (motors :wink: ) or HVAC or water or cold air intrusion. And we have to KNOW how all these findings come together with the stuff we find using our normal skills and inspection techniques.

  3. “Professional” thermographers don not do home inspections. No slam, it’s just not their job or area of expertise.

  4. The camera companies have been marketing to certain markets for so long, they the think that HIs are just another segment of an existing market, not the seperate and distinct marlet that we really are.

  5. Paying over $1,000.00 for training, and learning things that are not applicable to what we do (although, it is really cool stuff :cool: ) and taking 3 to 5 days to do so (and losing inspection time during those extra days) does not help.

  6. Having a course that is specifically designed and geared towards home inspectors, teaching both the necessary theory (and tailored towards that specific audience) and the practical experience (with homework. Get used to it! This is reality!) and actually involving real world (for HIs) situations and having HARD tests that challange the HI, in his/her own world (with the very real possibility of failing the course if they don’t pay attention!) is a much better course.

Learning Thermal Imaging, specifically for Home Inspections, and equipping the students to hit the ground running, should be the goal.

I have been to too many courses that charge mucho money and make it easy (so everyone passed and doesn’t b*tch about the money they paid) and don’t really teach a darned thing.

And, the camera companies just want to sell more cameras.

And, the vendors who hook up with the camera companies just want to make money.

Be very particular about which courses you choose.

Hope this helps;

Will, your joking right?

How so?

Will writes;

I have been to too many courses that charge mucho money and make it easy (so everyone passed and doesn’t b*tch about the money they paid) and don’t really teach a darned thing.


I disagree with your above statement.

I have learned a lot from doing the Level 1 course with ITC. It hasn’t made me an expert by any means, but it was a great start. I will be doing BS in April, and feel I’m prepared in terms of understanding the use of the camera and the technology.

If you are looking at a course geared more for the Home Inspector I would suggest this course IR Thermography for Weatherization. I plan on taking this course when available in my area.


LOL :twisted: :twisted:
I believe he’s serious :roll:
Here’s his quote on nachos instant mail order IR certificiation course.


Just pay him $500 bucks for his non completed instant nacho IR certificiation, just promise to learn the rest on paying customers homes.



In my personal opinion you’re way off base with ITC classes being easy and uneducational. At my last class three students failed and will have to take the test again. Fortunately, I wasn’t one of them.

I also disagree with your logic.



I wasn’t talking about the ITC course when I made this comment.

You have taken some of the CE courses, around here, and know what I mean.

Just to clarify.


It sure sounds like your talking about ITC!!!

The courses I posted are offered by ITC. I admit that they are not as in-depth as the in-class courses but are good courses none the less.



All the IR courses out there that are being sold to home inspectors are way over
priced, and most of the info is not needed to do a home inspection… Including ITC.


You are talking about 4 days in a classroom setting, breakfast and lunch are served with top notch instructors and all the course material. Do you really believe that the courses are overpriced?

It’s a 3.5 day course… and it cost the inspector $500+ per day.
The little snacks cost them a few dollars per person.

So the inspector pays about $1800 for the course + motel + airline +
misc. travel expense + loss time at work which all runs into thousands of
dollars… and about half the stuff in the course is information not
needed for a regular home inspection.

Level I, II, and III courses were all created back in the 90’s before
home inspectors were using the IR camera for inspections. That
is why they are so lacking. The building science course is great,
but much of it concerns information not used in a normal home

Almost all Level III thermographers cannot use and IR camera to
inspect a house. They were raised in other fields.

The IR camera is not the hard part… it’s the inspecting skills that takes
longer to learn.

We as inspectors do not need the ASNT to tell us what a thermographer
needs. There standards are not in use for home inspectors anywhere.

It’s all an illusion.

Now, as far as legalese goes, is taking the shorter, “just what we should really know” version better than going through a 3.5 or 4 day course.

I understand that one needs to “understand” it’s proper use. Just asking, because I know there are others wondering the same thing.

How would it stand up in court ?


Having taken both the Flir IR 3.5 day course ( $1,800;00)(++)and the NACHI 2 day at home course.( That John Mc. and Will D Taught )($500:00)
Yes I do feel the FLIR course is wastly over priced.
The FLIR Course to me was not slanted to-wards the Home Inspector .
Not blaming Flir 22 in the course only 4 where home inspectors. only 4 had a camera that cost less the $10,000;00. ( some where up to $60;000;00 I think ).
I am also taking other courses.
How will it stand up in court well how about the home inspector training that many do not have they seem to do well in staying out of court.


If you miss a moisture area in a house (mold and decay to go with it), I do
not know of any class that will protect you if you are found negligent.

On the other hand, I don’t know of any course that offers divine protection
because it is the one that is officially recognized as govenment ordained.

In fact, if you were found to be a FLIR-ITC Level III thermographer who
did not know how to inspect a house, you would be SOL… all the training
in the world cannot help you if you blew it.

There must be certain amount of people who agree with me, because
a large number of vendors offer various versions of entry level IR
courses for a variety of fields. They are not breaking any laws to do so,
because there are no laws of what class is right or wrong. Those
standards are set by each industry.

That is why we try to spend all our time teaching about the things that
home inspectors need to know, so you can be a better inspector with
the IR camera.

Your client does not care if you took a Level I course or a building science
course. I have met a lot of Level I people who could not inspect a house.

InterNACHI desires to promote an IR class designed for their inspectors
and requires them to pass a battery of HI testing and education to go with
it, in order to be “Infrared Certified”. That looks better in court than taking
a class that had very little to do with an home inspection.

If you were a brand new person trying to be “Infrared Certified” by
InterNACHI… it would take you several months of intense study to pass
all the InterNACHI membership requirements and testings, plus the our
two day Infrared Training course.

It only takes 3.5 days to pass a Level I infrared course and you may still
be unable to be “Infrared Certified” by InterNACHI standards… because
you don’t have any background as an inspector and would fail all the test
required to join InterNACHI.

Our “Infrared Certified” standards are very high in the HI industry.
Go ask a Level III thermographer to apply… he can’t do it.

Step one - http://www.nachi.org/rigorous2006.htm
Step two - http://www.infrared-certified.com/
Step three - http://www.infraredcertified.com/

When I went to the FLIR-ITC building science course that is
designed for commercial and residential applications, we finished
the infrared theory section of the class in 1.5 days. You see,
even FLIR realizes that it does not take that long to learn that
part of the course if your going into it for building application purposes.

If the judge ask other Level I thermographers “do they now
feel ready to inspect a house with an IR camera?”… the obvious
answer is NO.

Then the judge would ask why you offer Level I as evidence that
you are properly trained to use an IR camera to do home inspections,
when other students would testify that the Level I class has very little
application for doing an IR inspection of a house.

The ASNT defined what a Level I course was way back in the
90’s and did not create it for home inspectors… because they were
not using IR cameras on houses yet.

FLIR-ITC realized this and created the building science course
for a broad base of commercial and residential applications, but
InterNACHI has now refined it for home inspectors only.

This was Will Deckers point. Old ideas are still being sold to inspectors,
when at the time, home inspectors were not even on the radar.

I think $1700 for a 3.5 day class is waaaay over priced. They know that if someone just spent $7000 - $20,000 on a camera, surely they will spend $1700 for training IMHO

They also exist in a very high cost of living area, with instructors that also live in the high rent district (California).

I think that the high cost of certification may say something about the service fees we are/should be charging (to include this education thing).

I also thing we are comparing Apples and Oranges!
In less than a year ITC has come up with (and generating more) specialized courses. That’s because WE are demanding it! John (and others) “are” providing it and filling the need. Cheaper, more convenient and more to the intended use of the student.

I think YOU GUYS should figure what you NEED and get it the best way you can.
It’s not easy for a starving HI (in a crappy market) to pack up for a week and take “vacation time” to get training.

Not only are you learning something you need, John is getting CE certification for those of us in states that need CE to keep our licences.

You also have NACHI folks like Kevin Richardson (for his web site) Will Decker for his PP Presentations etc…, that are creating something worth while. Have any of you hung around the ITC BB? There is no thought process going on there!!! Ask Peter Russel, he posted questions there last year and has yet to get an answer. You get no better support anywhere!

As a matter of fact, ITC education is not approved by my state (yet). That’s 64 CE’s I have and may not be able to use!