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Professional Home Inspection in Charleston, Dorchester and Berkeley Counties of South Carolina
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Why Infrared?

The U.S. Department Of Energy Now Recommends That A Thermographic Scan Be Done Before Purchasing A House, Even On New Homes

Thermography measures surface temperatures by using infrared video and still cameras. These tools see light that is in the heat spectrum. Images on the video or film record the temperature variations of the building's skin, ranging from white for warm regions to black for cooler areas. The resulting images help the auditor determine whether insulation is needed. They also serve as a quality control tool, to ensure that insulation has been installed correctly.

Moisture below a master bath upstairs where a 'repaired area' was noted in ceiling; the leak below the master tub drain was not repaired correctly.

A GFCI protected kitchen receptacle that had loose internal wiring... an easy fix if you know it's there...

Entire outside corner of this bedroom had not been insulated prior to the drywall.

Infrared Thermal Imaging can detect many issues not seen in a tradition visual inspection:

  • Faulty wiring, breakers and fuses
  • Hidden moisture intrusion
  • The moisture sources of mold
  • Pipe and duct work leaks
  • Roof and ceiling leaks
  • Foundation cracks
  • Heat/energy loss
  • Structural concerns
  • Missing insulation
  • Ventilation problems
  • Moisture associated with termite nests
  • Rats, mice and other pests

Ceiling in dining room has condensate dripping from the HVAC lines above it; area showed no visible staining or other detectable signs of the moisture.

Combined with traditional home inspection techniques, the infrared inspection method reveals substantially more of the house than can be perceived by the naked eye and conventional inspection tools. Many things can't be be seen with only a flashlight.

So why don't all Home Inspectors use Infrared Imaging?

This technology is very expensive, some inspectors cannot or will not invest that much back into their business.  Others actually believe that Infrared "sees too much" and that it is too far beyond the required standards and may increase their liability.  At A to Z Home Inspections I believe differently.  I believe my clients deserved the absolute best inspection possible.  I strongly feel that includes Infrared Thermal Imaging.  Charleston thermal imaging is relatively new but with proper education on my part clients understand what the technology is capable of and what it is not. They benefit from the thorough inspection and I sleep better at night knowing I have provided the best possible inspection for my clients.

Thermography uses specially designed infrared video or still cameras to make images (called thermograms) that show surface heat variations. This technology has a number of applications. Thermograms of electrical systems can detect abnormally hot electrical connections or components. Thermograms of mechanical systems can detect the heat created by excessive friction. Energy auditors use thermography as a tool to help detect heat losses and air leakage in building envelopes.

Because wet insulation conducts heat faster than dry insulation, thermographic scans of roofs can often detect roof leaks.

In addition to using thermography during an energy assessment, you should have a scan done before purchasing a house; even new houses can have defects in their thermal envelopes. You may wish to include a clause in the contract requiring a thermographic scan of the house.