Thermal Inspection

Make sure the inspector you hire has thermal imaging equipment.

If they don’t, then they can’t even scratch the surface!

INSPECT A HOME professional inspections include infrared thermal imaging in addition to property inspections. We offer a full infrared thermal inspection and report. Our infrared thermographic camera enables us to do a powerful noninvasive sweep to see what is happening to the building we are inspecting. This technology helps monitor and diagnose the condition of buildings. It can quickly identify problem areas that can’t be seen by the naked eye and prevents us from having to use destructive probing methods. The results are captured and documented instantly in a picture and easily added to professional reports.


Using infrared thermal imaging in a certified home inspection can help you save hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars a year. We can identify missing insulation, improperly installed or compressed insulation, and shrinkage or settling of various insulating materials. We can often see moisture, leaks (including in roofs, water pipes, water lines), and electrical issues before they pose a bigger risk to fiscal or physical well-being.

What Is Infrared Thermal Imaging Technology?

Infrared thermal imaging has come a long way. This technology was first part of the science and space program, and since then, it’s made its way into the military and night vision programs. Infrared thermal imaging has been in the industrial and commercial area for some time now. It is now just coming into the residential field of home inspections. Thermography is the use of infrared imaging and measurement camera to “see” and “measure” thermal energy emitted from an object. Because everything has a surface temperature, infrared thermal imaging (ITI) allows us to see the variances in those surface temperatures. The variances are represented by different colors and we can see the hot and cold spots. We now can take the picture and use our diagnose methods to tell you what’s going on in the building and wiring. Infrared imaging technology allows us to see what the naked eye can’t (and what other Houston home inspectors can’t see).

Why Is Infrared Thermal Imaging So Vital to Your Houston Home Inspection?

There are two primary mechanisms for heat loss in buildings: conduction through the walls and air leakage. Both can be identified from the surface of the buildings with infrared thermography. Early correction of faults identified can be made before extensive damage can occur.

Conductive Losses
Problems identified as conductive losses can include:
  • Missing insulation
  • Improperly installed or compressed insulation
  • Shrinkage or settling of various insulating materials
  • Excessive thermal bridging in joints between walls and the top and bottom plates
  • Moisture damage to insulation
  • Moisture damage to building materials
  • Heat loss through multi-pane windows with a broken seals
  • Leak in water pipes
  • Damaged heat ducts
  • Leakage in buried heat and steam lines, water lines, or underground sprinkler systems
Air Leakage

Air leakage is the passage of air through a building envelope, including through walls, windows, or joints. Leakage to the interior is referred to as infiltration, and leakage to the exterior is referred to as exfiltration. Excessive air movement significantly reduces the thermal integrity and the performance of the envelope. Therefore, this is a major contributor to the energy consumption in the building.

In addition to energy loss caused by excessive air leakage, it can cause condensation to form within and on walls. This can create many problems, like reducing insulation R-values, permanently damaging insulation, and seriously degrading materials. It can rot wood, corrode metals, and stain brick or concrete surfaces. In extreme cases, it can cause concrete to spall, bricks to separate, mortar to crumble, and sections of a wall to fall, jeopardizing the safety of the occupants. It can also corrode structural steel, rebar, metal hangers, and bolts with very serious safety and maintenance issues.

Virtually anywhere in the building envelope where there is a joint, junction, or opening, there is potential for air leakage. An experienced themographer can identify the thermal irregularities on the building envelope, and the thermal pattern will discern whether the pattern indicates a problem with the insulation, air leakage, or the building structure.

What Infrared Thermal Imaging Is NOT

It’s not x-ray vision, a moisture meter, a super tool, or a risk eliminator. It cannot detect moisture because the best it can do is detect thermal differences. The infrared imaging camera can identify the suspect areas that require further investigation.

An INSPECT A HOME inspector, equipped with a thermal imaging camera and properly trained in its use, can find suspect areas with a house that a normal home inspector cannot. These areas include:

  • Water intrusion through the houses exterior covering, whether the house has brick, stucco, wood, or vinyl siding
  • Plumbing leaks inside the house, including leaking pipes, improperly secured toilets, leaky shower pans, bathtubs, and water pipe condensation that can be conducive to mold growth
  • Improperly installed insulation or no insulation at all
  • Wet moisture to walls and on stud areas
  • Circuit breakers in need of immediate replacement
  • Electrical faults before they can cause a fire
  • Overloaded and undersized circuits

FLIR i7 Infrared Camera Info

FLIR i7 cameras are not only advanced infrared cameras, but also the most compact, lightweight, and easy to use. The brand new FLIR i7 was launched on September 1, 2009, and conforms to the new proposed RESNET guidelines, which makes it ideal for all types of energy audits, weatherization jobs, and building inspections.

Point and Click

It is fully automatic. All you have to do is point and click to see the heat variations in the environment around you, allowing you to find exactly what you are looking for. It works because everything gives off heat. The FLIR i7 thermal images create a visualization of heat differences for the naked eye. If you are a plumber, an electrician, or if you install windows, insulation or HVAC systems, the FLIR i7 give you an edge in building diagnostics.

Catch the Heat of the Moment

The infrared readings from the FLIR i7 are immediately and clearly visible on a full-color display. You can save your readings as an image for later reference. FLIR infrared cameras are ideal for detecting hidden problems, assessing damages, surveying for moisture and leaks, identifying energy losses and poor insulation, and finding electrical faults and overheating.

Key Features

Delivers professional color images and a thermal sensitivity of : <0.1 C @ 25 C

Large 2.8″ color LCD screen

120×120 pixels image resolution