Thermal imaging can help identify surface temperature variations of the building envelope that relates to problems in the:
- thermal bridging,
- moisture content, and
- outside air infiltration.
Correcting these defects can play a significant role in increasing building energy efficiency and structural integrity. Considering occupant safety and comfort, the benefits of diagnosing building envelope problems without tampering with the building’s structure or mechanical systems is important.
Air infiltration is the passage of air through a building envelope, wall, window, or joint. Excessive air movement reduces thermal integrity and is a major contributor to energy consumption in a building. In addition to energy loss, air leaks can cause:
- condensation to form inside wall cavities,
- reduce insulation R-value,
- may seriously rot wood, corrode metals, and
- in extreme cases cause concrete to spall, bricks to separate and mortar to crumble, jeopardizing the safety of occupants.
Infrared provides a more precise, quicker visual analysis of the energy loss in a home or building over more traditional methods such as blower doors and smoke pencils. Missing or incorrectly installed insulation, air gaps in the building shell, and heating loss can all be quickly detected without any invasive techniques.