Infrared cameras cannot actually “see” behind surfaces or through any materials. They cannot provide views like X-ray vision might. (Please don’t believe the movies that show real-time infrared videos of people moving around inside of buildings. It just doesn’t work like that. They use special effects tricks to accomplish those views.)
Even though infrared cameras cannot provide “X-ray” vision, the images can often give clues as to what’s going on behind the surfaces, such as: 1) places of missing insulation, 2) possible water leaks, 3) areas of possible mold growth, 4) possible insect infestations, 5) HVAC air leaks inside wall, ceiling, or floor cavities, or 6) operation of radiant heating coils, etc.
Because surface temperature patterns can often be very confusing or visually misleading, special training is needed to prevent incorrect diagnoses from the images. (Too many inspectors have caused homeowners to tear into walls only to discover no underlying issues.)
You’ll receive infrared images that appear like other photos within your full inspection report (if you’ve ordered this additional service). Each image will follow narrative text as a description of the perceived issue, the location of the issue, and what consequences may be involved. The text may also recommend certain actions. Only the images deemed to be of significance by the inspector will be included.
The minimum additional cost for thermal imaging during a regular “Full Residential Inspection” is only $50. However, if the customer desires documentation of all surfaces, please call for an estimate or quote.