Have you ever seen the device in this photo?
This is a thermal imaging camera.
Here, a trained Sentry Roof technician is using the camera to locate moisture in a roof that’s scheduled for replacement. The purpose is to identify areas of wet insulation and to quantify those areas for the client prior to starting the job.
If we know what needs to be replaced without removing it first, it reduces cost uncertainty and lets us know the exact amount of materials we need to have on hand.
Wet insulation needs to be replaced because it’s not doing its job. It increases the cost of heating and cooling a building, and it degrades other roofing materials.
Since water heats more slowly than other substances, on a sunny day wet insulation will be cooler than the surrounding dry areas. At night, wet insulation will be warmer.
A thermal imaging camera detects differences in temperature — the thermal or infrared radiation (IR) part of the light spectrum — which are not visible to the naked eye. Even differences of one hundredth of one degree can be detected by the camera’s sensors. The camera then converts the IR readings into a picture that the naked eye can see. This is called thermography.
It takes training to understand how thermography works, how to capture the information, how to interpret the results and how to use it properly for commercial roofing applications. But it’s worth the extra training!
In addition to providing clients with scientific data for evaluating insulation, the technology is nondestructive and can be performed in a single day. It can also help locate roof leaks (even small ones). Commercial roof thermal imaging can be useful to building owners and property managers in other situations as well. Feel free to contact Sentry Roof if you have a leak, suspect you may have moisture in your roofing system or are interested in a thermal imaging inspection to help determine how well your roofing system is performing.