Co-founder, Adams + Beasley
About a year ago, one of our subs turned us on to the FLIR E5 compact thermal imaging camera, and we’ve been using it to diagnose hard-to-find heat loss and water leaks behind the walls ever since.
Instead of providing just numerical temperature readings, this tool gives us a detailed, color-coded thermal map of the area in question. You can still see those numerical readings for any spot, though, by using the button under the LED screen to scroll crosshairs across the image.
Now we can find areas where heat is being lost or where a pipe may have burst before cutting into drywall. The camera is especially useful for water leaks where there are no stains on the walls to point you in the right direction.
The MSX image enhancement setting lets us overlay a digital image with a thermal image of the area, making it easier to illustrate and explain the problem to clients who may have trouble reading the temperature map. Another favorite feature is the auto-hot/cold detection feature, which lets us find the warmest and coolest spots in an image with the touch of one button.
At $1,200 each, the camera isn’t cheap, but we’ve bought a second one to keep up with demand. When growing and maintaining relationships with past clients, it pays off to be able to take a warranty call or handyman job as the person who finds and fixes the problem, instead of the person who has to call someone else.