LHI’s Newest Technology: Infrared

February 2, 2012

Infrared is one of the newest up and coming types of light used to detect heat within objects.  Experts use infrared light across various fields of study, such as health, science, art and entertainment.  But what is it really and how does it work?


The Basics. 

 Infrared is light that is a part of the color spectrum.  Its wavelengths are longer than those of the visible light colors of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet.  Because of this, infrared is below red on the color spectrum, which correlates to its name – ‘infra’ which means ‘below’ and red, creating infrared.

 Infrared is energy that is invisible to the human eye.  The International Commission on Illumination divided infrared into three different sections based on wavelengths.  Near, medium and far infrared, near being closest to red on the spectrum and the closest to the visible eye; far is the farthest from red and closer to the longer wavelengths of microwaves.


 In order for infrared energy to be seen by the human eye as an image, a process called thermal imaging is used.  A special camera is used to detect the temperature of an object with red being the warmest area and violet being the coolest.

 Thermal imaging is used by the military, by health professionals and in night vision equipment.  And recently it has become a way to measure moisture, insulation, and electrical and structural issues within home inspections.


 Infrared in the Home.

 Lewis Home Inspection is now a Certified Infrared (IR) Scanning Service.  Companies such as LHI can use infrared devices to help with home inspections.  Equipment such as an infrared camera (thermal imaging), a moisture meter, and gas detector can be used to inspect the following aspects of a home:

  • Water intrusion
  • Insulation
  • Roofing leaks
  • Electrical systems
  • Structural issues


Infrared can detect excess moisture, such as mold, from roof leaks, plumbing problems and simple window leaks.  The thermal imaging camera can sense where insulation within walls and ceilings due to the temperature of the area, and will tell when there is insulation missing.  The overheating of electrical problems will also register on the IR camera which allows for easy detection.  Structural issues are not necessarily as prominently seen as other aspects of home inspections, yet missing or broken structures may be detected.

Infrared is one of the newest technologies that can be used to inspect homes.  Find a company, like Lewis Home Inspection, that is certified to work with infrared technology for a more advanced inspection of your home this year.






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