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  1. #66
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    OK, AD, you have been bustin' Ron's chops about his whiz bang ray gun for way over a year now but have had this closet affair for how long now?

    Have you really just been wanting the guys that are out of the closet to provide the justification for your indiscretion?

    By the way can I borrow it sometime?

    Inspection Referral SOC
    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  2. #67
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    OK, AD, you have been bustin' Ron's chops about his whiz bang ray gun for way over a year now but have had this closet affair for how long now?
    JL: No, you must've missed my IR debut post, bit I did fess up as soon as I bought it. In fact, before I bought it, RB tried to sell me his old wore-out unit.

    Have you really just been wanting the guys that are out of the closet to provide the justification for your indiscretion?
    JL: That sounds like something I would write. Have you seen a doctor about that?

    By the way can I borrow it sometime?
    JL: Why sure. I don't have it printed up yet, but the loaner fees are something like $100 per hour. At RB's claimed rates you could easily make $100 per hour above that, no sweat.


  3. #68
    Richard Soundy's Avatar
    Richard Soundy Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    A few comments on the many postings from above:

    [a] The 3 picture set shown by Michael Thomas - the client is really only interested in Fig 3 (the problem). I have no doubt that the problem could have been discovered by Fig 1 (what a camera sees) better still I am also relatively sure the eye could also see it far better especially backed up by a moisture meter/IR thermometer! Off course Fig 2 is the "wow" factor (even Bill is wowed).

    [b] Dana's picture of radiant heating - once again the unsaid "wow" factor "I can see my radiant heating lines". Do you inform your client that it is not the case? No, once they are wowed it is best to leave it as such. As an inferred measurement it is subjected to many possible mis-readings - "wow" and "double wow" "How did they know the person sitting at the desk was going to be exactly in that position when laying the radiant heating lines???

    [c] I regards to Bill's primary application as a moisture intrusion measurement, I can assure him that in such application the IR images are now subjected to a double inferred measurement finding (temperature transfer to outside visible area and low temperature readings being water) This conclusion can easily be disputed in a court of law. Bare in mind there are many cases (especially in the commercial world) where roofs are ripped off only to find the result of a false positive. Guess who gets sued? Carefully consider the risk factors.

    All the best - Richard


  4. #69
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Bare in mind
    RS: Good description of the IR disciples. Freudian slip?


  5. #70
    Richard Soundy's Avatar
    Richard Soundy Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quite observant of you ADM .... if it truly is a Freudian slip on my behalf it would read more like "bare in Bank" since we are talking about a ~$200 versus a ~$8000 investment - I certainly know where I would stand in the Home Inspection industry.

    VBR - RS


  6. #71
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Getting New Fluke TIR32. (whenever the heck it comes out)

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  7. #72
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I knew that statement, 'charge 5/insp', preceded and followed by, just a suggestion, would create some discussion. I just didn't realize it would work so well.
    One thing I got to hand to this site; U mugs don't leave any stone unturned till the horse kicked is surely dead. If I didn't know any better I'd think U're all closet AHJ's.
    Bob Smit, County Electrical Inspector


  8. #73
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by bob smit View Post
    If I didn't know any better I'd think U're all closet AHJ's.
    BS: Ouch!


  9. #74
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by bob smit View Post
    If I didn't know any better I'd think U're all closet AHJ's.

    Bob,

    Some of us have been out of the closet for some time now ... doing AHJ inspections.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  10. #75
    Patrick McCaffery's Avatar
    Patrick McCaffery Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    IR Camera’s, pros and cons.

    Having been both a Reliability Engineer and a Diagnostic Technician, which included Vibration Analysis, Infrared Thermograpy and Ultrasonic Testing for a large Manufacturing Company, here are my opinions:
    • Predictive Technologies are very useful in predicting failures and diagnosing problems, if you have the experience and proper training.
    • Predictive Technologies are expensive.
    • When the recession began if manufacturing the first thing that they got rid of was Reliability and Predictive Technologies, due to the cost.
    • Are you going to scan every wall, ceiling and electrical outlet? This will take extra time. You then have to review and determine what you are viewing and then add this image to your report. This will take more time. Are you going to charge extra for it, or absorb it in the cost of the inspection? Are the Realtors and clients prepared for the extra time?
    • Home Inspections are supposed to be visual inspections of accessible areas.
    Having said all that, I can see the benefits for infrared testing or any other non-evasive testing, however for a typical home inspection, the cost would be difficult to justify.
    If you can afford the equipment and use it for increasing your revenue by doing just electrical inspections, problem analysis or energy audits, the cost may be justified.
    I offer these opinions not to dispute the advantage of predictive technologies, only to stimulate constructive thought. There could be an opportunity to expand the Home Inspection business, for when times are a little slow. At this time, I cannot justify the cost and will try to do the best visual inspection possible, providing the best cost for my clients.


  11. #76
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Soundy View Post
    a] The 3 picture set shown by Michael Thomas - the client is really only interested in Fig 3 (the problem). I have no doubt that the problem could have been discovered by Fig 1 (what a camera sees) better still I am also relatively sure the eye could also see it far better especially backed up by a moisture meter/IR thermometer! Off course Fig 2 is the "wow" factor
    1) There was no evidence of moisture present in visible light.

    2) It's very difficult to reliably detect elevated moisture level via non-imaging thermal measurements alone at such locations as every exterior corner will be warmer or colder than the surrounding wall surfaces due to thermal bridging.

    3) The "Wow" factor in that image was what convinced both the buyer and seller that a leak was present and persuaded the seller to remove the deck on the roof above to discover the source.

    4) The buyer is a RE attorney - based on his experience, which is he going to recommend to his clients... the inspector with the IR camera, or the one without?

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-14-2009 at 08:27 AM.
    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  12. #77
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick McCaffery View Post
    IR Camera’s, pros and cons.

    Having been both a Reliability Engineer and a Diagnostic Technician, which included Vibration Analysis, Infrared Thermograpy and Ultrasonic Testing for a large Manufacturing Company, here are my opinions:
    • Predictive Technologies are very useful in predicting failures and diagnosing problems, if you have the experience and proper training.
    • Predictive Technologies are expensive.
    • When the recession began if manufacturing the first thing that they got rid of was Reliability and Predictive Technologies, due to the cost.
    • Are you going to scan every wall, ceiling and electrical outlet? This will take extra time. You then have to review and determine what you are viewing and then add this image to your report. This will take more time. Are you going to charge extra for it, or absorb it in the cost of the inspection? Are the Realtors and clients prepared for the extra time?
    • Home Inspections are supposed to be visual inspections of accessible areas.
    Having said all that, I can see the benefits for infrared testing or any other non-evasive testing, however for a typical home inspection, the cost would be difficult to justify.
    If you can afford the equipment and use it for increasing your revenue by doing just electrical inspections, problem analysis or energy audits, the cost may be justified.
    I offer these opinions not to dispute the advantage of predictive technologies, only to stimulate constructive thought. There could be an opportunity to expand the Home Inspection business, for when times are a little slow. At this time, I cannot justify the cost and will try to do the best visual inspection possible, providing the best cost for my clients.
    PM: Well said.


  13. #78
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    1) There was no evidence of moisture present in visible light.

    2) It's very difficult to reliably detect elevated moisture level via non-imaging thermal measurements alone at such locations as every exterior corner will be warmer or colder than the surrounding wall surfaces due to thermal bridging.

    3) The "Wow" factor in that image was what convinced both the buyer and seller that a leak was present and persuaded the seller to remove the deck on the roof above to discover the source.

    4) The buyer is a RE attorney - based on his experience, which is he going to recommend to his clients... the inspector with the IR camera, or the one without?
    Now that is exactly what I am talking about. It could not have been more right on to the complaint I have. It is slowly being pushed into a must for home inspectors and not a side or other business. This lawyer that guides countless folks a year with their real estate purchase has now become an advocate that all home inspectors should not only own but use an IR camera in all inspections. Next it will become a state or SOP guideline in what a home inspector must use and now have to purchase. Did the attorney say that they must pay a large some to include the use of an IR camera as should be or just the fact that the home inspector own and use one.

    Sorry. But I said this a long time ago about IR cameras. It has become the joke and burden to home inspectors to go spend another 5 grand, lets not forget about the freaking certification for a couple grand or your camera ain't worth crap, and of course the extra burden of time and liability. Then when it is in full use in an everyday home inspection then every square inch will have to be scanned and documented.

    This always has been the goal of the marketers of the IR camera. This was the way for it to become the must use item in every home inspection.

    Mike. Let me ask you this. What happens the next time you inspect a home and do not find a leak or see signs of it. Do you really think that you will get away with not finding a leak if someone knows you whipped it out at another home and found a leak. You are pretty much guarantied that you now have to use that camera at every home inspection.

    It no longer matters that you saw a sign of a leak and then whipped it out free of charge. You used it you are now stuck with the liability and guess what......no charge because you did n at charge for its use at the last home.

    Am I making way to much of this. Absolutely not. There has to be a stopping point of what a home inspection is as far as how far we must go. I am not talking about SOPs because SOPs no longer matter. You and countless others are making it the thing to do in every home inspection. You are forcing the hand for the industry. Let me ask you this also. How many inspections a year is your camera worth. No extra money and 5.... maybe 10 grand in camera cost and certification??????. What ever you paid you just knocked off 16 inspections a year at 300 per inspection when you drop that c amera and destroy it and now have to buy a new one.

    I need to stop.

    This is and and has been getting out of control.

    This is the absolute perfect example on why you should not pull your camera out unless there is a fee involved for you knowledge, time, experience and equipment and liability.

    Think about it before you bash back. I am sure this is not why you bought the camera. I am sure you bought it to buy into another entirely different type of business to add to your home inspection business as everyone else has.


  14. #79
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    ets not forget about the freaking certification for a couple grand or your camera ain't worth crap....
    I took the Snell training because I wanted to be better at what I did. Not one client has asked - before or since - if I'm "certified" to use it.

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-14-2009 at 05:26 PM.
    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  15. #80
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Infrared space telescope launched from California

    Mon Dec 14, 2009

    LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - NASA's new infrared space telescope was launched into orbit on Monday on a 10-month mission expected to reveal previously unseen objects ranging from near-Earth asteroids to some of the most distant galaxies in the cosmos.

    The Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, was carried into a polar orbit 326 miles above Earth by a Delta II rocket that lifted off before dawn from Vandenberg Air Force Base in central California.

    "All systems are looking good, and we are on our way to seeing the entire sky better than ever before," said William Irace, the mission's project manager at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.

    The $320 million instrument is designed to scan the entire heavens for the infrared radiation, or glow of heat, given off by objects that are too cold, too far away or too shrouded in dust to be seen by conventional visible-light telescopes.

    Scientists say the spacecraft's detectors are about 500 times more sensitive than those of the last infrared sky survey in 1983, and are capable of producing photograph-quality images of the objects they find.

    . . .
    By launching an infrared space telescope NASA has ruined it for every space agency. NASA could have launched a visible spectrum telescope but NOOOO! They had to pull out their infrared telescope without charging extra for it. Now all space agencies will be expected to launch infrared space telescopes, not simple, run-of-the-mill visible spectrum telescopes.

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  16. #81
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Next best thing (at least for electrical inspections are concerned).
    No contact laser therm imaging now on sale at Harbor Freight Tools.
    item # 96451/91778 reg 59.99 sale 25.99
    Remember my original post stated, "not necessarily a camera".
    U might not be able to produce a photo, but these cheepies will at least allow U to report.
    If this is all the sellers want to pay for......well, what he wants, he gets.
    Bob Smit, County Electrical Inspector


  17. #82
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Breedlove View Post
    Infrared space telescope launched from California



    By launching an infrared space telescope NASA has ruined it for every space agency. NASA could have launched a visible spectrum telescope but NOOOO! They had to pull out their infrared telescope without charging extra for it. Now all space agencies will be expected to launch infrared space telescopes, not simple, run-of-the-mill visible spectrum telescopes.

    Now Bruce. I know you are an intelligent guy. I suggest you read my post again and then give the implications of what is happening some very serious thought. I am not talking bull. I am not spouting off some ignorant information. I am telling it like it is. You are bringing way to much into the home inspection realm. The liability will be 2 fold what it is for a home inspector. I am not going to go into my entire post but please have some enlightening thought as to what is happening. Don't just come back with some off the wall completely unrelated copy and paster info about seeing in outer space. You tell me what is going to happen to home inspection as it is now. You tell me where it finally ends. You tell me when the ultimate give away for knowledge and technology and time and liability comes to an end. You tell me what happens when someone gets pulled into court for not documenting the entire home with the camera and covering every square inch of the home and misses a leak or what not when you found concerns in the past 5 out of ten homes with your IR.

    Are you going to hide behind your SOPs stating that is is an easily accessible inspection and does not require an IR camera when you use it all the time and find concerns. You only use the camera for this person and not that person. You inspected this home with the camera but not that. You scanned that suspect room but isn't the entire home suspect.

    Please/ I am not trying to piss anyone off so please try to avoid doing that to me and read over all the posts and see the reality of where this is going.

    The new technology give away. The way of things to come. The new age. The new wave. I have heard it all before and it does not change the facts.

    Why don't you throw in a free lead test and a free termite inspection and report and a free radon inspection, why not an areal photo of the home and a free landscape plan for those homes with crappy planting beds. Throw in a free foundation report by pulling out your water level and graphing the entire home.

    Doesn't that red paragraph sound utterly ridiculous ??????????????

    Enough said. If that did not make my point then there is absolutely no need to go further because there is no hope. All those tools, schooling, expertise licensing, insurance for all and all that liability will all allow you to do a better job for your client. Are you going to give all of them away as well.

    So you have an IR camera. So I guess now that has happened there is no getting to the reasoning part huh. Sold, hook, line and sinker and now the rest are going to have to pay for your poor thought out plan.


  18. #83
    Richard Soundy's Avatar
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    You are right Ted.

    I use a Ferrari to get me to the inspection site. It is fast, saves driving time and is impressive, especially the hand crafted roof rack for my "Little Giant".

    I am not making much of a profit, but hell why should I - that would mean paying taxes.....

    Richard


  19. #84
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Check this out...

    Fluke Challenge

    Best

    Ron


  20. #85
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I have to say, being cast as the heavy in this movie is a bit of a shock - but I guess it shows how far I've come.

    When I started in this business I quickly discovered that in home inspection - as everyplace else - "Life ain't fair".

    The only way to get experience was to get jobs, but the best way to get jobs was to have experience.

    I was in competition with established inspectors, some of whom I quickly discovered were less capable even than myself.

    And some of them were members of an association that would not (perhaps not unreasonably) have me as a full member until I had 200 inspections under my belt.

    My inspections took too long (still do), and it took me a too long to write my reports (still does), and one of the reasons was that I'd actually read the the state SOP, and was trying to comply with it, when some of the inspectors around me were using checklists that hadn't been updated for a decade and were not even minimally compliant.

    I could not get business from most RE agents if I attempted to do the job I felt I should, but business from agents is on of the few productive sort of marketing for new inspector to do.

    It really was (and still is) a very tough business - especially in this economy - and a lot of the reasons were just, well, "unfair".

    But... "Watcha' ya' gonna' do?"

    So I plugged on ahead, and tried (and continue to try) to learn how to do a better and better job, and do a better job of marketing myself.

    And somehow it seems I'm now the person who is being unfair: I've gone and got myself this gosh darn infrared camera, and I learned how to use it, and I'm finding leaks that inspector without the camera simply doesn't find, and my clients seem to like that - and because of that other inspectors are apparently starting to feel a need to do the same.

    So - and this is a shock to me - I'm now the guy who has the experience and the skill that's marketable, and that makes me a threat to other inspectors, especially to other experienced inspectors who don't want or can't afford to purchase, learn and market technology and new skills.

    And man, I do understand that - that's exactly the way felt the first few years in the business - struggling against "unfair odds".

    But that's unfortunately how life is.

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-15-2009 at 10:27 AM.
    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  21. #86
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I respect your decisions in the marketing business.

    Where does it stop Mike.

    Why don't you throw in a free lead test and a free termite inspection and report and a free radon inspection, why not an areal photo of the home and a free landscape plan for those homes with crappy planting beds. Throw in a free foundation report by pulling out your water level and graphing the entire home.

    Still sounds pretty silly huh.


    Market up your business. Get paid for your large investment and experience and training. I understand where you are coming from about the beginning of your inspection career because I saw in your past post on this forum what field you came from and could not get an edge over the other in inspectors. Now to combat the beginning years you went out and paid a large some for a camera and for your training only to give it away to have that competitive edge for your (no insult intended) lack of background in the construction trades.

    I moved to Texas 5 years ago. I got everyone of my inspections to life's past experiences and knowledge in the field.

    Today I am almost starting over again with the down economy and every other inspector giving everything away that does not have to do with a "Home Inspection"

    Advantage ??????????????? Very questionable. Free giveaways to everyone ?????? Completely beyond me as to why everyone is in such a big rush to destroy their future in home inspection by getting everyone aware that there are inspectors out there that give everything away.

    Mark my words. That camera, unless used with extreme caution, with out the marketing of your advantage over the other inspector (again, Don't use it once and miss something it will cost you more than you have gained by buying it and using it).

    Market your advantage with the camera (which you have) and you have now made it a permanent liability. You now must use it, document everything and never misread or miss anything with it. If pictures are not taken of your scans throughout the entire home in every room, walls, floors and ceilings, and something is found after they move in (such as a remodel and water damage found etc) you will be paying for it. Even mild marketing with the camera is telling folks that you will find everything no matter what you may have in your contract.

    You better be scanning every square inch of every wall and ceiling and leave absolutely nothing to chance. Read everything perfectly with that camera and never miss anything.

    By marketing that camera you are saying that you are better than your fellow inspector. That is why they hired you. It covers the entire inspection. You will be held to a higher standard.

    Your recovery for the cost involved by not charging for it will never be recovered. One miss and you go backwards ten fold.

    I hope it does well for you.

    I have to repeat Mike and this is nothing directly to you and no insult intended I am just telling you the facts. The race is on with all inspectors to give away everything to gain inspections. No one is marketing themselves anymore but there free giveaways.

    I cannot tell you of the folks in DFW that are giving it all away and now the only thing they can do is cut prices by a third and still give it all away. It is coming your way Mike. I used to be able to fight low prices even with give aways. Now it is low (very low) prices and even more give aways. The 2 are extremely difficult to over come.

    I ask you. What do you mean by unwilling to learn and buy and market new technologies so you can be better than the folks you use to have to battle for work. Now you give what you have learned and bought away to combat competition. I do not feel in the slightest that that is moving forward.

    I repeat what I said above.

    Why don't you throw in a free lead test and a free termite inspection and report and a free radon inspection, why not an areal photo of the home and a free landscape plan for those homes with crappy planting beds. Throw in a free foundation report by pulling out your water level and graphing the entire home.

    It keeps sounding even sillier every time I post it.


    That is what it has come to around here and I repeat, It is coming your way. You have opened the flood gates and the erosion caused by the flood makes it impossible to stop the flood. The water is getting deeper. Soon you will learn (maybe you will retire, for the second time by then and not have to worry about it) that giving it away is not moving ahead. It is taking a step back. What next after everyone has rock bottom prices and is giving it all away ? A free coupon for a complete brake job. Now that would be great marketing and an advantage over the competition because you can afford to do so.

    Now that sounded real silly, huh, but that is what it is coming to.

    Free warranties. Free IR camera scans, Free termite inspection. Free groceries coupons. Free lead paint test (or mold test). Free foundation analysis.

    That list is what many offer around here. No joke. True story. I have posted a couple folks in the past. All of that is thrown in between 200.00 to 250. from anywhere of 3000 to 3500 square feet. No up charge for nasty old crawls. Is that what you want.

    Now it does not sound like I am just being a complaining pain in the ass, huh.

    Charge what you will but if you are not marketing for at least a slight up charge (should be far more than slight) over real competition then you are not one up on your competition. You are marketing and getting work for the give away. Yes, a nice give away but still a give away. That is not moving forward to the future.

    If you have a working wife or second income then there is no reason to give it all away. Not that there would ever be a good reason for that.

    I know I inserted your name in this post Mike, and I apologize for that, but I was not just attacking you. I am attacking all the folks near me or anywhere that dropped their prices lower than the bottom and give everything away and I am sitting here trying to think of a good marketing plan that will not be a give away marketing plan to combat these folks.


    Sorry for the rant but I am so tired of completely changing strategies to combat this crap. I am not afraid to admit but I do hate to admit that the give away everything boys are truly destroying business and the profession and I am tired of so many days off do to the utter madness.


  22. #87
    Richard Soundy's Avatar
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Michael, I hear what you say, since I too have been through the same scenario. You have selected a business model (property inspections tied to RE transactions) that is not the easiest one in the world. It is a business that is easy on the entry side but real tough to grow profitably. Basically, since the only real asset you bring to the table is your knowledge and such businesses cannot grow by just adding or employing people - once you train your staff they can easily become the competition. There are many types of business models that fall in this category - yes, it may appear to be unfair but it is what it is.

    I am relatively sure you entered into this line of business to make a reasonable living with some profit behind it to take care of swings in market cycles. Having said this, a quick analysis of the costs and expenses versus potential income (your speed and energy being the key factor in capturing these dollars at a base price predefined by both customer and the RE transaction) tells you quite a bit. It tells me that my highest investment should go into knowledge, followed by marketing and the rest such as tools, software etc... which would best be served by getting the bare essentials to achieve the job function. Now, both marketing as well as these bare essentials are being defined by outsiders (not me, they do not care about profits or a basic living for that matter). Your observation also included reporting software, it continually gets bigger and better (and more expensive to purchase and maintain) driven by standards set by the RE industry - has this same industry allowed us to increase prices. Answer - NO!

    Another matter effecting our business, both in expenses (insurance) and the forever looming legality "make-or-break" occurrence - "the risk factor". We are fully exposed with what I perceive as the least effective protection.

    I believe our SOPS are there to level the playing field, an attempt to define our own practices (not someone else outside of our industry) with a certain amount of added liability protection in addition to making it a "fair" process for all inspectors. IMO a Standard Basic Report would also assist in this endeavor - plain old word processing no "fancy dancy" report system.

    Michael I do not put down IR Imaging as a tool - I fully believe in IR and know the "risks" associated with same. It is just not a good decision to include it in the Home Inspection business. We should ALL be working towards simplifying our business and increasing our fees to compensate our already high expenses. We should not be complicating our inspections and increasing our costs!

    Experience and knowledge is important - give it some thought.

    Your thoughts and opinions are always welcome so do not think the reply's are meant to put you down.

    Best regards - Richard


  23. #88
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    1) My contract is quite specific about the limitations of my use of infrared at home inspections, and also about the limitations of infrared inspections in general, for example the fact that when used to detect moisture intrusion they are highly dependent on the weather in the days preceding the inspection. Infrared is used at my inspections as an adjunct to visual inspection, in the same way that I use a conventional moisture meter. IMO, many of the concerns expressed here about the possible liability implications of IR inspections apply with equal or greater strength to the use of any technique other than the naked eye - it's possible I will get sued, but if so the overwhelming likelihood is that I'm going to be getting sued by the kind of people would have been suing in either case.

    2) In my market I'm faced with intense competition from inspectors considerably less expensive than myself. I'm constantly looking for ways to differentiate myself from these inspectors, IR is just one of many - in fact if anything I make only modest use of it for marketing, one of the things I'm doing in (1) above is to make people aware that it is just one of many tools in my toolbox, with its own strengths and limitations, and one of the reasons I'm doing that is precisely because I want to control their expectations about what IR can and can't do at a home inspection.

    3) As for stripping the business down to its essentials, I know a very experienced inspector has recently left the business - his complaint was that the clients increasingly expected him to talk to them, and they were increasingly skeptical of his four and five page checklist carbon copy reports.

    Now, this man was an excellent inspector, and in some areas he had an experience base which I will never match. I'm far from certain that for the majority of his clients his reporting technique was any less useful in my own - it's the big things, after all, that our clients are most concerned about.

    But the fact is, this man was a dinosaur in a market where his clients expectations are being raised by a variety of factors, of which things like HGTV are probably a lot more influential than the marketing efforts of other inspectors. He was used in knocking out two or three 2-3 hour inspections (including his report) a day for $250 each. I'd be happy to be making a reliable $750 a day average over a five day work week, but in my market - given the time I feel is required for an adequate inspection and report - it's not going to happen unless I can convince my clients that basic home inspection is worth $525. IR is one of the things that help me do that. My competition is trying to knock out those $250 inspections in a marketing environment where three-hour+ inspection and 20+ page report with a substantial number of digital pictures is is increasingly becoming a minimum. When I look at this I see a business model which is higher liability (because of higher volume and more pressure to do twice as much in 25% more time) and much more frustrating than my own.

    4) Finally, I find the almost overwhelming concern of some other inspectors with liability issues somewhat mysterious.

    Assuming a reasonable level of competence, a reasonably well thought out and structured inspection protocol, and good reporting practices everything I've read indicates that the likelihood of a lawsuit is pretty much a numbers game. It's also my opinion- completely subjective - that the likelihood of getting sued also to some extent reflects the kind of rapport you're able to create with your client.

    My approach is to attempt a high quality inspection and report, follow-up proactively after each inspection to determine if there are any concerns, address any concerns immediately, then pay my E&O accept the fact that sooner or later I'm going to get sued whether I "deserve" it or not. I've reached this conclusion after talking to inspectors who have been sued, and it appears to me that almost all lawsuits against home inspectors happen for one of three reasons: 1) you really screwed up , 2) a "shotgun" suit, or 3) you are dealing with people who are basically crooks, and are going to sue you whether you screw up or not. (You'll notice I didn't mention contracts, I've got a good one, but I assume that by the time I get before a judge to decide to what extent it may protect me, I've already incurred significant expense).

    So while I take it liability issues very seriously, I don't let them run my business, or prevent me from getting either a moisture meter or the IR camera out of the bag when some visually observed phenomena or potentially defective construction feature suggests to me that moisture intrusion may be present.

    Your mileage - and the conditions in your market and your own priorities - may vary.

    -------

    BTW, I had extensive construction and contracting experience when entered the business.

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-15-2009 at 02:19 PM.
    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  24. #89
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    BTW, I had extensive construction and contracting experience when entered the business.
    MT: Which of those experiences prompted you to purchase a Segway?


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    And while I understand it, I'm not much attracted to the idea that the solution to our marketing and liability difficulties is to legislate everyone down to the same minimum level of performance.

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    MT: Which of those experiences prompted you to purchase a Segway?
    Amazon. Check out my review and customer image, it makes it so much easier to use my Steering Wheel Laptop Desk after 5PM on Fridays.

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-15-2009 at 02:42 PM.
    Michael Thomas
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  27. #92
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    MT - I have been fully involved in IR for well over 13 years (both single point, scanners and cameras) and I can assure you that IR Imagery especially in the aspect of "moisture" is a SURE way to get sued. I have seen it again and again. We, instructed all our employees to immediately dispel any thoughts from customers or potential customers that IR can see behind surfaces and or it can be used to detect moisture in any form. This advice was from our legal department backed by the science.

    You may right off my background and experience as BS - there is nothing I can say or do to be of any assistance to you.

    I know that other experienced inspectors also see the continual requirements been forced upon us to do more and more for an average inspection can only increase your "risk" factor. I agree with this because it only provides more ammunition in this already high litigious business. But, it is the IR Moisture application that will get you in trouble sooner or later. But, do not worry I am sure you can sue SNELL for the damages they caused you......

    All the best - RS


  28. #93
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Soundy View Post
    MT - I have been fully involved in IR for well over 13 years (both single point, scanners and cameras) and I can assure you that IR Imagery especially in the aspect of "moisture" is a SURE way to get sued. I have seen it again and again. We, instructed all our employees to immediately dispel any thoughts from customers or potential customers that IR can see behind surfaces and or it can be used to detect moisture in any form. This advice was from our legal department backed by the science.

    You may right off my background and experience as BS - there is nothing I can say or do to be of any assistance to you.

    I know that other experienced inspectors also see the continual requirements been forced upon us to do more and more for an average inspection can only increase your "risk" factor. I agree with this because it only provides more ammunition in this already high litigious business. But, it is the IR Moisture application that will get you in trouble sooner or later. But, do not worry I am sure you can sue SNELL for the damages they caused you......

    All the best - RS
    Randy... Please provide support for your statements...

    Best

    Ron


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Mike Holmes says every home inspector should have an IR camera. His is a $30K model and I don't even think he is certified to use it fwiw.


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Soundy View Post
    We, instructed all our employees to immediately dispel any thoughts from customers or potential customers that IR can see behind surfaces and or it can be used to detect moisture in any form.

    Makes sense to me - I go to considerable lengths make to clear to clients that IR imaging does not allow me "to see inside or behind walls", and that it does not allow me to "detect moisture or water" - that all it does is sometimes allow me to observe patterns of temperature difference that may lead me to suspect the presence of possible differences in moisture levels at a surface, which must then be confirmed or eliminated as location of elevated moisture by direct readings with a moisture meter.

    In fact, my clients sign a rider to my contract - written non-technical English - which specifically advises them of these and a number of other significant limitations of IR technology as employed at home inspections. Of course they can still sue me - but they will have a very difficult time demonstrating that I misrepresented the capabilities of IR imaging at a home inspection.

    And in the meantime, I frequently discover instances of water intrusion that certainly would otherwise have had the potential to come back and bite me at a later date.

    I know that you've had 13 years experience in the IR industry, and I take your warning - and other similar warnings - very seriously.

    But if you've been home inspection business a few years, you'll also remember similar dire pronouncements from some quarters about the extreme liability hazards of digital photography as it increasingly enabled us to geratly increase our photographic documentations of our inspection , and I'm sure they're going to be repeated in the next few years as the portable digital radar systems allowing us to image structural, plumbing, and electrical defects below finished surfaces become available.

    Meanwhile, most of us learned how to use digital photography to reduce our liability, for example by taking a standardized set of photographs to which we can then refer when writing our reports to double-check our observations and fill in details that were not recorded at the time, or to come here and get second and third opinions on questions about which we are uncertain - I know that at least every few inspections I have to go back and and recheck some detail or extract some additional information, and I'll bet that most other people here if they're being honest with themselves would say the same - and every one of those instances is an instance when I'm reducing potential liability.

    One thing I do absolutely agree with: we must find ways to get paid appropriately for the use of this technology - but I don't think that turning our backs on it either because of acquisition costs or liability concerns is the solution.

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-15-2009 at 05:37 PM.
    Michael Thomas
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    And there's also this: where is this tasumi of litigation ?

    We now have several thousand home inspectors using such technology, do we have any evidence that any home inspector has ever been sued for the negligent use of infrared technology at a home inspection?

    Is there any objective evidence that the use of infrared technology home inspections is actually "a SURE way to get sued"?

    If anybody ought to know if this is real concern , it's E&O carriers - I get e-mail from FREA requesting that I put specific language related to "Chinese drywall" in my contract, but I'm not getting e-mails about any aspect of infrared inspection.

    Paging Ben Garrison : is this an issue of concern to FREA?

    Or, if such increased risk does exist, do we know if risk is offset - or even more than offset - by a reduction of risk from the use of such technology?

    Because I know from personal experience that such technology used in conjunction with conventional moisture meters and other methods is regularly allowing me to detect moisture intrusion I would not otherwise have discovered, problems that I know from experience will result in calls from clients the next time there is an exceptionally heavy rain if I have not discovered and reported evidence of previous water intrusion, and presumably each such discovery reduces my potential liability for having (in my clients eyes) "overlooked" evidence of previous problems. (Ignorance is not bliss in our business.)

    I'm not trying to be difficult, and I'm not arguing that such use is not a significant potential liability - but I am going to be highly skeptical it is until I see some kind of objective evidence that this is the case.

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-15-2009 at 06:42 PM.
    Michael Thomas
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    BTW, I think this is a great discussion, and it's both motivating and assisting me in thinking through how to better present the limitations of IR technologies to clients in an even more unambiguous manner.

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
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  33. #98
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    And there's also this: where is this tasumi of litigation ?

    We now have several thousand home inspectors using such technology, do we have any evidence that any home inspector has ever been sued for the negligent use of infrared technology at a home inspection?

    Is there any objective evidence that use infrared technology home inspections is actually "a SURE way to get sued"?

    If anybody ought to know if this is real concern , it's IMO carriers - I get e-mail from FREA requesting that I put specific language related "Chinese drywall" in my contract, but I'm not getting e-mails about any aspect of infrared inspection.

    Paging Ben Garrison : is this an issue of concern to FREA?

    Or, if such increased risk does exist, do we know if risk is offset - or even more than offset - by a reduction of risk from the use of such technology?

    Because I know from personal experience that such technology used in conjunction with conventional moisture meters and other methods is regularly allowing me to detect moisture intrusion I would not otherwise have discovered, and presumably reducing my potential liability each time I do so.

    I'm not trying to be difficult, and I'm not arguing that such use is not a potential liability - but I am going to be highly skeptical it is until I see some kind of objective evidence that this is the case.

    It's only one tiny point to this Mike and I apologies for keeping this going but you continually make points on why you think it is a great idea to keep expanding the home inspection business.

    For some unknown reason you keep looking right past, and around and under and over the real point here.

    Why don't you throw in a free lead test and a free termite inspection and report and a free radon inspection, why not an areal photo of the home and a free landscape plan for those homes with crappy planting beds. Throw in a free foundation report by pulling out your water level and graphing the entire home.

    Now that for the 3rd, 4rth 5th it time sounds really, really, really silly and continues to get even sillier. You can add all the justification you want for adding yet another service to home inspections but it still does not answer the question.

    When is enough, enough and where does the line get drawn. The example you use for a couple hundred inspectors already having them brings it closer and closer to the point that everyone Will, very soon, must have and use one as part of a home inspection. Then what will you do ??? Add yet another service and then another. The ball is in your court.

    Where does it end. Will it become like DFW has become. Cheaper and cheaper and cheaper inspections because they have already added all the services and have no place else to go.

    I know you are seeing this and hearing this. I know you know I am not just blowing some invisible smoke. It is all real. Not made up and going further in the direction mentioned.


    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Energy auditing or commercial scans or specialised home scans (wait, isn't that an act of energy audits)

    Next question. I have used a lot of different IR Cameras. I see absolutely no need for paying over 5 grand for an IR camera for energy audits. All that I have used (high priced and low priced) pointed to the least or almost the least expensive cameras to still do the exact same job. One that I just looked at is only 3 grand and I have used it. It brings out exactly what is needed. Am I missing something in all this IR camera scanning for a home or is it just nicer to hold a $10,000.00 camera in your hand. Is it like driving a car with a $10,000.00 paint job on a car compared to 2 to 3 grand, it is not going to give you anymore performance.

    This is the one I just recently used


    FLIR i40: High-Temperature Infrared Thermal Imaging Camera

    Built-in 0.6 Megapixel Digital Camera and Picture-In-Picture function

    Features:

    • Lightweight (1.3lbs), manual focus camera with 3.5" LCD display and easy one-handed operation
    • Wide temperature range: -4°F to 662°F (-20°C to 350°C)
    • Focal Plane Array detector with 120 x 120 pixels image resolution (14,400 pixels)
    • Built-in 0.6 Megapixel visible light digital camera with LED lamps
    • Fixed-size Picture-In-Picture (PIP) fusion function
    • 0.1°C @ 25°C Thermal Sensitivity provides the resolution needed to find problems faster and easier
    • Thumbnail Image Gallery function allows quick search of stored images
    • MicroSD Card slot for image storage (1GB card stores up to 1,000 Radiometric JPEG images)
    • Complete with 1GB microSD card, miniSD adaptor, rechargeable battery, power supply, USB cable, lens cap and carrying case
    • Includes QuickReport™ software for analysis of radiometric images
    • 2-Year Warranty



  34. #99
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I use the original Fluke TiR. At the time I bought it, it was one of the two obvious "entry level" cameras.

    IMO, it's adequate for HI work, and the only reason I would anticipate replacing it would be if it breaks.

    The two major enhancements I would like to see on the Flukes are a laser pointer and dedicated buttons to quick access to the auto/manual and PIP toggles.

    As I understand it, neither is present on the new models.

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
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  35. #100
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    MT this discussion has sure been dragged out with many views. It is always interesting (and at times amusing) to read the different points.

    Looking at IR cameras from a business (HI) point-of-view, I have also noted the new prices ~$2900 for Flukes entry level camera. Now, this price is getting closer than ever to being an affordable tool in our arsenal to locate potentail problems in our profession/trade. That price was always our target price in 1998 and things went a little ascew when Fluke bought the company to be then immediately bought out by Danaher (big fish eat little fish etc....). Strangely enough that was the second time I have been involved with a buy-out by Fluke.

    I have always taken approximately 100 pictures during a standard residential inspection for my purposes only and it is not part of my report. I share some of these pictures with my client in the all important "consultation with client" part of the inspection. At least 30% of my time and efforts go into the "consultation" IMO that is what I am being paid for - the rest is purely to satisfy the RE industry (and in this matter I stick closely to the SOP's which you know is minimal).

    Regarding the litigation matter, I am not aware of any HI case on a residential building. But, knowing how lawyers are, the big commercial cases (mostly roofing tare-off's on large manufacturing/industrial/warehouse buildings) will quickly lead them to the current highly litigated RE industry as it applies to residential market. So, it is highly likely that we will soon see cases in this area. Like hound dogs they sniff $$$'s!

    All the best - Richard S.


  36. #101
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    all it does is sometimes allow me to observe patterns of temperature difference
    MT: Sort of like a deluded individual wandering around aimlessly in circles looking for drafts?

    In fact, my clients sign a rider to my contract - written non-technical English - which specifically advises them of these and a number of other significant limitations of IR technology as employed at home inspections.
    MT: So then, let me get this straight. You spend multiple thousands of dollars on a whizzbang and training so that your bang doesn't go whizz; you then spend time and money promoting the capabilities of the whizzbang; then you have your clients sign something that indicates they understand that the whizzbang really doesn't do all that much, you are not doing much with it, and that they cannot expect much out of its use?

    Of course they can still sue me
    MT: And, after being bull$hitted by you to the nth degree, they should.

    I frequently discover instances of water intrusion


    MT: Didn't you just say you couldn't do that?

    you'll also remember similar dire pronouncements from some quarters about the extreme liability hazards of digital photography
    MT: Some of those issues were real until the courts began to understand the science behind it.

    One thing I do absolutely agree with: we must find ways to get paid appropriately for the use of this technology
    MT: Yep, and when you do, you'll let us know, right?

    Last edited by A.D. Miller; 12-18-2009 at 06:01 AM.

  37. #102
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I find lots of water intrusion I would miss without IR, but not because I'm "able to see through or behind walls" or beacuse "I observe the presence of moisture or water".

    Oddly, considering the difficult some here seems to have with these concepts, my clients seem to have no difficulty either understanding the limitations of what I do or appreciating the additional value IR brings to my inspections.

    -------------

    To address an issue mentioned below:

    1) WDI - Nope. Separately licensed in my state. I let the WDI guy plck up both the fee and the liability for that one.

    2) Radon - Nope. I canl't compete on cost with RDS, and don't want to spend the time for a second trip to pick up the equipment in any case. RDS slightly disconts their service to HIs, and I make a small profit for booking their inspection for my client.

    3) Mold testing - Nope. I don't believe in charging for a service that provides little if any value to my client.

    4) Level II - Nope. At 62, I'm no longer want to HAVE to get on the roof to do the job properly irrespective of slope or condition. If I was 22, though, ,this is likely a service I would provide. (And, yes, I can still handle the 32' ladder, and I still try to get only every roof I feel can be accessed safely)

    Michael Thomas
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  38. #103
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    Lightbulb Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Why would you pay thousands for a tool and cerifications and not expect to be paid extra for it? since home inspections are at a moment of time visual non evasive inspections and then you get paid a small fee for the service provided? Does the realtor standing there with their arms folded , patting their feet hoping you would hurry up and finish and get the hell out so they can go home and start thinking about how they can spend the thousands they will make on the commission they make or do there service for free also? I got certified in mold and air quality because while i was inspecting homes i would see signs of it and although i could not call it mold i would suggest further review by some one who could. Now that is me but, i do not give that service away free. I would not offer to test or spray for free, why would you? Don't cut your self short. I want an ir camera bad so i can sell another service and hopfully make more money too !


  39. #104
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Nope. I don't believe in charging for a service that provides little if any value to my client.
    MT: And therein lies the rub with IR cameras used in conjunction with home inspections.


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Whatever.

    Michael Thomas
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  41. #106
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Why would you pay thousands for a tool and cerifications
    CC: I give up . . .why?


  42. #107
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Jeff asked a simple question, "is an IR camera a toy or money maker". We have all expressed our opinions. There are pros and cons for using IR technology. Now it becomes a personal decision for each home inspector.


  43. #108
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Well spoken The only answer to his question that can be is of course, how you decide to use it


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I can't remember which brand of IR Thermometer has a "laser pointer" that "brackets" the sensing area with a circle of dots instead of just a single spot in the middle of the area.

    Anyone know which brand this is?

    - Thanks

    Michael Thomas
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I remember seeing those, just can't remember the manufacturer as yet.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  46. #111
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    I can't remember which brand of IR Thermometer has a "laser pointer" that "brackets" the sensing area with a circle of dots instead of just a single spot in the middle of the area.

    Anyone know which brand this is?

    - Thanks
    Like this?

    HumboldtMFG Search - 3597a


  47. #112
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Thanks, but I'm looking for the one that projects a circle of dots>

    It's one of the major manufacturers, holds the patent on the pattern, I just can't remember who it is.

    Michael Thomas
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  49. #114
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    A much higher end unit using this type of pattern:



    Michael Thomas
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  50. #115
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    A much higher end unit using this type of pattern:
    Portable Infrared thermometer with crosshair laser - Seacom Process Instruments

    http://support.fluke.com/find-sales/...50_ENG_B_W.PDF

    Nope, here it is:

    Infrared Thermometer


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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    OK, we are getting close - there is a circle dot 30:1 pistol grip unit for around $220, that's the one I'm looking for...

    Michael Thomas
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  52. #117
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    OK, we are getting close - there is a circle dot 30:1 pistol grip unit for around $220, that's the one I'm looking for...
    MT: Truly hard to please:

    Wireless Infrared Thermometer

    This one looks like yours:

    MODEL OS530E Series - Handheld Infrared Series with Built-In Dot/Circle Laser Sighting Thermocouple Input & Close Focus Models


  53. #118
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    OK, we are getting close - there is a circle dot 30:1 pistol grip unit for around $220, that's the one I'm looking for...
    That's the one I remember seeing, just can't remember the manufacturer of it. Almost think it may have been a Raytek unit, not sure though (Raytek is now part of Fluke).

    Professional Equipment used to carry it. I played with it at one of the FABI meetings they came to a number of years ago.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  54. #119
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Thanks!

    Michael Thomas
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  55. #120
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    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    MT, the original unit was a Raytek MX Series (designed & manufactured in Raytek German facilities)
    30:1 SD released ~ 1997

    Due to a patent infringement (Omega if I recall correctly) it could not be sold in the USA.

    Not sure how Fluke/Danaher handled it after the legal suite!

    Regards - Richard


  56. #121
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,245

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Soundy View Post
    MT, the original unit was a Raytek MX Series (designed & manufactured in Raytek German facilities)
    30:1 SD released ~ 1997
    Found some on a Google search, but they may no longer be available, also, the one I remember was not quite as complex - either that or I am just remembering wrong.

    Raytek MX IR Thermometers

    raytek infrared thermometer

    Raytek MX4+NI High Performance Infrared Thermometer

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  57. #122

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobra Cook View Post
    AD, change the batteries in your calculator please, 200x5=1,000x5=$5,000.00 in five years It is clear that you do not wish to get involved with the IR technology and there is nothing wrong at all with that, it is just another way to make a few bucks. But wow Bob, only five dollars to pull it out? How puch extra to put it in?
    Not every tool i buy is to recover the actual cost over a specific period of time but mostly to make what i do easier. I guess if a camera would cut just a half hour off of each inspection at my hourly rate of what i charge for other services i perform, is $65.00, then eventually it will pay for its self. No matter i will be able to take on maybe another inspection or other service in the same day or i could be just be home basking the the hot tub and smoking another Habana Made in Habana,Cuba "ROMEO JULIETA"s I purchased on my last trip to the Carribean. Either way it could be a win win situation.
    My camera pays it's freight every month with ONE inspection. After that, it's all GRAVY!

    True Professionals, Inc. Property Consultant
    877-466-8504

  58. #123

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by bob smit View Post
    Next best thing (at least for electrical inspections are concerned).
    No contact laser therm imaging now on sale at Harbor Freight Tools.
    item # 96451/91778 reg 59.99 sale 25.99
    Remember my original post stated, "not necessarily a camera".
    U might not be able to produce a photo, but these cheepies will at least allow U to report.
    If this is all the sellers want to pay for......well, what he wants, he gets.
    Bob Smit, County Electrical Inspector
    Accuracy guaranteed to +/- 30 degrees at 3 inches!

    True Professionals, Inc. Property Consultant
    877-466-8504

  59. #124
    David Argabright's Avatar
    David Argabright Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    For me and I suspect most inspectors, it's more of a curiosity than a money maker.


  60. #125
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    2,797

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    OK, found a "reasonably priced" Omega with the "circle dot pointer":

    http://www.omega.com/Temperature/pdf/OS423-LS.pdf

    30:1 $199.00

    Low Cost Infrared Thermometer

    50:1 $259.00

    Infrared Thermometer with 50:1 Field of View

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 12-28-2009 at 09:14 AM.
    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  61. #126
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
    Posts
    3,473

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I haven't gotten one request for or inquiry about thermal imaging for an inspection since the cameras came out. Not one. Of the two inspectors I know that have the cameras around here, one said he uses it on every inspection at no additional cost and the other said he wanted to sell his.

    If there is a market for IR in my area, I haven't heard about it. People around here like the idea of extra tests, inspections, or services until they are told how much those extras will cost.


  62. #127
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    I haven't gotten one request for or inquiry about thermal imaging for an inspection since the cameras came out. Not one. Of the two inspectors I know that have the cameras around here, one said he uses it on every inspection at no additional cost and the other said he wanted to sell his.

    If there is a market for IR in my area, I haven't heard about it. People around here like the idea of extra tests, inspections, or services until they are told how much those extras will cost.
    NO: Same down here.


  63. #128
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mesa AZ
    Posts
    1,181

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    This discussion came up with 5 or 6 guys at IW. Three were from AZ.
    Despite all the certifications, fancy websites, not one saw any demand on the residental side for IR inspections..
    A couple of the guys were thinking about giving up, and selling the cameras.

    Phoenix AZ Resale Home, Mobile Home, New Home Warranty Inspections. ASHI Certified Inspector #206929 Arizona Certified Inspector # 38440
    www.inspectaz.com

  64. #129
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Caledon, Ontario
    Posts
    5,005

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    Same up here. Not one of my clients has inquired about IR service.


  65. #130

    Default Re: IR Thermal Imaging, toy or moneymaker

    I vote money maker!
    Since the rain started here in California, I've done 4 IR moisture leak jobs in the last 4 days and have three more scheduled today At $300 a pop, I would say I'm making money with my "toy". This is in addition to my regular HI work and FHA Compliance inspections.
    Dana

    True Professionals, Inc. Property Consultant
    877-466-8504

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