What Is A Thermal Imaging Camera?


Thermal Image Camera - Sper Scientific

Thermal Imaging Cameras are used to see temperature events behind walls or other solid objects to detect overloaded breaker boxes, missing insulation, and water damage as well as many other items. Being able to “see” behind walls as well as detecting large temperature differences can help stop thousands and in some cases hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage to expensive equipment and homes. Homeowners, Inspectors, electricians, contractors, and auto mechanics are just a few of the people who can make use of Thermal Imaging Cameras.

Resolution is the most important factor indicating quality of thermal imaging cameras. The higher the resolution, the more precise and accurate measurements of small targets are going to be. Sper Scientific’s 800201 has a resolution of 220 x 160 with a visible image resolution 35,200. This resolution would put this model between the Flir E6 and E8 as far as resolution is considered.

Keep in mind, thermal camera displays might have more pixels than a camera detector, but your actual thermal image is always limited by the thermal detector resolution. You should think of it as up-scaling on your 4K TV. Your TV might have 4K resolution, but if the source (let’s say DVD player) is only 480P, you are only seeing an upscaled image.

Temperature range is an important factor to consider as well. For home use and DIY types a range of 14 to 300°F is more than adequate for almost all scenarios as this will allow you to spot unsealed windows,potential water leaks, and Heat/AC issues. For professional use in factories or inspections you will need a higher range such as -40 to +50 °F as this will allow you to spot check heat spots on active machinery that may operate normally at higher temperatures that 300°F.

The easiest way to spot a potential electrical issue is to find out an overheating element is with a Thermal Imaging Camera. Most electrical elements and wires have a certain temperature ceiling, if a wire or electrical component goes above certain temperature, they usually fail or cause fire. There are several ways of testing for potential issues, but most electricians agree that a thermal imager is a safe and fast way of detecting a potential problem. An on-screen spot meter can show overheating wiring or component and give you accurate temperature reading. Therefore, thermal camera is an essential tool for every electrician.

As a DIYer you have gone ahead and switched out some of the light fixtures in your new home as well added a few extra switches to your wall outlet. What you may not know is if the house was wired to the correct standard when it was built if you are pulling too much power from one outlet it can cause a tremendous amount of heat that you may not notice when you flip the switch. Prolonged excess in heat can damage your wall and potentially cause a fire. With a thermal imaging camera, you can simply point it at the wall and see if there are any heat spikes due to the additional wiring.

As a contractor or building inspector you may be called in to diagnose why the buildings AC or heating bill is so high – with a Thermal imaging camera you can detect if there is missing insulation broken areas of duct work or other energy efficiency issues. Without a thermal imaging camera, you would literally have to each start crawling through the duct work or roof and try to visually diagnose what the issue was which would not only be extremely more difficult but also take a tremendous amount of time.

We all know how devastating can humidity and moisture be to your home. Thousands and thousands of houses are ruined because of undetected moisture damages. Mold is dangerous and can spread quickly if left undetected. So how can a thermal imaging camera be helpful detecting leaks and moisture spots in your home that contains water or moisture is cooler than area around it. A high-quality camera can easily detect it so you can start fixing the problem. Most professionals use it to spot isolation problems.

The Sper Scientific 800201 has all the features that DIY and professionals need at a very affordable price.

See the 800201 in action:

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