How can infrared cameras help reduce home energy consumption?
These devices are used to check the building substance and air circulation during and after construction.
The aim of a low-energy home is to avoid heat loss or to keep heat out and also to develop all sources of heat production.
Passive houses (energy-efficient houses) go a step further because they:
- Have extremely good insulation
- Do not have heat bridges (insulation gaps)
- Use heat exchangers
- Use the sun’s radiation
- Provide more sources in order to save the heat of the air-outflow by transmitting its energy to the fresh air inflow
They follow some comfort (International Organization for Standardization ISO 7730) and air quality standards. These houses need up to 90% less heating energy than a conventional residential building. The passive house may eventually become a building standard, particularly in cold climates.
How can Infrared Cameras Help Reduce Home Energy Consumption?
It starts with the construction process …
Careful planning and construction needs to happen in passive houses. Markus Meyer, the owner of AIROPTIMA (a building consulting company specializing in Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning issues), does residential buildings and eco houses, in particular, said:
The building process needs to be monitored very closely. An infrared camera, combined with the blower door procedure, is a perfect instrument to detect temperature differences in a non-contact and non-destructive way.”
These temperature differences are prime indicators of building construction faults, warm bridges or air leaks. We can inspect passive houses after building stages are finished and at full completion of the house and will use an infrared camera during this type of inspection.
B series camera
Meyer uses an (Forward-looking Infrared) FLIR B360 infrared camera which has specific measurement features for building applications. He often uses the camera’s humidity, insulation alarm functions as well as its Picture-in-Picture functionality.
Passive housing construction has huge growth potential
Meyer sees growing potential in the energy rehabilitation of existing buildings in addition to the exploding amount of passive houses in Europe, where they focus on keeping the heat in. Similar processes are useful in Australia, where we usually focus on keeping the heat out!
The building substance will be increasingly valued by its degree of energy consumption against the background of energy price rises which mean high heating, cooling and ventilation costs.
Our passive construction analysis will always start with a thermographic inspection with an infrared camera to detect heat losses near roofs, windows, and key physical building elements. This information, together with relevant calculations, is the best basis for planning and monitoring building energy optimization works.