New Thermal imaging report guide launched

The NHBC Foundation in collaboration with BSRIA, has published a brand-new guide that details how Thermal Imaging can be used as a tool to assess the thermal performance of a new home. The publication was launched on January 30th, 2020.

In a typical existing British home, up to one third of the heat produced by the heating system can be lost through the building fabric, that is the roof, ceiling and walls. New homes built to the latest building regulations will typically hold their heat more efficiently than older constructions thanks to improvements in modern insulation, double glazed windows and the general approach to airtightness in buildings.

With higher expectations from today’s home buyers looking for ever more ‘greener’ and more energy efficient homes, now more than ever builders need to be able to demonstrate the thermal effectiveness of their new houses.

The ‘Thermal imaging report guide’ is written with the experience and expertise of the BSRIA Thermography team. The guide identifies the most important criteria that are necessary to perform a good Thermal Imaging Survey of the Building Fabric and gives examples of some thermal anomalies that can be found during a typical survey. The guide also highlights some of the factors that determine what makes a useful, authoritative report.

Richard Smith, Head of Standards, Research & Innovation at NHBC, said: “The information provided by a thermal imaging report can be extremely valuable in identifying heat ‘leaks’ if they exist, that may have not have been easily detected. With that extra information builders and customer care personnel can reassure homebuyers that their new homes will indeed save energy and money. But it’s worth noting the importance of using a qualified person, with the correct equipment and in the right environment.

“Having these elements in place are beneficial to achieving accurate and useful results. For anyone involved in the construction of new homes, the NHBC Foundation’s latest guide will also highlight how an accurate thermal imaging survey can distinguish between good construction and a potential fault.”

BSRIA thermographic surveys are conducted by engineers qualified in accordance with ISO 18436:7 and surveys in accordance with BS EN 13187 and ISO 6781 as recommended by the UK Thermography Authority (UKTA).

Thermal Imaging is typically used to highlight:

  • Areas of the building where insulation is not performing as expected
  • Areas of thermal bridging in the building fabric that will allow heat to travel through the walls and be lost to the outside environment
  • Areas of air leakage that will quickly remove warm, heated air from the building.

Additional applications include thermal imaging of:

  • Mechanical and electrical equipment to identifiy potential faults before they become a problem or fail
  • Underfloor heating systems to identify problems of underperformance
  • Rooftops to identify location of potential leaks.

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