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Thermal Infared Camera

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Does any of you use them? What is a good one to buy without breaking the bank?

I use a flir Bcam SD in day to day home inspection work. They are putting out new models yearly, so it's not as settled as say choosing a moisture meter.

Unless you have a good science background and you have been inspecting for a good while, you'll need to pay for the expensive training. Even after the expensive training, you'll just have to get experience using it for a year or two to get a good feel for its limits in your business.

Chris, Oregon

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I use a Flir B40. A few things to consider:

Buy a camera with a few more features than you think you will use, don't go crazy mind you, but it sucks to be disappointed in a several thousand dollar investment (fortunately the B40 wasn't on my dime). There have been several instances that it would have been helpful if the laser pointer had been enabled on my camera for example.

As Chris has said, get the training. Even with a good science and construction background the learning curve has been a bit steep for me, and the potential for growth is going to be limited until I get some further education.

Training or no, I suggest you practice on a building you are very familiar with. I have extensively renovated my house, and thought I had a pretty good handle on it's strengths and weaknesses. While the thermal images reinforced most of what I suspected, I was very surprised to find performance variables (good and bad) where I had not expected them.

Lastly, if you intend to rely heavily on the software component of your camera package make sure you get to see demo versions and understand the limitations. The B40 software component is virtually useless, and would have been a very big factor for me had it been my coin used for the purchase.


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