TECH NOTES | Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head
Catching the rain in buckets inside of your building? There is an inexpensive method to detect moisture problems in your roof that will relieve your rainy day blues for years to come.
Water can enter the roof system by means of condensation, damage and/or deterioration of the roofing membrane and flashing system. Moisture-laden roof materials retain more heat from the sun and hold the heat longer than surrounding, drier roof materials. This heat differential can be detected using an infrared camera. Large areas can be scanned and problem areas found more quickly than with other moisture detection methods. Areas of wet roof materials can easily be quantified, which allows for more accurate repair estimates. Infrared scans are typically conducted at night for accuracy when sufficient cooling of the roof surface has occurred. Areas of apparent wetness are marked on the roof surface during the scan, the images are digitally recorded, and a report is issued.
Infrared scans can also be performed on the roof prior to coating the existing membrane. Many coating manufacturers require that all wet materials be removed from the roof system before a warranty will be issued. Infrared imaging is the fastest and easiest way to determine the location and quantity of wet materials.
For those of you who manage large buildings, including an infrared roof survey as part of your ongoing maintenance program can produce significant cost savings. Areas of moisture located during infrared scans can be quantified and appropriate repairs performed. Maintenance programs with annual infrared surveys will increase the roof system life cycle and decrease damage to materials within the facility.
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