Thursday, January 28, 2010

3 Blind Mice...See How They (don't) Run

The seller's pest control company said there are no mice...
Well, there are no live mice.
But my photos show differently.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Infrared Imaging Detects Cold Drafty New Replacement Windows

For many years, a re-occurring and common complaint to me during an infrared thermal imaging scan is that the new replacement windows are cold and drafty. Savy homeowners often question their contractors ability to deliver their promise on workmanship so they have hired me to double check what they are feeling.

During the scan, the FLIR T-400 infrared camera detects and documents air infiltration at the seam of the upper and lower sash connections. Upon closer examination, the lock is not fully engaged, and when correctly executed, the window seals tight. The images below clearly show a before and after. My advice is to double check that all of the windows are properly closed. You will save money in two ways: 1. energy bills will be lower, 2. my inspection fee. (There are other issues here but I wanted to point out the most obvious and simple one.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Eliminate Cold and Drafty Windows Doors and Walls

What do you see here....

Two conditions are detected in dark blue/purple: 1. air infiltration at receptacle and incorrectly installed insulation in the wall cavity.

See the air infiltration at the center of the windows?

How about around this sliding glass door assembly

Hidden Water Leak Detected with Infrared Imaging

Thermal imaging detects cold anomaly associated with a leak which the moisture meter confirmed.

Friday, January 15, 2010


15 Tools That Every Homeowner Should Own
By Nick Gromicko and Rob LondonStandard plunger
The following items are essential tools but this list is by no means exhaustive. Feel free to ask an InterNACHI inspector during your next inspection about other tools that you might find useful.
1. Plunger
A clogged sink or toilet is one of the most disturbing problems that you will face. With a plunger on hand, however, you can usually remedy these troubling plumbing issues relatively quickly. It is best to have two plungers -- one for the sink and one for the toilet.
Torpedo level
2. Combination Wrench Set
One end of a combination wrench set is open and the other end is a closed loop. Nuts and bolts are manufactured in standard and metric sizes and because both varieties are widely used, so you’ll need both sets of wrenches. For the most control and leverage, always pull the wrench toward you, instead of pushing on it. Also, avoid over-tightening.

3. Slip-Joint Pliers
Use slip-joint pliers to grab hold of a nail, a nut, a bolt, and much more. These types of pliers are versatile because of the jaws, which feature both flat and curved areas for gripping many types of objects. There is also a built-in slip-joint, which allows the user to quickly adjust the jaw size to suit most tasks.

4. Adjustable Wrench
Adjustable wrenches are somewhat awkward to use and can damage a bolt or nut if they are not handled properly. However, adjustable wrenches are ideal for situations where you need two wrenches of the same size. Screw the jaws all the way closed to avoid damaging the bolt or nut.

5. Caulking Gun
Caulking is the process of sealing up cracks and gaps in various structur
es and certain types of piping. Caulking can provide noise mitigation and thermal insulation, and control water penetration. Caulk should be applied only to areas that are clean and dry.
6. Flashlight
None of the tools in this list is of any use if you cannot visually inspect the situation. The problem, and solution, are apparent only with a good flashlight. A traditional two-battery flashlight is usually sufficient, as larger flashlights may be too unwieldy.
7. Tape Measure
Measuring house projects requires a tape measure, not a ruler or a yardstick. Tape measures come in many lengths, although 25 feet is best. Measure everything at least twice to ensure accuracy.

8. Hacksaw
These are great for cutting metal objects such as pipes, bolts and brackets.

Hacksaws look thin and flimsy, but they’ll easily cut through even the hardest of metals. Blades are replaceable, so focus your purchase on a quality hacksaw frame.

9. Torpedo Level
Only a level can be used to determine if something, such as a shelf, appliance or picture, is correctly oriented. The torpedo-style level is unique because it not only shows when an object is perfectly horizontal or vertical, but it also has a gauge that shows when an object is at a 45-degree angle. The bubble in viewfinder must be exactly in the middle, not merely close.

10. Safety Glasses / Goggles
For all tasks involving a hammer or a power tool, you should always wear safety glasses or goggles. They should also be worn while you mix chemicals.
11. Claw Hammer
A good hammer is one of the most important tools you can own. Use it to drive and remove nails, to pry wood loose from the house, and in combination with other tools. They come in a variety of sizes, although a 16-ounce hammer is the best all-purpose choice.

12. Screwdriver Set
It is best to have four screwdrivers: a small and large version of both a flat-head and a Phillips- head screwdriver. Electrical screwdrivers are
Wire cutter sometimes convenient, but they're no substitute. Manual screwdrivers can reach into more places and they are less likely to damage the screw.

13. Wire Cutters
Wire cutters are pliers
designed to cut wires and small nails. The “side-cutting” (unlike the stronger "end-cutting" style) style is handy, but not strong enough to cut small nails.

14. Respirator / Safety Mask
While paints and other coatings have become less toxic (and lead-free) over time, most still contain dangerous chemicals, which is why you should wear a mask to avoid accidentally getting them in your lungs. A mask should also be worn when working in dusty or dirty environments. Disposable masks usually come in packs of 10 and should be thrown away after use. Full and half-face respirators can be used to prevent the inhalation of very fine particles that ordinary facemasks will not not stop.

15. Duct Tape

This tape is extremely strong and adaptable. Originally, it was widely used to make temporary repairs to many types of military equipment. Today, it’s one of the key items specified for home emergency kits because it is water-resistant and extremely sticky.

16. Peter Bennett's FLIR T400 Infrared Thermal Imaging Camera
Well, ok maybe that's a little overboard, but you can always call him for an infrared thermal imaging inspection of your home, investment properties, commercial buildings, warehouse, country club, restaurant bank, office, condo, townhouse, and even your horse.

You see this...

I see this...

With this...FLIR T400

Petr W. Bennett, Owner
Residential & Commercial Inspections
Infrared Thermal Imaging Services
(energy-loss survey)
(structural & insulation quality survey)
(survey horses for health anomalies)

530 Prospect Avenue Little Silver, NJ 07739
Office 732-758-9887 Cell 732-245-9817
NJ Home Inspector Lic#GI371
NJ DEP Radon MET11140
Certified Infrared Level One Thermographer No.7406
Certified Member of INACHI #NACHI05031062