Drones make roof inspections safer, faster, and more efficient by reducing the need for dangerous treks up and across rooftops. Drones equipped with thermal and visible cameras can more easily track down moisture under roof membranes or find indications of missing or damaged insulation.
This allows the roofer or roof inspector to determine which sections are performing well, and which need further investigation. They may still need to get up on the roof and use traditional (often destructive) test methods to quantify the extent of a problem, but the overall time needed from initial scan to diagnosis is greatly reduced.
Adding thermal imaging cameras to drones allows inspectors to scan large areas for moisture trapped underneath roof membranes, and look for the effects of structural issues such as missing insulation. The presence of water and the absence of insulation can both cause changes to the surface temperature of the roof. The thermal camera detects this temperature difference and displays it as colors—for example, dark tones indicating cold moisture or light tones indicating heat escaping through the uninsulated roof. Finally, the camera does not require visible light, so flights can take place at night or in areas that are shadowed.
FLIR, an industry leader in thermal imaging cameras, manufactures several types of thermal cameras that are both drone-agnostic and plug-and-play with systems made by DJI Innovations. Our gear will help you find potential leakage issues in your building.
Building owners and inspectors practicing commercial drone inspections can recoup the cost fairly quickly.
Robert Haller, Drone Specialist