How do you know if your home or business still has moisture?

One reason it's important to hire a professional to dry your house is moisture detection. Moisture detection has come a long way from simple and incomplete visual inspections. We now have moisture sensing and infrared technologies that allow for noninvasive and close to foolproof methods for checking for moisture.

Visual Inspection

Our first tool is visual inspection. If you call us for leak detection, you probably saw a stain, wetness, or irregularity that indicated a water issue. We use visual inspection to see where the problem begins, but that's only a piece of the puzzle.

Chances are that if you can see evidence of water in the form of stains, sagging ceiling tiles, or actual wetness, you have much more significant damage in the non-visible area.

It's quite likely that you have some invisible water inundation as well, and that's where our specialized equipment comes in.

Infrared Detection

Infrared cameras show all. They are one of our essential tool in detecting moisture. IR cameras work because of the slight differences in temperature we see between wet and dry areas. They'll detect temperature differentials down to about 0.1 degree Fahrenheit in framing, sheetrock, insulation, siding, furniture, and carpeting, and stucco and work through paint and other coatings. Our tech need only to point the detection camera at the suspected area and take a reading.

Floor without infrared moisture detection This floor and wall appear to be moisture free. But are they?

Floor with infrared moisture detection shows water! We can easily see that the floor and wall both have water that was invisible in the original picture.

They have significant benefits over visual inspection:

  • Non-destructive testing - In the days before IR, the only way to be sure that an area was dry was to open it up! This meant cutting into walls, removing siding, removing trim, and taking apart furniture.
  • IR saves a ton of time - Since nothing needs to be opened up, our water restoration pros can take a reading from your wall, ceiling, floor, couch, carpet or any other area and know immediately if you have a problem.
  • Inspection of hard-to-reach areas - High ceilings, tiny crawlspaces, and dead spaces are typically difficult to inspect no matter what, but an IR camera makes this easier as well.
  • No guessing - Because of the above three benefits, we can have much assurance that we have accurate information about water damage.
  • Documentation - Rather than just saying, "That looks wet," our techs can provide printouts that document and prove water damage.

Ceiling without infrared moisture detection This ceiling appears to be clean and dry from the outside. Is this true?

Ceiling with infrared moisture detection shows water! This ceiling has water accumulation at the ceiling joists. This could be a leaky roof or leaky bathroom plumbing.

Moisture sensors

Moisture sensors are more useful for directly monitoring areas that are susceptible to flooding or to ensure that future water entry doesn't occur. Since they take readings from the surrounding air/atmosphere, they are proximity devices. This means that they need to be close to the monitored area and not separated by any barriers. While a moisture sensor is good for monitoring the status of a room, crawlspace, or small area behind a wall, an infrared camera is more effective at doing this without entering the area and also whether the materials themselves are water-saturated.