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Thermal Imaging Averts A Potentially Dangerous Dryer Fire

Thermal imaging averts a potential dangerous dryer fire.

Mighty Mo does it again!  He loves his job.

I do a lot of One-Year Warranty Inspections.

They are the last time a buyer has a chance to have the builder address anything wrong with the house.

During those inspections the report needs to be very specific.  And they are extremely helpful inspections.

One very important thing I do is sweep the house with a thermal camera.

That is the only way we can see the quality of the insulation behind the drywall, and any other of a myriad of things a thermal camera can detect.

This family had dried a load of clothing about an hour prior to my inspection.  Yet the wall and ceiling above the dryer was still very warm.  I wondered why.  From the outside I had already looked at the dryer vent opening to see if it was clogged.  It was very clean.

So I had them run the dryer for about 10 minutes before looking at the wall again.

The same location looked much warmer!

There is a reason for that.  It tells me heat is not escaping.  Somewhere there is a clog, and it isn't on the outside of the house at the discharge hood.

Mighty Mo was vibrating with excitement.

It was attic time.

From the attic space I could see that the flexible discharge tubing, a virtual slinky with insulation and plastic, was crimped tightly as it turned immediately to the right to blow its air outdoors.

Thermal imaging showed that there was a heat build up right at that crimp.  Given that there is insulation at the crimp, so where the line is crimped the insulation is crushed also and provides less protection.  Hence heat, almost 125F, is built up right at that location.  That temperature build up is after only 10 minutes!


These folks and a small child have been in the house only 11 months.  In one year the three of them washed enough clothing, and created enough lint, to build up in that crimp, where the tubing is crushed to a very small dimension.

During installation, when the tubing was directed toward the outdoors it was bent too tightly.  THAT MUST BE CORRECTED!  These images notify the buyer of the dangerous condition and will put the builder on notice.

There are thousands of dryer fires in this country every year.  They are due to clogs - lint, bird nests, etc. - which build up heat.  That heat backs up overheating the dryer and it gets too hot.

Many years ago I wrote a blog calling the dryer the most dangerous appliance in your home.  Click on that link!

My recommendation:  not only are one-year warranty inspections very important, but a thermal camera can go a long way toward finding issues in a house that would be otherwise unnoticed!  Thermal imaging is very important during inspections.  Mighty Mo has found literally hundreds of problems otherwise unknown to buyers, and sellers.  And as far as home inspections and thermal imaging goes, insist on Jay Markanich!






Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560


Comment balloon 38 commentsJay Markanich • October 20 2018 11:53AM
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