It seems as if there is nothing a smartphone can’t do these days. It can get you where you want to go (most of the time), you can make reservations at your favorite restaurant, and now you can use it to detect whether your home is leaking energy or water.
Thermal imaging, a once-costly technology, available only to the military and police or firefighters, is now just a finger-swipe away with the right attachment to your smartphone, thanks to Seek Thermal, a California-based technology company.
The way it works is this: the Seek Compact Camera (which is smaller than a credit card swiper for your phone) attaches to your smartphone, turning it into a thermal imager that can then identify hot and cold spots in your house.
After downloading a free app, the camera begins working in seconds and homeowners can then easily spot energy loss in the home caused by air leaks, missing or damaged insulation, insufficient HVAC or poor construction. In addition, the thermal imaging camera can also find water in roofs, walls, doors, and window frames.
According to one user who tested the Seek camera at the end of winter in his own home, the results were “stunning.”
“Within minutes, I was able to detect sources of heat leaking out of my house,” he says. “Some of these places are easy to fix, while others would be quite difficult.”
For professional contractors, the Seek CompactPRO is a must-have because the camera has enough sensitivity to locate radiant heating pipes under concrete slabs, identify unsealed insulation gaps in roofs, walls, and door and window frames, and find out how far water has spread in the case of a leak.
Thinking of buying a home? This little jewel could save you all kinds of unexpected surprises in the form of water leaks in the basement and behind finished walls, and roof leaks that may have been painted over by a homeowner trying to disguise a problem.
To protect your investment (both the camera and your phone), the Seek Compact has a compatible module for the OtterBox uniVERSE Case System.
The smartphone attachment is designed to work with both iPhone and Android top models.