Winter Leak Detection House Inspections

Is Winter a Good Time for A Leaky Home Inspection?

It goes without saying… if you are buying a home, it’s MUCH better if it’s been raining. A thermal imaging building inspection will clearly show leaks within a week of heavy rain. It’s only logical to test the house for leaks under the worst possible weather conditions… particulary for roof, deck and window leaks. 

Leak detection services in NZ will vary in results depending on the type of equipment used during the home inspection. It’s important to understand that thermal imaging cameras are excellent for detecting leaks on ceilings, under decks, roofs, back of showers and under windows, whilst moisture meters are the best method for testing for moisture problems in external walls.

What if it hasn’t rained for a few weeks, is it still possible to find moisture in walls?

Yes. In NZ, the typical homes we get hired to test for moisture are plaster systems with no cavity system. If the home has no cavity, then the moisture and condensation gets trapped behind the walls and soaks into the timber framing and insulation. The moisture testing meters we use are highly sensitive and will detect the slightest change in timber and gib board density caused by higher levels of moisture.

What about roof leaks after no rain?

It is true that a roof leak that hasn’t found it’s way into an external wall may go undetected in summer months… but the good news is that a roof leak is generally easy to fix, and it’s the least harmful type of leak that can be found in a home (As long as it hasn’t travelled into an external wall). Generally, if the leak was that severe you would see visual signs of damage or discolouration on the ceiling.

The insulation batts may be wet also… but if you have a pitched roof, you can crawl through the manhole and substitute the wet insulation with new batts. If it’s a mono pitched roof (Can’t crawl inside), then you can either fix the source of the leak and let it dry out, otherwise if it’s showing on the gib board you can open up the ceiling and take out the saturated insulation. Not such a big deal considering there is moisture damage to the ceiling anyway.

In summary, winter is an excellent time for thermal imaging inspections and general leak detection investigations. Summer is normally fine for moisture inspections, unless it hasn’t rained for over 3 weeks or so. Don’t rush your property purchase if you feel the place could be leaking and it hasn’t rained for some time. Give us a call if your aren’t sure if the timing is right for you.

Booking & Job Completion Process

Here’s how the thermal imaging inspection works:

inspection reports1) Pick up the phone and give us a call 7 days per week. We give you a live ‘locked in’ quote over the phone based on the size of your home and the type of inspection required. Compare the difference between our ‘quick scan’ and complete report here.

2) We then arrange a time to meet at your property, and we begin the process at an agreed time. An inspection on an average size home takes approx 1.5 hrs.

3) We scan your home room-by-room… one wall at a time. We document our findings for each and every room as we go. We have a compulsory ‘double-check’ policy in our company which simply means that not only do we scan with the camera, but we also go over every wall top to bottom with our state-of-the-art moisture meter made in NZ, for NZ conditions.

4) Once the process is complete, we then take the information away and compile a complete report of our finding. This report is emailed to you within 12-48 hrs.

5) Payment is usually C.O.D. An invoice is issued with all reports. If you can’t pay on the day, or you can’t be present for the inspection, that’s fine, you can simply do a direct deposit.

6) You can email/call us into the future with any further questions relating to your property inspection and findings.

If there’s any potential problems with your home that require attention, there are many professional tradespeople who can assist. We can discuss this matter as it arises.

Contact Us to book an inspection today!

Read about our ‘quick scan’ here