Thermographic Surveys

Jan 28, 2022

Many businesses rely heavily upon mechanical equipment. Do you think this is true for your business? In many industries, fans, pumps, vacuum sets, compressors, and motors all contribute to overall productivity. How do you determine if there are hidden problems within an equipment item? Use our Thermographic Surveys.  


Thermography services at WACOMM are available to help you avoid unexpected breakdowns which could halt production or knock out power and even set fires. Thermography (also known as infrared-based testing) uses an Infrared Camera to measure the energy emitted by objects using infrared wavelengths. The camera converts infrared information to a temperature image. The infrared wavelengths are shorter that the human vision can see. This means that thermography can detect heat-related problems much earlier than with the human sight. 


Thermographic Surveys are becoming more common due to their efficiency and high performance. WACOMM have more than 20 years of industry experience and are experts in thermal imaging surveys.  

Read more from the Perth commercial electrician team at WACOMM to find out. 


Why Use Thermography testing? 


Thermal anomalies in electrical equipment can be easily detected by thermography surveying conducted by industrial electrical contractors, such as WACOMM. Overloading, incorrectly sized components, load imbalance or resistance due to poor connections could all cause excessive heat. You can also detect mechanical issues, such as poor lubrication, misalignment, or any other friction-related problem. 


Research has shown that every dollar spent on a thermography study results in five dollars of cost avoidance. This ratio increases to 1 to 20 when you consider factors such as business interruptions, downtime, and additional expense. Depending on the facility’s size and type, the average exposure to electrical fire is between 1-60. You can save a lot more than you invest. 


The quality and experience of our staff is key to the high quality of WACOMM’s services in thermography. All WACOMM Thermographers are certified at minimum Level II. They are experts in thermography and have experience in many industries and operations. 


There are many applications for thermography: 


  • The electrical components include power stations, transmission lines and grids as well as control panels, components, circuit boards, and control panels. 
  • Equipment such as conveyors, sealing, and rotating equipment. 
  • Furnaces and other refractory-lined structures 
  • Body scans and medical procedures 
  • Heat leakages, dampness/mold, pipes, and ducts in buildings 


Ongoing electrical switching board surveys 


Industrial electrical contractors will conduct visual inspections of electrical systems for potential problems such as loose connections, corroded components, overload, short circuits, and other potentially dangerous faults. There are many electrical switchboards in some facilities. It can be costly and time-consuming to conduct inspections on these large installations. However, Thermography can significantly reduce this time and cost. These inspections often yield more accurate results at lower prices. 


Mechanical inspections 


Survey inspects a variety of mechanical equipment such as motors, pumps, and other rotating equipment. They can also identify and fix cooling issues, lubrication, alignment, and cooling problems. Thermography makes it easy to identify low speed rotating equipment, such as conveyor rollers. This reduces the time required to identify failure or failing rollers. 


Pre and Post Shutdown Inspections 


Inspect the pipework, chutes & hoppers, and conveyer rollers. Pre-shut will quickly identify any damaged or failed rollers, linings and blockages that may have occurred during service. This will give you ample time to plan for replacements and to make sure the shutdown goes smoothly. This allows maintainers to be certain that they only replace what is required. It also gives them confidence that they have not wasted time, money, or resources on maintenance that’s not needed. Post-shut surveys allow you to verify that all repairs have been successful. They also show if any blockages were removed and if the process is operating as expected. 




It is important to take time to ensure the environment is clean, brightly lit, and that everyone knows what you are doing. This is done to protect you and your children from any unnecessary danger while you’re completing the survey. 


Be aware of electrical panels and distribution boards. All electrical panels and distribution boards must be turned on, and all should be under load. You will have a better chance of identifying any problems. It doesn’t have to be on if it isn’t. If you could, cover all items that need to be scanned. You would be able to see all terminations. However, this is not always possible due to time constraints, the possibility that something might accidentally turn off, or customer preferences. 


You need to be aware that reflections can occur. Reflections on shiny surfaces nearby can cause hot items to appear in your image. Make sure that there are no hot objects in the vicinity of the object you are looking at. 


Set the camera to the ambient temperature. Next, check the reflected temperature. Set the humidity to 50. You should set the emissivity at 0.96. If it is not set correctly, you will see drastic temperature variations! 


When choosing an electrical colour palette. Use iron for electrical surveys. Black/blue is cold, while white/red signifies hot. 


You should check the temperature range of your camera to ensure it is within the range you expect for the survey. This range would typically be between -20 and 120C. Sometimes cables, busbars and connections can get hotter than 120C. It is possible to heat up to 120C. To get more precise readings, change the temperature range to 0-65C. 


Here are some things to keep in mind 


Unexpected failure of an electrical device can be caused by several factors. You can get the best outcome from your electrical components without turning off the switch (i.e. letting it run). 


  • It’s not too full 
  • The loads are evenly and balanced 
  • The cable insulation is intact 


Applying Thermography for a Long-Term Gain 


In addition to other condition-based monitoring activities you can also use thermography in your long-term predictive maintenance plan. This will allow you to maximize equipment performance and increase productivity. Thermography inspection can quickly locate electrical and mechanical issues and prevent production losses. 



The Importance of Hiring a Professional 


If you are considering a thermographic survey, it is a good idea to contact a professional thermal imaging company such as WACOMM instead of trying to do the work on your own. A Level I or 2 certified thermographers will have an in-depth knowledge of the equipment and cameras that are appropriate for the job. This will ensure that your cameras will be properly calibrated and used as intended. 


The professional thermography survey and honest, impartial advice by your field engineer will provide you with peace of mind knowing that the inspection was carried out to a high standard. 


WACOMM are your Perth commercial electrical contractors you can turn towards to enhance electrical efficiency and safety. 

Looking for a Perth commercial electrician you can continuously count on? 

Contact WACOMM  today for affordable, high-quality electrical solutions for your business. 




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Trusted Electrical Contractors In Perth

Since 1997, WACOMM has been providing Commercial and Industrial Electrical services in Perth, Western Australia. Experienced and efficient, David and the team at WACOMM have the skilled knowledge to complete medium and large scale projects to the highest possible standard in Perth.

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