Building Envelope forensic inspection and Repairs
Calgary and surrounding areas
At Leak Doctor™, we have the experience and expertise necessary to provide the broadest range of services in the building inspection industry. We provide the following services for homeowners, property management companies, condominium corporations , finance companies and commercial building owners.
book on line for nondestructive testing of your roof or Building envelope.
Infrared Flat Roof Inspection
Nondestructive Roof & Waterproofing Testing
Pinpoints and Documents Areas of Wet Insulation in Flat Roofs
Saves Thousands of Dollars on Roof Repair and Replacement Costs
Reduces Risk of Structural Damage and Failure of Your Roof System
Targets Problem Areas – Stretches Maintenance Dollars
Inspection Saves Money – Wet Roofing Insulation Wastes Energy
Identifies Small Problems Before They Become Bigger & More Costly
Professional roof & waterproofing testing can target problem areas to help save big money on repair or replacement.
Leak Doctor™ Commercial Building Inspection use infrared thermal imaging technology to perform flat roof inspections with surgical precision.
This service typically involves two visits to the subject property and can be modified to meet the needs of individual clients. The end result will reveal the location of trapped moisture beneath the protective flat roof membrane. The roof is one of the most expensive building components and an infrared flat roof inspection can save significant money by highlighting specific areas in need of repair, prolonging life, and avoiding total replacement.
Infrared Flat Roof Inspections typically include the following:
After Sunset On Site Visit
Infrared thermal imagers detect radiation on the infrared wavelength that reveal the surface temperature of the roof. Each image contains nearly 80,000 temperature readings that are color coded to form an image for interpretation by an experienced certified thermographer. The ambient temperature drops on a flat roof after sunset and the building materials begin to cool. Trapped moisture retains heat much longer than dry building materials and can be seen with an infrared thermal imager.
During the night time visit, Leak Doctor™ will mark the roof to identify areas of trapped moisture so they can be found without specialized equipment for future repair.
Day Time Follow Up
An inspector will return to the roof during daylight hours to photograph all marked areas and perform a capacitance survey of the roof.
Infrared Flat Roof Report
Once the two on site visits are complete, the thermographer will compile both thermal and daylight images into a written report.
Images will be accompanied by location description.
Depending on the size and scope of the inspection description info could utilize satellite imagery, CAD modelling, or simple narrative descriptions.
Insulated Roof System
Leak Doctor™ perform also a non-distructive inspection to confirm the presence of moisture by using an advance technology called electric capacitance/impedance testing, that sends an electric current into the roof and is based on the material’s ability to store electrical energy. If there is moisture within the roof system, the dielectric properties will provide higher readings than a dry material would.
Capacitance surveys can be performed with a hand-held device which is normally utilized for confirmation in conjunction with infrared or nuclear scans or on leak investigations for small isolated areas.
A deck scanner can be utilized as a standalone tool for larger projects. As with nuclear surveys, capacitance surveys can identify not only wet insulation, but interply moisture as well as standing water at deck level depending on the roof thickness. Capacitance, when using a deck scanner, does not rely on mapping but can clearly identify areas of moisture that can be marked on the roof.
Capacitance testing is more expensive than infrared testing. Limitations include any membranes that conduct electricity such as EPDM (due to the carbon black within the material) and aluminum coated roofs.
EIFS OR SYNTHETIC STUCCO INSPECTIONS
Specific, high-risk locations, such as areas under windows, roof flashings and decks are tested for moisture using an electrical resistance-type probe meter. Additionally, the surface of EIFS is scanned under high-risk locations using a Tramex Roof and Wall Moisture Scanner.
Any locations that register an elevated reading with the Tramex Roof and Wall Moisture Scanner must be probed using the electrical resistance-type probe meter. The meters are calibrated at an appropriate test location.
The location is photographed and indicated in the report. The calibration procedure is repeated for each side of the home. This step is intended to determine the accumulated moisture content of the sheathing and/or frame for each elevation of the home and to provide a baseline for comparing readings to other locations on the home.
To probe for a moisture reading, the inspector will first drive two steel pins through the EIFS into the wall. The inspector should note whether the substrate or framing seems firm or soft, keeping in mind that different substrates may be used on the home.
The readings are recorded and we note the “feel” of the framing or substrate wood. The small inspection holes are sealed with an appropriate sealant, preferably matching the colour of the EIFS as closely as possible.
Leak Doctor™ use multiple types of voluntary diagnostic water intrusion testing protocols and analysis to accurately isolate and reproduce previous water intrusion events caused by storm action as well as multiple industry standards and specifications for analysis of proper building methodology. In addition, we provide diagnostic leak testing for monitoring, quality control, and performance of new existing exterior wall and roof assemblies including doors, operable and fixed glass windows, skylights, shower assemblies, and wall installations. All water testing services may be field modified to conform to any specific building situation. Water intrusion testing results are visually identified, then verified using static-level height differentials, diametrical increase in "ponding" areas, and water intrusion pH paper for verification of source entry points. Procedures include:
Spray Rack Test - involves a rectangular, calibrated piping system with spray nozzles every 12 inches to cover the building component with a uniform spray pattern. The unit is placed 12 inches away from the building component and is pressurized with pumps to provide adequate pressure according to such standards as ASTM E1105, AAMA 502, & AAMA 503 Standards.
Chamber Testing – consists of a negative air pressure chamber constructed on site in the field on the interior face of windows in combination with the spray rack to test windows for specifications and water leakage according to such standards as ASTM E1105, & AAMA 501.2.
Line Rack Test – involves a linear perforated/calibrated pipe with specific size holes every horizontal inch in the line rack to provide wall/roof coverage at a very low volume for wall and roof testing according to such standards as ASTM E514, ASTM C1601, & ASTM C1715 Standards.
Monarch Nozzle Test – hand held use of a calibrated Monarch Nozzle for fixed storefront glass/frame testing at a specified pressure and distance from the building component according to such standards as the AAMA 501.2 Standard.
Hose Stream Test - uses a fixed fan head sprayer at specified distances for application of arc-shaped water pattern at specified pressure levels hitting building component assembly at a specified angle according to such standards as the ASTM E2128 Standard.
Double Fan Head Hose Stream Test - uses two fan head sprayers at specified distances from the target for application at specified pressure levels according to such standards as the ASTM E2128 Standard.
Static Sill / Threshold Test - involves placing a malleable "dam" around a specific area to be tested - alarm sensor/sill penetrations, window or door frame junctures, as well as threshold penetrations. The test dam may be constructed using plumber's putty, plexi-glass, or an adhesive tape/membrane configuration. The dam is then filled to a specified, marked level and the level is noted at timed intervals to determine water leakage through the test area according to such standards as the AAMA 511 Standard.
Shower Pan Test - consists of damming the shower drain followed by independent introduction of water into the shower to test the shower pan assembly for water leakage according to such standards as the UPC 412.8.1 Standard.
French Drain/Site Drainage Testing – involves testing of wall/grade conditions above drainage systems to verify performance/failure of the system according to such standards as the ASTM E2128 Standard.
Air Infiltration Testing – consists of a negative air pressure chamber placed over windows/doors to verify window specifications and rate of air infiltration according to such standards as the ASTM E783 Standard.
Plumbing and Foundation Survey
Over the years Leak Doctor have located thousands of homeowners leaks and realize how devastating a leak can be to your property causing water damage and costly repairs to your home.
Occasionally it may not be possible for you or your plumber to locate the source of the leak and can also be due to obstacles such as floorboards, walls and cupboards. This is where leak detection can be most helpful as our leak detection equipments is specially designed to find a leak anywhere in your property without causing any damage.
Sometimes there will be visible evidence of a water leak such as dampness, water stains and actual water, however in other cases there is no evidence apart from a very high water bill! Common water leaks in the home are on the mains pipe work in the kitchen or bathroom, plumbing vents, in-floor heating, foundation leaks or crack, window well overflow.
During our inspection we often inspect the status of the insulation in your attic and behind the walls, this is because lack of insulation create condensation and it can be mistaken for water intrusion.
Foundation: Hidden leaks can be difficult to find.
At Leak Doctor™ our technicians use specialized leak detection equipment to find your leak causing little or no damage to your property.
Our leak detection technician have many years experience in finding leaks and use various leak detection methods to accurately locate your water leak.
What are the signs of a possible crack when there are no visible indications?
Apart from visible cracks, there are many symptoms that indicate that your home does not have effective protection against external waterflow. Do not neglect the warning signs.
They should be taken seriously and addressed immediately because they could inflict serious damage on your home. The most common signs are:
An excessive degree of ambient humidity in the basement
Signs of moisture on the walls
Excessive condensation on windows and baseboard
Water accumulation on the floors
Musty, mouldy or bad odours and fumes
Softened plaster or swelling baseboards
Crumbling concrete or the formation of salt deposits on concrete surfaces
The formation of black spots and mold on walls, fabrics, carpet or woodwork
Rotting or swelling wood floors
If you notice some of these symptoms in your basement, you are definitely experiencing a crack problem or your foundation walls do not have sufficient waterproofing.
Our Leak Detection Survey includes:
• An experienced qualified technician
• Latest ‘state of the art’ equipment to accurately locate your leak which means minimal disruption to your property.
• The appropriate testing and inspection process to locate and pinpoint your leak
• A full written report with photos and recommendations. (Insurance approved)
On completion of our Leak Detection Survey we provide a fully comprehensive leak detection report including colour photographs and recommendations. You will then be able to make arrangements our management team to repair the leak.
INFRARED THERMAL IMAGING:
ESSENTIAL FOR ACCURATE BUILDING DIAGNOSTICS.
Today, infrared thermal imaging has become essential for accurate building diagnostics. The fact is, the data that’s provided through imaging far exceeds any other diagnostic technique. Damaged or poorly installed insulation can be easily identified. Air leakage and moisture intrusion can be accurately detected in the building envelope. And areas of sub-standard construction can be very clearly highlighted. All of the above can be costly when it comes to maintenance and repairs.
With infrared thermal imaging, a high-tech camera can accurately identify various deficiencies in the building envelope. Energy efficiency (or lack) can be precisely diagnosed. Water damage can be clearly revealed and structural issues can be exposed for future repairs or retrofitting.
For any building owner (residential or commercial) infrared imaging will allow for early diagnosis of specific problem areas, and better decision-making when rectifying the areas of deficiency.
The main benefit of an infrared camera is that it’s non-invasive.
A complete building inspection can be undertaken without the need to open up ceilings, walls, or roofs. For example, when diagnosing air infiltration or exfiltration, problem areas can be isolated in preparation for repair work. Similarly, pockets of moisture or wetness in a building envelope can be identified so that the source and extent of the problem can be addressed.
Thermal imaging is quick and reliable.
Imaging is ideal for energy audits and home inspections
Infrared thermal imaging provides accurate data about a building’s air tightness, and consequent energy efficiency. This type of diagnosis can be relevant when determining air leakage through walls, roofs, and attics. Indeed, imaging has proven extremely valuable in revealing compromised insulation (basement and attic) or doors and windows that have been poorly air-sealed.
What is a Thermal Imaging Survey and how can it save me money?
Leak Doctor™ Thermal imaging surveys incorporate the use of an infrared camera to highlight areas of energy loss from a building. Regardless of the type of building, infrared thermography can provide remarkable information about construction details and building performance when used by qualified technicians.
Who can benefit from a Thermal Imaging Survey?
Pretty much every building can benefit from using themography as a survey tool. Whether you are a Property management company, Condo board member, Realtor, Building owner or home owner receiving an energy audit. Leak Doctor™ specialize in using thermography for building envelope performance, leak detection and energy surveys.
What will a Thermal Imaging Survey highlight?
Leak Doctor™ Thermal Imaging Survey may highlight the presence of :
Missing, damaged or non-performing Insulation.
Air Leakage, air Infiltration and air Exfiltration is unwanted air movement through a building. The problem can be as common as a failed weather seal or as complex as an air pathway through plumbing or electrical service installations. The leakage path is often complex and, without infrared, extremely difficult to identify and locate.
Moisture instrusion. As building designs and techniques produce tighter thermal envelopes moisture (from leaks or condensation) have created more and more problems. When water enters through a small crack it is then trapped between building materials. Thermography can find traces of water invisible to the human eye.
Condensation. This may be a cause of moisture instrustion. It is important to identify sources of air leakage that can transport moist air into the wall sections and cause condensation.
Mold Growth and Health Issues. Mold, organic fumes or bacteria plays a significant role in a variety of health issues. Damp surfaces with inadequate air change rates provide the breeding grounds for mold spore to develop and grow.
The darker areas are the cold bridges and air movement passages. A well insulated wall or ceiling should display a uniform colour with little or no change in temperature
Plumbing leak, vent leak, stucco and window leak are often cause of mold and structure failure in Condo and Commercial building, leading to expensive repairs.