Defective, loose, overloaded, and malfunctioning electrical system components can easily be identified through Infrared Thermal Imaging without the need for invasive investigations, service interruption, or disconnecting components.
When electrical components are improperly installed, overloaded, failing or defective, they create heat. Our technology can quickly and easily identify electrical concerns without service interruption. By identifying these potential electrical problems, we can help our Dayton area clients avoid serious hazards, liability, and risk while saving vast amounts of time and money when combined with timely and effective repairs.
Since 1975, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has published NFPA 70B, Recommended Practice for Electrical Equipment Maintenance. This document has evolved over the years to cover a wide array of testing and maintenance practices for electrical equipment.
The most recent editions of NFPA 70B have recommended infrared inspections of energized electrical equipment be performed annually.
In January of 2023, NFPA 70B was reissued as Standard for Electrical Equipment Maintenance. Compared to previous editions, the 2023 version has been extensively revised. Of particular note is the requirement that infrared inspections are now required on an annual basis for all electrical equipment. Under certain circumstances, more frequent inspections are required.
Most insurance providers recognize the loss prevention benefits of routine annual electrical inspections, and have adopted the revised NFPA 70B standards. As such, many businesses, commercial building owners, and industrial facilities are required to perform annual Infrared Electrical inspections performed by an independent and certified third party provider as part of their facility preventive maintenance schedule.
BC Warner Inspections Delivers
Commercial and industrial clients throughout Ohio and surrounding states have realized the benefits an infrared electrical inspection of switch gear, motor control centers, and all other facility electrical equipment can provide. When promptly corrected, a single discovered concern can recoup the cost of the inspection several times over through preventing unplanned downtime and production loss!
BC Warner Inspections has the proper equipment, training, and knowledge to provide accurate and industry standard compliant Infrared Electrical Inspections and Reports. We aren’t just another company with a camera. We have experience and knowledge with commercial and industrial electrical equipment and similar high-voltage systems.
Infrared Electrical Inspections Frequently Asked Questions
The time required to conduct an infrared electrical inspection is contingent on the amount of equipment to be inspected, difficulty of access to the equipment, and number of problems encountered that need to be recorded. Many facilities will require 1/2 day to a full day for the inspection; however, facilities with a large quantity of electrical equipment or more than 1 or 2 buildings may require far longer time periods. BC Warner Inspections can discuss an estimated time frame with you for your unique facility.
In most cases, the answer is YES. Unless the electrical equipment has been fitted with specialized Infrared Windows (view ports) permitting the infrared camera to ‘see’ into the enclosure, the doors and service covers of every electrical enclosure must be opened and/or removed for access to the critical electrical connections and accurate infrared thermal imaging inspection. Some unscrupulous or poorly trained providers may not remove covers (we have seen their reports). This critical step omission unfortunately provides little if any benefit to the client, and is a highly inaccurate method of conducting the electrical infrared inspection. Far too many electrical connections and terminations cannot be accurately inspected without removal or opening of the covers and deadfronts.
With proper safety gear and apparel, most covers and access panels can be safely removed or opened without need for power shutdown or de-energizing the equipment.
Only qualified assistants or electricians designated and defined by OSHA 1910 and NFPA 70E standards should be performing the electrical work which requires removal or opening of energized electrical equipment and electrical load measurements. All electrical equipment should be arc flash rated which subsequently designates the appropriate Personal Protecive Equipment (PPE) required to do such tasks during the inspection.
If the facility does not employ qualified personnel or have the manpower to perform these tasks, BC Warner Inspections has partnered with and can provide a qualified electrical contractor to assist with the electrical inspection.
Yes. For accurate infrared electrical inspection, the inspected systems and components should be under active load. It is recommended that the systems be under at least 40% load conditions when the inspection is conducted.
The simple answer to this question is “it depends…” Unfortunately this is not a simple answer subject.
Each identified electrical concern (also known as an infrared or thermal exception) is given an objective repair priority rating based upon temperature rise criteria specified by NFPA, NETA, and the Infraspection Institute Standard for Infrared Inspection of Electrical Systems and Rotating Equipment. The priority rating is carefully calculated by taking multiple factors and measurements into consideration. These include, but are not limited to ambient temperature, the exception temperature, the rated load of equipment or device being inspected, and the measured load of the equipment or device. Accurate temperature measurements also rely on careful consideration and site specific infrared camera calibration for such things as emmissivity, distance to target, background or reflected temperatures, and spot ratio compensation.
Based on all of these factors and calculations, a temperature rise of 50°F may be completely normal under the conditions. And a slight temperature rise of only 5°F may be an indication of an immediate repair concern. Or vice versa. As well, there are some instances where no temperature rise at all may be a cause for concern. So temperature alone is not the sole deciding factor in determining how hot is “too hot”.
BC Warner Inspections has the training, knowledge, and experience to help you understand the inspection results, report the concerns, and direct the prioritization of the necessary action for repair.