IR or infrared thermometers allow users to accurately measure temperature from a distance without having to touch the object that the user is measuring. They are easy and useful and commonly used in factories and kitchens. IR thermometers are frequently used for detecting overheated electrical circuits and equipment, yet they also have many other uses.
- Common Used For IR Thermometers In Industry
- Locating an overloaded circuit breaker
- Detecting a faulty termination in a high-power electrical circuit
- Finding a problem in electrical switch-gear
- Measuring or monitoring the bearing temperature in rotating equipment or large motors
- Detecting a leak in a sealed vessel
- Locating “hot spots” in electrical equipment
- Identifying faulty insulation that occurs in insulated processes or process pipes
- Collecting process-temperature readings
All IR thermometers have a D:S, which stands for a distance-to-spot ratio that indicates the diameter linked to the area that is measured in comparison to the range from a target. For instance, if the IR thermometer features a D:S ratio of 12:1, it will measure around a 1-inch- diameter spot if it is 12-inches away from a target. When trying to measure a 2-inch area using the same thermometer from a meter away, the result will not be accurate since the thermometer will also measure the temperature around the outside of the target.
D:S ratios vary significantly from around 1:1 for the cheap thermometers to around 60:1 for the more expensive models. The distance varies slightly from one model to the next. For this reason, it becomes important to refer to the manual that comes with the thermometer to achieve accurate results.
IR thermometers provide satisfactory accuracy when it comes to measuring a variety of objects. However, reflective and shiny surfaces are often a challenge. Using non-reflective tape or applying flat paint over a reflective surface provides a target to achieve a more accurate measurement.
Where an IR thermometer is used will also affect how accurate the reading is. For instance, when there is dust or steam between the thermometer and the target, the IR energy may deflect before it reaches the thermometer. At the same time, a scratched or dirty lens on an infrared thermometer can reduce the lens’s ability to “detect” the IR energy needed to produce a measurement. If the lens fogs up when bringing the thermometer from a cold environment into a warm environment could also impair accuracy.
To achieve the highest accuracy when using an IR thermometer, it is recommended to allow the IR thermometer to adjust to the surrounding temperature especially when the thermometer is brought into an environment that is colder or warmer from where the device was stored.
The non-contact IR thermometers provide a combination of convenience, accuracy, and speed when used correctly.
Tips On How To Achieve The Best Results:
- Know the distance-to-spot ratio of the IR thermometer, and get near enough to a target so the thermometer is only reading the area that should be measured.
- Make sure the lens is free from scratches and clean.
- Keep in mind that dust or steam can also affect accuracy.