Do I need Thermal Imaging of my electricals to be covered by insurance?

Do I need Thermal Imaging of my electricals to be covered by insurance?

March 01, 2022 Views: 435
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What is thermal imaging and electrical thermography?

Thermal imaging is the use of an infra-red camera to detect heat. Electrical thermography is the use of thermal imaging on electrical work, including switchboards. This can be used as a diagnostic tool to identify any unexpected sources of radiant heat. Radiant heat may indicate the presence of a fault in electrical work or on an electrical switchboard. Electrical thermography is often used as part of a scheduled maintenance plan in many businesses, both industrial and otherwise.


Why should I use thermal imaging on my electricals?

Thermal imaging is a highly efficient, effective and accurate diagnostic tool. It is non-invasive, meaning it can be used without opening up walls, etc. It also does not require power to shut down, allowing your business to continue on as usual during inspection. Thermal imaging is also cost-effective with the cost of thermal imaging decreasing over the recent years.

When used alongside visual inspections and other inspections such as testing and tagging, it provides a comprehensive and proactive approach to risk management. Not only does it locate potential faults that other methods of inspection can not locate, but it also does it in advance of malfunction, preventing issues before they occur.


How does thermal imaging of electricals help reduce my risk?

Thermal imaging reduces your risk of electrical faults when used as part of a maintenance protocol. Traditionally a visual inspection as well as testing and tagging has been used on electricals to locate any failures. However, visual inspections and testing and tagging can only identify certain issues. When there is a fault in your electricals, this will often emit heat prior to catastrophic failure. Thermal imaging is able to detect any unusual or unexpected heat in your electrical work or on your switchboard, which is unable to be detected by a visual inspection.

Identifying faults in electrical work and switchboards reduces your risk by picking up any electrical faults early. Early detection is a preventative measure and allows the fault to be fixed before it causes your business a problem.


What risks can thermal imaging help me avoid?

One of the main risks to a business from faulty electrical work is the risk of fire. Reports show that upwards of 20% of industrial fires are caused by faulty equipment. Fire represents a huge risk to a business and its employees whether it is damage to property, interruption to the business or risk of injury or loss of life.

Fire is not the only risk from electrical faults. Other significant risks caused by electrical faults may include:

  • electric shock
  • equipment damage
  • interruption to your business caused by power loss
  • interruption due to machinery down time
  • loss of stock including fridge/freezer stock

Proactive identification of electrical faults significantly reduces these risks to the business.


How regularly is thermal imaging required?

Thermal imaging may be part of an annual maintenance plan, however, depending on the industry and nature of equipment it may be that more frequent thermal imaging would be more in line with the risk profile of the business. It is important to consider the load your system is under as well as the type of equipment and switchboard that you have. While an office building may only require an annual check, a heavy industrial site may require a weekly check. There is no set standard.


Is thermal imaging the responsibility of the owner or renter?

For businesses that rent their premises and also for landlords, the responsibility for thermal imaging of electricals is an important discussion to have. The building owner or landlord will usually take responsibility for the building's electrical system. However, where a renter is installing industrial equipment with complex electrical needs or requiring a heavy load on the building's electrical infrastructure the responsibility may shift. It is important to come to an agreement over who is responsible for electrical checks occurring and who is responsible for payment.


Do I need Thermal Imaging of my electricals to be covered by insurance?

Many insurers now require thermal imaging of electricals or switchboards as part of scheduled maintenance. Be sure to check with your insurer or insurance broker to see if this is a condition of your insurance cover. Otherwise you may find that in the case of an electrical fault your business may not be covered for the damage and costs incurred.

General Advice Warning: This advice is general and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider whether the advice is appropriate for you and your personal circumstances. Before you make any decision about whether to acquire a certain product, you should obtain and read the relevant product disclosure statement.


Advisr does not provide advice and does not hold a financial service license (AFSL). All information above has been provided by ADVISR.

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