Thermal imaging

Transition Hythe has had access to a thermal image camera from Kent County Council for the last five years.

Each year, we seek people who would like to have their houses tested for heat loss. This has been via the local press, through other groups such as the Hythe Civic Society and Rotary Club (we’ve given talks at both) and other channels.

This is a great way to identify areas for remedial action and can bring significant cost savings.

The first visits took place during March and April 2011, and we’ve visited a wide selection of homes since then (plus a few businesses and one residential home for the elderly, Tynwald, in Hythe, which is also the venue for our community allotment). Nearly all properties show up some opportunities for improvement. All those visited receive copies of the thermal images and a summary of the findings – so it is a fine, free service!

A number of members of the Transition Scheme have gained experience with the camera, with each year’s project starting with a fun training session at the home of our project leader, Helen Severs.

The studies take place in the winter, in early evening (they do not work well when the weather warms up due to the heat retention of walls, so it is basically a seasonal project). We’ve done well over 100 properties in the four years, in Hythe, Seabrook, Folkestone (including rented properties in the Dover Road area), Lympne, New Romney, Saltwood, Greatstone and Lydd.

Helen has produced a write-up of the project, with example images to highlight findings and suggested remedies (see elsewhere on the website).

The camera has subsequently been taken up by a number of other Transition groups in Kent¬† and we’ve been delighted to share our experiences with these groups.

In 2016 the thermal imaging team completed 20 home visits with the camera during January and February. Despite the unseasonally mild weather, some useful results and advice were passed on to home-owners. We expect to run another programme of visits early in 2017 – email thythe.energy@gmail.com if you would like us to contact you about this nearer the time.