By now we have all heard of thermal imaging cameras so small they can fit in the palm of our hand, and so affordable they make an attractive gift come the holidays. While these cameras have obvious uses for professionals, the list of things you can do with them is growing all the time, as we find interesting ways to get the most out of this newly accessible technology. With this in mind, here are 11 unexpected ways to use a handheld thermal camera that we’ll bet you haven’t thought of…
11) To find the coolest place to sit in the room-
Stuck somewhere in the blistering heat without AC? Just point your thermal camera around the room to find the most comfortable seat in the house.
10) To find the coldest beer or soda in the cooler-
This one speaks for itself… and will make you popular at summer parties!
9) To show your kids there are no monsters under the bed –
Kids afraid to go to sleep in the dark? Just let them give the room a sweep with your thermal camera before bedtime and watch how fast they settle down to sleep.
8) Find out who is really working hard at the gym, and who is just slacking off-
Ever look around you at the gym and wonder who is really giving it their all and who is just there for the view? Thermal cameras can separate the tourists from the real go-getters, so you know who really means business, and who might make a good gym buddy.
7) Finding birds and other animals at a nature reserve-
Do you love nature but get frustrated when you spend a whole day at a reserve and barely see any animals? They can show you the exact location of all kinds of critters, meaning you can get the most out of your experience, without having to get close enough to disturb or frighten animals or their young.
6) Finding your way back to the family tent at night while camping-
Sure, you could use a flashlight, but then you would miss out on all the cool things that come out at night.
5) To check if your white wine is properly chilled-
Tired of opening a bottle of white wine just to find out that it’s not cold enough yet? They can tell you the exact temperature of your wine, so that you never crack open a nice bottle of white too soon again.
4) Check your electronics (before the warranty is up!)-
How many times has something broken on you right after the warranty expired? The disposable culture we live in means that production standards are dropping as all kinds of gadgets are built with planned obsolescence (and dollar signs) in mind. With thermal cameras, you can take a look inside your gadgets and expose overheating components before they fail, and either service them or turn them in for a new model before your cool gadget becomes just another expensive piece of junk in a landfill.
3) Search for your lost pet-
The wooded areas surrounding many homes in rural areas are especially tempting to family dogs and cats, and many pets run off to explore and end up getting themselves into trouble. Often they are very close to home but either can’t find their way back or are injured or too weak from lack of food and water. Thermal cameras let you see in the dark, so that you don’t have to end your search when the sun goes down.
2) House hunting-
Thermal cameras can expose all kinds of problems that would be otherwise undetectable- before it’s too late. From poor insulation to overheating wiring behind the walls, handheld thermal cameras can save you from an unwise rental or purchase, before the contracts are signed or money changes hands.
1) To find your kids in the yard after dark-
Little ones hiding from you because they don’t want to stop playing and come inside? Don’t worry, no matter how well hidden they think they are, your thermal camera will give away their hiding place in a moment.