Using Robots and Drones During Home Inspections

March 15, 2021 blog

The value of residential home inspections is clear:

  • They give home buyers peace of mind about their home purchases
  • They provide important information about health and safety hazards within a home
  • They help homeowners maintain the major systems in their homes
  • They help homeowners plan and budget for home repairs

That said, the value of a home inspection is limited by what the inspector can actually see; if the inspector cannot access a steep roof, see wiring within the walls, or explore the crawl space, they cannot make any assessments or recommendations.

High-tech innovations like drones and robots are expanding the reach of home inspectors, allowing them to access previously out of reach areas and provide more insight into the health and safety of homes. Let’s take a closer look at how these high-tech devices are impacting home inspections.

Drones

A drone is a remote-controlled flying device also sometimes known as an unmanned aircraft system (UAS). Drones are equipped with cameras that can give operators a bird’s eye view from above, something that’s difficult to achieve otherwise. Drones provide the following advantages for home inspectors:

  • Safety. It’s much, much safer for an inspector to examine a roof remotely using a drone than it is to do it in person. Climbing ladders and navigating steep rooflines is one of the most dangerous aspects of a home inspector’s job.
  • Thoroughness. Sometimes a roof is impossible or impassable for a home inspector; wet conditions, clay tiles, and tall chimneys are just a few of the things that can prevent an inspector from getting a good look at the roof. Because a roof inspection is often essential, being able to complete a challenging inspection using a drone prevents homeowners from needing to arrange and pay for an additional roof inspection.
  • Time savings. Setting up a ladder and physically climbing around a rooftop takes time. Drones can potentially get a better look at the condition of the roof in significantly less time.

Drones do, however, have a few drawbacks as well, including the following:

  • Cost. High-quality drones aren’t inexpensive.
  • Compliance. Many municipalities require drone flyers to be licensed
  • Weather. Drones can’t be flown in windy or inclement conditions (but in-person roof inspections can’t be done safely in these conditions either)

Robots

What’s next on home inspectors’ list of places they don’t really want to go? The crawlspace. And can you blame them? Crawlspaces are dark, dirty, and cramped, sometimes too cramped to actually access. Plus, there’s also the risk of encountering something unexpected; while inspectors don’t relish crawlspaces, spiders, snakes, mice, and other critters do.

The solution? A home inspection robot. These devices resemble remote control cars and are equipped with cameras that feed images to smartphones or other controllers. Operators can view live feeds, record videos, and take still shots safely above ground. Their low profile allows them to fit in very tight spaces, giving home inspectors full view of everything going on beneath your home.

Robots are also useful for residential electrical inspections in Philadelphia, PA, as well as for inspecting other tight spaces such as vents, attics, HVAC equipment, and others. More and more home inspectors are taking advantage of these devices to improve their home inspections.

Eagle Inspections

Call Eagle Inspections today to schedule a residential inspection in Philadelphia, PA. Ask about how our inspectors use the latest technology to provide high-quality, reliable, thorough home inspections.