Infrared thermometers take measurement of temperature using the radiation, generally in the infrared part of the spectrum, emitted from objects. They are also known as laser thermometers if a laser is used to help aim the thermometer, pyrometers, or non-contact thermometers to describe the device’s ability to measure temperature from a distance. By knowing the amount of infrared energy emitted by the object and its emissivity, the object’s temperature can be determined.
The specifications for infrared thermometers usually include ratings of temperature accuracy, to plus or minus a degree or two, among other parameters. The distance-to-spot ratio (D:S) is the ratio of the distance to the object and the diameter of the temperature measurement area. For instance if the D:S ratio is 12:1, measurement of an object 12 inches away will average the temperature over a 1-inch diameter area.
An infrared thermometer does not just belong in a science laboratory anymore, you know. Having one at home presents a myriad of applications, some truly practical and some just for fun. And when you actually own an infrared thermometer, the more things you think of to use it for, the more it seems having one is a necessity.
You will find yourself measuring the temperature of all kinds of things with an infrared thermometer. Try taking it shopping with you. It is a great little tool to tell how warm different coats are. Just think: You could be paying more for a jacket that does not keep you nearly as comfortable as one that costs half as much but fends off the cold better. And you know this now, all because you brought along your infrared thermometer to test them.
A more serious application of an infrared thermometer would be using it to diagnose problems with your car or motorcycle. With this handy, little diagnostic tool, you could test your radiator fan to make sure it starts blowing at the correct temperature, check the temperature of your tires, or check to see if a cylinder is on its deathbed or has already passed away to dead-cylinder heaven. An infrared thermometer is a must for home mechanics.
So where does one acquire an infrared thermometer? Go to amazon.com, which generally keeps them on hand and currently has them from $29.99 and up. Other online retailers will carry more sophisticated products for higher prices. For example the Mini Infrared Thermometer, which features a minimum/maximum memory, a lock function for long-term monitoring, measurement within plus or minus two percent accuracy, a button-cell battery, and a 20-inch neck strap.
And infrared thermometer, expensive or not so expensive, can be a convenient and useful tool. Whether or not you want to measure the difference in temperature between your dog’s head and his tail, or if you want to measure the heat you are losing from the lack of insulation in your home, you are sure to find a ton of uses for an infrared thermometer.
So why not look into getting an infrared thermometer soon? You just never know when one might come in handy, or at least give you some interesting entertainment!