FAQ

Your questions, answered.

MyHEAT

  1. Who is MyHEAT?

    At MyHEAT, we are empowering urban energy efficiency™ by helping to address one of the biggest hurdles faced when engaging homeowners about energy efficiency – its invisibility. We help millions of home and business owners visualize and compare energy loss across entire cities. We are located in Calgary, Alberta and bring products based on awarding-winning technology created at the University of Calgary to life. For more information, visit our About Us page.

  2. How does MyHEAT’s process work?

    Our process starts with airborne thermal data collection, building on a world-class Canadian TIR sensor. We integrate key benefits of a cryogenically cooled push-frame thermal sensor, with patented processing methods that utilize computer vision and machine learning. With industry leading data fidelity and acquisition capabilities over traditional airborne cameras, thermal data can be collected for entire cities over the course of a few days. The collected data is then processed to reveal individual buildings’ heat loss details, as well as comparable energy efficiency metrics over a town or city. Our proprietary post-processing pipeline includes an industry first—the ability to automatically correct for local changes in temperature, microclimate and elevation. Thus, all houses are evaluated as if they were collected at a single instance in time, allowing urban heat loss to be compared over different dates as well as between houses, communities, and cities. For more information, visit our Technology Overview page.

  3. How is the heat loss data presented?

    MyHEAT provides heat loss data on public or private platforms. We work with partner organizations and clients to determine the best solution for offering heat loss data in a service area. On the public platform, neighbourhood maps enable users to visually compare heat loss across entire cities, while personalized data is included for buildings within the service area on unique home profile pages.

  4. I would like to bring MyHEAT to my community, how do I find out more?

    If you are interested in bringing MyHEAT to your community, visit our Business Solutions page or send us an email at sales@myheat.ca to request a demo. If you are a resident, vote for your city here.

HEAT Maps

  1. What is a HEAT Map?

    A HEAT Map is an aerial thermal image of a building that indicates potential heat loss areas. The pseudo colour image is mapped to the full-scale of colours shown, with red indicating the hottest temperature measured and blue indicating the coolest temperature measured. Red areas are losing the most heat and blue areas are losing the least.

  2. Why do most houses ‘look the same’?

    This is because the temperature difference of the roof is mapped to the full spectrum of colours shown. As a result, every home will have some blue and some red. For example, if one house has a temperature range between 7°C and 12°C degrees, our system would assign 7°C the colour blue and 12°C the colour red and then distribute the rest of the colours between that range. Another house may have a temperature range between 10°C and 13°C degrees. In this case, 10°C would be assigned the colour blue and 13°C would be assigned the colour red.

  3. Why aren’t the HEAT Map and aerial image aligned properly?

    Simply because they come from two different data sources. The HEAT Map is provided to you by MyHEAT, while the aerial image is provided through the Google Maps Static API. Basically, it’s the image of your house as seen in any version of Google Maps. We are currently working to improve this alignment.

  4. What are the ‘grey’ areas in the HEAT Map?

    The grey areas represent the raw thermal data around a home that have been processed with a smoothing (i.e. blurring) algorithm, so as to provide more focus on the detailed HEAT Map colours of your home.

HEAT Ratings

  1. What is a HEAT Rating?

    A HEAT Rating is a value assigned to a building that compares its heat loss to others in its neighbourhood and city. The higher the rating, the higher the heat loss.

  2. How accurate is the Heat Loss Rating?
    The world-class thermal sensor used to capture your homes heat loss is highly accurate to 0.05°C. Collected data is then processed with peer-reviewed algorithms to reveal individual buildings’ heat loss details, as well as comparable energy efficiency metrics over a town or city. Factors that can impact the accuracy of a HEAT Rating include:
    1. The size of the house, with larger houses typically losing more heat than smaller houses,
    2. How well the roof material is classified (as this affects an important thermal characteristic known as emissivity),
    3. How well vegetation over roofs are classified, and
    4. How well we can fit home boundary information (i.e., GIS building polygons) to the corresponding thermal image of the home – for which we have developed world-class patented technologies.
  3. Why doesn’t my house have a HEAT Rating?
    If your home does not have a HEAT Rating, it may be due to:
    1. Vegetation covering more than 40% of your roof,
    2. Missing thermal data, or
    3. Incorrect home boundary information (i.e., GIS building polygons).

Data Collection

  1. How is the data collected?

    Data is collected using a thermal sensor attached to the bottom of an airplane. MyHeat collects mid-wave thermal infrared energy (3-5 µm) emitted from the surface of the features (i.e., houses, roads, vegetation) composing the scene at the time of acquisition. MyHEAT’s data currently shows a 1m spatial resolution and a spectral (thermal) resolution of 0.05°C. This means that every pixel composing the HEAT Maps represents an area on the ground 1m x 1m in size. For more information, visit our Technology Overview page.

  2. When was the data collected?

    Our flyovers take place in the spring and/or fall. This allows us to meet our strict environmental requirements for acquisition. Data is collected between 11:00 PM and 4:00 AM to minimize solar effects on building temperatures and under cool, dry, and low-wind speeds conditions. Visit your home profile page to see when the data was collected for your specific area.

  3. Is the data collected in real time?

    No, the data is not collected in real time. The HEAT Map of your house was collected at a single instance in time. Additionally, the HEAT Map and Rating do not reflect any upgrades or changes made after the date that the data was collected.

Interpreting the Information

  1. Does the HEAT Map or HEAT Rating represent my home’s energy consumption?

    No, neither the HEAT Map nor the HEAT Rating represent consumption. The HEAT Map represents potential heat loss areas. It can help you identify where you may be wasting energy due to warm air escaping your home. The HEAT Rating is not an energy efficiency rating, though it is correlated with energy consumption. Consequently, homes with higher heat loss tend to consume more energy, while homes with low heat loss tend to consume less energy.

  2. I don’t agree with this information, is it wrong?

    While there are several factors that may impact the accuracy of the HEAT Rating, disagreeing with the information doesn’t necessarily mean that it is incorrect. We always recommend that you treat your HEAT Map and HEAT Rating as an indicator of potential heat loss, not a diagnosis. It is important to consider your knowledge of the building and how it is used. For instance, changes made to your home after the collection date will not be reflected on the map so you may not see the result of a retrofit if it was made after the HEAT Map was created. Once you’ve viewed your information, we recommend doing some additional investigation. Visit our Case Studies page to see example homes where further investigation helped homeowners uncover hidden problems shown on their HEAT Map. It is possible that you’ve uncovered a hidden problem in your home. If you still have questions, send us an email and we can look into the matter.

  3. What should I do next?
    There are a number of steps you can take to reduce the amount of energy your home is wasting, including:
    1. Contact your local utility or government agency to learn more about rebates that may be available for energy efficiency improvements.
    2. In Canada, you can contact a local service organization to schedule an EnerGuide home evaluation which will provide you with expert advice and a personalized retrofit plan. Find a service organization to schedule an appointment. In the U.S., we recommend visiting the Professional Home Energy Audits page on the U.S. Department of Energy’s website to learn more about home energy audits.
    3. Implement no or low-cost improvements such as:
      1. Adjusting your thermostat or install a programmable thermostat that will automatically adjust to your schedule,
      2. Caulk and weatherstrip windows, doors, and baseboards that leak air. Look for air leaks to seal around plumbing, ducting, or electrical penetrations as well. If you have a chimney, make sure the flue damper is closed when it is not in use.
      3. Purchasing energy-efficient window coverings and let the sun shine in during winter days. Install shrink-wrap plastic to the interior of windows in the colder months.
      4. Avoiding running your bathroom or kitchen ventilation fans longer than necessary to prevent outside air from replacing inside air.

Privacy

  1. Can you actually ‘see’ into my house with this data?

    No, the thermal camera we use does not see through windows, roofs, or walls. We do not collect, or have access to, any information regarding the number of occupants in a house, their age, gender, race, income, or the occupancy status of the home. We also cannot identify any contents within the home. Read more in our Privacy Policy.

  2. I don’t want my house shown on the map. Can I remove my house’s HEAT Map and HEAT Rating from this site?

    Yes, please send us an email with your house address and we will remove it within 1-5 business days

Finding your home

  1. Why is my address different from the one I searched?

    Our map search is powered by the Google Maps API while the house addresses in our database come from multiple sources such as local governments, or through open data catalogues. In most cases, the addresses are very similar. However, the street type (e.g. Rd:Road, St:Street, Ba:Bay, etc.) may vary depending on the source. Please send us an email if you would like to report an error with your address.

  2. My house is not on the map. Why is that?

    Currently, MyHEAT is focused on single-family residences for the cities available online on our platform. If you live in a single-family residence and your house is not on the map, please send us an email so we can look into this matter.

Additional Questions

  1. My question is not listed here. How can I contact you?

    We are continually adding answers to frequently asked questions. However, if your question is not listed here, you can send us an email and we will respond back to you as soon as possible.