Hilti PT-C Thermal Camera Review

Tool Box Buzz rating:

Hilti PT-C Thermal Imaging Camera


Manufacturer: Hilti
Model number: PT-C
Power source: 12 Volt
Thermal imaging cameras, like the Hilti PT-C Thermal Camera, revolutionize the construction industry by translating thermal energy into visible light. This allows construction pros to analyze structures with accuracy and efficiency, by capturing temperature profiles and presenting them as thermal images.

The applications of thermal imaging are vast and diverse. In the industrial sector, thermal imaging cameras are used to reveal hidden insights, and provide preventive maintenance. By detecting overheating in machinery or electrical circuits, these cameras can help prevent costly equipment failures and enhance safety.


• High resolution
• Wide temperature range – thermal imaging from -20 °C up to 600 °C
• Drop resistant up to 1.5m
• IP rating IP54
• Transfer data via USB-C including voice notes, infrared picture, and optical picture to help you quickly document your work.



• Temperature – range -4 °F – 1112 °F
• Measuring accuracy
from -20 °C to -10 °C (-4 °F to 14 °F): +/- 4° C, from -10 °C to 100 °C (14 °F to 212 °F): +/- 2° C, from 100 °C to 600 °C (212 °F to 1112 °F):  +/- 2 %
• Temperature resolution 0.1 °C
• Operating temperature range 14 – 122 °F
• Resolution, infrared sensor 256 x 192 pixels
• Field of view (FOV) 40° x 30°
• Battery lifetime 10 h
• Max. internal image memory 600
• IP protection class IP 54 (IEC 529)


Lack of insulation at intersection of partition wall and exterior wall

View where insulation deficiency is

Uses For the Hilti PT-C Thermal Camera

Detecting Heat Loss and Insulation Issues

Thermal imaging pinpoints areas of heat loss, poor insulation, and water leaks swiftly and accurately. This capability is invaluable for energy audits, building inspections, and ensuring structural integrity. It’s also useful in locating previously installed heat / AC piping and radiant heat lines or checking for leakage.

Circuit breakers

Dishwasher circuit – unit running

Electrical Wiring Maintenance

Identifying overheating in electrical systems is critical for preventing equipment failures and ensuring workplace safety. Thermal cameras help detect hot spots in electrical panels and wiring, enabling proactive maintenance.

Checking 3-Phase Equipment

By visualizing temperature imbalances in three-phase electrical equipment, thermal imaging facilitates early detection of potential malfunctions, enhancing equipment reliability and longevity.

Furnace manifold

Furnace zones running

Mechanical Installations

Thermal imaging aids in the preventive maintenance of mechanical systems by detecting heat generated by friction and stress. This proactive approach minimizes downtime and extends the lifespan of machinery.

Gas Detection

Infrared imaging serves as a valuable tool for detecting gas leaks in construction sites, enhancing safety protocols, and preventing potential hazards.

Basement window, heat loss

Basement window, brick foundation

Identifying Structural Defects

Thermal imaging helps detect defects in concrete structures, bridge decks, and paved surfaces, allowing for timely repairs and maintenance.

Pest Detection

Thermal cameras assist in locating pests within walls and structures, by locating nesting hot spot. This facilitates targeted pest control measures without the need for invasive inspections.


Operating the PT-C thermal Camera

We found that Hilti kept the PT-C controls intuitive. The manual provided was not helpful, but Hilti does have a video online that we watched to learn how to use the camera.

The Hilti PT-C Thermal Imaging Camera Controls include:

  • Trigger – captures photo.
  • Four navigation (arrow) buttons
  • A centered menu buttons.
  • A camera icon used to “save image.”
  • Power button – lower right
  • Gallery button – upper left.
  • Image lock/saves photocopies in different view settings. Upper right.
  • Date Port – included USB-A computer to a USB-C camera port.

Evaluating The Hilti PT-C Thermal Camera

When reviewing the Hilti PT-C thermal camera in the field, we considered several factors that we felt determine the camera’s suitability for specific applications and ensure optimal performance for diverse construction scenarios.

1. Resolution

  • The Hilti infrared sensor provides 256 x 192 pixels and can hold up to 600 internal infrared or overlay images.
  • The higher resolution the clearer, more detailed thermal image. A thermal imaging camera with a high resolution can detect small temperature differences, making it ideal for tasks that require a high level of accuracy.

2. Sensitivity

  • The Hilti PT-C has a sensitivity of a t wide temperature range -20 °C up to 600 °C. covering a broad spectrum of construction applications.

3. Field of View (FOV)

  • The Hilti PT-C has a 40° x 30° FOV. A wider FOV is beneficial for scanning large areas quickly, while a narrow FOV is better suited for focusing on small, specific areas.

4. Functionality

  • There are several features that he Hilti PT-C has that make it useful to construction professionals such as; seamless data transfer via USB-C, including voice notes, infrared images, and optical pictures for comprehensive documentation.

5. Run-time and durability

  • The Hilti PT-C has a run-time of 10-hours, a drop rating of 1.5 meters, and an IP rating of IP 54 (IEC 529).
  • An IP54-rating carries a level of water and dust resistance, it still leaves the device susceptible to damage if faced with jets of water, or temporary or continuous immersion in water.

Locating heat loss and air leaks that contribute to ice dams

Using the PT-C Thermal Imaging Camera

We used the Hilti PT-C thermal camera to locate electric radiant heat coils under a tile floor. The coils showed clear and when used with an overlay photo we could easily identify locations in the room later.

We also used it on the interior and exterior of a residential house to determine heat loss at the houses rim joist and around doors and windows. Inside we checked external walls for indications of rodent and carpenter ant nests.

The camera easily located the hot vs cold spots allowing us to make insulation and energy efficiency decisions. Lastly, we had our electrician use the camera to check for hot spots in several electrical panels we had on a recent job site.

Thoughts on the Hilti PT-C Thermal Camera

In conclusion, we feel that the Hilti PT-C Thermal Camera empowers construction professionals with cutting-edge thermal imaging technology, enhancing precision, efficiency, and safety across construction projects. The camera sells for $2,059.00

Hilti’s PT-C thermal camera allows professionals the ability to perform inspections, and make an informed decisions on hidden conditions and then use that information to diagnose or plan for repairs and maintenance.

About the author

Rob Robillard

Robert Robillard is a remodeler, general contractor, and principal of a carpentry and renovation business located in Concord, Massachusetts, and serves as the Editor of Tool Box Buzz and founding editor of A Concord Carpenter . Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review - Tool and Product Review - Video Channel, , where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the remodeling industry. The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

http://www.aconcordcarpenter.com/@https://twitter.com/robertrobillardRob Robillard

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