Convolutional neural networks (CNNs) are powerful machine learning models that have become the state of the art in several problems in the areas of computer vision and image processing. Nevertheless, the knowledge of why and how these models present an impressive performance is still limited. There are visualization techniques that can help us to understand the inner working of neural networks. However, they have mostly been applied to classification models. In this paper, we evaluate the application of visualization methods to networks where the input and output are images of proportional dimensions. The results show that visualization brings visual cues associated with how these systems work, helping in their understanding and improvement. We use the knowledge obtained from the visualization of an image restoration CNN to improve the architecture's efficiency with no significant degradation of its performance.