Considering UV Lights to Improve Your Home's IAQ? Here's What You Need to Know
February 7, 2017
What part can UV lights play in a strategy for healthier indoor air quality? You’re probably already aware of airborne particulates you can actually see—dust, lint and other irritants—and their role in triggering allergic responses and other respiratory symptoms. Installing a quality air filter and changing it monthly is important to reduce these pollutants. But what about the threats to air quality you can’t see? Airborne microorganisms such as bacteria, mold spores and viruses are invisible to the naked eye yet still cause physical effects ranging from simple allergies to infection. Many are too microscopic to be effectively captured by most air filters. Even when they are filtered, however, microorganisms often thrive and reproduce inside the media of air filters, continuing to infect the airflow in your entire house.
The disinfecting properties of UV lights have been known for over a hundred years. Ultraviolet light is commonly used to sanitize hospital operating rooms and surgical implements. It’s also utilized by municipal water utilities to disinfect the water supply. These specific wavelengths of light are present in sunlight and have no effect on humans. However, exposure to UV light neutralizes airborne pathogens like bacteria, mold spores and viruses by destroying their capacity to reproduce.
UV lamps are small tubes, basically a downsized version of a fluorescent light. They are energy-efficient, consuming only about 35 watts of electricity. Here’s how ultraviolet technology can be utilized to safeguard your indoor air quality:
- Installed inside your ductwork by a qualified HVAC professional, the lamp exposes the circulating airflow to the purifying effects of ultraviolet light. As all the air in your home moves through the ducts several times per day, indoor air quality is continuously disinfected.
- A UV lamp may also be utilized to target certain components where microorganisms are likely to breed. Installed at the air conditioning evaporator coil located in the indoor air handler, exposure from ultraviolet light prevents growth of toxic mold that often occurs when spores infect the damp coil surfaces.
Ask the professionals at Lozier Heating & Cooling for more information about safeguarding your indoor air quality with UV lights.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Des Moines, Iowa area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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