If you have an indoor air-filtration system with a high-efficiency filter, you already have a good first line of defense against airborne contaminants. Filters can remove many of the particles in your home’s air, including dust, pollen, mold, bacteria and viruses. To add a second level of protection against potentially harmful microorganisms in the air you breathe every day, it’s can be a good idea to add an ultraviolet (UV) light to your air-filtration system.
A UV light is installed inside the ductwork of your forced-air system, so it is not seen by the homeowner. UV lighting is a very powerful disinfectant. It is so effective that it is used by the food industry to sterilize preparation areas and by the medical industry for sterilizing surgical instruments and operating rooms. The combination of a high-efficiency filter and a UV light will make your indoor air much cleaner than a filter by itself.
UV light kills bacteria, germs, mold, viruses and other tiny living organisms by causing damage to their DNA. At the microscopic level, it usually takes only a few seconds of exposure to kill bacteria and related microorganisms.
As microorganisms travel along with the air inside ductwork, they are exposed to the UV light, which destroys them and removes them from your indoor air. To be effective, the microorganisms must be directly exposed to the UV light.
In other types of UV air-purification systems, most bacteria and related contaminants are trapped in a high-efficiency filter. Air flowing through the filter and over the UV light activates a catalyst that combines with water vapor in the air to create substances that kill other organic compounds in the airflow and eliminate additional microorganisms, odors and chemical vapors.
For answers to your questions about UV lights and how they can improve the quality of your home’s indoor air, contact us at Overland Park Heating & Cooling. Since 1983, we have provided reliable residential, commercial and industrial heating and cooling services to the greater Kansas City area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about UV lights and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.