Indoor air quality is important for every homeowner. If you lack adequate air quality products, indoor air is likely to be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air. But with different air cleaning methods to choose from, how do you know which one is right for your home and family? Here’s a comparison of two quality choices—air purifiers and UV lights.
How Do Air Purifiers Work?
Air purifiers are used to improve indoor air quality by trapping dust, tobacco smoke, and pollen from the air. Some also collect odor-causing molecules for a clean scent. Air purifiers come in a portable form, which means they can only work in one room at a time.
There are different types of air purifiers, like mechanical filters, activated carbon filters, ozone generators, electronic air purifiers, and ionization systems. They all function somewhat differently, but the goal is the same—to trap airborne particles. However, once allergens drift down to the floor, purifiers can no longer capture and remove them.
One underlying byproduct with several air purifiers is that they produce ozone. Whether in its natural form or blended with other chemicals, ozone can be detrimental to health. Breathing ozone decreases lung function and enhances the risk of throat irritation, coughing, chest pain and lung inflammation. This is an ironic side effect, because a homeowner would only install an air purifier to improve indoor air quality, not weaken it! Based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance, homeowners are encouraged to rely on proven systems of managing indoor air pollution. These methods include removing or controlling pollutant sources, adding outdoor air ventilation and using any proven methods of air cleaning that doesn’t intensify or generate ozone.
How Do UV Lights Work?
Ultraviolet-C (UVC) rays are the highest energy portion of the UV radiation spectrum. This type of light is considered germicidal because it inactivates most viruses and kills bacteria and molds. UV lamps have been used as a sterilization method in hospitals and food production for many years. When installed in your HVAC system, UV lights can greatly improve indoor air quality.
The process is quite straightforward: an ultraviolet lamp is installed in your ventilation system, where it runs throughout the day. Each time the air conditioner or furnace activates, indoor air containing particles blows near the light. Airborne microorganisms are inactivated in under 10 seconds of contact, rendering them unable to reproduce until they die shortly after UVC exposure. It is advised that UV lights be utilized alongside both high efficiency filtration and ventilation accessories. All three work in tandem to give you the best, most pure indoor air for your home.
Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights – Which is Recommended?
Abbey Air Home Services by Enercare recommends installing UV lights for maximum indoor air quality. This solution can offer relief to people suffering from asthma and allergies, especially in warm, humid climates where microorganisms flourish. Unlike air purifiers, UV lights can:
- Improve the air in your entire home
- Destroy the majority of viruses, bacteria and mold
- Lengthen your HVAC system’s lifespan
- Reduce the possibility of producing ozone
If you believe a UV germicidal light is right for your home, speak with one of our indoor air quality technicians today. We can point you to the ideal combination of products based on your HVAC equipment and indoor air quality needs. Don’t forget, you should still have an HVAC air filtration system to remove dust, pollen and pet dander since UV lights won't affect non-living allergens. To learn more about available air cleaning methods, or to arrange a free home health consultation, call us at 289-813-5566 now!