Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights: What’s Right for My Needs? 

Indoor air quality is something to keep in mind for every home. If your home doesn’t have the proper air quality products, indoor air is often two to five times less healthy over outdoor air. But with so many air cleaning methods on the market, how do you find out which one is best for your home and family? Here’s a comparison of two top choices—air purifiers and UV lights. 

How Do Air Purifiers Work?

Air purifiers are used to increase indoor air quality by filtering dust, tobacco smoke, and pollen from the air. Some also capture odor-causing molecules for a fresher scent. Air purifiers come in a portable form, which means they can only work in one room at a time. 

There are several types of air purifiers, such as mechanical filters, activated carbon filters, ozone generators, electronic air purifiers, and ionization systems. They all work a little differently, but the goal is the same—to filter out airborne particulates. However, once allergens settle to the floor, purifiers can no longer capture and remove them. 

One common side-effect with several air purifiers is that they produce ozone. Whether in its raw form or mixed with other chemicals, ozone can be detrimental to health. Being exposed to ozone hampers lung function and increases the risk of throat irritation, coughing, chest pain and lung inflammation. This is an ironic side effect, because a homeowner would only use an air purifier to improve indoor air quality, not make it worse! Based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) instructions, homeowners are encouraged to utilize proven ways of reducing indoor air pollution. These methods include removing or controlling pollutant sources, increasing outdoor air ventilation and using any proven methods of air cleaning that doesn’t add or produce 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 called germicidal because it inactivates most viruses and eliminates bacteria and molds. UV lamps have been used as a sterilization system in hospitals and food production for a very long time. When installed in your HVAC system, UV lights can greatly enhance indoor air quality. 

The process is surprisingly straightforward: an ultraviolet lamp is installed in your ductwork, where it runs constantly. Each time the air conditioner or furnace starts, indoor air containing particulates moves near the light. Airborne microorganisms are deactivated within 10 seconds of contact, rendering them unable to reproduce until they die soon after UVC exposure. It is recommended that UV lights be installed alongside both high efficiency filtration and ventilation systems. All three work in unison to give you the best, most pure indoor air for your home. 

Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights – Which is Recommended?

Stevenson Service Experts encourages you to consider installing UV lights for maximum indoor air quality. This solution can provide relief to people dealing with asthma and allergies, especially in warm, humid settings where microorganisms are in abundance. Unlike air purifiers, UV lights can: 

  • Filter the air in your entire home 
  • Eliminate the majority of viruses, bacteria and mold 
  • Lengthen your HVAC system’s lifespan 
  • Avoid the possibility of generating ozone 

If you think a UV germicidal light is beneficial for your home, speak with one of our indoor air quality Experts today. We can walk you through the ideal combination of products based on your HVAC equipment and indoor air quality needs. Remember, you should still install an HVAC air filtration system to remove dust, pollen and pet dander since UV lights can’t affect non-living allergens. To learn more about different air cleaning methods, or to request a free home health consultation, call us at 614-334-3192 today! 

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