Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights: Whats Right for My Needs?

Indoor air quality is important for every household. If you lack adequate air quality products, indoor air is frequently two to five times less healthy compared to outdoor air. But with a large number of air cleaning methods available, how do you find out 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 designed to increase indoor air quality by filtering dust, tobacco smoke, and pollen from the air. Some also collect odor-causing molecules for a fresh scent. Air purifiers can be found in a portable form, which means they can only work in one room at a time.

There are different types of air purifiers, such as mechanical filters, activated carbon filters, ozone generators, electronic air purifiers, and ionization systems. They all perform slightly differently, but the goal is the same—to filter out airborne pollutants. However, once allergens drift down to the floor, purifiers can no longer catch and remove them.

One underlying problem with several air purifiers is that they generate ozone. Whether in its raw form or blended with other chemicals, ozone can be harmful to health. Exposure to ozone affects lung function and intensifies the risk of throat irritation, coughing, chest pain and lung inflammation. This is an ironic side effect, considering that 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 managing indoor air pollution. These methods include eliminating or controlling pollutant sources, adding outdoor air ventilation and using any proven methods of air cleaning that doesn’t increase or create 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 mechanism in hospitals and food production for many years. When placed in your HVAC system, UV lights can drastically increase indoor air quality.

The process is surprisingly straightforward: an ultraviolet lamp is installed in your ventilation system, where it runs throughout the day. Any time the air conditioner or furnace activates, indoor air containing pollutants moves past 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 advised that UV lights be utilized in conjunction with both high efficiency filtration and ventilation equipment. All three work in unison to give you the best, most pure indoor air for your home.

Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights – Which is Better?

Strand Brothers Service Experts suggest installing UV lights for the highest possible indoor air quality. This solution can bring relief to those dealing with asthma and allergies, namely in hot, humid settings where microorganisms prosper. Unlike air purifiers, UV lights can:

    •Clean the air in your entire home •Eradicate the majority of viruses, bacteria and mold •Lengthen your HVAC system’s lifespan •Avoid the potential ofcreating ozone

If you believe a UV germicidal light is useful for your home, talk with one of our indoor air quality technicians today. We can point you to the ideal combination of equipment based on your HVAC equipment and indoor air quality needs. Don’t forget, you should still use an HVAC air filtration system to dust, pollen and pet dander since UV lights don’t affect inorganic allergens. To learn more about these air cleaning methods, or to arrange a free home health consultation, call us at 512-592-3072 right away!

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