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

Indoor air quality is a concern for every household. If you lack the right air quality products, indoor air is likely to be two to five times more contaminated than outdoor air. But with a large number of air cleaning methods on the market, how do you recognize which one is ideal for your home and family? Here’s a comparison of two popular options—air purifiers and UV lights.

How Do Air Purifiers Work?

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

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

One common byproduct with several air purifiers is that they produce ozone. Whether in its pure form or mixed with other chemicals, ozone can be harmful to health. Exposure 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 weaken it! Based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommendations, homeowners are reminded to utilize proven methods 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 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 wipes out bacteria and molds. UV lamps have been used as a sterilization mechanism in hospitals and food production for decades. When installed in your HVAC system, UV lights can drastically enhance indoor air quality.

The process is quite uncomplicated: an ultraviolet lamp is installed in your ventilation system, where it runs constantly. Every time the air conditioner or furnace activates, indoor air containing pollutants drifts through the light. Airborne microorganisms are made sterile 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 accessories. All three work in tandem to produce the best, most pure indoor air for your home.

Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights – Which is Best?

Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning encourages you to consider installing UV lights for maximum indoor air quality. This solution can bring relief to people struggling with asthma and allergies, especially in warm, humid settings where microorganisms thrive. Unlike air purifiers, UV lights can:

    •Clean the air in your entire home •Eliminate the bulk of viruses, bacteria and mold •Extend your HVAC system’s lifespan •Avoid the potential ofcreating ozone

If you think a UV germicidal light is best for your home, talk with one of our indoor air quality technicians today. We can walk you through the perfect combination of products based on your HVAC equipment and indoor air quality needs. Remember, you should still use an HVAC air filtration system to collect dust, pollen and pet dander since UV lights don’t affect inanimate allergens. To learn more about available air cleaning methods, or to schedule a free home health consultation, call us at 289-273-2229 today!

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