The benefits of cleaner air on your health, your loved ones and your home

It’s been a well-known medical technology since the dawn of the 20th Century, yet it’s still considered a relatively new addition to most modern residential comfort systems; germicidal UV light air purifiers.

From treating certain medical ailments and disinfecting hospitals and laboratories to making public food and water supplies safer, germicidal UV light air purifiers are now gaining popularity as a desired feature in residential climate control systems. Air purifiers can be purchased as stand-alone units or as “add ons” to your existing air conditioning unit, providing whole house air purification through your existing ductwork.

How does UV light “clean” the air?

First, let us tell you how the air purifiers work, then we’ll add in the light. Purifiers are a device that draw in the surrounding air, then force it through a HEPA (or other) filter to remove airborne contaminants and allergens, essentially “scrubbing” the air before it re-enters your living spaces. Germicidal UV light air purifiers use UV lamps that further destroy and eliminate smaller and live microorganisms that may get through a regular filter. The ambient air drawn into the purifier is pushed through a chamber housing the UV light bulbs. The light emits within the UVC frequency, between 200 to 280 nanometers (200-280 nm), which provides the strongest germicidal effect.

Is this the same UV light emitted by the sun that can harm us?

There are three types of ultraviolet light that occur naturally in our world, including the type that comes from the sun. Of those three types of UV light, only one is used to purify the air (and it is not the one we wear our SPF lotions to guard against.)

  • UVA Light: This type of light accounts for 95% of the sun’s radiation on earth. If you use a tanning bed, you are exposing yourself to UV-A light. It can cause premature aging and skin damage.
  • UVB Light: Rays of this light are responsible for those beach day sunburns. It damages the DNA and top layers of your skin. Many skin cancers are directly linked to exposure to UV-B light.
  • UVC Light: This is the type of light used in germicidal air purifiers because it can damage and destroy microorganisms. The sun also emits UV-C light rays, however, our planet’s atmosphere filters out 100% of that radiation. Germicidal UV light air purifiers replicate this type of light and use it to destroy whatever micro particles the HEPA filter doesn’t catch.

When UVA and UVB light damages human skin, the inflamed response we call a “sunburn” is our body reacting to the DNA-level assault by the sun’s radiation. Over time, repeated damage of this nature to our skin can cause permanent scarring or cancer. When microorganisms, viruses, and other allergens are exposed to UVC light, the impact is similar in that their one-cell DNA is irreparably damaged, effectively killing the bacteria before it leaves the purifier and enters the home.

How effective are germicidal UV light purifiers?

To properly set expectations, no singular system is going to guarantee that 100% of every microbe, allergen, bacteria, mold, or virus spore is destroyed passing through the light. Overall, UV light has been well-documented by scientists and researchers as a way of killing most airborne pathogens over the decades. Commercial UV light air purifiers are used in hundreds of hospitals throughout the United States. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends the use of UV light as a way to control infectious disease spread. Depending on their design, some germicidal UV light air purifiers can effectively filter out 99% of harmful airborne particles.

Why do you need UV light if you have a high-quality HEPA (or other) filter in your purifier?

Some virus particles are smaller than 0.1 micron and can slip right through the porous material of a HEPA filter. HEPA filters are effective at trapping bacteria, allergens, mold spores and other airborne microbes, but they don’t kill them. The ones that slip through, like live viruses, then blow into your home and you breathe them in. A germicidal UV light air purifier will “zap” those escaping live pathogens after they pass through the filter, rendering them harmless.

At One Hour Heating and Air, we recommend purifiers that offer the two-stage approach of filter and UV light to better clean the air you and your loved ones breathe. That’s why we offer the OxyQuantum® LED UV Germicidal Air Purifier. Its twin UVC lamps extend nearly 16” into the ductwork of your home for maximum efficiency. The OxyQuantum® purifier features both UVC and UVV lamps for peak effectiveness in removing live pathogens from your home’s air. UVV is another wavelength in the ultraviolet spectrum and, when paired with UVC light, broadens the purifier’s impact on microorganisms, viruses, and other microbes. The OxyQuantum® LED UV Germicidal Air Purifier also prolongs the life of your HVAC system and maintains efficiency.

At One Hour Heating and Air, your climate comfort is important to us, but your health and safety are paramount. Let us provide a free, comprehensive consultation on the germicidal UV light air purifier that would work best in your home and within your budget. We’ve been serving your neighbors in Charlotte and the surrounding areas, including Indian Trail, Concord, and Mooresville for decades.

Our affordable financing programs can match any budget to a high-performance, top-quality comfort system. If your HVAC system is relatively new, but needs a seasonal inspection and tune-up, our highly skilled technicians are standing by for all your central air needs. If we need to do a repair, we’ll waive the trip fee!

Visit www.onehourA/ for our weekly and monthly specials. Call our 24/7 customer service line today 704-251-0610.