Air Purifiers vs. UV Lights: What's Best for My Home?

Indoor air quality is important for every household. If your home doesn’t have adequate air quality products, indoor air is frequently two to five times less healthy than outdoor air. But with different air cleaning methods to choose from, how do you determine 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 designed to enhance indoor air quality by filtering 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 be used in one room at a time.

There are many types of air purifiers, like mechanical filters, activated carbon filters, ozone generators, electronic air purifiers, and ionization systems. They all perform somewhat differently, but the goal is the same—to trap airborne particles. However, once allergens settle to the floor, purifiers can no longer trap and remove them.

One consistent side-effect with a number of air purifiers is that they generate ozone. Whether in its natural form or mixed with other chemicals, ozone can be detrimental to health. Being exposed to ozone hampers 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 weaken it! Based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance, homeowners are advised to take advantage of proven methods of reducing indoor air pollution. These methods include eliminating or controlling pollutant sources, increasing outdoor air ventilation and using any proven methods of air cleaning that doesn’t intensify 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 system in hospitals and food production for a very long time. When added to your HVAC system, UV lights can dramatically boost indoor air quality.

The process is very straightforward: an ultraviolet lamp is installed in your ductwork, where it runs continuously. Every time the air conditioner or furnace starts, indoor air containing pollutants drifts past the light. Airborne microorganisms are made sterile in under 10 seconds of contact, rendering them unable to reproduce until they die shortly after UVC exposure. It is recommended that UV lights be utilized in addition to both high efficiency filtration and ventilation accessories. All three work in unison to give you 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, particularly in hot, humid climates where microorganisms thrive. Unlike air purifiers, UV lights can:

  • Improve the air in your entire home
  • Eliminate the majority of viruses, bacteria and mold
  • Lengthen your HVAC system’s lifespan
  • Avoid the potential of producing ozone

If you believe a UV germicidal light is best for your home, discuss it with one of our indoor air quality specialists today. We can suggest the best combination of equipment based on your HVAC equipment and indoor air quality needs. Keep in mind, you should still install an HVAC air filtration system to remove dust, pollen and pet dander since UV lights can’t affect inanimate allergens. To learn more about these air cleaning methods, or to arrange a free home health consultation, call us at 352-414-4006 now!

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