In 2020, the outdoor air quality of Denver, CO, has not improved much since last year. It is estimated that at least three million residents of the area experience bad air 35 percent of the year. At Summit Heating & AC, we are aware of these facts. This is why we help our customers improve the quality of their home’s indoor air. There are several ways to accomplish this. One is using UV lights. Let’s discuss some facts about UV lights and their impact on indoor air as well as the importance of maintaining a healthy indoor air level.
What Are UV Lights?
Ultraviolet light is a kind of electromagnetic radiation. UV lights have several purposes. This is the light that is used in tanning beds. Other people use it as an interior design decoration because it looks cool. On an industrial scale, this light is used for sterilization purposes. The medical industry, such as hospitals, dentists, and doctors, use it to kill bacteria as well as phototherapy. The light can also cure inks and resins.
UV lights, like lasers, can be adjusted in order to complete a task. Lasers are used for a variety of purposes in the beauty industry, for example. In one setting, lasers are used to discourage the growth of new hair on a desired area of the body. In another setting, lasers are used to encourage the growth of hair on a different part of the body. UV lights function in the same manner in terms of setting. In one setting, the light is used to tan. In a different setting, the light is used to disinfect a hospital room.
How Do UV Lights Impact Indoor Air?
A UV light lamp can impact indoor air. In an appropriate setting, the lamp acts as a sanitation device. Its purpose is to eliminate bacteria and mold directly in its path. The lamp is often placed inside the heating, cooling, and ventilation of a home. So, it is a complimentary device. As the HVAC system is sucking in air, that air is being sanitized. Your system is cooling or heating the air, and when the air is pushed back out, it is sanitized by the lamp. The result is the circulation of sanitized air as opposed to air that may still have particles of pollutants in it. A UV light lamp is mostly effective against mold, mildew, and fungus as well as bacteria. Basically, it is effective against pollutants that are alive and that have the ability to grow.
The lamp must be placed within the HVAC system because the lamp has a limited range. Studies have found that UV light lamps are particularly effective in climates that are humid. This is because mold, bacteria, and fungus thrive in the moisture. When the lamp is installed inside the HVAC system, it can help keep the unit’s coil dry. Your HVAC unit and air, therefore, can remain free of pollutants that tend to grow.
With humidity, due to its materials, the coils can become wet thanks to the moisture in the air. It is important to keep it dry because spores that grow mold can land on it. If there is mold inside your cooling system, eventually you are going to smell the odor. What is worse is that it is going to blow out air with spores in it, which defeats the purpose of trying to achieve a healthy indoor air quality.
What UV Products Are Available?
There are different types of UV light products for indoor air sanitation on the market. As you pick out the one that best serves your needs, take into consideration the intensity, number, and placement as well as the direction of the UV lamps. UV lights are on 24/7. As a standalone, they do not always include an on-and-off switch. The two main types of UV lights for air sanitation are coil sterilization and air sterilization.
Coil sterilization is a stick light. It is installed inside the HVAC system near the return air duct. Its job is to sterilize the air handler coil. This is the light that runs 24/7. It is also the most common type of HVAC UV light. If you opt for the air sterilization, you are going with a complete UV light unit. It is installed in the return air duct. Its job is to sterilize moving air. The UV light unit that is installed runs in cycles with the air handler blower. The best way to make any type of UV light its most effective is to ensure that it is pointed correctly. The lights have to shine on the areas where mold and bacteria are most likely to grow. HVAC technicians who have experience in this area will know how to install the light for maximum effectiveness.
UV lights are available in a variety of sizes and power settings. This is so that every HVAC system can have a good match. The light has to fit near the coils as well as possible. If they do not, the result could be the growth of slime, algae, or bacteria as well as mold. No one wants any of those in their heating, cooling, and ventilation system because that means you are going to be breathing in those spores.
This technology has been around for at least a century, so it is not new, but it is more effective. Keep in mind that UV lights are complementary. In your home, you may need the UV light stick, but you will also need an air purifier. Factors like the number of rooms, the size of the house, and the people who live in the home should be taken into consideration.
Why Is Healthy Indoor Air Important?
As mentioned earlier, the outdoor air quality is questionable in the Denver area. When you are home, your goal should be to get away from it. In your house, you should be comfortable. If you are someone who experiences respiratory issues, your home is supposed to be your refuge. A poor indoor air quality level is hazardous to your health, especially if your home is not very spacious. Basically, you are in a box, and pollutants are in there with you. When you sleep, you breathe in more deeply. This gives pollutants the opportunity to find their way deeper into your lungs. The result could be asthma or worse.
A child is still developing his or her immunity, vital organs, and brain. If children are breathing in poor quality air on a consistent basis, it has a negative impact on their health. Children who are prone to respiratory issues due to genetics are more likely to start suffering from them at an earlier age, which can affect their future health as well. Older adults should be mindful of the air that they are breathing, too. The older you are, the less likely your body is able to fight back against the effects of pollutants.