Americans spend 90% of their time indoors where air pollutants — including mold, dander, chemicals, bacteria, smoke and dust — are two to five times more concentrated than outdoors. Extreme levels of pollutant concentration result from poor or nonexistent ventilation, cleaning agents and inadequately maintained HVAC systems.
Clean air is critical at home and in schools, offices and other buildings. At best, poor air quality can lead to strong odors. At worst, it can irritate asthma and allergy symptoms, cause headaches, fatigue and dizziness, or even spread bacteria and viruses that could lead to or worsen some illnesses. Proper air ventilation is the best way to ensure your indoor air remains clean, safe and enjoyable.
What Is UV Air Filtration?
UV air filters are either stand-alone systems or attach to your existing HVAC system. Most use ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) and short wave UV-C light to actively target and deactivate airborne particles and pathogens, like mold and bacteria. Some businesses are even using UV air filtration to minimize the spread and infection rate of highly infectious viruses. Though this process doesn’t remove pathogens from the air, it can neutralize, reduce indoor pollutants and improves overall air quality.
Most residential UV air filtration systems are low-pressure mercury vapor lamps. Depending on the type of emitter the system uses, you may or may not be able to see the UV light in your HVAC system while operational. Please note, UV lights can become ineffective if not installed properly or if you fail to maintain the unit once in-place. Schedule regular inspections and have a professional replace them as needed. Always follow manufacturer guidelines for exposure, use and safety.
You may need to replace your UV bulb a few times over the course of ownership. Always use a manufacturer-recommended bulb or consult an HVAC technician, as inadequate UV lamp coatings can be harmful.
Should Homes Have UV Air Filtration?
UV air filters are not necessary for a clean home, but they can make significant improvements. For people with preexisting conditions or who have difficulty breathing, these improvements could lead to a better quality of life at home. Because they cannot trap or eliminate particles, UV air filters do not replace standard particulate filters, which are passive — they enhance them, like a secondary defense. Together, filters and UV technology can create a safer indoor environment for you and your loved ones.
Types of Home UV Air Filtration Systems
Although there are stand-alone UV air filtration systems, most of what we install, maintain, and service are systems in your existing HVAC system. UV filters usually run continuously as the fan circulates to have a continuous feed of clean, healthy air to the whole home. Some UV lights provide sterilization to the air conditioning coil or supply air purification.
The inside of your HVAC system has a coil that condenses moisture from the air to provide cooling and reduce humidity during the cooling months. While the HVAC unit gathers air, debris and bacteria pass over these coils during the condensation process, potentially creating mold and pathogens that either sit or project back into your airflow. Coil sterilization technology uses stick-shaped UV lights to sterilize the coil, preventing this buildup. There are single-lamp or dual-lamp configurations depending on the type of evaporator coil in your HVAC system.
Air purification technology uses the same germicidal irradiation but works from inside the ductwork. These systems target the supply air that moves through ducts to provide either cooling or heating to your home. When you turn your fan on, the UV air filter automatically begins to operate and continues purifying the air until you turn the fan off again.
Since these systems work from the inside out, they effectively target air throughout your home. Continuous runtime provides constant air purification while keeping energy consumption low.
Benefits of UV Air Filtration
UV air filters can go a long way in helping you create a safer, healthier home or business. These are a few reasons you might consider installing one in your home:
- The air will be cleaner: If you’ve ever walked into a room and been immediately overwhelmed by stagnant or foul-smelling air, you know how uncomfortable it is. The cleaner your air is, the less likely you are to circulate strong odors through your home, like burned food, mildew, tobacco smoke, pet smells and chemical cleaning fumes. UV air filtration units can help deactivate potentially odorous pathogens before they can reach your nose.
- They create a healthier environment: UV air filtration creates a healthier environment by deactivating viruses, mold and bacteria, creating fewer irritants in the air and minimizing the spread of contagions. This makes them a great choice for long-term residential and commercial use.
- It can prolong the life of your HVAC system: Clean air inside your home and ductwork will reduce the amount of buildup that occurs over time. Using an active filtration system like a UV light, your passive air filter will do a better job at capturing the neutralized particulates in your home.
How to Get a UV Air Filtration System
Coil UV air filtration systems must be installed next to the evaporator or cooling coil, with lights directed at the coil. This helps minimize or prevent mold and algal growth that occurs from condensation.
A professional HVAC technician can inspect your existing HVAC filters and identify whether or not you’re already using UV technology as a whole-home filtration system. If not, they are trained to install the best option for your home and needs. They also know exactly where to install units for maximum effect.
Our technicians can help to identify critical air concerns in your home and create a plan of action to improve air quality. Contact us and ask about UV air filtration options, or consider adding it to your next planned maintenance agreement appointment or a free estimate.
Contact Zimmerman Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning to Get UV Air Filtration in Your Home
Zimmerman Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning is a family-owned and operated business serving homes across Harrisburg, Mechanicsburg, Carlisle and Camp Hill. Our team consists of highly trained, fully licensed, bonded and insured technicians committed to maintaining our high standards for service and installation. We’re so confident in our results that we guarantee a one-year warranty on all parts and labor, no matter the service. We also offer convenient financing options and savings offers to help you get the most out of your service appointment.
Contact a member of our team today to learn more about our UV filtration installation process and get one step closer to improved air quality.