Since the germicidal properties of sunlight were discovered over 100 years ago, ultraviolet (UV) light technology has been adapted for cleaning and sanitizing. Take advantage of UV light’s germ-killing properties in your Harleysville, Pennsylvania, home by installing a UV lamp on your air conditioner or air purifier. Here’s how a UV lamp protects your home from invisible, airborne invaders.
UV light is invisible to the human eye, but if we could see it, it would come after violet on the light spectrum, hence the name “ultraviolet” light. One of the ways UV light is different from the light we can see is the way its high frequency affects organisms, such as bacteria and mold. UV light can disrupt these nasties at a cellular level, making them unable to reproduce. That’s what makes UV light useful for decontamination.
There are three different wavelengths of UV light: UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C. Only UV-C light, which has the highest frequency, can be used to eliminate bacteria and mold.
The sun produces all three types of UV light naturally. As the sun’s rays reach the Earth, UV-A and UV-B light pass through the atmosphere, but highest frequency UV-C light is filtered out. It’s a good thing too, because UV-C light is harmful to living things. Its ability to destroy living cells is what makes it dangerous and useful at the same time.
A UV lamp artificially creates UV light so it can be put to various uses, such as sterilizing and purifying. UV lamps come in many different sizes and shapes, allowing them to be used for various purposes, such as detecting counterfeit money, inspecting artwork, or by a ticket agent checking your re-entry stamp at a concert.
A UV lamp is different from a regular lamp because it’s typically made of quartz instead of glass. Inside, there is an inert gas mixed with mercury. When the lamp is plugged in, electricity reacts with the mercury, and the lamp produces UV light. The type of UV light emitted depends on the pressure inside the lamp. Not all UV lamps produce the UV-C germ-killing wavelength.
The coils on the HVAC equipment in your home — such as an air conditioner or air purifier — are prone to the buildup of harmful bacteria and mold. When these coils aren’t cleaned properly, airborne contaminants circulate into your home. This makes it uncomfortable for family members with respiratory problems, and it can aggravate allergies or asthma and also cause sickness. Using a UV lamp to sterilize the coils on your HVAC equipment has been proven to improve indoor air quality.