Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Do the UV bulbs in UV air purifiers ever need to be cleaned or dusted, if so how can I do that safely?

In general a UV air purifier system should not need to have the bulbs cleaned on any type of routine basis. This is because in some systems there are filters that the air passes through before reaching the bulbs that actually remove most of the larger dust particles and other microscopic particles that may be present. Even in those UV air purifiers that don't have pre-bulb filters the UV rays from the light will actually degrade the particles over time, literally self-cleaning the surface. In some instances if oil from someone's hands or any other type of adhesive material gets on the bulbs, clean with a soft cloth and a solution of 99% alcohol. Always use a lint free cloth and only clean when necessary.

What does UV actually mean and can UV be seen by the naked eye?

UV air purifiers use a technology known as ultraviolet light. This is a naturally occurring light in the spectrum that is beyond what the human eye can detect. UVC is the type of UV light used in ultraviolet air purifier systems. It is also known as short wave UV and is the most effective at killing germs, molds, viruses, bacteria and other type of naturally occurring and man-made types of contaminants. Another common term for UVC is UVGI which stands for ultraviolet germicidal irradiation. This type of UV, UVC or UVGI is potentially harmful to any living organism, including humans. Exposure to UVC light can have serious health effects as it does destroy organic material including DNA within individual cells. High levels of safety back-ups such as infrared motion detectors and LED displays that show the cycle of room type UV air purifiers make this advanced technology both safe and efficient for a wide range of home and facility applications.

If I already use a filter system in my home or office air conditioner, do I still need to consider a UV air purifier?

Standard filters, including HEPA filters and activated carbon filters are a good way to eliminate odors and some types of allergens and irritants from the air. However, they are not designed nor do they claim to remove the smallest particles, many which are the most problematic. Viruses, bacteria and even mold spores are simply too small to be trapped by these types of filters. UV air purifiers can be used in conjunction with other filtration systems to provide a very comprehensive improvement to indoor air quality. Filters are helpful in making the ultraviolet air purifier even more efficient as they remove the dust particles that the germs may be on. This then allows the UV light to immediately start destroying or deactivating the target microorganism. Some of the newer portable types of UV air purifiers incorporate all three types of air treatments, HEPA filters, activated charcoal and then UV light for fast and efficient cleaning.

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