The quality of air that you breathe while inside the house has become a thing of grave concern. Homeowners are now constantly on the lookout for options that would work the best with their current heating and cooling system. In the past, indoor air quality was something that people seldom ever thought about. However, things are now changing, and the masses are becoming more conscious about cultivating a conducive and healthy environment in the home, and that includes indoor air quality.
Why Is Indoor Air Quality Important?
The quality of air in a closed space like a home, office, school, or any other building is significant for a number of reasons. Even the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers them important.
1. On average, around 90% of Americans spend their time indoors. In these places, the concentration of the pollutants is 2 to 5 times greater than the outdoors.
2. People who have allergies, small children, and the elderly spend an even larger amount of time inside.
3. In the last decade, the concentration of pollutants has increased manifold indoors. It is due to the use of energy-efficient building construction, which does not allow for adequate mechanical ventilation, thereby preventing appropriate air exchange. Additionally, there has been a considerable increase in the use of personal care products, household cleaning agents, synthetic building materials, and such.
What Are UV Lights?
UV lights are also known as Germicidal Ultra Violet lights, and these are used for sanitization purposes. These kill germs, bacteria, viruses, mold spores, and other biological contaminants. This purifies the indoor air and makes it healthier to breathe.
The reason why UV lights are suggested for improving indoor air quality is mainly that it can be paired with your HVAC unit. However, if your unit is old, it may not be possible, so it is best to check with your local HVAC contractor and get the go-ahead first.
Benefit OF UV Lights
The prime benefit of UV lights is that they are very effective in eliminating contaminants. They are so efficient that hospitals and nursing homes have been using them for sterilizing equipment for a very long time.
Eliminating the contaminants present in the air has lots of health benefits. The most obvious change will be felt by those who have asthma and suffer from seasonal allergies. Once you start using UV lights, you will also notice that the tendency of your family to fall ill is far less than those families who don’t use germicidal lamps. It is all because the indoor air quality of your home is far superior to theirs.
A lesser-known fact about UV lights is that they help get rid of odors present in the house. These odors tend to be irritating and distracting, so getting rid of them would be a godsend.
Types Of UV Lights
There are two basic types of UV lights, namely
1. Coil Sanitizing UV Lights – The coils are an ideal place for the growth of bacteria and mold. The coils trap moisture from the passing air to dehumidify it, and in turn, itself becomes moist due to condensation. The air passing over the coils leaves behind contaminants over it, which breed and increase colonies or release spores that are again picked by passing air and circulated throughout the home. The coil sanitizing UV lights are placed where they can shine on the coil surface without any obstructions and disinfect it.
2. Air Sanitizing UV Lights – The air sanitizing UV lights are installed in the return air ducts. The aim is to kill the contaminants before they can find a place to settle over the coils or become a part of the air going back into the home. The clean air dilutes the concentration of the polluted air indoors and makes it better and healthier to breathe.
Cost-Effectiveness Of UV Lights
Let us have a peek at the cost-effectiveness of UV lights. Coil sanitizing lights cost between $60 to $280 while air sanitizing UV lights cost between $80 to $400. But that is just the core cost of the light. You need to shell out more for the installation, which will include the labor cost and take into consideration things like the type of your HVAC unit and the complexity of work. Hence, the actual cost of installation may vary between $600 to $1,800.
UV lights are low maintenance, and running them non-stop will cost you between $15 to $30 annually. No matter the total cost, the benefit it renders in terms of improving the indoor air quality is priceless.
Can I Install UV Lights
Some UV lights have to be hard-wired, and all of them have to be placed precisely. Also, the ductwork needs to be sealed after the installation, which you may not be able to accomplish. For these very reasons, the indoor air quality experts at Aztil Air Conditioning don’t recommend installing the UV lights for your heating and cooling system as a DIY project. In your bid to save some dollars, you may inadvertently land up making a costly mistake.
Life Expectancy Of UV Bulbs.
Most UV bulbs have a life expectancy of one year, though some may stretch for a year and a half to two. It is best that you consult your HVAC contractor on when your UV germicidal bulb may need to be replaced. Since they work with these appliances day in and day out, the technicians can give you the best time frame, though it is up to you to change the bulbs or get them changed around the recommended time.
If you have never thought about the indoor air quality in your home till now, its time to take stock. Times are changing, and diseases and illnesses are evolving, but having good indoor air quality will limit your exposure to them.
Residents of West Palm Beach, Florida, can contact the air quality experts at Aztil AC to discuss the indoor air quality solutions further. To book an appointment call at +1-888-729-8452.