Can UV Light Systems Combat The Spread of Viruses?

No one wants to think about filling their home with allergens, bacteria, or mold whenever the heater or air conditioner is running. HVAC plays an important role in keeping your home healthy, or not, and UV light systems can be effective at removing some of the most common health and aesthetic problems that come up in HVAC. Whether you or someone in your home has developed allergies, has a respiratory condition, or you’re concerned about the COVID-19 virus, looking to your HVAC for solutions to help keep the air in your home healthier is a good place to start.

What Are UV Light Systems?

UV light systems are ultra violet lights that can be used in an existing HVAC system to eliminate airborne contaminants like germs, pathogens, and viruses. This can be accomplished one of two ways:

Air Sterilization (also called in-duct UVC systems)

A specialized type of UV light called UV-C light is used to disinfect air as it cycles through the home’s vents, killing airborne germs and mold.

Coil Sterilization

Typically the more common HVAC UV light system, Coil UV light systems work with the central air conditioning unit’s coil – a trouble spot for mold growth and contamination. These lights are installed where they can shine directly on the coil itself, eliminating mold, germs, and bacteria where they originate.

UV Light Systems: Can They Stop The Spread Of Viruses?

UV light has a long history of killing mold, viruses, and bacteria, and when used correctly in an HVAC system it can effectively perform this function in your home. An experienced HVAC professional will be able to recommend the best system for your home based on your particular configuration.

Can UV Light Kill the COVID-19 Virus?

The answer to the question on everyone’s mind is… maybe. Early research indicates that UV light is effective at eliminating the COVID-19 virus (coronavirus). The UV light systems in HVAC are the same kinds of UV lights being used to sterilize hospitals and healthcare facilities from COVID-19.

The effectiveness of UV light systems at combating COVID-19 depends on the installation. Continuously on light systems like coil sterilization, for example, have the potential to be more effective since virus elimination is dependent on the length of exposure to UV light. It’s important to have an experienced HVAC professional evaluate and install an HVAC light system to ensure its effectiveness and efficiency, no matter what you’re looking to do to improve your indoor air quality.  

How Much Does It Cost to Install In My HVAC System?

UV light systems range in cost for installation and the bulbs themselves. Count on installation for coil systems to be between $100-225, and bulbs between $60-285+ (this depends heavily on the type of light bulb purchased).

For air sanitizing systems, expect installation to cost $150-300, and bulbs from $80-400+.

You’ll also need to consider the increase in your utility bill, since you’re adding an energy hungry light bulb (or bulbs) to your home. You can ballpark operational costs by reading the packaging of the UV bulbs themselves to price out their cost to run, though it’s generally under $100 per year.

Do They Work In Any System?

Most home’s HVAC will support the addition of a UV light system. The important thing to consider is the placement of the UV lights themselves, as this is the biggest contributor to the system’s effectiveness.

Our experienced HVAC professionals will be able to evaluate your system and make recommendations about where, and how best, to install a UV light system, and answer any other questions you might have about UV light systems for HVAC.  Schedule a visit online today or call (619) 762 – 3044 to get started.

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