Do UV Lights in AC Ducts Really Work?

Ultraviolet (UV) lighting is a popular solution for preventing the accumulation of microbes on air filters, cooling coils, drain pans and duct surfaces. Studies have shown that UV lights can reduce the amount of mold and bacteria in a home by up to 97%, as well as reduce the amount of airborne flu virus by 90%. While UV lights can help improve air quality, it's important to understand how they work and if they are the right solution for your home. UV lights are not a new technology and have been used for nearly a century to treat problems such as tuberculosis in hospitals. To work its magic, UV light has to be properly installed in your air conditioning system (and UV lights can damage your eyes if you're not careful).

And the last point, which is really surprising, is that UV bulbs aren't even installed in ducts most of the time. The idea of eliminating germs from your home just by illuminating your air ducts sounds too good to be true, but UV HVAC lights can really improve your home's air quality. Installing UV lights in your HVAC system can reduce accumulated contaminants in system ducts; therefore, heat exchange and airflow are considerably improved. In addition to air purifiers, another way to improve indoor air quality is to install UV lights in the system of air conditioning. Before you start looking for a UV HVAC lighting system, you'll need to choose which of the two available types is right for you for your needs. It's true that UV lights offer very little benefit when it comes to mold spores and bacteria from the condenser coil reaching the air supply.

However, it's important to consider the impact that contaminants can have on your long-term health and how UV lights in your air conditioning system can help. In general, the UV lights that your HVAC company is trying to sell to you are probably a waste of money, and it would be much better if you check your system manually once a year. Most importantly, the UV lights that most HVAC technicians try to sell you aren't powerful enough to kill even a significant amount of mold spores, bacteria, and viruses that circulate through your system. Purifying the air in your home with UV lights isn't as simple as some manufacturers might make it seem, and not every home actually needs one of these systems.

Grady Ungvarsky
Grady Ungvarsky

Proud sushi specialist. Freelance food aficionado. Wannabe coffee fan. Friendly pop culture junkie. Certified social media evangelist. Hardcore twitter junkie.