A UV light is part of an HVAC system. It shines ultraviolet rays onto parts of the system to improve indoor air quality. Not every HVAC system has one, and not every home requires one. Though they can be expensive to install, they offer specific benefits many homeowners desire.
The UV light in an HVAC system has a specific purpose: to kill living microorganisms. Your HVAC system has several defenses against poor indoor air quality. The air filter removes particulates like dust and pet dander, and the AC itself keeps the indoor humidity at a reasonable level. The UV light’s job is to shine on the coils and prevent any mold or bacteria from growing on the coils. It also kills mold and bacteria in the air that passes over the coils.
If you or someone in your family has bad allergies or asthma, a UV light is very helpful. Mold spores can trigger asthma episodes, cause allergies to flare, and overall harm your health in small but irritating ways. Some HEPA air filters will pull mold spores and even some bacteria particles from the air, but a UV light is the most effective line of defense against these microbes.
HVAC pros recommend UV lights commonly in two circumstances. Firstly, those that are very prone to allergies or asthma attacks should consider a UV light. Secondly, if you live in a high-humidity climate, like lots of the United States south, you would benefit from a UV light. High-humidity climates are breeding grounds for mold, so a UV light is especially necessary.
The best way to know if you need a UV light is to talk to your HVAC technician about it. Describe any air quality issues you’re experiencing, and get an air quality test. If you have one installed, you can breathe freely knowing it’s neutralizing harmful particles in your indoor air.