THE UV-C STORY
The History of UV-C
Germicidal ultraviolet light (UV-C) has been used for killing harmful microorganisms and disinfecting drinking water for over 70 years. It was first introduced for this purpose in France in 1908 and is now used around the world. In 1903 a Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to Niels Ryberg Finsen for his contribution to the treatment of diseases using concentrated light radiation. Throughout the 20 th century, UV-C has been used in various applications in bakeries, meat storage and processing plants, dairies, kitchens, animal labs and other places where microbiological contamination was an issue. Many of these microorganisms are the same ones that cause the indoor air quality problems in homes and offices. Advancements in technology and manufacturing have now led to the development of UV-C systems for use in the harsh conditions of central air system.
How UV-C Works
The Bio-FighterŽ UV-C Light System contributes significantly to the reduction of the small microbial organisms that pass through filters and into the general air stream. Ultraviolet light represents the frequency of light between 200 nanometers (nm) and 400nm and cannot be seen with the naked eye. Within the UV spectrum lie three distinct bands of light: UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C. Long wave UV light (315nm to 400nm), or UV-A, refers to what we commonly call "black light." UV-B (280nm to 315nm), or midrange UV, causes sunburn. Germicidal UV light (200nm to 280nm), or UV-C, is effective in microbial control. Research has demonstrated that within this UV-C band, the most efficient frequency for microbial destruction is 253.7 nanometers. Bio-FighterŽ lamps produce the majority of their output at this frequency. UV-C light emitted by the Bio-FighterŽ penetrates the cell walls of the microbe, damaging its genetic structure by severing the bonds in the DNA strand. The affected microbe is neutralized or becomes unable to reproduce. Intensity and exposure time determine how quickly a susceptible microbe is disabled by UV-C light.
THE IAQ PROBLEM
In an effort to conserve energy in the early 70's, construction practices and materials were reevaluated. Unfortunately, actions taken to make our homes, offices and buildings more efficient created a more serious problem. Studies now prove that air pollutants are 2 to 5 times higher indoors than outdoors. This is a startling statistic considering people spend about 90 percent of their time indoors. Headaches, nausea, respiratory problems, wheezing, coughing, and eye, nose, or throat irritations, are just a few symptoms that may be related to poor indoor air quality. These symptoms may range from mild to serious depending on the health of the individual's immune system. It is important for even healthy individuals to breathe clean air in an effort to help strengthen their immune system. Cleaner indoor air can be achieved in many ways. Adding the Bio-FighterŽ to your home or office is a major step toward achieving cleaner, healthier air.
ˇ BRI's (Building related illness) account for a 69% increase in request for investigation by the National Institute for Occupational Safety over the past 15 years..ˇ Asthma afflicts about 15 million Americans. The disease is the leading cause of childhood hospitalizations and school absenteeism. (Environmental Protection Agency)
ˇThe EPA estimates that combined medical cost including lost productivity and sick leave cost businesses up to $60 billion a year.
ˇ 85% of Americans don't know the air in their homes may be hazardous to their health. (American Lung Association)
ˇ Air Sampling in 1,717 buildings detected fungi in 86% of the structures.(Applied Environmental Microbiology)
ˇ Studies by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology show that 50% of all illnesses is either caused or aggravated by poor air quality.
ˇ Surveys show that 30% to 50% of all structures have damp conditions which may encourage the growth and buildup of biological pollutants.(U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission).
THE BIO-FIGHTERŽ ADVANTAGE
Driven by quality and cutting-edge technology, Dust FreeŽ offers a comprehensive product line of patented UV-C Light products for residential and commercial HVAC applications. Continual research and development of the latest UV-C technology coupled with a strong commitment to having a fully trained and qualified staff allows Dust FreeŽ to stand out as a leader in the crowded UV-C market and enables our customers to realize a rewarding experience when doing business with Dust FreeŽ. Innovative engineering, quality components, and the latest technology in lamp and ballast design, results in some of the most powerful UV-C fixtures in the industry. And research and development at the Dust FreeŽ test facilities allow us to make the most UV-C intensity for the dollar.
Every Bio-FighterŽ is designed with safety features to protect the installer, technician, and owner from electrical and UV-C exposure. Fused circuits, On/Off switches, disconnect power cords, and access panel safety interlocks prevent the units from operating when not intended. Additionally, a UV-C safe viewing port is also included on all insert type Bio-FighterŽ's to check operation of the UV-C lamps once installed. Bio-FighterŽ fixtures are classified by ETL to UL std. 1598/867 and certified to CSA std. C22.2 No. 250.0.
Easy to install and maintain, the Bio-FighterŽ UV-C Lights are designed to fit into a wide variety of locations and applications. Bio-FighterŽ fixtures can be installed in the supply or return ductwork. Preferred fixture location is near the cooling coil where microbial growth is most likely to occur. Bio-FighterŽ fixtures installed in this area can provide effective control of mold and bacteria growth on the coils and drain pans. UV-C can also be installed in the return air duct for airborne microbial protection. Easy to follow instruction manuals and self adhesive air duct/AHU labels are included with every Bio-FighterŽ.
Bio-FighterŽ's are designed to be the easiest UV-C fixtures to install and maintain. Many of the Bio-FighterŽ models only require a Phillips head screwdriver and a 1" hole cutter for installation. Features like the patent pending Slide Clip Retention system, multi-input voltage power supplies, and remote lamp mounting kits make Bio-FighterŽ's the product of choice among HVAC dealers. A factory support UV Hotline, 1-800-441-1107, is also available to get quick answers to your questions.
BIO-FIGHTERŽ UV-C LIGHT FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Background:UV-C Technology has been used for many years in medical and industrial applications for controlling microorganisms. Its effectiveness has been sufficiently proven through scientific studies and thousands of field applications. Concern with the health threats associated with legionella and other microbial pathogens has driven an interest in UV-C light as an economic means of improving indoor air quality. UV-C technology is now entering the HVAC distribution network and it's acceptance as a control for microbial pathogens is being recognized with increasing interest.
Question:Why use a UV-C light product?
Answer:There are two primary benefits to using UV-C light. The first is to use UV-C light to radiate a surface to keep mold from growing in that area. The other use is for disinfecting the air stream as it passes through the HVAC system. A high kill rate is generally not accomplished in the air stream. However, enough kill rate is accomplished to make the use of UV-C light very beneficial with repeated circulation of air through the system.
Question:What is a UV light?
Answer:"Light" includes a wide variety of frequencies. There are a lot of frequencies that we don't see: infra red, radio, x-ray, gamma, and ultra violet rays. UV-C is a 254 nanometer wave of light-wave radiation. One nanometer is 10 to the 9 th power. This frequency has been proven to kill micro-organisms.
Question:What does it do?
Answer:When a UV-C frequency hits a cell, it penetrates the cell and given time will kill the DNA molecule. The smaller the organism, the less time required for an objective kill rate. Micro-organisms can't live in the presence of UV-C light rays.
Question:Is it safe?
Answer:There are several bands in the UV light spectrum. UV-C is used to control microbials. UV-C light will damage human tissues as well with enough exposure, and can severely burn the eyes. A glance at a distance may not be a problem, but looking at a UV-C lamp close-up for 5 10 seconds could damage the eyes. Generally, your eyes will heal if they are burned. Dust Free, Inc. recommends that goggles be worn when in the presence of unshielded UV-C light.
Question:What is eye protection?
Answer:UV light is invisible. Then you look at a UV lamp and see blue light, you are seeing a by-product of the UV process, NOT a UV light. UV light is easy to shield. It will not go through Plexiglas, but in time will oxidize plastics. UV light will not go through plastic glasses or plastic goggles. Standard glass eyes glasses are not considered protective eye gear for UV light. Regular plastic "wrap-around" goggles are recommended when working around UV light..
Question: How much maintenance is required on a UV-C light product?
Answer:The Dust Free UV-C light tubes have a service life of 9,000 hours (approximately 375 days). We recommend leaving the lights on continuously as turning them on and off ages the tubes and power supplies.
Question:How much electricity do they use?
Answer:Each tube uses approximately the same electricity as a 40-watt light bulb.
Question:What is the main benefit?
Answer:UV-C light will kill microbials in ductwork and air space, helping to reduce health problems associated with inhaling microbials. UV-C light also keeps HVAC coils cleaner, which increases efficiency.
Question:What is the importance of UV-C light products for indoor environments? Answer: When people spend over 90% of their time indoors with little or no ventilation, pathogenic organisms can multiply and cause the spread of any number of diseases. With deaths being caused by legionella molds and with increased cases of tuberculosis and AIDS, controlling the growth and spread of these and other pathogens is of major concern particularly in office buildings, hospitals, nursing homes, day care centers, jails, and homes. Indoor air quality experts are of the opinion that controlling airborne micro-organisms is the next major challenge of the industry.
Question:Does temperature alter the output of UV-C lamps?
Answer:Cold temperatures reduce the UV output. When engineering a UV-C system, temperature must be considered when determining the number of lamps required to reach an objective airborne kill rate.
Question:Is it necessary to clean UV-C lamps?
Answer:Lamps must be clean for optimal performance. The best way to clean them is with a soft cloth to which alcohol has been applied. When installing a UV-C lamp, care should be taken to not leave oily fingerprints on the lamp. Oil can block the UV-C light from leaving the tube, causing the glass to overheat. Smoky looking spots on a lamp would indicate that the glass is overheated and is now blocking the UV-C output. We recommend cleaning the lamp every 6 months. This would give the contractor an opportunity for a service to the customer. Lamp service life is 9,000 hours or approximately 375 days.
Question:What is the meaning of micro-watts per centimeter at 1 meter?
Answer:This is the amount of UV-C radiation exposed to one square centimeter of surface area on a target placed 1 meter from the lamp..
Question: What precautions should anyone take before entering the ductwork where a UV-C lamp is operating?
Answer:The UV-C lamp should be turned OFF before entering the ductwork for any reason (i.e., repair work, changing the filter, inspections, cleaning). Placing the external switch and warning stickers are a good idea when installing UV-C lights.
Question:Are air filters needed with UV-C lamps in the ductwork?
Answer:A high performance air filter is an excellent companion to a UV-C lamp. The high performance filter will trap the larger dust particles, mold, and pollen. The UV-C lamp will reduce the number of smaller organisms, bacteria, virus, and smaller molds. If the filter is directly exposed to the UV-C light, any plastic components in the filter will be adversely affected in time.
Considerations for Installation
It is normally recommended that the HVAC coil and drain pan be radiated with UV-C light to prevent microbial growth. The particular method of installation is up to the contractor's intuitive judgment. For maximum kill rate in the air stream, UV-C lamps are normally installed in the ductwork or air handler. Maximum lamp length and exposure times are primary considerations. The closer an object is to the tube, the greater the intensity and the higher the kill rate. The longer the contact time with the light, the greater the kill rate. In larger ductwork, the airflow is slower so the kill rate would be higher..
LIMITED LIFETIME WARRANTY
Dust Free LP warrants this Bio-Fighter UV-C Light to be free from defects in materials and workmanship under normal use and service, for as long as it is owned by the original purchaser. This warranty does not cover UV-C lamp(s), which carry a one (1) year warranty from the date of installation, or the ballast which carries a ten (10) year warranty. This warranty does not cover cosmetic damage, damage due to acts of God, damage as a result of handling or shipment, negligence, misuse, connection to improper voltage, improper maintenance, or abuse. This warranty is void if defect(s) result from failure to have this unit installed by a qualified, properly licensed, heating and air conditioning contractor in compliance with local building and construction codes. Dust Free LP's exclusive obligation under this warranty shall be to supply, without charge, a replacement for any covered component of the Bio-Fighter UV-C Light which is found to be defective within the parameters defined herein. Dust Free LP reserves the right to replace or repair the defective part or component. DUST FREE LP SHALL NOT BE LIABLE FOR ANY LOSS OR DAMAGE OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING ANY INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES RESULTING, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, FROM ANY BREACH OF WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, OR ANY OTHER FAILURE OF THIS PRODUCT. (Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of incidental or consequential damages, so this limitation may not apply to you.) THE WARRANTIES SET FORTH HEREIN ARE EXCLUSIVE AND DUST FREE LP EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ALL OTHER WARRANTIES, WHETHER WRITTEN OR ORAL, IMPLIED OR STATUTORY, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, WORKMANSHIP, OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR USE. If the limited warranty is void due to failure to use a qualified contractor all disclaimers of implied warranties shall be effective upon installation. How to make a warranty claim or have questions answered: Should you have a warranty claim or questions about the warranty policy, contact the distributor or dealer from which you purchased the product. Proof of original purchase and proof of identity that the original purchasing party is filing the claim is required in order to initiate a warranty claim. Defective parts must be returned no later than thirty (30) days after the failure to the installing contractor together with the model number, serial number, and date of installation. All service and removal must be performed by a licensed HVAC contractor. You must pay shipping charges and all other costs of warranty service. Warranty is only valid in the United States and Canada.
THIS WARRANTY SHALL NOT OBLIGATE THE MANUFACTURER FOR ANY LABOR COSTS AND SHALL NOT APPLY TO DEFECTS IN WORKMANSHIP OR MATERIALS FURNISHED BY THE INSTALLING CONTRACTOR AS CONTRASTED TO DEFECTS IN THE GERMICIDAL LIGHT ITSELF.
NOTE: Do not return any products or parts to the factory without an issued Return Authorization number issued by the Dust Free LP customer service department.. In the event you have any questions concerning the use and care of this product or this warranty which have not been answered to your satisfaction by the distributor or dealer, please call or write the factory.