UV Water Purification Pros and Cons
UV water purification (Ultra Violet water purification) is a popular water treatment method, possibly because it’s an economical way of disinfecting water in households.
It’s one of the best treatment options for water with lots of bacteria and other microorganisms. UV purifiers are point-of-entry systems installed at the main water line in homes.
They (UV purifiers) only eliminate microorganisms, so they are often combined with other water filtration systems to provide clean water in homes.
In this article, we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using UV water purifiers. But to understand their pros and cons, we’re also going to learn about how they work, their maintenance, and the kinds of contaminants they eliminate.
How Does UV Purification Work?
Ultraviolet radiation can kill bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi that may be present in your water. The purification system works by passing ultraviolet light of a particular wavelength through the water. The waves in this spectrum have a “germicidal frequency,” which effectively kills microorganisms.
UV lamps are used to pass the ultraviolet light through the water in the filter. The UV rays emitted damage the DNA of the microorganisms so that they cannot reproduce. The microorganisms also lose the ability to function, and this prevents them from spreading diseases through water. The treatment process eliminates up to 99.99% of the microorganisms found.
It’s advisable to use a pre-filter to remove sediments from your water before passing it through the UV purifier because some microorganisms may hide behind large dirt particles and escape the elimination process.
Contaminants That UV Water Purifiers Remove
UV disinfection can eliminate organisms such as:
- Dysentery bacilli
- Mycobacterium tuberculosis
- Some viruses as well as fungi and algae.
Installation and Maintenance of UV Purifiers
Steps Before purchasing a UV water purifier
- Daily water usage: This will determine the size of purifiers to go for.
- Water quality: Your water should be free of sediments so that they don’t hinder the purifier from doing a thorough job.
- Space: UV systems will usually take a lot of space, especially if you combine them with other water filters. Make sure you have room to accommodate the system.
- Flow rates: The size of the UV purifier will affect the water flow rate in your home. Bigger sizes equal higher flow rates.
- UV dose: This refers to the amount of UV energy that the system will expose the water too. Usually, residential water purifiers are rated at 10 mJ/cm2 or more. Higher doses are not necessary for a home water supply.
- UV transmittance (UVT): You’ll have to find out the UV transmittance of the water. UVT is a measure of the water’s ability to transmit UV light. If the UVT is less than 75%, you’ll need to pre-treat the water before using a UV purifier.
Steps After Installation of a UV Purification System
The installation of a UV purification system usually takes at least 2 hours. You can contact a reliable plumbing service to help you with the process.
After installing your UV purification system, you’ll have to maintain it regularly. Although most systems will last for years, they still have to receive proper maintenance. Luckily, they’re quite easy to maintain. Here are steps you can take to preserve them:
- Change the UV lamp after one year: UV lamps use mercury as fuel. The mercury starts to dissipate after some time. So, the lamp will need to be replaced. They usually last up to 375 days.
- Clean the glass quartz sleeve: The UV lamp is usually enclosed in a glass quartz sleeve to protect it from water. You have to clean it regularly to make sure the lamp works effectively. The glass has to be clear enough for UV light to pass through. You can learn the step-by-step process of cleaning a UV filter on BOS.
- You have to get a new quartz sleeve after using the UV purifier for two years.
Pros and Cons of UV water purification
- UV water purification doesn’t require the use of chemicals, so it doesn’t leave by-products in the water.
- The UV lamp only needs to be maintained once a year.
- UV water purification is very useful during floods because it protects drinking water from contamination.
- It destroys up to 99.99% of microorganisms found in the water. Especially bacteria and viruses.
- UV water purification is an environmentally friendly method of disinfecting a water supply.
- It’s safe to use at home since you don’t need to handle corrosive chemicals.
- The purification process is relatively swift since water doesn’t need to be kept in a holding tank before passing into the home.
- The process doesn’t require a lot of electricity.
- The purification process doesn’t wastewater.
- UV purification has one of the lowest operating costs compared to other disinfection methods.
- A UV purification system only kills microorganisms. It doesn’t remove sediments, large contaminants, loose particles, or the remains of dead microorganisms from the water it purifies.
- When you’re not running water, the UV lamp heats the water if it’s sitting stagnant in the chamber.
- The purification system can only work if the water is clear and free of sediments.
- The UV purifier does not work without electricity, e.g., during power outages.
- It does not improve the taste or odor of water.
Overall, UV water purification is a very effective method of disinfecting water, and the pros seem to outweigh the cons. So, if you’re thinking of trying this method for water treatment, you’re on the right path.
We recommend combining a UV water purification system with other water filtration systems like reverse osmosis. This way, you get to enjoy clean, contaminant-free water in your home and greatly improve your health.
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