Types Of UV Light Systems

Presidential Heating & Air Conditioning

Gaithersburg HVAC Contractors


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Sun giving off uv light in sky Ultraviolet (UV) light systems are installed in HVAC units in homes to destroy bacteria and prevent mold from growing. There are many different ways this can be implemented. One of the biggest uses of UV light systems is through the production and use of UV lamps. These lamps use low and medium pressure mercury vapor to emit radiant energy through a wavelength. Here are some of the different types of UV systems.

Germicidal UV

Germicidal UV lamps are intended to destroy germs and bacteria in your HVAC systems. These lamps work by emitting a wavelength of ultraviolet light between 200 and 400 nm, which penetrates the cells of harmful particles. This will make you notice first a cleaner and fresher air quality in your home, and second, fewer illnesses during cold and flu season.

Factors like temperature and humidity can affect the wavelength and should be taken into consideration when deciding on a UV light system for an area that has a higher temperature or humidity level. There are two cathode types of germicidal UV lights: hot and cold.

Hot and Cold Cathode

In both the hot and cold cathode UV lamps, the cathode refers to the type of electrode that the lamp uses. The hot or cold cathode is indicative of their ability to maintain a good UV output at a certain temperature, the hot being able to perform better at higher temperatures, and the cold better at lower temperatures.


Hot cathode UV lamps have advantages in power efficiency and space and work best in warmer temperatures. Hot cathodes take some time to warm up but are very efficient once they are ready. However, their disadvantage comes in their lifespan. Hot cathode lamps will need to be replaced more often if they are in colder environments or if they are switched on and off frequently. However, if you are planning on installing a UV light in a warm climate, these may be the right choice for you.


UV light system hanging from wallCold cathode UV lamps are different from the hot lamps because they have an instant-start system that keeps this lighting lasting longer than the hot cathode lamps which use much of their power by heating up. Cold cathode UV lamps can maintain a constant UV output at a lower temperature and last longer than many other types of UV lamps. These may be the right choice for temperatures that fluctuate and for those who do not want frequent replacements.

Slimline Germicidal UV

A slimline germicidal UV lamp is another instant-start option, like the cold cathode, but comes in low, high, and very high ozone types. The lifespan of the UV light system is determined by the life of the electrode, and the amount of times the lamp is turned on.
Slimline UV lights have high UV emissions and consistent output, which makes them ideal for germicidal applications like surface sterilization, indirect air irradiation, and use on conveyor lines. They can also be used for many other sterilization applications.

High Output

A high output UV light system is one of the greatest options on the market because of the many high-performance features it has. High output systems can operate in a varied temperature range, has an extra-long life, and a well-maintained UV emissions output. These light systems are great in real-world applications, like working in air ducts. High output UV light systems also have a long lifespan and can maintain a consistent output.

Ask About the Right Installation for You with Presidential Heating and Air

HVAC tech fixing unitWith many different types of UV light systems, you may not have a clear picture of which one would be right for your home. If you are not sure which type of UV light you should install, then call and talk to the professionals at Presidential Heating and Air and see what HVAC UV light systems our experts suggest for your home.

With just a few minutes over the phone, you can schedule an appointment for us to come to your house and advise you on installing the right type of UV light systems. No matter what kind of light system you decide to go with, we can install it for you!

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