UV-C lighting: Your questions answered
When ultraviolet light is mentioned, most people probably think of either sunbeds or counterfeit money detectors. But UV light is actually all around us and can be used to make our daily lives more secure, comfortable, and even healthier. Because of UV’s ability to kill bacteria and viruses, a lot of questions are currently being asked about how it works and whether it’s safe for us to use.
Last month some senior members of the Keith Gunn team completed training to become certified UV-C lighting installers with Phillips & Signify Lighting. Armed with this knowledge, we want to make sure your questions about UV-C lighting are answered and instill you with confidence about this excellent technological advancement.
How does UV-C lighting work?
Whilst UV-C lighting technically doesn’t ‘kill’ bacteria or viruses, it rather inhibits any replication by destroying the DNA of the organism. For years, UV-C has been used to disinfect and sterilize drinking water, wastewater, air, pharmaceutical products, and surfaces against many different pathogens.
In fact, it has rendered all bacteria and viruses inactive that have been tested to date, including the most prevalent in our world at this moment in time.
If it is designed to the correct dosage, it is 99.9% effective.
Is UV-C lighting safe?
It’s no secret that prolonged exposure to UV can be harmful to our bodies. Therefore, it’s highly recommended to have a trained and certified professional install any UV-C lighting in commercial properties or public transport vehicles.
However, that does not mean that UV-C lighting is not a safe and secure option for disinfecting the surfaces we work on and the air we breathe.
Philips UV-C luminaires with UV-C lamp systems are an incredibly safe way to ensure the proper disinfection of surfaces. They can be positioned to provide work spaces, shop floors, etc., with direct exposure to the UV-C radiation and are only activated when people are not present.
Where can UV-C lighting be installed?
- By neutralizing micro-organisms, the risk of contracting or spreading viruses and bacteria is massively reduced through UV-C lighting. And the great thing is, it is incredibly versatile and can be mounted to the walls and ceilings of populated areas such as:
- Retail units
- Hair and beauty salons
- Hospitality venues
- Food outlets
- And even transportation vehicles.
Many places have been using UV-C lighting on their public transport systems for some time, including Japan’s bus service and, recently, New York’s subway system.
How often do UV-C lamps need replacing?
UVC lamps from Philips are good for approximately 17,000 hours (two years) of continuous use, with only a 20% decrease in output over the two years – giving you even more peace of mind by being incredibly low maintenance.
To be effective, how close do UV-C lamps need to be to a surface?
The exposure of UV-C lighting is the product of time and intensity. What we mean by this is that high intensities of UV for a short period of time, and low intensities of UV for a long period of time, are fundamentally the same when it comes to lethal action on bacteria.
The average bacterium is ‘killed’ in ten seconds at a distance of six inches from the UV-C lamp, but through prolonged exposure more bacteria at a greater distance from the lamp will also be ‘killed.’
This is another reason why having wall and ceiling mounted UV-C lamps are a great idea as they can be left on all night when no-one is around and disinfect a large area ready.
Who do I contact to have UV-C lighting installed in my office or commercial space?
Philips won’t sell you their UV-C products without having an approved installer in place because of the risks involved. We at Keith Gunn are an approved installer and we will calculate the dosage required in order to make it effective. When installing surface disinfectant UV-C lighting, a risk assessment will need to be carried out and safety measures put in place to ensure that nobody is allowed into the area when the UV-C lighting is in use. We will also provide training to the end user at the commissioning stage to ensure the products are used safely.
Contact us to discuss how to proceed with your purchase.
Call Keith Gunn to ensure your UV-C lighting is installed professionally and securely.
We’re thrilled to be able to offer a service such as UV-C installation, especially at a time where we are all facing such uncertainty about the future of going back to busy offices and other crowded spaces.
Feel free to get in touch with us to discuss what UV-C options are available to you.