Enhancing Water Quality in Harrisburg with UV Sterilization

Are you concerned about the water quality in your Harrisburg home? Poor water quality and contamination are more common than you might imagine, and one option for overcoming these issues is UV sterilization. A UV water filter or purifier is a great option for improving the water quality in your home, and today we’re going to show you how these units work, how effective they are, and what benefits they can bring to your home.

How Does UV Sterilization Work?

Ultraviolet light is a form of electromagnetic radiation. UV rays have an extremely powerful germicidal effect when they are emitted at a certain wavelength. When short-wave UV-C rays come into contact with living microorganisms like bacteria, algae, viruses, and mold spores, the rays almost instantly alter the organism’s DNA. UV light doesn’t actually kill microorganisms, but it does change them in a way that makes it impossible for them to reproduce or spread so that they are rendered entirely harmless.

UV light has such strong sterilizing properties that it is one of the main tools that hospitals use to kill bacteria and viruses to prevent infections and limit the spread of illnesses. This exact same technology can also be harnessed to eliminate harmful viruses and bacteria from your home’s drinking water.

UV water filters are usually small metal canisters that house a UV light bulb. Most UV water filters are whole-home filters or point-of-entry systems, which means they are installed where your main water line enters your home. Whenever you turn on a faucet or use any other plumbing fixture, water will first flow into the canister and be sterilized before it flows into your plumbing system. The water always flows through the UV filter at a specific rate to ensure that the UV rays have ample time to completely sterilize it and destroy any microorganisms that may be present. This ensures that the water you drink, use for cooking and brushing your teeth and even for showering and washing dishes is completely sterilized and free of any germs.

You can also opt to install a point-of-use UV water purifier. Point-of-use means that the unit will only work for one plumbing fixture instead of sterilizing the water as it enters your home. This type of purifier is usually installed in the kitchen to sterilize the water that comes from your kitchen sink. The unit can also usually be connected to your refrigerator so that the water and ice it supplies are also completely sterilized.

UV water sterilization is a great choice for homes with well water, but these units are also great even if your home is supplied by a municipal water system. Municipal water treatment systems typically use chlorine to sterilize and purify the water. Chlorine also has strong germicidal properties, but there are some viruses such as Legionella and hepatitis that are mostly immune to the effects of chlorine. This means that the water may still contain some harmful microorganisms after it leaves the treatment plant. As the water travels through the municipal water system on the way to your home, it can also become contaminated with other microorganisms. UV light sterilization will ensure that this is something you no longer need to worry about and will ensure that your water is always safe to drink.

How Effective Are UV Water Filtration Systems?

UV water filters are extremely effective and will typically eliminate 99.9% of bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms from your home’s water supply. While some harmful microorganisms are resistant to chlorine, scientists have yet to find a single microorganism that is resistant to the effects of ultraviolet light. UV light sterilization has been proven to destroy E. coli, influenza virus, legionella, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, salmonella, and even the viruses that cause cholera, typhoid fever, polio, and tuberculosis.

UV light also kills harmful oocytes like giardia and cryptosporidium. You can find countertop UV water filters that are effective at killing most viruses and bacteria. However, these units generally won’t eliminate more complex microorganisms like giardia as they don’t expose the contaminants to the UV rays for a long enough time to destroy them. A properly sized whole-home UV water filtration system, on the other hand, will destroy these complex contaminants since these systems better control the flow rate to ensure that the water is exposed to the UV light for long enough to eliminate any microorganisms that are present.

While UV water sterilization is effective for eliminating microorganisms, it doesn’t have any effect on other types of contaminants such as heavy metals, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and other chemical pollutants. A UV water filtration system will also not have any effect on improving the taste of your drinking water or eliminating bad odors. This is why many UV water filters are used as part of a multi-stage water filtration system.

A multi-stage water filtration system will be far more effective than UV sterilization alone. This is because the various other filters in the system will work to eliminate the vast majority of other pollutants and contaminants. Many of these systems have an activated carbon filter, which will work to remove contaminants that can give your water a bad smell or taste. This includes chlorine, chloroform, VOCs, pesticides, and other organic chemicals. Most systems also have a series of mesh filters that work to remove silt, sand, and sediment. These filters will also remove most other harmful pollutants such as lead and mercury. In this way, you can basically be 100% certain that your drinking water is completely clean and pure.

Benefits of UV Water Sterilization

UV water filters are extremely low maintenance. You will need to occasionally clean the light bulb and replace it with a new bulb around once a year, but most units have a light that shows you when the bulb needs to be cleaned or replaced. UV water filters are also very energy efficient, and most units will use around the same amount of energy as a 60- to 80-watt light bulb.

UV water sterilization is also 100% safe and will purify your water without leaving anything behind. The same can’t always be said about all other water treatment options as some of them use chemicals to eliminate contaminants, and these chemicals often remain present after the water has been treated.

UV water purifiers aren’t necessarily cheap as most high-quality whole-home systems will cost at least $500 and potentially as much as $2,000. However, these systems can end up saving you money in the long run by eliminating the need to buy bottled water. The average American spends around $5 on bottled water each week, which adds up to around $260 a year. If you have a family of four, this means that you could easily be spending more than $1,000 a year on purchasing bottled water. If you instead always filled up reusable water bottles at home, even the best, most expensive water filtration system could easily end up paying for itself within only a few years.

Harrisburg’s Water Quality Experts

At Ready & Able Plumbing, Heating & Air, we are proud to be your local water quality experts. We offer a range of different water treatment options including UV water sterilization. We also install reverse osmosis filtration systems and water softeners, and our team can take care of your drain cleaning, heating, air conditioning, and indoor air quality needs as well. Contact us today if you have any questions or to learn more about our water treatment options.

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