A UV-C water treatment system
The ultraviolet lamps used in UV water treatments produce UV-C. This designation signifies “beyond violet” (from the Latin word ultra, which means “beyond”). The UV C coming from the sun do not reach us, since it is is entirely filtered out by the atmosphere. UV-C lamps are used in biology laboratories for their germicidal properties. The radiation intensity that characterizes UV-C is far greater than the light from the sun and is used to sterilize water.
UV filtration can kill the majority of bacteria and viruses that could be present in the water. However, this form of water treatment does not totally purify water. Indeed, it is unable to treat water to eliminate chemical pollutants, for example. The use of ultraviolet water purification systems are thus combined with other water purification systems, given that UV light generally has no impact on chlorine, heavy metals, and other chemical contaminants.
The advantages of UV water treatment
All the same, it is probably the most efficient and most effective technology available to homeowners for the purposes of eliminating a wide array of biological contaminants from their water. UV water treatment boasts numerous advantages compared to other forms of water treatment in terms of dealing with microbiological contaminants. More significantly, it doesn’t leave any chemical product residues in the water, doesn’t generate any by-products, and doesn’t change the taste, pH level, or other properties of the water.
As a result, in addition to producing reliable drinking water, it will not harm your pipes or septic tank.
How does a UV treatment work?
Ultraviolet water purification uses a UV light source (lamp) that is enclosed in a transparent protective casing (usually quartz). The lamp is mounted in such a way that the water goes through the filter by way of a flow-through chamber. The water is thus exposed to light UV-C rays. When toxic microbes are exposed to UV rays, their nucleic acid absorbs the UV energy, which then muddles their DNA structure. The cell is thus rendered sterile and can no longer reproduce itself. The cell is now considered dead and no longer poses any threat.
Applications of UV treatments
UV treatment is an excellent option for the elimination of biological contaminants from most sources of water, whether your home requires additional filtration, or if you have untreated private water at your disposal (rainwater, lake water, wells etc.). Its unique purpose is to kill toxic biological contaminants. We thus reiterate the necessity of combining this system with other kinds of filtration (water softeners if calcium is high, sediment filtration system, reverse osmosis…) for the reduction of heavy metals, chlorine and other chemical contaminants.
UV treatments are very often used for the water in swimming pools.
What can make the difference
There are no known micro-organisms that are resistant to ultraviolet rays, which is not the case for chlorine treated water. UV is known to be particularly effective against bacteria, viruses and algae. In practice, bacteria and viruses are the cause of numerous pathogenic diseases transported by water. Amongst these viruses, the hepatitis virus and legionella have demonstrated their ability to survive for considerable periods of time despite treatments with chlorine, but are easily eliminated by a UV treatment. For most micro-organisms, UV’s efficiency against microbiological contaminants, such as bacteria and viruses, generally exceeds 99.99%.
UV water treatment is very effective (+ of 99.99%) against: salmonella (typhoid fever), salmonella enteritidis (gastro-enteritis), vibrio cholera (cholera), mycobacetrium tuberculosis (tuberculosis), legionella pneumophila (legionella), influenza virus, poliomyelitis and hepatitis.