Using ultra violet light (UV) to kill bacteria and viruses in drinking water is an excellent water treatment option instead of chlorine.
For most homeowners, if they have sent a water sample in to the Health Unit and received notice back that there are trace amounts of either e-coli or coliform, an ultra violet light disinfection system is the answer. Instead of shocking the well once with chlorine and hoping that the problem does’t come back, having a UV system in place ensures continual protection – 7/24.
Any living organism that passes in front of the light is exposed to a wavelength of 254 nanometers for a few seconds. In very simple terms, this is the perfect frequency to alter the DNA of the organism so that it mutates, can’t reproduce, and dies. This process renders the bacteria or virus completely harmless.
Unlike chlorine, the UV system doesn’t add any chemicals to the water that alter the taste, gives off a smell or have negative health effects.
In addition to bacteria and viruses, ultra violet light disinfection is very effective for dealing with cryptosporidium and giardia. These two pathogens are extremely resistant to chlorine.
Before installing a UV system, the incoming water should be free of iron and have very little or no hardness. Both these factors affect the transmittance level of the water (the ability of the light wave to travel through the water). Cloudy or murky water will dramatically decrease the lights ability to ‘kill’.
For additional information about ultra violet light in water treatment, read about it on Wikipedia by clicking here.