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How to Clean Your Water at Work: Ozone Vs UV Light Purification

While most tap water in the U.S. is safe to drink due to chlorine disinfection, Nancy Hearn says  this method alone won’t kill all the dangerous microorganisms. So installing a water purification system at your office can be a great way to improve the health of your employees—and be more environmentally friendly to boot. Two methods you may want to consider are Ozone Vs UV light purification.

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Ozone is created by passing oxygen through a corona discharge generator and dissolving it in water. Unlike the oxygen you breathe, which has two oxygen atoms, ozone has three oxygen atoms. This means that ozone is an unstable gas that quickly gives up an atom of oxygen; these atoms are lethal to most microorganisms.

What is Ozone Purification?

 

Ozone systems were once just widely used in Asia and Europe, but many U.S. companies have used them since the early 2000s. .

What is UV Light Purification?

UV light systems are very simple: UV light disrupts RNA and DNA which stop microorganisms from reproducing, thus rendering them harmless. However, the water can only be purified by UV light if there is no haziness or cloudiness caused by particles in the water. While this method can help to purify the water in your office, further sanitation is often required once the water flows out of the UV chamber.

Why Are These Two Systems Confused?

While both Ozone and UV systems are different, some people get them mixed up. This is a very easy mistake since UV-generated ozone treatments were incredibly common in the late 90s and used for people’s spas and pools.

While both UV light and Ozone systems have their advantages and disadvantages, Ozone is arguably a better treatment since it is a very powerful oxidizer and can kill biofilm. Ozone systems are efficient and have minimal maintenance requirements, whereas UV light systems typically need to have lamps swapped out every 6-12 months.

What Are Some Other Advantages of Ozone?

According to wcponline.com, the most popular water treatments for municipalities are chlorine, chlorine dioxide, and chloramine. However, when used in excess, wcponline also says that chloramines can irritate mucous membranes and cause nausea. While Ozone cannot remove these chloramines, it can pre-treat the water so less chloramine is used.

Lastly, ozone can help your office’s water supply by removing the following:

  • Organic Materials (e.g. food debris)
  • PCBs: These chemicals are used for industrial applications, like paint
  • Dangerous Bacteria: Unlike chlorine, ozone can easily eliminate Cryptosporidium and Giardia.
  • Strange Odors or Tastes

You can definitely remove all of these contaminants in workplace’s water, as there are many point-of-use systems out there that can incorporate ozone technology.

 

References:

http://www.wcponline.com/2015/11/15/drinking-water-disinfection-options-and-hazard-management/

http://www.waterbenefitshealth.com/chlorine-in-drinking-water.html