Ultraviolet light sanitizers present a safe, affordable, and effective way to sanitize surfaces.
Some people use UV light sanitizers to clean phones. Others use them to clean keyboards, remotes, or kitchen counter-tops.
As the COVID-19 coronavirus spreads around the world, ultraviolet light sanitizer sales have surged while shortages in hand sanitizers transpire in the global marketplace. Consumers are growing more and more aware of how important it is to clean not only the hands, but also the surfaces we come into contact with daily, which can often serve as hotbeds for billions of bacteria.
Products like Mobile Klean, Sterilize-X, Verilux, CleanWave, and GermGuardian are being heavily promoted across the internet, with thousands of companies touting their product as the ultimate way to clean surfaces with ease and without dangerous chemicals like ammonia.
But with so many ultraviolet light sanitizers available today, it’s hard to know which one works best for your unique needs. Some UV light sanitizers do very little to destroy bacteria, and many are almost completely ineffective at making surfaces cleaner and killing the worst propagators of disease and illness.
Today, we’re listing the best ultraviolet light sanitizers of 2020, including the best options for killing bacteria and viruses. Our guide will provide readers with a complete introduction into the truth behind ultraviolet light sanitizers, including a list of frequently asked questions about ultraviolet light sanitizers, how to use them, and how to know which ultraviolet hand sanitizers are best.
Ranking the Top 20 Best Ultraviolet Light Sanitizers in 2020
Our list of the top UV light sanitizers in 2020 provides users with an extensive source for all information on UV light, including a list of frequently asked questions concerning UV light technology and light sanitizers.
- 1 Ranking the Top 20 Best Ultraviolet Light Sanitizers in 2020
- 1.1 HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer
- 1.2 Mobile Klean
- 1.3 SmartSanitizer Pro
- 1.4 Super Charged UV-C Ultraviolet Light Wand
- 1.5 Verilux CleanWave
- 1.6 PhoneSoap 3
- 1.7 GermGuardian UV-C Light Sanitizer
- 1.8 LARQ Bottle
- 1.9 HomeSoap
- 1.10 Oblio Wireless Charger & UV Cleaner
- 1.11 LioKen Ultraviolet Cell Phone Sanitizer
- 1.12 Sienna Lux UV Light Sterilizer
- 1.13 Rosa Rugosa UV Sterilizer Bottle
- 1.14 Germise UV Sanitizer
- 1.15 Philips Sonicare UV Sanitizer
- 1.16 BVibe UV Sterilizer Pouch
- 1.17 Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer
- 1.18 Steri Shoe Ultraviolet Shoe Sanitizer
- 1.19 CrazyCap Water Purifier
- 1.20 bblüv Portable UV Sterilizer
- 2 How We Rank the Top UV Light Sanitizers?
- 3 Who Should Use UV Light Sanitizers?
- 4 Benefits of UV Light Sanitizers
- 5 Frequently Asked Questions About UV Light Sanitizers
- 5.1 Who Should Use UV Light Sanitizers?
- 5.2 What are UV light sanitizers?
- 5.3 Do UV light sanitizers actually work?
- 5.4 Are UV light sanitizers new?
- 5.5 Do UV light sanitizers cause cancer?
- 5.6 Are UV light sanitizers dangerous?
- 5.7 Can ultraviolet light give you a tan?
- 5.8 What is UVGI?
- 5.9 What are ultraviolet lights used for?
- 5.10 What microorganisms are deactivated by ultraviolet light?
- 5.11 Where can you get ultraviolet light sanitization systems?
- 5.12 What’s the difference between a black light and ultraviolet light?
- 5.13 What is ultraviolet?
- 5.14 What is ultraviolet light used for?
- 5.15 What is the wavelength of ultraviolet light?
- 5.16 Where does UV radiation come from?
- 5.17 How does ultraviolet kill bacteria?
- 5.18 Can you see ultraviolet light?
- 5.19 Can animals see ultraviolet?
- 5.20 What does ultraviolet light look like?
- 5.21 What are the benefits of ultraviolet light?
- 6 Final Thoughts
HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer
Most other products listed here are exclusively sold through Amazon and other retailers. The HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer, however, is sold through Macy’s and other traditional retailers.
The HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer can sanitize anything you put inside the container, including keys, jewelry, eyeglasses, remote controls, cash, earbuds, and other personal items. You can throw it inside your backpack or carry-on for easy UV sanitization on-the-go.
One thing we appreciate about HoMedics UV-Clean is that the product has four UV-C LEDs. Many other products have just a single light, which reduces the sanitization power.
HoMedics claims that their UV-Clean will sanitize items in one minute. It’s also rechargeable, and it offers up to 18 uses on each charge.
- Pros: Sanitizes items in one minute or less; works on all small household items; uses multiple UV lights
- Cons: Only 18 uses per charge; Relatively expensive
- Price: $170
Mobile Klean has been heavily promoted across the internet in recent weeks. It’s a handheld ultraviolet sanitization system that claims to eliminate 99.9% of surface bacteria, viruses, and pathogens.
All you have to do is wave the wand over the surface, hold it for 5 to 10 seconds, and that’s it. The surface will be cleaned.
Mobile Klean’s manufacturer makes bold claims about its effectiveness, claiming it can reduce you and your family’s chances of getting sick, remove unwanted bacteria and viruses, and prevent other pathogens from spreading.
- Pros: 99.9% effective in eliminating surface bacteria; works within 5-10 seconds; relatively mobile; cost-efficient
- Cons: Lots of work to clean larger surfaces; difficult to clean smaller items like phones, earrings, etc.
- Price: $30 to $45 per unit
The SmartSanitizer Pro is a medical-grade ultraviolet light sanitizer that uses UV-C as a disinfectant sterilizer that claims to kill up to 99.99% of bacteria, germs and viruses within a minute of using the hygienic cleaning device in an odorless and chemical free-way. As a top-rated ultraviolet smartphone sanitizer, the USB-powered SmartSanitizer Pro uses UV technology to help on many household items including earbuds/headphones, watches, glasses, jewelry and many of the most popular mobile devices.
- Pros: UV light sanitizer promotes 99.99% disinfection rate that works within seconds, works on many different items, no confusing settings, bulk discount options and portable
- Cons: can not clean bigger items or larger surfaces
- Price: $89 for one, low as $53 each per unit
Super Charged UV-C Ultraviolet Light Wand
Super Charged is a portable UV sanitizer wand that uses 253.7 NM wavelength UVC-light to offer an optimal home solution for killing 99% of viruses, bacteria and fungi. The SuperCharged UV light is an advanced hygienic ultraviolet technology device that starts working in as little as 15 seconds to eliminate these invisible indoor threats.
Using a 4W Cold Cathode UV bulb, the SuperCharged UV-C lamp delivers 2350 mW/cm2 (for fluence rate or irradiance) runs on 4 AA batteries and is encased in a white ABS plastic shell that uses no toxic chemicals and leaves no after smells.
- Pros: flexible use options as a portable disinfectant to clean smartphones, laptops and computers, packages and mail, take out food orders, face masks, door knob handles, car steering wheels and remote controls
- Cons: limited number to buy, only 12 units per order are allowed
- Price: $35.49 per UV-C lamp wand (save 10% on 2, save 15% on 3, save 20% on 5)
Verilux CleanWave is an ultraviolet sanitization system that kills germs and odor-causing bacteria without chemicals. It’s a rechargeable unit sold online through Amazon and other retailers.
Like Mobile Klean, Verilux CleanWave is a sanitizing wand. You can pass the wand over any surface – from your laptop keyboard to your kitchen countertop. The maker of CleanWave, Verilux, claims that the device uses “powerful ultraviolet light” to sanitize everything in its path, including E. coli, dust mites, flea eggs, MRSA, and influenza A (H1N1), among other bacteria and viruses.
Using CleanWave is as easy as pressing the button and holding the sanitizing light over the targeted area. That’s it.
The Verilux CleanWave is one of the more expensive UV-C sanitizing wands on this list, priced at around $200. However, you may be able to find discounted rates online through Amazon or other retailers.
- Pros: Tested on specific illnesses and bacteria; easy to use; rechargeable; extremely effective
- Cons: Very expensive
- Price: $200
A company called PhoneSoap makes a lineup of ultraviolet sanitization cases for phones. These cases are virtually identical to other cases sold through Amazon and other retailers. It’s a plastic case. You open the case, slide your phone side, then activate the ultraviolet light. The light kills germs on your phone’s surfaces without harming your phone.
PhoneSoap claims their PhoneSoap 3 device kills 99.99% of germs. It also fits all smartphones and most case sizes. You can safely sanitize anything that fits inside – whether it’s a phone, a phone case, or anything else that’s approximately the same size.
Oh, and did we mention Phone Soap 3 will charge your phone at the same time? The device has two charging ports, allowing it to charge your phone and one other device while being cleaned.
As PhoneSoap explains, your phone is like a “petri dish in your pocket”. By sanitizing your phone regularly, you can significantly reduce germs, bacteria, and viruses on your phone.
- Pros: Eliminates 99.9% of germs; cleans phones specifically; charges the phone while cleaning
- Cons: Relatively expensive; really only effective for phones
- Price: $80
GermGuardian UV-C Light Sanitizer
GermGuardian is a UV-C sanitizer and deodorizer that kills germs, freshens air, and reduces odors around the home. You plug the air sanitizer into a standard electrical outlet, then let the device go to work.
To be clear, GermGuardian isn’t like many of the other items listed here. It’s not going to sanitize surfaces or clean germs from your phone. However, it will kill airborne mold and germs while reducing odors – so it may work well in conjunction with some of the other handheld UV sanitization systems listed here.
Another nifty feature of the GermGuardian GG1100W UV-C air sanitizer is that there’s no filter replacement required: you just need to replace the UV-C light bulb every 10 to 12 months depending on use.
- Pros: Can reduce odors; improves cleanliness of entire rooms; cost-efficient; long-lasting light bulb
- Cons: Cannot clean smaller items (phones, computers, etc.)
- Price: $60
LARQ is a self-cleaning water bottle and water purification system. Priced at $100 to $150, it may be one of the priciest water bottles you buy. However, it’s also packed with more technology than any other water bottle on this list.
The water bottle contains UV-C technology to purify water and clean the inner surfaces of the bottle, for example, eliminating odor-causing bacteria and viruses.
LARQ also claims to keep water cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 hours thanks to its double-wall insulated stainless steel construction. Your water won’t just be clean – it will also be the perfect temperature.
Plus, you can recharge your water bottle at any time with the microUSB connector (included with your purchase). The bottle holds 17 oz or 500mL of water, making it a travel-friendly option for those who want UV-sanitized water on-the-go. It’s also available in six stylish colors.
- Pros: Niche water bottle; self-cleaning; keeps water cold
- Cons: Can only clean water; needs to be recharged; relatively expensive
- Price: $100 to $150
HomeSoap is a new UV sanitization system by the same crew that made the PhoneSoap 3, which is also on this list.
HomeSoap kills 99.99% of germs, safely sanitizing anything that fits inside the cabinet. Unlike many other container-based UV sanitization systems on this list, HomeSoap is big enough for tablets like the iPad Pro and others. It also works on books, utensils, the Nintendo Switch, and similar sized objects.
We also appreciate that the HomeSoap has two charging ports (1 USB and 1 USB-C) for universal charging.
To use the HomeSoap, just place whatever you’re trying to sanitize into the cabinet, then flick the on/off switch. Anything inside the HomeSoap will be sanitized.
- Pros: 99.99% effective; large enough for tablets, books, etc.
- Cons: Relatively expensive
- Price: $200
Oblio Wireless Charger & UV Cleaner
Want to buy something that charges your devices and cleanses them using UV light at the same time? The Lexon Oblio Wireless Charger & UV Cleaner is what you need.
This is one of the few UV cleaning systems sold by Nordstrom. It’s also arguably the most stylish UV sanitization system on our list. It wouldn’t look out of place on your living room coffee table, for example, or as a centerpiece on a dining room table.
To use the Oblio Wireless Charger & UV Cleaner, just drop your smartphone (or any other thing you want to clean) into the middle, then let the ultraviolet light get to work. That’s it.
- Pros: Charges and cleanses devices a the same time
- Cons: Relatively expensive
- Price: $100
LioKen Ultraviolet Cell Phone Sanitizer
LioKen makes a popular UV cell phone sanitizer and wireless charger priced at a reasonable $70. The device works similar to other cell phone sanitizers: you open the case, place your phone inside, and let the ultraviolet light go to work. Meanwhile, the wireless charger charges your phone while it gets sanitized. It’s the best of both worlds!
LioKen’s UV cell phone sanitizer also has a feature we don’t see with any other UV sanitization systems on this list: an essential oil diffuser. LioKen recommends adding a few drops of essential oil to the case before placing your smartphone (or any other item) in the UV sanitization system, creating an aromatherapy experience while your device gets sanitized. Yes, this is a three-in-one system that charges your phone, sanitizes it, and smells great.
It takes just 8 minutes to sanitize your device. LioKen works on the iPhone 11/11 PRO/11 PRO MAX/XR/Xs Max/ XS/ X/ 8/ 8 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+/S8/S8+/S7/Note 8, LG and all QI compliant products.
- Pros: Made specifically for phones; cleans in 8 minutes or less; essential oil diffuser
- Cons: Relatively expensive
- Price: $70
Sienna Lux UV Light Sterilizer
The Sienna Lux UV Light Sterilizer is a portable sterilizer capsule for smartphones, eyeglasses, jewelry, toys, keys, toothbrushes, and more. The device eliminates bacteria and germs: just place whatever you want to clean in the capsule, then let it get to work.
Sienna claims their UV-C technology will kill 99.9% of bacteria while offering better UV sanitization than traditional UV light wants.
Once you’re ready to clean an item, just pop open the lid, slide the item in, and press the power button. You’re good to go. Sienna doesn’t explain how long it takes to sanitize an average item.
- Pros: Works on most small household items; 99.9% effective
- Cons: Unclear how long it takes to sanitize items; relatively expensive
- Price: $80
Rosa Rugosa UV Sterilizer Bottle
Like the LARQ UV sterilizer bottle, the Rosa Rugosa bottle will sterilize water with ultraviolet light and ozone. The device is specifically advertised as a way to clean baby pacifiers, makeup brushes, toothbrushes, MP3 and MP4 players, earbuds, and other smaller devices.
There’s just one button: place the items in, close the lid tightly, and connect the USB power jack to a 5V/1A power adapter. Press the top button until the LED indicator turns green. The bottle will sterilize your item over a five minute period.
Rosa Rugosa’s eco-friendly silicon bottle comes with a USB power jack. Insert a standard USB charging cable, and your bottle will be fully charged in 75 minutes. If you’re looking for effective, easy-to-use sterilization for smaller electronics and devices, then the Rosa Rugosa UV sanitizer bottle may be the right choice for you.
- Pros: Simple charging process; effective on small household items
- Cons: Awkward size; relatively expensive
- Price: $70
Germise UV Sanitizer
The Germise UV light smartphone sanitizer is a travel, portable folding UV light wand that uses a 3-watt UV-C lamp to sterilize and kill germs. Germise is one of the few UV sterilization light manufacturers that discloses the specific wavelength used (253nm).
Like other handheld UV sterilization wands, you wave the Germise UV Sanitizer over any surface or device. You can wave it over kitchen counter-tops to kill germs, for example, or hold it over a smartphone to eliminate bacteria and pathogens.
Germise claims their sanitization system can kill bacteria and fungi “in just [a] few seconds, even at an 8-inch distance.” That’s significantly more power than most other UV sanitization systems listed here.
- Pros: Inexpensive; works on smartphones and surfaces; works in just a few seconds
- Price: $60
Philips Sonicare UV Sanitizer
Electronics giant Philips makes a popular Sonicare UV Sanitizer. As you may have guessed, this sanitizer is specifically designed for toothbrushes. You place your toothbrush inside, and the UV technology kills bacteria on the brush heads.
Theoretically, you can place other items inside the Philips Sonicare UV Sanitizer: if it’s approximately the size of a toothbrush, then the device may clean it. Generally, however, this is a UV sanitizer designed for toothbrushes.
Toothbrushes can be ridden with bacteria. Each clean with this device helps kill bacteria on brush heads. Just a single push of the button will activate a 10-mionute UV cleaning cycle. Then, the device automatically shuts off, leaving your toothbrush ready for you to use the next time you clean it.
- Pros: Cleans toothbrushes specifically; relatively inexpensive
- Cons: Cannot clean surfaces or smartphones
- Price: $45
BVibe UV Sterilizer Pouch
BVibe’s UV Sterilizer Pouch is the first UV sanitization “pouch” on our list. You slide any items you want inside the pouch, and the ultraviolet light goes to work cleansing everything.
BVibe claims their product can kill 99.9% of harmful bacteria. It’s all packaged into a travel friendly bag.
To be clear, BVibe is a sex toy company: the company’s UV Sterilizer Pouch is designed to discreetly clean your sex toys – including anything from butt plugs to dildos. However, there’s nothing stopping you from sliding anything else inside the pouch as well.
With UV sterilizer products sold out nationwide, there’s nothing wrong with buying BVibe’s UV Sterilizer Pouch if you’re looking for effective ultraviolet sterilization in a pinch.
- Pros: Cleans sex toys specifically; highly reusable; discrete
- Cons: Relatively expensive
- Price: $50
Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer
If you want good bacteria killing power at a ridiculously cheap price, then the Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer may be the right choice for you. The device is marketed towards parents who want to sanitize toys, bottles, and other items for their kids. However, people are increasingly using the sterilizer to kill germs on other small items.
Munchkin claims the sterilizer will kill 99% of bacteria and viruses from pacifiers and bottle nipples in 59 seconds using UV-C light. That UV-C light kills staph, E. coli, RSV, salmonella, kleb, influenza, and other common germs.
Using the Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer is as easy as popping open the lid and placing the item inside. Close the lid, let the UV-C light get to work, and that’ it.
Please note that the Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer is very small – about the size of a fist. It won’t fit a normal-sized phone, and you can’t run the device over ordinary surfaces.
- Pros: Very cheap; aimed at sanitizing toys; 99% effective
- Cons: Only sanitizes small items; cannot clean phones or surfaces
- Price: $20
Steri Shoe Ultraviolet Shoe Sanitizer
Do your shoes have bad odor? The Steri Shoe Ultraviolet Shoe Sanitizer can help. You place your shoe in the box, then activate the ultraviolet light. The light removes bacteria and viruses from your shoes, reducing odor and germs.
SteriShoe isn’t fancy. It appears to be a straightforward ultraviolet light attached to a cardboard box. However, if you’re looking for an effective ultraviolet radiation device that cleanses germs from your shoes, then the Steri Shoe may be worth a look.
- Pros: Eliminates specific shoe odors; easy to use; very cheap
- Cons: Can only be used on shoes; requires outlet plug-in
- Price: $16
CrazyCap Water Purifier
The CrazyCap water purifier has been featured in major media outlets in recent years. The cap purifies water with the touch of a button. That button activates a UV-C light, cleansing the water inside.
All you need to do is place the lid onto the top of a standard bottle, then activate it. The cap fits normal bottle lids, soda and pop bottles, and other standard-sized bottle openings. Just place it on top, tap the button, and let CrazyCap purify and hydrate your water with ultraviolet light.
CrazyCap claims to eliminate more bacteria than any other ultraviolet sanitization system on this list. The cap claims to eliminate 99.9996% of viruses and bacteria using the same “next generation deep UV” that is used in operating rooms and hospital settings.
- Pros: 99.9996% effective; purifies water; inexpensive
- Cons: Only works on traditional water bottles; dubious product claims by the company
- Price: $60
bblüv Portable UV Sterilizer
The bblüv UV sterilization system is designed to clean baby bottle nipples and pacifiers, although it can theoretically sterilize anything else you place inside it.
This device is very similar to the Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer that’s also on this list. It’s about the same size (say, the size of your fist). It’s designed to clean the same types of items (pacifiers and baby bottle nipples).
Just place the item you want to sterilize inside the compartment, then let the device go to work over a three minute period. The UV-C light will eliminate pathogens and bacteria. bblüv claims you can expect the device to kill 99.9% of germs.
- Pros: Helps to clean baby bottle nipples, pacifiers; 99.9% effective
- Cons: Limited applications
- Price: $26
How We Rank the Top UV Light Sanitizers?
There are dozens of ultraviolet sanitization systems available online today. Here’s how we ranked:
UV-C Radiation: All ultraviolet devices above use UV-C radiation. UV-C radiation is the type of ultraviolet light used in medical settings to sterilize equipment. If a device uses UV-A or UV-B radiation, then it’s not going to be as safe or effective.
Wavelength: Most research on the sanitization effects of ultraviolet light have used the 264nm wavelength. This is the most proven wavelength for killing germs, viruses, pathogens, and bacteria. Some of the ultraviolet sanitization systems above disclosed their wavelength, although most did not.
Price and Value: The devices above ranged in price from $20 to $200. We wanted to feature a range of devices for all budgets. However, we also don’t want our readers getting ripped off, which is why we made sure all devices above offered good value at any price.
Usage: UV sanitization systems vary widely in terms of usage. Some are designed to be portable, carried in a standard purse or backpack for easy sanitization on the go. Others are designed to be plugged into a wall or waved over a surface. Many UV sanitization systems consist of compartments, where you place the device you want to clean inside the compartment and let it work its magic.
Speed: UV sanitization systems can’t seem to agree on the time it takes to clean an item. Some of the items above claimed to fully sanitize an item in 3 to 10 minutes, for example. Others claimed to do it in seconds. None of the devices above provided evidence they were faster than others, making it difficult to compare speed between ultraviolet devices.
Effectiveness: Most UV-C sanitization systems claim to kill somewhere between 99.9% and 99.99% of germs, viruses, and bacteria. However, some sanitization systems go the extra mile, claiming to kill 99.999% or more bacteria.
Ease of Use: Two of the UV sanitization lights listed above are designed specifically for baby pacifiers and baby bottle nipples They’re easy to use, but they only fit a small range of items. The best UV sanitization lights are easy to use.
Advertised Health Benefits and Claims: Some ultraviolet sanitization lights go overboard with the benefits. They claim their devices kill all germs, prevent influenza bacteria, and provide other unproven benefits. We were wary of UV light manufacturers that made untruthful claims about their effectiveness.
Manufacturer Reputation: In recent years, we’ve seen manufacturers whitelabel cheap UV-C lights from China, then sell them at inflated rates to make a quick buck. We emphasized UV sanitization lights made by proven manufacturers with a long track record of success.
Who Should Use UV Light Sanitizers?
UV light sanitizers have skyrocketed in popularity in recent months – and not just because of the COVID-19 coronavirus sweeping across the world.
Parents use portable UV light sanitizers to clean pacifiers, baby bottle nipples, and other items on-the-go, for example.
Or, on-the-go adults use UV sanitizer water bottles to drink clean, purified water. Just add water to the bottle, activate the light, and drink purified, bacteria-free water throughout the day.
UV light sanitizers are also popular among anyone concerned about germs and bacteria. You can sweep a UV light sanitizer across your keyboard, smartphone, and other bacteria-ridden surfaces, for example, to rid the area of germs.
UV light sanitizers are also popular for cleaning specialty items – including everything from sex toys to toothbrushes. Several of the UV-C light sanitizers listed above are designed specifically for these items.
Finally, UV light sanitizers are popular for those who want to reduce the spread of bacteria and germs inside the home. Many of the UV sanitizer wands listed above are proven to cleanse surfaces, for example, making them ideal for use in kitchens, bathrooms, and other areas with bacteria can collect.
Benefits of UV Light Sanitizers
Can special light really clean bacteria and germs from a surface? Is there any scientific evidence that UV light sanitizers work as advertised to clean germs and bacteria?
In fact, UV light sanitization systems have been popular since the 1950s, which is when they first started to be used in medical settings.
Today, UV light sanitization systems can be seen in air purification systems, water purification systems, medical sanitization stations, and much more. As seen above, you can also find plenty of portable sanitization systems available today.
One of the best studies proving the effectiveness of UV-C radiation was this study from 2012. Researchers analyzed all available evidence on UV-C radiation, then ultimately concluded that UV-C radiation was “an alternative antimicrobial approach to localized infections”.
When analyzing the effectiveness of ultraviolet radiation systems, it’s important to consider that there are three types of ultraviolet light, and only one has been proven safe and effective for killing bacteria:
- UV-A: 315nm to 400nm
- UV-B: 280nm to 315nm
- UV-C: 200nm to 280nm
UV-C is the type of radiation used in all of the ultraviolet sanitization systems listed above. It’s the type of ultraviolet light linked to the most benefits. UV-C is proven to work throughout the spectrum (200nm to 280nm); however, growing research shows that the 264nm wavelength variety of UV-C light is most effective at killing germs, viruses, and bacteria.
Another advantage of UV-C light is that it passes through the air without creating ozone. That’s one of several reasons why UV-C is so popular.
When you use ultraviolet light to kill germs and bacteria, you’re engaging in a process called ultraviolet germicidal irradiation, also known as UVGI. This process uses short-wavelength ultraviolet (UV-C) light to kill or inactivate microorganisms.
How exactly does UVGI kill bacteria? UVGI destroys nucleic acids and disrupts their DNA, leaving them unable to perform vital cellular functions. Today, you can find UVGI in a wide variety of applications, including food, air, and water purification.
What’s the difference between a UV sanitization system that’s 99.9% effective and a system that’s 99.99% effective?
The effectiveness of UV radiation depends on light of sight exposure of the microorganisms to the ultraviolet light. The more light hits the bacteria, the more effective the light will be at killing the bacteria.
Furthermore, the degree of inactivation is directly related to the UV dose applied to the surface. You can find the “dosage” of UV radiation by multiplying UV light intensity with exposure time, giving you a result in microjoules per square centimeter (or microwatt seconds per square centimeter).
Unfortunately for us, many of the UV light sanitization systems listed here do not disclose the UV dose. Instead, they make vague claims about killing “99.9%” or “99.99%” of bacteria and germs.
Complicating matters further is that few UV light sanitization systems listed above have gone through any type of clinical testing or formal studies; instead, manufacturers cite other studies performed using other UV light sanitization systems.
Ultimately, ultraviolet light sanitization systems are proven to be effective at killing certain germs, viruses, and bacteria. When the correct wavelength (264nm) of the right type of ultraviolet light (UV-C) is applied to the surface over an appropriate length of time (3 to 10 minutes), the light will kill many bacteria, germs, viruses, and pathogens it comes into contact with.
Frequently Asked Questions About UV Light Sanitizers
Although UV lights have enjoyed popularity for many years, consumers all over the world are just now getting used to UV lights as a potential way to sanitize surfaces. It is only natural that readers have a number of questions. This section will answer some of the most commonly asked questions about UV light sanitizers and the companies behind them.
Who Should Use UV Light Sanitizers?
UV light sanitizers have skyrocketed in popularity in recent months – and not just because of the COVID-19 coronavirus sweeping across the world. Parents use portable UV light sanitizers to clean pacifiers, baby bottle nipples, and other items on-the-go, for example. Or, on-the-go adults use UV sanitizer water bottles to drink clean, purified water. Just add water to the bottle, activate the light, and drink purified, bacteria-free water throughout the day. UV light sanitizers are also popular among anyone concerned about germs and bacteria. You can sweep a UV light sanitizer across your keyboard, smartphone, and other bacteria-ridden surfaces, for example, to rid the area of germs. UV light sanitizers are also popular for cleaning specialty items – including everything from sex toys to toothbrushes. Several of the UV-C light sanitizers listed above are designed specifically for these items. Finally, UV light sanitizers are popular for those who want to reduce the spread of bacteria and germs inside the home. Many of the UV sanitizer wands listed above are proven to cleanse surfaces, for example, making them ideal for use in kitchens, bathrooms, and other areas with bacteria can collect.
What are UV light sanitizers?
UV light sanitizers are handheld tools, portable machines, or other devices that emit ultraviolet light at a specific wavelength designed to kill germs, viruses, and bacteria. The lights are generally safe, although too much exposure over an extended period of time can lead to adverse effects on the human skin.
Do UV light sanitizers actually work?
Yes, UV light sanitizers that use 264nm UV-C radiation are proven to work as advertised to deactivate microorganisms, kill harmful germs and bacteria, and provide other sanitization benefits. The benefits of UV radiation have been observed in numerous studies, and more research continues to support the effectiveness of UV lights in cleaning surfaces of bacteria.
Are UV light sanitizers new?
UV light sanitizers have been used since the 1950s in medical settings and labs. In recent years, they have seen a resurgence in popularity in portable sanitization systems. It is only recently that light sanitizers have made it into the home, as companies have developed new ways to maintain the strength of the UV lights while making the devices more portable.
Do UV light sanitizers cause cancer?
There’s no evidence that UV light has any cancer-causing effects. However, little research has been done on the precise effects of extended UV radiation on the skin. It is always possible that UV light exposure comes with harms that our research cannot yet support.
Are UV light sanitizers dangerous?
Yes, too much exposure to UV light can be dangerous. However, unless you’re applying your UV light sanitizer to your skin for an extended period of time, it’s unlikely to cause damaging effects. To avoid negative impacts, limit the amount of exposure your skin has to UV lights; only use UV sanitizers on surfaces, and never on skin.
Can ultraviolet light give you a tan?
Yes, ultraviolet light is the radiation from the sun that gives you summer tans, as well as sunburns. Tanning beds use ultraviolet light to provide their users with tans. However, we recommend that you avoid trying to give yourself a tan using ultraviolet lights, considering the potential negative effects of ultraviolet light on the skin.
What is UVGI?
UVGI stands for ultraviolet germicidal irradiation, which is a disinfection method that uses short wavelength ultraviolet light to kill or inactivate microorganisms. This is the method employed by UV light sanitizers to turn the light into an effective killer of bacteria.
What are ultraviolet lights used for?
Ultraviolet lights have been used in sanitization since the 1950s. More recently, they’ve been used in water and air sanitization systems. Contemporary technological developments have allowed companies to manufacture UV sanitization systems that can effective fit in the house or travel on-the-move.
What microorganisms are deactivated by ultraviolet light?
Dozens of microorganisms are deactivated by ultraviolet light, including molds, viruses, protozoa, yeast, and bacteria, among other microorganisms. For a full list of deactivated microorganisms, see here.
Where can you get ultraviolet light sanitization systems?
Many of the ultraviolet light sanitization systems above can be found on Amazon and other major online retailers. You can also find other sanitization systems via other major online and offline retailers.
What’s the difference between a black light and ultraviolet light?
A black light is a type of UV light. Black light comes from a fluorescent light tube that emits at about 365nm, which is just below the wavelengths that humans can see. Ultraviolet light is any radiation with a wavelength just shorter than that of violet light, which is the shortest wavelength of light in the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum. You might also see black light labeled as UV-A light.
What is ultraviolet?
Ultraviolet is a spectrum of light just below violet, which is the shortest wavelength of light in the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum. Ultraviolet light has a longer wavelength than X-rays, which is the next lowest wavelength of light on the electromagnetic spectrum.
What is ultraviolet light used for?
Ultraviolet light can be used to kill microbes. Hospitals use UV lamps to sterilize surgical equipment and other tools. UV light can also be found in water and air sanitization systems.
What is the wavelength of ultraviolet light?
The wavelength of ultraviolet light ranges from 10nm to 400nm. It’s shorter than the wavelength of visible light, but longer than the wavelength of X-rays.
Where does UV radiation come from?
UV radiation comes from the natural world, including sunlight. It constitutes about 10% of the total electromagnetic radiation output of the sun. Tanning lamps, black lights, and mercury vapor lamps can also produce ultraviolet radiation.
How does ultraviolet kill bacteria?
Ultraviolet light kills bacteria by destroying nucleic acids and disrupting their DNA, which deactivates the bacteria and renders them ineffective at generating illness and causing sickness.
Can you see ultraviolet light?
Ultraviolet rays are invisible to most humans. The lens of the human eye blocks most radiation in the wavelength of 300 to 400nm. However, humans and young adults can see ultraviolet down to wavelengths of about 310nm.
Can animals see ultraviolet?
Ultraviolet light is visible to insects, birds, and certain mammals. Birds have ‘true' ultraviolet vision because they have a fourth color receptor specifically for ultraviolet rays.
What does ultraviolet light look like?
The human eye cannot see ultraviolet light, so it doesn’t look like anything to us.
What are the benefits of ultraviolet light?
Ultraviolet exposure is linked with certain benefits (in moderation), including the production of vitamin D, improvement in mood, and increased energy. Vitamin D is also linked with improved calcium metabolism, insulin secretion, blood pressure, immunity, and cell propagation.
Ultraviolet light sanitizers use advanced technology to destroy bacteria. Ultraviolet light sanitization systems have been used in medical facilities since the 1950s. Today, manufacturers have added the technology to portable systems, letting you sanitize your smartphone and household surfaces using ultraviolet radiation.
Whether fighting the COVID-19 coronavirus or protecting your family from bacteria, germs, and viruses, you may want to buy an ultraviolet light sanitization system to create a safe environment.