Do Ozone Generators Kill Germs
When it comes to germs, there is scientific evidence that ozone generators might be effective, albeit at higher concentrations of ozone.
An old 1983 study, published in the Journal of Clinical Pathology, has investigated the microbiological effects of domestic ozone generators against bacteria. This is what they have written in conclusion:
A useful bactericidal action, against a variety of human pathogens was achieved with ozone concentrations between 0.3 to 0.9 ppm.
However, they do add that these bactericidal ozone concentrations are quite high. Thats almost 40 years ago. Between then and now there is quite a lack of studies that would show that ozone generators are effective at killing germs.
Hurricane Florence Has Caused Massive Damage Mainly Throughout North Carolina South Carolina And Virginia
One of the most severe aftereffects of flooding in the home is mold growth, which may not only cause further damage to your property, but can also have a serious impact on your health.
What Other Methods Can Be Used To Control Indoor Air Pollution
Of the three, the first approach is the most effective. This involves minimizing the use of products and materials that cause indoor pollution, employing good hygiene practices to minimize biological contaminants , and using good housekeeping practices to control particles.
The second approach outdoor air ventilation is also effective and commonly employed. Ventilation methods include installing an exhaust fan close to the source of contaminants, increasing outdoor air flows in mechanical ventilation systems, and opening windows, especially when pollutant sources are in use.
The third approach air cleaning is not generally regarded as sufficient in itself, but is sometimes used to supplement source control and ventilation. Air filters, electronic particle air cleaners and ionizers are often used to remove airborne particles, and gas adsorbing material is sometimes used to remove gaseous contaminants when source control and ventilation are inadequate.
See Additional Resources section below for more detailed information about these methods.
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Arguments Against The Use Of Ozone Air Purifiers
A Word About Commercial Ozone Machines
Ozone Generator High Quality Components
Most ozone machines use only the highest quality ceramic generator paddles, and not fragile mica or cheap ceramic with a tiny piece of stainless steel mesh glued on them. The ozone producing paddles have nickel-titanium printed on them, electrified to produce the highest volume of ozone possible. Long life ceramic coating: the paddle surfaces are coated with a life extending porous ceramic glaze over the electrified nitinol which reduces the need for frequent cleaning and extend the cell life to nearly 5000 hours! Nitinol is nickel + titanium + -nol . The ozone-producing parts of the ozone generators are the highest quality available on the market.
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Warnings About Relying On Oxone
Ozone Generators are another futile attempt to “kill” mold instead of cleaning it up. This “magic bullet”approach does not work and can destroy some building materials as well as the health of building occupants.
Because of the trouble and cost of performing an effective mold cleanup in buildings, some vendors offer what sounds like an attractive alternative, offering to “kill all building mold” using ozone.
One Midwest company offers to tent the building and follow a mold extermination procedure.
It would be silly to leave Aspergillus sp., a problematic and easily-airborne mold, in place on this subfloor, trying to “kill it” with a sterilizing gas or spray.
Killing mold is not the same as “removing” problem mold:;As with the “bleach” and other “kill the mold” approaches we described above,this process fails to remove the problem reservoir from the building, leaving toxic or allergenic particles, even if they are no longer viable.
Trying to kill mold with ozone risks oxidizing other building materials:;One of our clients, in an effort to remove odor and mold problems from their building, rented a commercial ozone generator ran it aggressively in closed rooms in their home.
The ensuing odors, which we tested and traced to oxidized carpet padding, were so severe that the building was no longer habitable. Carpeting had to be removed as well as other oxidized rubber and foam products which had been “ozone treated.”
This discussion has moved to COSMETIC MOLD CLEANUP EXPENSE
Healthconsiderations When Using Ozone To Kill Mold
Unfortunately,the same chemical properties that allow ozone to alter organic material inhousehold air also give it the ability to react with organic material insidethe human body. Ozones chemical reactivity does not stop whenit enters the body. It continues to release the extra oxygen atom, whichdamages cells. This released oxygen atom is an oxidizer, the opposite of ananti-oxidant that we might take to improve health.
These well documented scientific and medicalfacts form the basis for a number of health risks related to ozone. Fourdifferent government agencies have restrictions on ozone exposure, includingthe Food and Drug Administration , the Occupational Safety and HealthAdministration , the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, and the Environment Protection Agency .
These agencies agree that low levels of ozone exposure can cause the following conditions:
- Worsened chronic respiratory diseases suchas asthma
- Increased risk of developingbronchitis or pneumonia
- Compromised ability of the body tofight respiratory infections
There are a lotof other known health risks associated with ozone exposure but the above listare the most concerning.
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Industrial Settings Or Job Sites
Work environments where a great deal of harmful, smelly compounds permeate the air may be a setting where ozone generators are occasionally used. Because employers are required by law to ensure a safe and compliant work environment, the use of ozone generators varies from site to site. Generally, specialists are consulted to ensure that the generator will not interact harmfully with worksite VOCsotherwise it is likely an alternate cleaning method will be used.
How To Use Ozone Safely
- Ozone is a very toxic gas.
- People and pets should not be in the building when an ozone machine is on. Do not even take one whiff of it. Make sure you have a plan to turn it on and off while holding your breath. Ideally, turn it off without entering the room . It clings to your clothes even if you hold your breath and walk through this is not safe.
- Ozone can be harmful from 100 ft away or more if its a high dose, it can harm others in the area including neighbors. Clear 200 ft in every direction before a high dose.
- Ozone needs to be 5-10 x above safe levels for humans to impact bacteria and mold . You cannot treat mold and be near it.
- The place should be aired out for 25 hours minimum after using ozone to make sure that the gas is not inhaled. Ozone is unstable and will dissipate, but it does not dissipate as fast in a closed space with no airflow. If other VOCs form then it is necessary to air out the place for a while.
- The half-life of ozone is 40 min-25 hours. If byproducts have been created then give it a few days at least. Make sure there are tonnes of open windows for the air out.
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Do Ozone Generators Remove Cigarette Smoke Odor
Yes. Ozone will oxidize the over 4000 chemicals that make up cigarette smoke and eliminate the lingering smell.
Cigarette and cigar odors tend to travel to every nook and cranny they can find.And because of the tar residue that that is part of tobacco smoke, it adheres to everything, especially carpets, drapes, and furniture.
Thats why cigarette and smoke odors seem so hard to get rid of and keep lingering on for years.
Ozone will travel in a similar path as cigarette; smoke and break down the the molecules that are causing the odor, even the molecules that have glued their self to your furniture.
Automobiles that have been used by smokers that smoked inside their vehicles can have a very persistent third hand smoke presence.
Detailers use ozone to return a vehicle back to a new car smell that people love.
Safety Ways To Use Ozone Generators In The House
With all said about the dangers posed by ozone generators, are there any safe ways ozone machines can be used? The safest way to use ozone generators is in a space that is unoccupied. Ascertain that there are no humans or animals in the house and remove all indoor plants before starting the ozone machine.
In some cases, ozone machines can be safely used at home in low concentrations and safe levels as specified by OSHA or the EPA. This includes lesser requirements like sanitizing the air for breathing, get rid of smoke from cooking or to clear cigarette smoke. Such a space can still be occupied while the machine is being used. However, that cannot be done when high ozone concentration is required such as for killing mold in the house. Moreover, experts warn against the use of ozone machines in occupied spaces at any concentration at all.
Other safety precautions totake note of when using an ozone generator is to cover or remove valuable itemsbefore switching on the generator. Also, to keep the machine in a usable andsafe condition, carry out regular maintenance such as cleaning its collectorplate at an interval of 2 â 6 months. Also, avoid running the generator in anenvironment with high humidity. Moisture can cause arcing inside the ozonemachine.
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What Precautions Should Be Taken
Ozone generators are legally sold and marketed as air cleaners, but they produce ozone as a byproduct and have not been approved for use in occupied spaces by any federal agency. Here are a few precautions you should take if using an ozone generator:
- If you opt for an ozone generator to mitigate a vehicles odor, use it in the vehicle for 1-2 hours, then air the car out overnight.
- Remove any items that you dont want to experience discoloration or potential damage from rooms in which you use an ozone generator.
- Ozone can worsen respiratory symptoms and asthma, so wait 2-4 hours for it to settle before re-entering the room in which you used the generator.
- Make sure pets and children do not have access to the space while the ozone generator is running.
- Keep plants out of the area.
- Run the generator for only 2-3 hours in larger rooms and do not return to the house until later that day.
How Effective Are Ozone Generators
Manufacturers say that the highly reactive nature of ozone allows it to easily attach to pollution, especially odorous compounds like smoke and organic matter such as viruses, bacteria and mold spores. However, these claims are not backed up by sound science.
Performance against mold and bacteria
Research has found that ozone generators were not effective at stopping mold or bacteria growth in a standard hospital room, and would require unsafe levels of ozone to do the job at all . For mold growth, public health departments do not recommend using ozone generators for clean-up, saying that ozone even at high levels cannot control mold.
Performance against VOCs
You may be asking yourself, if ozone gas is effective at anything, it should work on other gaseous pollutants right? Well, it might not, unless you wait for thousands of years in some cases. A research study analyzed how long it would take to remove 14 of the most common organic compounds found in the air. It was found that at ozone concentrations of 100 ppb, it would take 880+ years for six of these pollutants to be broken down into half of their initial concentrations . In fact, it would take more than 4,400 years for formaldehyde! Only one pollutant, styrene, was found to have a half-life of about 4 hours.
Performance against particulates
You must remember that ozone generators do not remove particulate matter like dust or pollen from the air.
The EPAs conclusion about effectiveness
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Which Ozone Generator To Use
I started with the;Jenesco Ozone Generator;with an output of 100-2100 mg. This is a high-quality unit with a timer and dosage control.;I liked this unit because its well made and, the timer settings and dosage control setting were useful.This one comes in around $400
I have the little;Airtherial 5000 mg one; this is the lowest cost one I have seen.
If you are doing a shock treatment for mold you need one with a hold setting like this one.
If you are using it at low amounts for fragrance you will only need the basic timer.
You cannot control the dosage with these little inexpensive ones, but you can find them for under $100 on .
For only a little more than a hundred, you can buy this Ivation model which can dial down the dose from; 6000 mg to 500 mg.
This is what I would use for going after fragrance and smoke as well as cleaning product residue.
You dont want a high dose for these applications, start as low as possible. You should still be out of the space at low doses.
Why Is It Difficult To Control Ozone Exposure With An Ozone Generator
The actual concentration of ozone produced by an ozone generator depends on many factors. Concentrations will be higher if a more powerful device or more than one device is used, if a device is placed in a small space rather than a large space, if interior doors are closed rather than open and, if the room has fewer rather than more materials and furnishings that adsorb or react with ozone and, provided that outdoor concentrations of ozone are low, if there is less rather than more outdoor air ventilation.
The proximity of a person to the ozone generating device can also affect ones exposure. The concentration is highest at the point where the ozone exits from the device, and generally decreases as one moves further away.
Manufacturers and vendors advise users to size the device properly to the space or spaces in which it is used. Unfortunately, some manufacturers recommendations about appropriate sizes for particular spaces have not been sufficiently precise to guarantee that ozone concentrations will not exceed public health limits. Further, some literature distributed by vendors suggests that users err on the side of operating a more powerful machine than would normally be appropriate for the intended space, the rationale being that the user may move in the future, or may want to use the machine in a larger space later on. Using a more powerful machine increases the risk of excessive ozone exposure.
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Does Ozone Kill Bugs
Yes. Ozone will kill bugs when it is used but it is a temporary solution at best.; It does not take the place of a regular exterminator or a plan to keep bugs from coming back.
Ozone is primarily used as an odor remover.
And though any bugs that get trapped in the area while the room is being treated with ozone will be killed,
Once the ozone has dissipated, the bugs will be back. Most bugs will just run away while the room is being treated, and come back when the coast is clear.
Ozone Generators & Mold
The easiest way to use ozone to minimize mould growth in your home is by using an ozone generator.
You can find ozone generators for homes that are made to be smaller than the commercial-grade ones that are used in larger establishments.
There are a couple of different kinds of ozone generators that you can choose from. There are ones that only produce ozone and there are others that feature ozone features with HEPA filters.
The ozone generators with HEPA filters can be effective for reducing mould spores as well as other pollutant particles in the air.
They include pet dander, allergens, smoke, and dust particles.
There are air purifiers, such as the Winix 5500-2 that come with PlasmaWave technology that can break down mould spores without releasing potentially harmful ozone.
They also feature true HEPA filters for removing other pollutants from being airborne in your home.
You can also find ozone generators that feature UV lights.
The UV lights can be a great way to get rid of more viruses and bacteria in the air that may have been caused by the build-up of mold spores.
You should be aware that ozone emitted from generators are only able to target mould that has accumulated on the surface.
If mould has grown inside your walls, ozone wont be able to get through and have any kind of effect.
Furthermore, before you start using an ozone generator, we recommend that you deal with any moisture build-up in your home.
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