View Full Version : UVC as a Enclosure sterilizer?
01-05-2007, 12:40 PM
A few months back I installed a Honeywell Air sanitizer in the air duct of the house and it got me wondering if anyone had thought of using UVC to kill/sterilize the parasites that haunt keepers? Might it make sterilizing a quarantine enclosure easier and alleviate the requirement for harsh cleaning agents and pesticides? Though being is it (UVC) destroys DNA I'm assuming the plants would have to be removed? But also I'm wondering about it's true effectiveness against parasites (Protozoa, Metaozoa, mites etc. etc.)
Just my thoughts, whats yours?
01-05-2007, 09:00 PM
Since you already know about UVC destroying DNA, it doesn't take much to take it one step further. You'll have to remove anything living that you don't want killed off sooner or later. In other words, if you remove the plants, they'll be safe. However, when you put the plants and animal inhabitants back, any cooties they harbored from before the sterilization will re-seed the tank. You might have killed off the various parasites, but you'll be reintroducing them. If you decide to get new plants, you'll probably reintroduce some or all of the same life-forms since they do love to hide in plants and soil.
I've looked at UVC before, but decided it's too risky to take a chance on, and not guaranteed to work either, so why bother?
If you want to kill off parasites, a good cleaning of the tank and decorations with a mild bleach solution and/or mild detergent will work for the run-of-the-mill parasites. For real heavy-duty dangerous ones, you have to do more intensive cleaning, not even UVC can help much.
Don't forget, you have to protect yourself from the UVC too. If you were to use it on a regular basis for several enclosures, yoiu might be risking your own safety.
I'd say skip it, go for a decent cleaning instead. Not all mites, protozoa etc., are dangerous, some are beneficial. If you don't have a known dangerous parasite, don't get out the big guns, it's not worth it.
01-06-2007, 11:14 PM
Does UVC effect some of those protective spore/cyst forms?
01-07-2007, 06:58 AM
For real heavy-duty dangerous ones, you have to do more intensive cleaning, not even UVC can help much.
Not to sound un-thankful or antagonistic, but what are you basing your claim that UVC wouldn't help that much against the harder to kill parasites?
Which are you referring? Spores, I'd imagine so especially mold being thats what the air sanitizer claims is a benefit.
01-08-2007, 06:39 AM
I'm not just sure that anyone can answer the questions as to whether UVC impacts macroscopic parasites without doing clinical trials and realistically that is unlikely to happen.
I do share the concerns that have been offerred regarding possible issues with human exposure to UVC. Years ago, ultraviolet "sterilizers" were somewhat popular in veterinary hospital wards. They no longer are: their impact on contagious illness was difficult to assess and more importantly, there were public health issues with kennel workers who had lighter skin tones being burned and even as I recall some people who suffered retinal injuries. It was a worker's comp and insurance nightmare for some veterinarians.
01-08-2007, 12:19 PM
Interesting, Well should that worst happen and something bad starts floating around my collection, I'll keep this in mind as a "try and see" (with proper precautions)
vBulletin® v3.8.4, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.