Home Air Quality Have You Thought About UVC Light Machines for Guestroom ‘Cleaning’?

Have You Thought About UVC Light Machines for Guestroom ‘Cleaning’?

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It has been said that “crisis breeds innovation.” That has certainly been true in our industry and others since the onset of the pandemic. One of the innovations I have been seeing more often in recent months is portable or even robotic ultraviolet (UV) light machines that can be used by housekeepers or others in maintenance for guestrooms and public areas. They tend to use UVC light as compared to UVA or UVB. UVC light has a wavelength range of 100 to 280 nanometers (nm) and is widely acknowledged as the most effective light to eradicate germs. The machines are used as the final step in cleaning the room and include safety features that turn them off if a person is detected.

As seen in the article just posted this past week on Green Lodging News, the machines tend to be portable and tall to reach the most space possible. These machines are being used in large hotels and even inns with just five rooms. Each supplier has their own take on the technology, and I have seen prices range from $4,000 to $150,000. So yes, there can be major differences in the machines. The more expensive machines can be priced down sharply if multiple machines are purchased and in some cases lease options are available that can bring the cost down to $1.50 a room per day. More expensive, more powerful machines can reduce the runtime needed.

These machines can bring peace of mind to owners, associates (housekeepers especially) and guests. They can reduce the amount of time needing to be spent in the guestroom cleaning and can reduce the volume of harsh chemical products used in a space. The ultraviolet light can reach most areas of a room—one supplier’s disinfection cart can separate into four modules to ensure no “shadow” is let untouched.

Ask About Impact on Any Room Items

Your housekeepers may still have to manually clean certain items—the TV remote, for example. Be sure to ask your supplier if prolonged exposure can negatively impact any item in the room—soft goods, artwork, plants, etc.

I asked Jim Colantoni, Co-Founder & Head of Strategy & Sales for PURO UV Disinfection Lighting, what questions one should ask a supplier before purchasing a UVC disinfection system. Colantoni said, “How long have you been in business? Can you provide data on the full device? Is the company and its facility EPA registered?” He added that the machine should meet a UL standard and have safety certification. Third party data should also show a machine’s effectiveness three to four meters from the machine—the typical scenario in a hotel guestroom.

When considering UVC lighting, also look for ceiling fixture options. A UVC disinfection fixture can provide whole room protection. In hospitality, Colantoni says these fixtures are ideal for gyms—certainly rooms of concern during the current pandemic.

This past week I also posted an article entitled, “Organizations Join to Address Safety of UVC Germicidal Devices.” Be sure to read that article as well.

Glenn Hasek can be reached at greenlodgingnews@gmail.com.

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