Hydroxyl generators have quickly become the preferential method for odor removal by restoration contractors. After decades of ozone being the go-to solution, hydroxyl radical technology came along and offered a safer, yet still effective alternative.

Hydroxyl radicals are created naturally in the atmosphere when the sun’s ultraviolet rays react with water vapor and oxygen. From there, they rapidly decompose chemicals in the air and play a crucial role in keeping the Earth’s atmosphere clear of harmful organic and inorganic compounds. Hydroxyl radicals react so rapidly that indoor environments have few natural hydroxyls present because they are consumed near their point of entry. Powerful hydroxyl generators using the same broad range of UV radiation as the sun are now used to naturally clean and deodorize indoor environments.

Here are four tips to maximize the efficacy of hydroxyl generators on odor removal jobs:

  1. Know the space.

One hydroxyl generators can deodorize moderate to severe odors in a space that’s about 1,000 to 1,500 square feet, with 10 to 15-foot ceilings. Of course layout, severity of odor, and the number of contents play a big role in how long it takes to complete the job. While some may be done in a few hours, others could take three to four days.

  1. Deodorize contents, too.

In the days of ozone, contents had to be removed from spaces where ozone generators would place due to the corrosive nature of that odor removal process. With hydroxyl generators, contents not only can stay in the space – the hydroxyl radicals will also deodorize the items while removing odors from the room as well. Being able to keep contents in place during the odor remediation process is a great way to increase efficiency of these jobs.

  1. Change the UV optics as needed.

For many of the popular hydroxyl generators on the market for restoration contractors, the UV optics will last up to 10,000 hours. However, due to the harsh environments they may be exposed to during disaster restoration jobs, they will gradually lose power over time, resulting in jobs taking a bit longer to complete. Factoring in the environment and constant turning on and off of the machines, it is wise to change the optics long before hitting the 10,000 hour mark. The key is to keep track of the hours each machine is turned on, which is usually indicated on a monitor right on the machine, and then replace the optics around the 4,000 to 5,000 hour mark to keep them running as efficiently and effectively as possible.

  1. Know when source removal is necessary for complete odor removal.

While hydroxyl radicals are one million times more reactive than ozone, and can remove just about any odor – good or bad – from a space and contents, it is critical to remember source removal is still part of the remediation process. Items like charred wood or flooring deeply saturated in pet urine are good examples of sources that should be removed and replaced in order to ensure the odors are permanently gone.

Want to know more about hydroxyl generators, or have basic odor removal questions? Our special Odor Removal Infocenter has all the answers! Visit: www.randrmagonline.com/infocenter/odor-removal