How to care for the uv curing lamps in your printing press

Following a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule for your UV lamps and accessories means that the lamps should continue to cure long beyond the 1,000 hour warranty. Indeed Alpha-Cure regularly hears from customers who report that their lamps are still curing at 4,000 hours, thanks to the environment they are run in and the fact they are looked after well.

Our UV technicians have provided the advice below, but are always happy to answer any questions you may have about UV lamp cleaning and maintenance.

  • Always wear latex gloves when handling the lamp
  • Before placing the lamp into the UV system, clean with isopropanol wipes available from your supplier
  • For longer lamps, rotate them every 100-200 hours to avoid deformation of the quartz
  • Ensure the UV system is clear of all external contamination, such as inks and paper dust, etc.
  • Allow the lamp to cool for at least 5 minutes after the power has been turned off, before you handle the lamp
  • Clean the lamp, UV system and reflectors every 500 hours to maintain the longest possible lamp life
  • Avoid excessive starts – this can cause contamination due to the electrodes throwing off tungsten into the lamp
  • Check reflectors periodically, to make sure they are not scratched, dented and are free from contaminants
  • Check that the electrical connections are tight and not eroded
  • Change reflectors after you’ve replaced a lamp 4 times

We also have a useful troubleshooting guide which outlines some of the more commonly-seen issues which can prevent UV lamps curing properly. Take a look here.