LED grow lights have many advantages over traditional grow lights like HPS lights. They use less energy and typically generate less heat. They generally put out a full spectrum light, while some allow you to switch to mostly red or blue light. But there are many different LED grow lights on the market today. Let’s learn how to choose best led grow light for your particular situation.
01.Consider the Application
There are significant differences between the ideal light spectrum for seedlings and fruiting plants, maximizing the production of leafy greens like lettuce and helping woody herbs to grow. What light spectrum do your plants need? And will they need a different light spectrum at different stages? If you want full spectrum light at the start but heavy red light later on, you can either get a grow light that lets you switch modes or you’ll need supplemental lights to generate the necessary spectrum. On the other hand, the best led grow light for lettuce will have more blue light than a pure red spectrum lamp, since it increases plant quality as well as yield.
02.Determine the Growing Area Size
If you want to know how to choose best led grow light, first map out the layout of your grow tent or green house. The best led grow light for 4x4 tent usage will be larger than the one for a 2x2 planter.
Check the light PAR data relative to coverage. You don’t want to buy a grow light that can provide some light to a 4x4 area when you actually need bright light for an area that large. Make sure you’re comparing lights based on the same standard. Some grow light manufacturers tell you the PAR readings at a 18 inch elevation when you’d have it 24 inches above the ground. Others try to maximize the light readings by reporting the values at a 12 inch elevation.
03.Take the Growing Conditions into Account
The best grow light for your application won’t just provide light for the plants. It will do well in the environment in which you’re raising the plants. For example, some grow lights will stop working at temperatures over 90 degrees Fahrenheit. These lights clearly aren’t an option if you’re going to use them in a hothouse. The best led grow light under 500 dollars will put out some waste heat. Do you need supplemental fans or a higher level of ducting and fans to prevent overheating the tops of your plants? Other lights won’t work well at near freezing temperatures. That precludes using them in a greenhouse near freezing.
If the grow light is located above an aquarium, the high humidity could cause problems. And you’d want to prioritize grow lights that won’t short out if humidity is near one hundred percent. If you’re going to have the grow lights located near misters or irrigation equipment, try to find a model that won’t short out because it gets hit with a jet of water. Very few grow lights are water-proof, but if the situation calls for it, find those models so you don’t have to buy replacement lights every few weeks.
04.List the Key Performance Criteria So You Can Narrow Down the List
You should know the necessary coverage area and light spectrum at this point. But what is the power source you’re going to use? Not all grow lights can plug into a 220 volt power outlet without an adapter. If you’re growing plants in a grow tent in the closet, then you’ll need something that can draw power from a standard 110 to 120 volt wall outlet.
Know how much voltage and amperage your local power system can supply. Remember to take the total load into account. This means you may not be able to plug three LED grow lights in a daisy chain into the nearest wall outlet without tripping the circuit breaker, even though the lights could be safely connected to two different wall outlets.
05.Use Convenient Features to Determine Which Model You Want to Buy
The extras thrown in with the grow light can make one product better than another. For example, hanging kits should come with the light, though some units ship without one. Temperature sensors and humidity sensors are nice to have but not essential. You may not want to use the safety glasses sold with starter grow kits, but that may be appropriate for a beginner. Timers are value-added, as are remote controls. The best grow light will be the one that provides the best overall value, meeting or exceeding performance needs while delivering additional value.