When you make the decision to invest in your indoor grow, you'll definitely want to learn about the best LED grow lights.
LEDs are regarded as some of the best indoor grow lights on the market, but there are so many out there that it can be tough to weed out the cheap, unreliable brands and models from the legitimate ones.
And with the price of some of these grow lights, it's crucial that you do your research before purchasing.
Before you buy an LED, you should make sure its the right light for your grow.
What are LED Grow Lights?
LED stands for light-emitting diodes. LED grow lights have rapidly come down in price and home growers everywhere are starting to make the switch to solely using them as their lighting option.
These lighting systems produce extremely low heat, come ready to plug-and-play, and can produce high yields with incredible energy efficiency.
Whereas HIDs require a reflector and ballast for operation, LED lights do not. They can last for decades, whereas HID bulbs will often need to be replaced every couple of years. But, one of the main reasons LED grow lights are regarded as the best is due to the spectrum they produce.
Why Are LEDs Perfect For Growing Cannabis?
- Plants have a different use for a different wavelength. Blue light is mostly associated with plant growth as it helps the plant in springing leaves and growing. On the other hand, red light is the most important light color for flowering and stemming.
- However, photosynthesis is not enough. Many plants need the natural change of light to grow. Natural change doesn’t mean a sudden absence of light. If you ever spent a couple of hours before the sunset in the natural light, you must’ve noticed that a change in light occurs gradually as the sun sets. So, if you are growing indoors you will need a perfect emulation of sunlight. You can’t just flip the switch and expect your plants to be happy with it. Remember when you were a kid, and your dad comes in and turns the light off? Did you like it? Well, surprise! Your plants hate that too.
- That’s where LEDs come in handy. Since a LED lamp consists of many individual LEDs , you can buy one that has both blue and red light and just change the tone of light as the day goes on. Your plants will be happy and they will reward you accordingly. If you are a cannabis lover, LED lights represent the best solution for your gentle weed.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST LED GROW LIGHTS IN 2020?
Earlier in this article we explained some of the key factors that you need to keep in mind before you buy the LED grow lights. In order to get the best LED grow lights for your need, you must start by first planning out a budget – then looking at all the grow lights that you can find in your price range. Then, you must also consider the size of your plant – and consider it against the coverage area of your grow light. Lastly, you must also see if the grow light that you are planning to grow is offering the right kind of spectrum. Most grow lights today are full spectrum LED grow lights so make sure you are going for a full-spectrum light and not for one which has a partial spectrum.
While these are the primary considerations, you must also look at certain secondary things such as if the light you are planning to buy water-proof? How is the heat dissipation system of the grow light you are considering to buy? Also check out the warranty period and whether you can return the product if you are dissatisfied with it. The lifetime of the product is also something that buyers must consider. Most LED lights today come with an average lifespan of about 50,000 hours. Keeping all these things in mind would help you choose the best LED grow light in 2020.
This fixture has a huge footprint of 7' x 7' during veg and 5' x 5' during bloom. It can effectviely replace a 1000 watt HID light, and save you tons of money on your investment not just through energy savings, but through an increase in flower quality and weight too.
It uses 4 custom-made full-spectrum white light quantum boards supplemented with Samsung LM301H and Deep Red LED 660nm, leading to one of the most powerful, advanced spectrums yet.
You get all kinds of great customization options with this light, giving you more control than ever. The unit is dimmable from 60-610 watts, so you can power down during earlier stages and save money.
With a System PAR Efficacy 2.8 μmol/joule and a total PPF output of 1700, this LED is not just efficient, but powerful. It will penetrate your spectrum deeper than the competition and get you thick, huge colas deep in your plant.
Its available in 120v and 240v options, so no matter how you grow, you can invest in this beast today.
One of the most popular LED grow lights on our website right now is the Growers Choice ROI-E720 LED Grow Light.
If you are looking to save a little bit of money and the price tag of the Gavita scares you away, but you still understand that your grow room is an investment - this is the LED for you.
This light covers a veg space of 6' x 6', and a flower footprint of 5' x 5'. It pulls 720w from the wall, and will cost no more than $31 a month. It comes with a 3 year warranty.
From a power standpoint, this light does not fail to impress. It puts out a whopping 1870 umol/s, and is capable of producing up to 2050 umol/s when put into boost mode. It does this at a total system efficacy of 2.6umol/J.
It comes with many of the certifications the Gavita does, including IP65 water resistance and UL 8800 certification.
You can pair this fixture with the Grower's Choice Master Controller to achieve all kinds of control. You get access to different settings for different phases of plant growth, dimming options, sunrise/sunset, etc. You can control up to 100 fixtures per zone when daisy-chained!
Using LED Grow Lights by Understanding the Growth Cycle of Marijuana Plants
By this point in the article, we hope to have covered everything that is essential for you to get hold of the best LED grow lights in 2020 for growing your marijuana indoors. However, there’s one last thing that we consider important for all growers to be aware about – the growth cycle of the marijuana plant. This is something that plays a huge part when you look at using LED grow lights. Based on the phase of growth your plant is in, you need to use lights in a different mode or you will need to adjust the lights to a different wavelength/colour. Let us take a closer look at all the phases of growth that the cannabis/marijuana plant has to go through so that you can understand how to use the LED grow lights in a better manner to get the most out of your plant!
The growth cycle of the marijuana plant is divided into seven stages:
- Seed: Like every plant, the marijuana plant also begins its journey in the form of a seed. When you look at a seed there is no way to identify whether it is a male seed or a female seed. However, this is something that can be known when the seed is produced – if the seed is labeled and separated at the right time you can be sure of the sex of the seed. You can find packages of seeds available from various sellers which will ensure that only female seeds are being sold to you. When you talk about the growth cycle of the marijuana plant and the relation of light, there is absolutely no relationship between the seed and the source of light! Female seeds are important because only female seeds can bear flowers!
- Germination: The next step in the process of the marijuana plant’s growth cycle is that of germination. Once you get hold of the female seeds, you need to soak them in water or put them wrapped around a wet paper towel. If you plan to soak them in water, know that they are going to float at first and sink as they absorb enough water after which they will begin to germinate and begin to sprout. In case of using the wet paper towel, you’ll know they’re germinating when they begin to sprout and the taproot begins to emerge. Make sure the place is also warm where you are germinating the seeds.
- Seedling: The seedling stage is achieved when you plant the germinated seed in soil and dirt, the taproot facing downwards. It is then that the shoot will break the casing and start growing upwards and embryonic leaves will begin to emerge from the plant. The seedling phase is where you need to begin providing appropriate amounts of light to the marijuana plant. The plant in the seedling and the growth stages requires a lot of light – about 18 hours during the seedling phase. You’ll know that the seedling phase is ending when about six to eight leaves have grown. The seedling phase of the marijuana plant can last for 1 to 3 weeks.
- Growth/Vegetative Stage: Now this is the phase of rapid growth. You will need to provide about 16 to 18 hours of sunlight and about 6 to 8 hours of darkness during the vegetative phase of the marijuana plant’s growth cycle. This is the phase where the height of the plant begins to grow and the stem begins to thicken and new nodes begin to develop. It is on these nodes that leaves and new branches begin to emerge. This phase will have a lot of growth and you will need to provide warm water, dry air as well as organic nutrients such as liquid fish or seaweed, which are essentially high on Nitrogen. This is a phase which can last between four to six weeks and will see the plant grow to a height of up to 3 ft. To halt the growth of the plant and to enter the pre-flowering stage, you’ll need to reduce the light to about 12 hours when you think the time is right.
- Pre-Flowering: By the time you hit the pre-flowering stage, your plant would be somewhere about 5 months old. If sac-like structures begin to appear around the nodes of any of those plants, you will need to seperate those plants from the rest because they are male plants and if the sac opens the pollens will be released and the psychoactive properties of the female plant will be hindered. Hence, you will need to remove the male plants and then the female plants will produce resin and fake seedpods which contain THC which is the psychoactive substance in cannabis! You can then begin to decrease the light even more to enter the flowering stage. Up to 10 hours of light would be sufficient here.
- Flowering: This is the phase in which the buds begin to emerge and you need to move the lights closer to the plants by about six inches than earlier. The light will be closer but the time of the lights would be reduced too! The plants will require phosphorus and potassium based nutrients at this phase of their growth cycle. This phase will last for eight to ten weeks. It is now that we move into the last stage.
- Harvest: The final stage of the marijuana plant’s growth cycle is harvesting – the pistils that come out of the bud will develop a deep orangish look and feel and this is the time that you should begin harvesting your plant. Make sure the trichromes don’t fall off while harvesting. Cut the plant according to how you want it, and then hang it to dry in a room with humidity levels of about 50% – hang it to dry for about 5 days and your weed should then be ready!
Now that you understand the different cycles in the growth of the marijuana plant, it will be easier for you to ensure that you are able to give it the right type of light and from the right distance. Let us now move into our next category, which is about some of the most Frequently Asked Questions about growing marijuana using LED grow lights.
WILL LED GROW LIGHTS GROW PLANTS?
LED grow lights are designed to provide your plants with lights similar to the sunlight spectrum required for growth. The LED mimics the sunlight spectrum needed for every and different stages of growth. These lights provide your plants with systematic daylight for hours needed and can be switched on and off for users to regulate. They have bloom and vegetative mode, wherein specific light is provided to trigger bloom and vegetative stage in the plants. These lights are designed to help you grow indoors, just like you can grow in sunlight outdoors or way simpler.
Our Analysis – The Best LED Grow Lights
Below you’ll find our analysis of many of the most widely available and best LED grow lights on the market today. We have compared them based on a number of factors including $ per Actual Watt, Spectrum range (LED colors), including UV or IR, warranty, returns, reviews, etc. Our ratings are designed to take all available factors into account. Immediately below you’ll find a quick reference table showing each light’s features at a glance. Scroll down below the table for a detailed look at each light.