17 Best Advantages of Full Spectrum LED Grow Lights
If you’re thinking about investing in full spectrum led grow lights, there are numerous advantages to doing so, the most 17 important of which have been outlined below.
Knowing these benefits will help you make an informed decision about your grow light choice before you purchase one. Before we get into the specifics, here’s some background information about full spectrum grow lights.
Full Spectrum LED Grow Lights Help Plants Grow Bigger, Stronger, Fatter
LED Grow Lights are a great alternative to both high-pressure sodium (HPS) and metal halide (MH) lights. HPS/MH bulbs provide high levels of light, but they’re also hot and emit a single wavelength that can burn plants or damage delicate leaf tissues over time.
LED Grow Lights on the other hand provide smaller amounts of light, but it is delivered in an optimal manner that encourages plant growth. Here are 17 major advantages LED grow lamps have over traditional systems:
Using LED grow lights can result in a 30 to 50 percent energy savings compared to HID (high-intensity discharge) lights, according to Lighting Science Group.
LEDs tend to be more efficient because they’re designed for one task only: emitting light at specific wavelengths that work best for plant growth. HIDs, on the other hand, are used for multiple purposes (such as producing heat and lighting), so they have higher utility costs.
The LEDs also use half as much power as fluorescent or incandescent bulbs. The lower wattage means less material is needed, leading to significant cost savings over time. It also means less power consumption equals fewer greenhouse gas emissions per bulb.
2. Full Spectrum
Full-spectrum light has an entire spectrum that covers everything a plant needs to make chlorophyll, photosynthesis and produce sugars.
This means you don’t have to purchase one blue light and one red light separately, resulting in less money spent on artificial lighting.
Red and blue LEDs are important as they help with photosynthesis and helps get rid of yellow leaves.
The higher percentage of blue and red hues, paired with a moderate amount of green, is what gives plants their energy source and promotes growth, so it is best to use both together rather than separately.
It also increases yield by 10% more than other types of lights because it provides all wavelengths needed for growth.
It also allows plants to grow up to 50% faster than if they were under different types of lighting such as fluorescent or incandescent bulbs.
3. Even Light Distribution
Full-spectrum led lights provide even coverage across all regions. This means that they’re less likely to produce underdeveloped or overgrown areas in your garden. For example, if you have a HPS light, a significant amount of light can go directly upwards rather than towards your plants.
However, with a full-spectrum led unit, every area is properly lit and as a result you can expect higher yields. While it may not seem like much, it’s actually pretty significant when you consider how tight grow spaces tend to be.
Another benefit of an even light distribution is no more overlapping heat zones for plants at different stages in their growth cycles.
4. Less Heat Output
LED grow lights generate much less heat. This means that your air conditioner is going to be less strained as it pushes out hot air and you’ll spend far less on utilities for your grow room.
The payoff: Your crop will produce more buds, which makes it that much easier to recoup your investment in a new set of led grow lights!
Using fewer watts means less heat output-you can grow just as well with 250W LED’s as you could with a 1000W HID. Efficiency also comes into play-a 1000W LED fixture may not emit the same amount of heat as a 1000W HID fixture because the LED grow light converts more energy to light and less to heat.
This helps cut down on excess expenses and frees up even more space for plants.
5. Consume Less Power
LED grow fixtures convert more electricity into usable light than HID lights do. However, although LEDs use less wattage for the amount of light produced, some wattage is still lost as heat and some extra wattage is used to cool LED fixtures.
LED graphics typically use 48% less electricity than HID lights, which means you can save money on your utility bill while getting a better yield from your plants.
6. Longer Lifespan
Full-spectrum led indoor plant lights typically have a longer lifespan, emitting light for up to 50,000 hours on average. This means that they do not need to be replaced as often, saving you money on replacement costs over time.
Because of their durability and longevity, consider purchasing multiple led grow lights that can run simultaneously in order to provide enough light for your indoor plants at all stages in their life cycle.
A setup like this is more cost effective because it utilizes less electricity per watt when compared with traditional lighting systems.
Over time, less money will go toward replacing bulbs and more money will go toward increasing your profits.
7. Cooler Operating Temperature
Fluorescent bulbs have been a staple in indoor gardening for decades, but these bulbs run quite hot. In contrast, LED grow lights use much less energy and stay cool while they do it.
Because of their lower heat output, full-spectrum LEDs are ideal for low-temperature environments where humidity is crucial. They produce less heat than other types of grow lights, resulting in a more comfortable environment inside the grow area.
This is especially important if you are trying to nurture seedlings or young plants, which could succumb to excessive heat.
In other words, LEDs eliminate the need for cooling systems in your greenhouse or grow room, reducing the necessity for energy consumption results overall.
When you use LED grow fixtures, you control all the necessary factors that are required by plants that grow indoors.
- Harvest Cycle:
If you grow inside, your plants have no access to sunlight so they need you to give them direction on what to do in response to seasonal changes like when to flower and when to harvest.
When you use LED lights, you are able to manipulate the daylight hours and control the wavelength of red light to maximize the growth rate of plants.
You can lengthen or shorten flowering times in plants, giving them multiple harvests and increasing production.
There are also some light fixtures with a function of tunable spectrum. When plants are entering the vegetative stage, growers can adjust the spectrum that has more portion of blue color than red one because blue color stimulates plant compactness, root development, and the production of secondary metabolites.
After plants begin to bloom, indoor growers can shift the spectrum so that the red wavelengths predominate, which causes photosynthesis to speed up, leading to a quicker increase in the buds of the plant.
In other words, some engineers configure these spectrums into a flowering and vegetation switch, where you can turn on and off whenever you like.
It’s the best way to make sure your crops to receive proper and enough lighting during their growth.
All led grow lights have a dimming knob with a 0-100 percent dimming capability that enables cultivators to change the brightness to suit the needs of the plant.
It is important to control your grow light so that you can keep your plants healthy. Dimming the lights is necessary when your plants are stressed or if you're spraying pesticides on them.If you decide to dim your lights, you should be sure that you are providing the right amount of light in every stage.
- Light Schedules:
For seedlings or clones, set the grow light at least 18 hours a day and let them sit in the dark for 6 hours.
When in vegetative, your plants grow bigger and taller, growing only stems and leaves. As a grower, you should control 18 hours of light, and 6 hours of darkness a day.
Many indoor growers also provide 24 hours of light a day (known as 24-0 light schedule) during the vegetative stage to encourage faster vegetative growth.
When your plants enter the flowering stage, the light should be set for 12 hours a day. The other 12 hours will be placed in darkness each night.
After plants start budding, make sure you control the light responsibly because if plants get shorter dark nights less than 12 hours, they may revert back to the vegetative stage.
- Space Needs.
Compact construction and versatile hanging heights make LED grow lights perfect for limited indoor space of any size or covering even larger farming operations.
- Environmental Control
Due to the significant cooling of LED lights in comparison to HPS equivalents, growers have the ability to control the indoor environment temperature more precisely and the heat exposure of the plants.
9. Closer Hanging to Canopy
Traditional grow lights can burn plants if placed too close to the canopy due to the large amount of heat they produce. But LED grow lights can be placed even closer, sometimes as close as a few inches to plants due to their low heat emission.
This feature also allows growers to place the lights closer to plants to ensure optimal light penetration deep into the canopy. However, depending on the PPF of the light, placing the fixtures too close can result in light burn so the manufacturer’s recommendations on distance should be followed.
Additionally, it allows growers to grow vertically on racks. Multi-level grow operations enable cultivators to grow more plants in limited space. In regions where space is less or real estate is expensive, multi-level growth can increase a cultivator’s harvest output while reducing their expenses.
The color of LED lights can be adjusted accordingly depending on the crop and its life cycle. Lots of LED fixtures come with different color channels, with which you can adjust the amount of specific colors being produced.
In order to mimic the year length the plants are used to, put in blue and red balanced light when plants are in the vegetative stage and a relatively higher amount of red light when they are in the flowering stage.
11. Maintenance Cost Saving
LED grow fixtures save you a lot of time by simplifying maintenance. Most of them are waterproof and dustproof, so you don't have to worry about taking care of them.
Plus, the long lifespan means you don't have to change bulbs frequently, as was required with the old HPS lights. Just hang them and let them go.
According to many gardeners' lighting strategies, they need to re-lamp their HID lamps 4-9 times in 5 years. This comes at a cost of $50-200 per lamp not including labor and potential downtime losses. While it's no big deal for someone who just has one or two light bulbs to swap out, this is an issue for those who manage a business with hundreds of lights in each room and multiple rooms.
12. Easier to Install
Most LED grow lamps have bulky construction, but they are easy to use. As soon as you open the lights, all you need to do is hang them from four angles with the cables that come in the package, plug them in, and then they are ready to go.
13. Healthier Plants
Plants don't like harsh light that emit UV rays, IR rays, and heat. When these types of lights are on, plants quickly become sunburnt and begin to dry out, which requires more water and energy to maintain.
With LED grow lamps, the need for heat and exposure to harmful wavelengths of light is greatly reduced. This water and energy is better utilized to grow and develop healthier plants and not just survive.
14. Environment Friendly
LED grow bulbs are super green as they don't contain mercury or other toxic substances. This makes them safe if they are broken and they can even be recycled. This is guaranteed by ensuring that all quality LEDs are certified by RoHS.
15. Government Rebates
It’s true that not every lighting technology is right for all grow situations, but those looking to reduce costs should keep in mind rebates available from utility companies that come with some LEDs.
The booming industry of indoor cultivation has been responsible for power companies' unprecedented energy usage and stress on the grid.
In order to encourage more sustainable farming and to discourage the use of more power-hungry HID grow lights, electric companies offer rebates to cultivators who purchase more energy-efficient LED grow lights instead.
Depending on your local guidelines, you can receive a percentage of the total cost of the LED grow lamps you purchase back as a rebate from your local utility company.
16. Daisy-Chained by Smart Controller
When it comes to growing, a grow light with a daisy chain design can be pretty useful. Simply plug the grow light into the next light’s outlet to power multiple fixtures at once.
No additional power cords are necessary. There are LED fixtures that support up to 100 LED lamps when connected to smart wireless or wired controllers.
17. Multiple applications
The fact that LEDs can be configured in many different ways enables them to be used in a number of lighting applications.
One might be used as the sole light source in a closet grow tent, hung daisy-chained as supplemental lighting in a large-scale greenhouse, or they might be stacked up and placed inside a large water tray in a multi-level, highly vertical environment.
Old and traditional grow lights are gradually going out of fashion, while LED grow lights have risen in popularity as people have become more accustomed to them.
They have less of an impact on the environment, are more energy efficient, and are more effective in supporting healthy growth in your indoor plants.
Yes, in the short term LED grow lights for indoor plants can be more expensive than traditional lighting systems – but, in the long run, they are also more durable. We definitely recommend making the purchase.