When growing hydroponic plants indoors, the lights for hydroponics should mimic sunlight in the appropriate spectrum and at the ideal time.
Depending on the geographic location, season, and site of the hydroponic system, there may not be enough natural light for plants to grow at their normal rate.
Why artificial light in hydroponic crops?
In addition, when the sun’s rays pass through a glass, its molecular composition changes, so they cannot provide the plant with complete photosynthesis. Therefore, artificial lighting is needed.
If your hydroponic system is indoors and you are a beginner, choosing a lighting system may be difficult. Therefore, here are the best hydroponic lights that might help your system.
What lights do I need for hydroponics? What type of lights are used for hydroponics? The most common bulbs are LED; compact fluorescent (CFL); high intensity discharge (HID), which incorporates metal halide (HPS) and high pressure sodium (MH). In my personal opinion, LED lights are the best for price and performance.
Best LED Grow Lights for Hydroponics
Are LED lights good for hydroponics?They are very efficient and customizable up to long term because with the PAR spectrum (photosynthetically active radiation) plants receive all the fundamental wavelengths for photosynthesis, so they help the plants in their growth and the yields are also higher, than other lights. In addition, they emit little heat and can therefore be placed close to plants. This in turn has the advantage that space is saved.
Overall, LED lights have an efficiency between 5 – 10 years. What LED lights are good for growing plants?:
Best Hydroponic Lights:
Do you want to give your plants one of the best lighting equipment, that is easy to install and turn on, that has good results in your large coverage crops, that does not take up much space, that is powerful and that electricity bills are low? low? If so, this grow light might be for you.
The aluminum material of this hydroponic light has high-quality covers to protect the cables and extend its lifespan. In fact, its performance is far superior compared to several similarly priced lights.
The edge-gathered arrangement of the diodes makes the PPFD more uniform, so you don’t get terribly hot in the grow area and your plants won’t stretch. With the dimmer knob, you can adjust the light intensity according to what you need.
Regarding the assembly, if you live in a place where the temperatures, depending on the time of year, fluctuate abruptly, for summer, you can place the controller outdoors because it gets very hot.
This is possible due to the configuration of the cables. Likewise, for winter you can place the control indoors. If you want a light with greater coverage, you can purchase the SF7000
- Spectrum: 660-665nm,3000K,5000K,760nm IR
- LED: 1212 pcs SAMSUNG LM301B
- PPF: 1217umol/s
- Coverage: Maximum Coverage: 5×5 feet / Core Coverage: 4×4 feet
- Operating temperature: -20-35 ℃
- DB: 0
- Frequency: 50-60HZ
- Dimmer switch
- High quality
- Great coverage
- The clips to hang the light are a bit weak
Best Hydroponic Lights:
If your budget limits you to a mid-range priced light, but you don’t want a cheap and tricky hydroponic light, that will be damaged in weeks; this could be for you.
This model is for small or medium crops; the thin frame makes it slightly decent; the simple leveling system allows you to maneuver it properly, its design is elegant, modern and small, but very bright; noise is minimal; the spectrum is balanced.
Also, at its maximum intensity, it warms up a bit; you can adjust the intensity according to the growth stages and the assembly is enough for you to hang it well. As a suggestion, you can use a fan to extend the lifespan.
- Power: 150w
- PPF: 343μmol/S
- Spectrum: 660-665nm 730-740nm 3000-3200K 6000-6500K
- Max Coverage: 2.5×2.5 feet
- Core Coverage: 2×2 feet
- Value for money
- Adjustable intensity
- Instructions are a bit confusing
- The dimmer does not have brightness percentages
Best Hydroponic Lights:
If you need good, cheap, versatile small plant supplemental lights, these are good options. The case is made of 100% aluminum, which provides decent heat dissipation. Also, the tone is warm and easy on the eye.
Also, it is relatively easy to configure and has different options. For example, you can connect the lights together to change them from 2 feet to 4 feet, using a single power supply.
- Power: 24 W (each light)
- Frequency: 50/60Hz
- Beam angle: 270 degrees
- Input voltage: AC85 ~ 265V
- Affordable price
- Easy assembly
- Reflectors are difficult to adjust
Distance and lighting cycle
The distance and time of use of hydroponic grow lights depend on multiple factors. Normally, the manufacturer recommends continuous working hours and the desired height.
As a general rule, the light duration for hydroponics:
- Short day plants: 12 h. max.
- Long day plants: 16 h. maximum.
How far should led grow lights be from plants? According to Scynceled.com these would be the distances for LED lights:
- 1 000W: 1.17 m (46 in)
- 800W: 1.07 m (42 in)
- 600W: 96.5 cm (38 in)
- 400W: 68.5 cm (27 in)
- 200W: 51 cm (20 in)
- 1 000W: 91 – 1.17 cm (36-46 in)
- 800W: 81 – 1.07 cm (32-42 in)
- 600W:76 – 96.5 cm (30-38 in)
- 400W: 51 – 68.5 cm (20-27 in)
- 200W: 30 – 51 cm (12-20 in)
- 1 000W: 53 – 91 cm (21-36 in)
- 800W: 48 – 86 cm (19-34 in)
- 600W: 46 – 76 cm (18-30 in)
- 400W: 33 – 53 cm (13-21 in)
- 200W: 20 – 41 cm (8-16 in)
Higher wattage growth lights emit more heat compared to lower wattage grow lights, therefore, it is critical to consider the distance of the hydroponic light. Generically, growing areas are shown as a function of wattage.
- 150W: 6.5 ft2 (0.6 m2)
- 250W: 9 ft2 (0.8 m2)
- 400W: 11 ft2 (1 m2)
- 600W: 13 ft2 (1.2 m2)
- 1 000W: 16 ft2 (1.5 m2)
Some bulbs emit much more heat than others, so it is important that you manage the temperature so as not to damage your crop.
Area of coverage
A common mistake is to grow as many plants as possible in a small area under the lamp, causing shadows, hence lack of light for some of the plants. So, make sure that the entire hydroponic system receives the appropriate light.
The footprint of a light refers to the area it illuminates. Not all light within the footprint of the light is of equal intensity, because the edges will receive less intense light and the center will receive more direct light.
This directly affects the number of plants that can be grown efficiently. Consequently, plants often respond to shade by elongating their stem-like organs, as well as by orienting their leaves upward.
Likewise, crop plants produce smaller, thinner leaves in low light conditions. So, make sure that the entire hydroponic system receives the appropriate amount of light.