The best LED grow lights produce light that mimics that of the sun to enable your plants to grow just like they were outdoors, but even better because all of the other conditions are perfect too.
Indoor gardening has gained traction in recent times especially as a commercial enterprise in urban areas. With indoor gardening you are assured of a bountiful harvest because you take full control of the conditions inside the house or tent.
To be able to do this however you need to have all the necessary equipment. A full spectrum grow light is one of those devices that you cannot do without in indoor gardening.
This review focuses on the best grow lights in the market from renowned manufacturers including all the details necessary to help you choose, and a buying guide to point you in the right direction.
|Best LED Grow Light Brand
|VIPARSPECTRA Reflector-Series — EDITORS CHOICE
|2.5′ x 2.5′
|BESTVA DC Series
|7.8′ x 7.5′
|Advanced Platinum Series
|4.5′ x 4.0′
|Roleadro LED with UV&IR
|2.0′ x 2.0′
|Kings Plus Grow Light
|3.4′ x 3.8′
|Marshydro Reflector LED Grow Light
|4.0′ x 4.0′
|1.5′ x 1.5′
VIPARSPECTRA Reflector-Series 450W — Editors Choice
The VIPARSPECTRA reflector series 450W grow light is a full spectrum light that can help your plant through the vegetative stage, flowering stage and extreme flowering stage.
It comes with reflectors that are flame retardant and UL certified for the same. Due to the reflectors, this grow light is also able to produce light with high photosynthetic active radiation (PAR) rating.
The light produced is of wavelength within the photosynthetic range of 400nm to 700nm. It also produces IR at 700nm and 3000K and 7500K colored light.
Your plants therefore have light that will help them in all stages of growth.
This VIRASPECTRA light has also made it to the list because it doesn’t overheat. To prevent this, the grow lights have quiet fans and aluminum heat sinks that make heat dissipation quick and easy.
The operation is also very quiet. With good heat dissipation, performance of the lights and life expectancy is not greatly affected.
Due to the full spectrum this light can be used to grow a wide variety of plants.
It also comes with Daisy Chain function that allows you to use multiple lights together with few outlets. One light can cover a maximum of 2.5” x 2.5” at 24 inches above ground during the vegetative stage and 2”X2” at 18 inches above the ground during flowering.
BESTVA DC Series 2000W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum Grow Lamp — Popular Choice
This is the grow light for those that are looking for power and to cover a wide region. One light can cover an area of 7.8’ X 7.8’ at 24 inches height.
This is made possible by the fact that this light comes with 10W dual chip LEDs that are much brighter and highly efficient.
To enhance growth of your plants at all stages, the BESTVA grow light emits light within the range of 330nm to 780nm which is suitable for photosynthesis. The light is suitable for growing different plants, vegetables and flowers.
To ensure power efficiency, the BESTVA light uses only 390watts while the output compares to that of 1400watts HPS usage.
There is a powerful cooling system with quiet fans and holes on the aluminum system that ensure heat loss.
The light can operate optimally at temperatures between 68 – 104° F.
The light is durable with a lifespan of 100,000 hours.
It comes with a timer that you can use to set the duration for which the light should run for convenience and enhanced power savings.
The design ensures that the light is spread over a wide area in an equal manner to avoid stunted growth of the plants at the middle area.
Advanced Platinum Series P450 450w 12-band LED Grow Light
The Platinum Series P450 comes with 12 different bands that give a full spectrum from UV to IR to support plants in all stages of growth from vegetative to flowering.
The product provides very good PAR and spectral output to ensure a good yield in whatever you are growing.
The P450 consumes only 255 watts but can be used to replace a 600 watts HPS light.
This means you get high power savings when using the P450.
This light also ensures performance by providing highly tuned light that is 100% usable by the plant.
Further, the LEDs are covered with 90 degree focusing lenses that ensure deep penetration of the light in the canopy.
For convenience of use during the different stages of growth, the light comes with two switches to select vegetative stage and flowering stage so the right PAR is achieved.
At 18 inches above the ground, the P450 is able to offer maximum coverage of an area 4.5’ by 4’.
There are aluminum cooling heat sinks and fans that ensure low heat in the house.
To stand behind the quality of the product, the manufacturer gives a 5 year warranty with 90 days money back guarantee. The P450 comes with a lifespan of 100,000 hours.
Roleadro 300W Series with UV&IR
The Roleadro comes with a full spectrum which provides the most useful wavelengths for blue, red, white, infrared and UV light.
Their blend of LED lights has more red light which is said to increase yield by 30% to 50%.
The LED bulbs on this product come with a bead or Zener design which is not affected by high temperatures.
This design ensures that the light is distributed well and total reflection is achieved for maximum output efficiency.
Further, to ensure high PAR value and Lumen output, the LEDs have 90 degree lenses with 10W chips design.
The design of the product ensures efficiency of 98% which means minimal power usage for you.
There is a powerful heat removal system made of two high speed fans, a built in aluminum heat sink and a built in temperature controller.
This ensures optimal temperatures for high performance and to ensure longevity of the product.
One Roleadro grow light provides a maximum coverage of 3ft X 3ft and the lifespan is at 50,000 hours.
King Plus 1000w LED Grow Light Double Chips Full Spectrum with UV&IR
The King Plus 1000W has a really low power consumption that saves you energy at only 185W. This only saves you power but doesn’t compromise on the output.
The light comes with 10W double chip LEDS that are bigger, brighter and more efficient.
Inside you also get different color LEDs for a full spectrum so you can care for your plants all through the vegetative to the flowering stages.
Under the hood, each of the 100 LEDs gets its own resistor which ensures that each works separately from the others.
If one of them burns out, the others continue to work and provide the required light as usual.
There are vents on the side of the board and fans to enhance heat dissipation.
The LED board is thickened at 3.0mm to enhance performance even under high temperatures and contains holes for efficient heat dissipation.
The maximum coverage area for one light is 3.8ft x 3.4ft at a height of about 3ft above the ground. The light comes with a timer for controlled operation.
Marshydro Reflector 960W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum
The Marshydro Reflector 960W has four different compartments so that if one part of the light gets damaged the others continue to serve you usually.
Each compartment has its own heat sinks and there are two high speed fans to keep everything cool and at optimum temperatures for operation.
In terms of light, the Marshydro reflector 960 produces a full spectrum capable of handling a wide range of plants and in different stages of growth.
You get two switches to move from vegetative to blooming so the light produced is the most suitable for the stage the plants are in.
This helps also to save on energy.
The Marshydro 960 offers wide coverage of about 5.5ft X 5.5ft maximum during vegetative stage and 4ft X 4ft during flowering.
To make installation easy the light comes with a free installation kit and since it is plug and play you will be up and running immediately.
The reflector sheet as a 90 degree angle width and 120 degrees length to ensure the light gets far and wide.
Phlizon Newest 600W LED Plant Grow Light, with Thermometer Humidity Monitor, with Adjustable Rope, Full Spectrum Double Switch Plant Light
This has made it to the list of the best grow lights because of not only the performance but the safety that has been put in place.
To ensure no risk of shorting and even fires the light comes installed with UL certified switches with a high fire rating.
It also doesn’t have a reflector which can melt off at high temperatures.
The power supply to the light is also ROHS and CE certified. It is isolated to ensure safety and longevity.
Heat dissipation is ensured by double cooling fans and the vents on the side of the lamp.
There are two switches for operation catered for the different growth stages of the plants.
The core coverage at 24” above the ground is 2ft X 2ft but it extends to 3ft x 2ft maximum coverage.
Besides being full spectrum, the light produced by this grow light also has high PPFD value. This ensures efficiency at all stages and a high yield.
This grow light is highly efficient drawing only 108W but can be used to replace a 400 watt HPS/MH light with better output.
Things to Consider Before Buying Grow Lights
Room size vs. light size. Each light has a maximum coverage area it can handle effectively. Get the size of the entire area where you intend to plant and divide that with the area covered by one lamp to identify how many lamps you will need to cover the entire room.
The best grow lights are able to stand out from the rest in terms of the quality of construction. Everything should be great quality from the LEDs, the LED board, the cover, the heat dissipation system, the hanging kit and cables. Only then can you be sure of longevity of the product. If you intend to use the light outdoors check to see that it can withstand outdoor use and is waterproof.
The heat output of the lamp will affect performance and longevity. Also, when several lights are connected in the room the heat from all of them can really add up and raise the temperatures in the house which would mean you will need other equipment to maintain desirable temperatures.
The best grow lights have low heat output and also there is a heat dissipation system in place to ensure that the light is cooled and the area around it too.
Intensity & Color of Light
Well the main reason you are buying the grow light is that it provides light that mimics that from the sun. It should therefore be able to provide the desired light intensity at different stages of the plant growth.
Also, ensure that you check the colors or the wavelengths of light that it produces. For photosynthesis this is light that is anywhere from 330nm to about 730nm wavelength. The light should be able to offer blue, red, UV, IR and white light. IR and white light is not required in large amounts.
LED lights do not heat up as much as other grow lights. However, using them for a considerably long period can cause some heating. Using lights with a high-quality heating system can prevent this from happening. Therefore, look for a light with high-speed fans with noiseless operation and highly advanced and efficient heat sink using aluminum coils.
Lifespan and Warranty
Most of the best grow lights out there have a lifespan of 100,000 hours. A good manufacturer also stands behind their work with a sound warranty and sometimes even a money back guarantee. A warranty of 3 years should suffice but there are those that offer even 5 years warranty on their products.
LED lights have low power consumption, and their efficiency tends to decrease at higher wattage. However, sorting for the more efficient ones in the category can help you save more in the long term.
Different lights come in different sizes, offer different coverage and also have different weights. Whenever you are buying the best LED grow light, make sure that you have arrangements for fixing the light properly for you definitely do not want them to fall over and destroy your harvest.
Plants to be grown
Different plants require different intensities of light to perform well. For instance, if you are into commercial marijuana growing ensure you have a light that meets the needs of the particular strain you will be growing. Lights of certain intensities might increase the THC levels making your product superior.
The best grow lights in the market come in an array of prices to suit different budget needs. The coverage distance of the light and the number of lights required will affect the budget. You should therefore know exactly how many lights you will need and compare the features you are getting from each product to settle on the right one for you.
Checklist for Growing
Here is a checklist of some of the things you will need if you want to take up growing of plants indoors.
1. Inline Fans
To ensure circulation inside the grow room you will need to have inline fans installed. The inline fans also mimic the effect of wind which makes the stems of the plants strong so they can hold the fruits without breaking.
You should have a source of lighting organized. Ensure that it is a full spectrum lighting system that will provide all the light that plants require for photosynthesis.
3. Temperature Control
For the plants to grow without wilting or burning, then the temperatures have to be just right. Ensure that you have exhaust fans and other equipment for temperature control. An automated system with sensors ensures that temperature build up doesn’t happen even when you are not regularly checking on the plants.
4. Grow Tents
A grow tent works great for all kind of indoor growing and separates the growing area from the rest of the room. The tent is specially made to ensure the conditions inside are suitable for growth of plants. The interior is reflective to get the maximum effect of the LED grow lights installed.
Most grow tents also have infrared blocking roofs to keep IR rays out. There are exhaust vents also to ensure circulation. A grow tent can be bought as a complete package with everything else needed including the lights, nutrients, hydroponics and fans.
You should ensure that you have the right nutrients to grow your plants to maturity and get the best yield from them. LED grow lights ensure maximum use of the available nutrients because there isn’t excessive temperature rise inside the room which causes evaporation and nutrient loss.
6. Sensors/Control Systems
With sensors and control systems you do not have to be present in the room all the time. You can stay for days without going in because the control system regulates the on and off cycle of the fans, lighting and circulation in the room or grow tent.
Protection – you need to protect your investment so that longevity and safety is enhanced. This can be achieved by use of a digital dimmable high frequency ballast. The ballast ensures that the running temperatures of the lights are optimal. It also protects the system against short circuiting. With a soft start system and a thermostat installed the system will last you for long.
Benefits of Using the Best LED Grow Lights
Here are the top benefits of using grow lights;
1. Low Heat Dissipation
Heat dissipation was one of the major flaws with incandescent and fluorescent grow lights. The amount of heat generated during operation led to an increased watering requirement for the plants which was an added burden. LED Grow lights completely eliminates this issue. The heat dissipation from the LED grow lights is extremely low compared to its counterparts and hence the watering cycle of the plants is increased considerably.
The operating temperature of the LED grow lights ranges from 40 to 60 degree Celsius, a figure which is minute when compared to 400 to 600 degree Celsius which can often be reached during excessive operations of incandescent grow lighting.
Excessive heating of the room where plants are artificially grown can destroy the plant growth and can be disastrous for the crops. Plants do not survive in excessively hot environments and hence LED grow lights provide a suitable mechanism of artificial lighting without the need for continuous monitoring.
2. High Efficiency
Power efficiency comes into play because the plants require artificial illumination for a lengthy span of continuous operating time. If the source of illumination is not efficient, it will lead to considerable power losses, which was the case with incandescent and fluorescent grow lights.
LED grow lights provide a suitable illumination intensity to the plants without wasting too much power during operation and hence leads to a lot of cost-cutting.
LED grow lights have the impact of being cost-effective in the long term which acts as a major incentive for its use. Power losses can be easily cut down through the use of LED illumination.
3. Long Life and Durability
One of the major benefits of LED lighting is that it is long lasting and durable. LED lights often provide an extremely long time span as compared to the incandescent and fluorescent lights. This characteristic feature is utilized in the LED grow plants as well.
LED grow lights generally last from 50000 hours to 100000 hours as compared to the 20000 hours from its counterparts. This massive difference is an important factor in turning the tides in favor of LED grow lights and the use of such lights for plant growth.
Once installed, LED grow lights will last for years without the need for replacement. It is a one-time investment that provides a valuable return. It is also durable in nature and reliable so that one could trust the LED grow lights once they are installed for plant growth.
4. Compact Design
LED grow lights are compact and do not take up much space. They are small and can be easily fitted into the room without cramping up the space. The advantage of small and sleek design of the LED grow lights provides a major incentive for the users as it can be installed in small rooms and does not require excessive space for operation.
Since the LED grow lights do not dissipate excessive heat and have a mild operating temperature, they do not require extra cooling equipment along with the grow lights. This is a benefit that wins the battle for the LED grow lights against incandescent and fluorescent grow lights.
LED grow lights encourage small rooms for plant growth and hence do not ask for much capital when investing in artificial plant growth.
5. Offers targeted wavelengths
Vegetation, flowering and budding all have their own individual wavelength requirements which needs to be catered to accurately for rapid and healthy growth of the plants. LED grow lights ensure that target is achieved by providing accurate wavelengths for the vegetation, flowering and budding processes uniquely.
The presence of the unique wavelengths help in the growth of plants and avoid the deterioration or bushy growth.
6. Environment Friendly
LED grow lights have a major advantage in that they do not negatively impact the environment. Environmentalists and scientists have approved the use of LED grow lights as it does not lead to greenhouse gases or global warming. A massive reduction in the emission of CO2 occurs with the use of LED grow lights, a benefit that has a great impact.
Another reason why LED grow lights are environment friendly is that it is quite convenient to dispose them once they have surpassed their operation capability. They lead to no harm during disposal and hence is a viable option for plant growth.
Precautions to take when using the Best LED Grow Lights
- LED grow lights need to be used with care and precaution, for it is an investment of real worth and requires proper treatment. The LED lights need to be charged after a specific use of time but overcharging LED grow lights will seriously damage the lights and reduce the luminous intensity that the grow lights provide to the plants. This would in turn deprive the plants of the required intensity and stunt their growth. Charging should be carried out as prescribed by the manufacturer.
- Heat Sink and the cooling system should be regularly checked for. Although good LED Grow Lights will have a reliable cooling mechanism, it is advisable to regularly check for the heat dissipation by the LED grow lights. It the temperature is beyond acceptable, it will damage the plants and hence the lights need to be replaced or checked.
- LED Grow Lights do not always give the rated luminous intensity output. It is important to understand the difference between operating intensity and the rated intensity. Plants would get the operating luminous intensity which will be lower than the rated value so LED grow lights should be deployed according to the needs of a specific plant.
FAQs To Know About LED Grow Lights
Final Words on the Best LED Grow Lights
The list here features all the best led grow lights in the market for beginners and pros alike. You will also find that they are at different price points to cater for different budgets. Ensure that you have the lights properly installed and you change the height from the ground as required during the different stages of the plant growth for best results.