Most people have challenges determining the best LED grow lights in the market. Reasons include the wide range of varieties with different specifications and prices, as well as varying lighting requirements among the growers. While the LEDs should ideally work the same way, the design and construction material impact on the performance, reliability, and efficiency.
The grower should match the lighting requirements with the correct lamp to avoid buying an expensive unit that provides excessive light or a small unit that does not meet demand.
While there are several low-cost lamps which can easily tempt a grower, it is important to pay attention to all important details that influence the overall performance of the LED grow light. What may appear cheap may end up being more expensive in the long run. It may suffer from breakages, inefficiency, and inability to perform as expected.
First-time indoor farmers and even experienced ones may find it challenging making the best choice, especially with new products entering the market every day. Most the marketers promise that their products are the best, but this may not be so unless the customer understands the technical details and whether the lamps perform as specified.
Factors to consider when looking for the best LED grow lights in the market
There are several factors to consider when selecting a grow light. This includes power consumption, light output, control, spectrum, warranty and more.
Power consumption and efficiency
The power consumption and efficiency are important since they impact the running costs. The wattage of the LED light depends on the growing area and the number of plants to cover. A high efficiency means that the light will convert most of the electricity it consumes to useful energy and will, therefore, be cheaper to run without compromising quality.
The controls such as grow stage switches, dimmers, and automatic timers are good to have because they reduce the amount of manual work. Some lights may also incorporate daylight sensors such that they can either dim or turn off the lamp when the sunlight is sufficient.
Check below for dimmable and remote controlled LED grow lights
Coverage area and plants
This will determine the physical size, as well as the light output of the lamp. Usually, manufacturers will specify an area the lamp will illuminate properly at a certain height. An ideal light should be able to work at various heights for the different growth stages or type of plants. There are special adjustable ropes that help in fixing the lamps at teh desired height. Typical ropes include the Apollo Horticulture GLRP18 Pair of 1/8″ Adjustable Grow Light Rope Hanger w/ Improved Metal Internal Gears .
Best LED grow lights in the market have various characteristics that make them stand out from the competition. They produce almost all the useful light that most plants require. Typical lights consist of red and blue lamps with high light intensity for faster growth and better yields. Generally, an LED grow light with a wide range of the light spectrum is the best. This will support all the growth stages for different types of crops.
Manufacturers of high-quality products usually provide longer warranty periods because they know that their lamps will survive this long without any issues. However, a longer warranty period may also cost more. Most of the best grow LED lights in the market have warranties that vary from one year for the entry-level lights, to an average of 3 years for the majority of the middle priced lights. High quality and expensive lights may have warranties that extend up to five years.
Other factors beyond light
In addition to providing the correct amount of light, it is important to check other conditions such as the nutrients, humidity, temperature and more.This ensures that all the other conditions for optimum growth are met.
Although you can monitor some of the parameters individually, there are some advanced devices that combine all these into one unit. One of the best indoor monitoring solution is the Accurte 00613 humidity monitor that also includes a thermometer, hygrometer and a humidity gauge indicator.
The best LED grow lights in the market
Since some non-technical people may have problems deciding on what is best. To help you choose the best LED grow lights in the market; we have, below, a list of tested and reliable lamps that will provide value for money – not in any particular order.
TaoTronics LED Grow Lights – 36W, 3 Bands
This emits 3 bands in the 460, 630 and 660nm which are the peak growth spectrums for most plants. It has a total of 12 LED lamps, of which 10 are red and 2 blue. The 660 and 630nm red LED bulbs prolong the flowering that leads to better colors, juicy and sweeter fruits. The blue bulb strengthens the stems and helps the plants to grow more leaves.
Advantages of TaoTronics LED Grow Lights Bulb
- High-grade heat sink and its aluminum construction allow it to dissipate heat efficiently, hence reducing component degradation and enabling the light to provide a stable performance for a longer period since.
- Low consumption
- Better light output
- Minimum heat dissipation
- It has a beam angle of 60 degrees, which illuminates a wide area without compromising the light intensity.
Roleadro Galaxyhydro Series 300W LED grow lights
This is redder than blue for effective plant development. The light provides a good environment that makes the plants to be greener and sturdier. The grow light uses 3 –Watt bulbs hence more energy efficient and less heat dissipation. In addition, the ROHS and CE certified LED grow light provides a high level of brightness as well as IR glow. It has a two-year warranty and is a good choice for growers with a low budget. It covers a 2X2 foot square area.
Benefits of Roleadro Galaxyhydro Series 300W
- High efficiency
- Supports germination, vegetative and flowering stages
- Long service life of about 50,000 hours
- A wide supply voltage of between 85~265V AC
- less heat dissipation
- Provides ideal light spectrum to support optimum growth of plants.
This produces intense light from its 5 –Watt LED bulbs. In addition, it emits the UV lights that support flowering. The 410 model covers 4×4 spare feet grow area. It has a switch that enables growers to switch the type of light to suit the plant growth stage right from vegetative growth to the flowering phase. With this control, the farmer does not have to install different types of the various plant stages.
This is one of the best LED grow lights in the market. It has a lifespan of at least 50,000 hours and comes with 2-year parts and labor warranty.
Benefits of Mars Hydro Reflector 400 Watt
- High quality LED bulbs and light
- Full spectrum hence ability to cover all growth stages for a wide variety of crops
- Has reflectors that increase the coverage area
- Brighter light
- Modular design allows combining several lights to increase and conform to the growing area.
- Square panel light, hence suitable for lighting squared as well as rectangular indoor gardens since there can be combined to create either shape.
The Viparspectra 300-Watt is a 24 inch LED grow light perfect choice for small areas such as a 2X2 or 2X 3 foot closet or tent. It consumes 137 Watts of electricity and has a balanced PAR that ensures an even light intensity. As such, light coming from the sides of the unit is similar to that coming from the middle. This ensures that all the cops receive the same amount flight regardless of the location and there are not cases of stunted growth or burning of the plants in the center.
The lamp has a three-year warranty and is ideal for growers with small spaces.
Benefits of Viparspectra 300-Watt grow light
- A rugged design and good build
- Internal fans to cool the electronics to improve performance and reduce degradation
- Reliable and established manufacturer
- High-quality brand
- Internal cooling fans
- The grow lamp has a reflective coating that surrounds the LED bulbs. This increases the PAR value without using extra electricity.
- Long warranty period of 3 years.
The King Plus 1000w LED Grow Light is a high fixture that utilizes 10 Watts double chips. This makes it brighter than lamps using the standard 3 and 5 Watts bulbs. It has a wide range of supply voltage which falls between 85V and 265V AC and has a coverage area of 3.4 x3.8 feet.
Advantages of King Plus 1000w LED Grow Light
- The full spectrum LED light produces a light almost similar to the sunlight and has all the useful colors for plant growth stages. It has IR, red, blue, yellow, white and UV.
- High energy efficiency,
- LED grow light with a design balances its performance, PAR, and Lumen output.
- Efficient cooling design that allows proper heat dissipation.
- Long lifespan of about 50,000 hours.
The most important factors to consider when looking for the best LED grow lights in the market include coverage area, PAR, light spectrum, cost, power rating, control, warranty and more.
These vary from one manufacturer to the other and it is important to consult the data sheet or specification documents to ensure the grow light will serve the intended purpose.