Best LED Grow Lights 2017 – Reviews and Buyer’s Guide

Growing cannabis is becoming an increasingly popular hobby, but with it come some roadblocks that a beginner must bust through. It’s not an easy job, and it requires proper research and preparation if you want to see significant results.

This is where I come in. I’ve prepared all the info you need to successfully choose the best LED grow lights, including why you’d choose them over other similar products, how it all works and more. After reading this article, hopefully, you’ll be prepared to tackle the world of cannabis growing smartly and efficiently!

So let’s get started:

Top 10 Best LED Grow Lights Overall in 2017 Comparison Chart

Image

Product Name

Best For

Wattage

Coverage Area

Galaxyhydro Series 300W

Galaxyhydro Series 300W

Overall and Under $100

300 Watts

Max Coverage at 18" Height 3'x3'

Review

VIPARSPECTRA Reflector-Series 450W

VIPARSPECTRA Reflector-Series 450W

Runner-up and Under $200

450 Watts

Max Coverage at 24" Height 3.5’x3.5’

Core Coverage at 24" Height 2.5’x2.5’

Review

Advanced Platinum Series P300 300w

Advanced Platinum Series P300 300w

High-end And Under $400

300 Watts

Max Coverage at 18" Height 4.5'x3.8'

Core Coverage at 18" Height 3'x2'​

Review

Apollo Horticulture 24W

Apollo Horticulture 24W

Cheap DIY Option

24 Watts

2'x2'

4 Square Feet

Review

Roleadro UFO 138W

Roleadro UFO 138W

UFO

138 Watts

Veg Growth: 1'×1'

Bloom Flower: 0.8'×0.8'​

Review

Roleadro Panel Series 45W

Roleadro Panel Series 45W

Small-Space

45 Watts

Core Coverage at 18"-48" Height

7-8 Square Feet​

Review

MarsHydro Mars 300W

MarsHydro Mars 300W

Beginner

300 Watts

Core Coverage at 12"-30" Height

2'x2'​

Review

G8LED 600W MEGA

G8LED 600W MEGA

Under $1000

600 Watts

4.5'x4'

18 Square Feet​

Review

VIPARSPECTRA PAR600 600W

VIPARSPECTRA PAR600 600W

Under $300

600 Watts

Max Coverage at 24" Height 4’x4’

Core Coverage at 24" Height 3’x3’​

Review

Marshydro MarsII 1200W

Marshydro MarsII 1200W

Under $500

1200 Watts

Veg Growth: 4.5'×4.5'

Bloom Flower: 4'×4'​

Review

LED Grow Light Versus Other Grow Lights

Light-emitting diodes (LED) are made of semiconductive materials and emit light when an electric current is passed through. They’re not the only kind of light you can invest in, and it’s important to know the differences before you spend your money.

LED Versus CFL

Compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) are made of phosphor, glass, ceramic and metal, and use a third of the power of a regular iridescent bulb, making them a competitive choice. However, let’s compare the two thoroughly and see what we can conclude.

LEDs are more power-efficient overall. They not only give a better yield for the same amount of power used, but they also turn more energy into light and less into heat. You don’t want to keep things too hot since it can damage both your plants and the space they’re growing in.

CFLs also require more daily maintenance and adjustment. While this isn’t some 5-hour hassle that will keep you housebound while your friends are having fun, it’s definitely a chore you have to be prepared for. However, there’s some convenience to be found here, too.

LEDs are more strict when it comes to how far from the plants they need to be to ensure good growth. While CFLs work well only a few inches away from the plants, LEDs need to be anywhere from 12 to 18 inches away. This isn’t a small distance, and it could mean you don’t have the space to invest in these lights. However, if you do have space, LEDs win out overall, especially if you’re worried about power-efficiency.

LED Versus HID Lamps (MH/HPS)

HID (High-intensity discharge) lamps are composed of a tungsten electrode housed inside a fused quartz or alumina tube. They’re often used in combination with an LED panel to increase the quality of buds produced by your cannabis. While LEDs are known to improve the smell and taste, HID lights bring out the healthiest look in your buds.

LEDs also cost more on average, but this comes with some increased convenience. They’re much easier to setup, as they don’t require a ballast or other similar tool. The thing to go with here is multiple smaller LED panels over fewer big ones.

If you don’t have a system in place for getting rid of heat, LEDs are practically your only choice. They’re the only kind of growing light to not produce a considerable amount of heat while operating. HID lights do fine when you have ways of keeping the heat out, especially during the flowering stage.

The main benefit of HID lights is how much bang you get for your buck. They yield the most for the same amount of power, and if this is your main priority, they should be as well. Otherwise, stick with LEDs, since they offer better bud quality overall.

Reasons to Choose LED Panels

If you’ve paid attention so far, you’ve noticed that LED is objectively the best in most categories. While some brands kick up the price a bit, you get the best results in the end. Here are all the reasons why LED lights are your top choice:

  • The buds are at their peak quality after being exposed to LED panels. While some other lights make them look prettier, that shouldn’t be your primary concern.
  • While you need a bit of space to utilize an LED panel properly, they’re magnificently easy to set up and require no maintenance once you’re done.
  • The heat levels are manageable, as LEDs convert energy into light efficiently, without generating too much excess heat. This lets you more conveniently organize your workspace, as you don’t need to arrange this whole system for draining heat.
  • These panels give great yields in exchange for not great amounts of power. If you combine them with HID lights during the flowering stage, you will get a ton of produce without sacrificing bud quality.
  • LEDs tend to come in a variety of price ranges, so you can usually fit some into your cannabis-growing budget. This means you don’t have to settle for inferior lights just because of money reasons.

Full-Spectrum LED Grow Lights – A Cannabis Grower’s Best Friend

At some point, researchers discovered that plants can be grown using two-band lights. These lights appeal to the main two ranges at which a plant’s chlorophyll receptors are active. This range of increased activity is known as PAR (Photosynthetically Active Radiation). Don’t be too worried about this term, what matters is further findings.

While you can technically grow plants using only two-band light, it’s far from ideal. The power-to-light conversion is inefficient, and the two colors (red and blue) are not uniformly spread across the plant’s receptors since the individual emitters for these colors were firing from separate angles. The plants also suffered from bleaching

After a while, more emitters were added, this time corresponding to deep-red and navy blue. These are right on the edge of human perception, hitting almost UV or infra-red ranges. However, as you may suspect, this wasn’t enough. Where were all the greens and yellows? While these colors don’t match up with ideal photosynthesis ranges (for all plants – green is sometimes as good as blue, if not better, but this isn’t relevant for cannabis), they’re still necessary to ensure the plant stays healthy.

Having greens and yellows wasn’t a part of older designs since it added to the production cost and it wasn’t seen as equally important. White emitters were mixed in at some point as a compromise, but this wasn’t as effective as full-spectrum coverage.

Studies show that you want all colors to be represented, though not equally. The sun shoots down everything, from the colors of the rainbow we’re familiar with, to invisible frequencies like infra-red and ultra-violet. Obviously, this makes it more efficient at feeding plants, but you can’t exactly transport the sun to your cannabis grow-room, can you?

This is why full-spectrum LEDs are the way to go. They offer complete coverage, without spikes in any range. A spike comes from a specific color being focused on and overemphasized, and this is inefficient for plant growth. Oddly enough, the best source of this kind of good coverage is the basic incandescent lightbulb, but those are incredibly power-inefficient and are therefore not used. They also don’t last very long, as I’m sure you’ve had many opportunities to witness.

Interestingly enough, as much as you want to have each color represented, you don’t want them all in equal amounts. Looking up the McCree curve shows us that cyan is less represented in the ideal spread, while yellow is plentiful. For cannabis purposes, heavier red means bulkier buds, which is preferable and sought after.

Full-Spectrum is not a reliable term, though. While it certainly represents positive things for your cannabis, don’t just trust every manufacturer when they claim their lights are full-spectrum. Further down the article, I’ve outlined the most credible manufacturers you can prioritize, so you don’t have to dig up the info yourself. Approach everything with caution, as always.

Here’s a comparison table for LED lights versus a variety of other options, in several categories:

LED

HPS

MH

CMH

CFL

Cost

All Over the Place

Medium

Medium

Medium-High

Low

Heat Output

Very Low

High

High

High

Low

Spectrum

Custom

Yellow-Red

Yellow-Red

Balanced

Balanced

Size

Small

Large

Large

Large

Small

Lifespan

50000 Hours

15000 Hours

15000 Hours

20000 Hours

10000 Hours

Efficiency

Great-Best

Good

Good

Best

Fair

Supporting tools required

None

Ballast + Reflector

Ballast + Reflector

Ballast

Ballast

Application (best for which stages of grow cycle)

All Stages

Flowering Stage

Vegetative Stage

All Stages

Vegetative Stage

The LED Grow Light Buying Checklist:

Depending on the amount of space, money, and ambitions you’re working with, different types of light may suit your needs. When I was starting out, I found it very difficult to narrow down what I wanted, because I wasn’t sure! You have all these statistics and weird terminology, it can be easy to get lost. To help out, I have divided everything up into bite-sized bullet points, so you can understand what you’re looking for.

Let’s begin!

The Spectrum

The most obvious requirement here is a good coverage. Full-spectrum LEDs are ideal, but they can be costly. Try to steer clear of two-band lights and similar sub-par products if your budget allows you to do so. Otherwise, you will end up with a smaller yield and weaker-looking buds.

An acquaintance of mine had this bright idea (no pun intended) to add various color emitters into the mix slowly, and it paid off as much as the average slot machine run, so don’t do it! Be careful of going too broad, however. Oversaturating all the colors (which some dodgy products can do) is not healthy for your cannabis, and you will see visible signs of light burn or poor health.

Heat and Cooling Systems

If you end up purchasing a non-LED light or just have sub-par working conditions, you will encounter problems with heat. Too much heat can harm your plants and the space they grow in. For this reason, you want to make sure your setup doesn’t need inconvenient cooling arrangements just to function properly. Ever had a plastic cup melt on the stove accidentally? Yeah, you don’t want that to happen.

A common mistake made by beginners is only looking at the light source as a generator of heat. Even if you get the most efficient LED light, you still want to make sure other heat sources are accounted for. Cooling systems don’t typically bring in new, cold air – they filter out the heat. Depending on where you’re growing your cannabis, you may need a good cooling system in place regardless of how much heat your light dispenses.

Lifespan and Warranty

It’s obviously important for all your equipment to last. However, longer lifespans come with increased price points, and sometimes you don’t need to have the lights on until the end of time. If your project is more of a one-time affair, you might not need the most long-lasting lights imaginable.

Good-quality LEDs often clock in around 50000 hours of work, which amounts to around six years of activity. That’s longer than you’ll have some pets, and definitely long enough to justify the somewhat increased price point of full-spectrum LED panels.

Power Consumption

LED lights are very efficient when it comes to power consumption, especially compared to their simple incandescent counterpart. The more efficient your light is, the less energy is wasted, and the less money you have to spend on your electricity bill at the end of the month (expect a bit of a spike anyway, since you are adding a constantly-active device to your home).

Price

The first thing that pops out to many of us when we look at products of any kind is the price. It’s hard to avoid quickly noticing the big number when we’ve been conditioned to worry about whether we’ll be able to afford a new piece of equipment for work by the end of the month, or simply if we can fit the latest electricity bill into our monetary schedule. There is no shame in choosing a product based almost solely on the price, and thankfully, there is something for everyone on the market when it comes to LED lights.

Don’t get me wrong, by the way; higher price range panels are often better-quality work, but LED lights are more than reasonable even when you aim for the budget variants. The benefits far outweigh the cost, as long as you can find a panel that fits your needs. Besides, successfully growing a large batch of cannabis is a lucrative enough investment to justify the purchase of even the priciest lights.

Calculating Your Ideal LED Grow Light Wattage

Knowing how much power and space you need is very important when you’re raising anything in-doors. However, it can also be difficult to determine while snake-oil salesmen are trying to sweet-talk you into buying whatever they can pitch, with false promises and withheld information.

It’s actually a simple calculation! The total wattage you need depends on how much space a single plant needs and how many plants you have in your garden. A square foot of space typically requires about 32 Watts of LED power. Multiply that by the number of plants you have and the average space one plant needs, and you have a rough estimate of the kind of power you want. But let me simplify it even further and just give you the values. For a square foot of cannabis space, you want 32 Watts. If you’re going for two sq ft, you want 128 Watts. Three sq ft requires 288, while four sq ft needs 512 Watts of juice.

800 Watts of power will keep you covered if your workspace is the commonly used average of 5 square feet. However, if your plants are in their vegetation stage, remember to reduce the wattage by roughly 50%. Plants in this stage don’t need nearly as much light exposure as they do in the flowering stage, and leaving the full power on can have some mild negative effects.

Seedlings also don’t need super-powerful lighting, so don’t go overboard. People typically recommend weaker CFL lights for this, since you can place them closer to the seeds to save space, but this becomes irrelevant later, so just do it the right way from the start.

Trustworthy LED Grow Light Brands

These people have made a name for themselves by delivering solid-quality products consistently. If you’ve ever bought a third-party knockoff of some electronic equipment, you know by now that brand names are often the safe haven for people who aren’t sure what to get. So let’s cover them here!

  • VIPARSPECTRA
  • ADVANCED PLATINUM
  • APOLLO HORTICULTURE
  • GALAXYHYDRO
  • MARSHYDRO

One of the best LED brands on the market, MarsHydro pumps out all-around great panels for all stages of plant growth. Their models don’t require extensive setup procedures, work well on a plug-and-play principle and provide great coverage within the color spectrum. Additionally, all MarsHydro products have passed various tests and have been declared eco-friendly, lasting around a year with no chemical or electronic smell scaring you during inspection.

​Of course, all of this comes at a price. While MarsHydro lights aren’t overly expensive, their price points are often slightly scarier than their competitors, which makes them an unlikely choice for beginners. However, the price is justified with quality, so if you can afford these LEDs, they pay off in dividends.

Best LED Grow Lights for the Money

All of this is good and fine, but without looking at individual products, I feel like the article wouldn’t be complete. Seeing examples of quality work is the best way to become able to imagine they exist. So without further delay, let’s dive into the actual offers!

Best Overall: Galaxyhydro Series 300W LED Grow Lights Full Spectrum (Best for Under $100)

Galaxyhydro Series 300W

GalaxyHydro swoops in with an amazing 300W panel that, when purchased in a batch of two or three, keeps you (and your plants) covered for two years or more. Three of these are enough for 5 square feet of space, with some power to spare.

The color red is cranked up a notch with these lights, and as we mentioned before, that contributes a lot to having bigger, healthier buds, perfect for cannabis growers. With bountiful yields and good durability, there isn’t much more to ask for, honestly. Keep these panels around 18 inches away from your plants and you’ll see them growing under ideal lighting and heat conditions, with no real need for a cooling system. Another selling point is the fact that the price is under $100, which is hilariously cheap for a panel this good. This means even newcomers and amateur hobbyists can safely invest without too much stress or fear.

Runner-up: VIPARSPECTRA Reflector-Series 450W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum (Best for Under $200)

VIPARSPECTRA Reflector-Series 450W

If you have a slightly smaller workspace, this VIPERSPECTRA model is ideal for that. The space it covers is around 2.5-3.5 square feet, and you should keep it roughly 25 inches away from the plants. Also your eyes. This thing is super-bright, don’t look directly at the bulbs while it’s in use. The 200 Watts of drawn power may not seem like a lot, but I managed to replace a 400W setup of other lights using this baby without a single problem cropping up.

This model is useful during all stages of growth. However, you should watch out for the weather since there is no waterproofing here. Never expose these lights to water and you’re in the clear. The price is noticeable, but not too stressful for your wallet (as it remains under $200), so these lights are also not bad for beginners. A cooling system is included, removing any risk of potential heating problems.

Best High-end: Advanced Platinum Series P300 300w LED Grow Light Full Spectrum (Best for Under $400)

Advanced Platinum Series P300 300w

These lights are just insane. They can replace other kinds of light and match their power output with half the Watts drained. Roughly capable of covering a 3x4 square foot area, there aren’t many situations where you would want more than one of these, though it certainly helps.

Keep these lights over 20 inches away from your plants to avoid light burn or similar problems. These lights have an impressive warranty of 5 years, meaning that if you can afford them, they pay off extremely well in the long run.

However, affording them could initially be problematic. The price is slightly under $400 which is pretty steep even compared to other full-spectrum lights. Luckily, if you find it not suitable for whatever you’re doing, you have 90 days to return it and get your money back. That’s more than enough time to determine if these lights are good for you (they probably are, but who knows), and it’s no skin off your back if they aren’t.

Best Cheap DIY Option: Apollo Horticulture 24W LED Grow Light

Apollo Horticulture 24W

If you’re a fan of fine-tuning and customization, Apollo Horticulture has your back here. These lights are bought in smaller packages, and individually cost a trivial sum, meaning you can buy them in bulk to meet any kind of Watt and space requirement.

For such seemingly fragile equipment, these lights sport a solid warranty of 2 years, and because you don’t need a ballast to set them up properly, they’re really convenient and easy to adapt to any kind of workspace. As always, maintain a healthy 18-inch distance at all times, and make sure to get enough of these lights as the coverage is rather narrow. While the package claims the power clocks in at around 12 Watts, the light is actually brighter than what you’d expect from that figure.

Sadly, the different size approach comes with a downside or two. For one, the spectrum of coverage is rather narrow, only representing red and blue to any significant degree. Additionally, if your workspace is very large, you have to buy so many of these that the price ends up being higher than some wider, bigger panels.

Best UFO: Roleadro UFO 138W LED Grow Light - Sold by Galaxyhydro

Roleadro UFO 138W

No, it’s not a flying saucer, I swear. In this context, UFO actually stands for Universal Fiber Optics, which sounds even more advanced than the alien technology we saw in movies of old. Conveniently enough it also shoots a beam of light, except this beam helps your plants grow instead of uprooting them for later analysis. It’s a pretty affordable model overall, and it doesn’t skimp on the spectrum to accomplish this.

The actual draw power is around 48 Watts, which isn’t bad, and these lights are good during all stages of cannabis growth. The coverage is rather small, however, at only 1 square foot of solid lighting. The light is very bright, which means you should not only give it a good distance (I’d recommend 18-20 inches away) from the plants but use sunglasses when adjusting it. If you can purchase enough of them for your workspace, it’s quite a respectable offer, so don’t hesitate if these lights seem like they could work for you.

Best Small-Space: Roleadro Panel Grow Light Series, 45W LED Plant Grow Light

Roleadro Panel Series 45W

As the title suggests, this is the ideal product if you’re struggling to find space, or if you want to keep clutter to a minimum within your backyard or whatever. The red-to-blue ratio is ideal for promoting healthy growth in your cannabis, especially while it’s still smaller in size.

The 12-month warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee should give you tons of time to see if these lights fit your needs, though if you do forget to return them, you don’t lose out on much since they’re cheap. The hanging distance is a bit fidgety, as you have to go from 18 to as far as 48 inches above the plants, depending on how tall they are.

Sadly, the red-and-blue-only nature of the panel is less than ideal, so you might not see buds as healthy as with some other models. Since this panel is space-efficient, I strongly recommend combining it with other types of lights for optimal results.

Best for Beginner: MarsHydro Mars 300W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum

MarsHydro Mars 300W

While most of these products are somewhat suitable for newcomers and inexperienced hobbyists, I would say this model is the best choice. With full-spectrum coverage and an ideal space of 2 square feet, this panel is easy to adapt to any workspace you have, as long as you can secure 12-30 inches of vertical space above the plants.

The panel is operated using a plug-and-play approach, so you don’t have to fiddle with any remotes or switches, and the light is very healthy for plants during all stages of growth. Couple that with a very reasonable asking price, and you have a very safe choice for the inexperienced.

The only downside I’ve encountered is that this panel just doesn’t seem to burn as bright as other 300W models I’ve come across. It wasn’t enough of a deterrent to stop me from getting three of these panels, but it’s something to consider if you’re concerned about optimization (and honestly, as a beginner you shouldn’t be. Focus on cranking out a good batch or two before in-depth analysis).

High Times’ Recommendation: G8LED 600 Watt MEGA LED Grow Light (Best for Under $1000)

G8LED 600W MEGA

The 2016 favorite of High Times Magazine, this model is another high-end monstrosity. It has 600 Watts of horsepower, meaning that you can probably get away with only one of these panels, and it covers a space of 18 square feet, which is ludicrous compared to most other lights on this list!

All it needs now is also to make breakfast and forward emails, why not. The spectrum of coverage is nearly 100% optimal, and the panel helps your plants in all stages of growth. It has good lasting power, too, with a 2-year warranty and pretty handy customer support service.

The moment you saw the term “high-end,” you probably saw this next part coming. The price is very tough to swallow (at slightly under $1000), and it could very well be a deal-breaker on its own. For this reason, I would not recommend this panel to beginners, because they don’t have the necessary understanding to justify investing such a ludicrous sum.

Budget Pick: VIPARSPECTRA PAR600 600W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum (Best for Under $300)

VIPARSPECTRA PAR600 600W

​VIPARSPECTRA brings us another competitive-quality panel to consider, without letting the price point go past 300 dollar. It boasts full-spectrum coverage and the ability to keep your plants healthy through all growth stages, while the three built-in cooling fans keep temperature levels reliably low.

It’s ideal for a growing space of 3 square feet, as long as you keep a safe 24-inch distance from the actual plants. The warranty extends for up to 3 years, and you can return the panel for your money back within the first month after purchasing.

The only thing I could target as a downside here are rumors that not all copies are shipped in perfect working order. Some people have complained about malfunctioning fans, rust, and other niggles, though I never experienced any of that with my order. Keep that in mind when choosing to opt for these lights, and you’re relatively safe.

Budget Pick: Marshydro MarsII 1200W LED Grow Light Full Spectrum (Best for Under $500)

Marshydro MarsII 1200W

MarsHydro is slowly becoming one of my favorite brands, honestly. They make high-quality panels and seem to specialize in providing options for newcomers and experienced hobbyists alike. This model drains about 450W and is made to cover a space of 4 square feet, slightly more during the vegetation stage.

It also has 3 other variants, each at a different sub-500$ price point and specs to consider. The warranty is a satisfying 2 years, and the period for money-back returns is 30 days. Maintain a safe distance of 18 inches for optimal growth.

Much like with the VIPARSPECTRA model featured right above this one, there have been claims of faulty models being shipped and things breaking down easily with some inconvenient customer support practices following. Two of my diodes gave in after around 8-10 months, but no other issues were detected. Still, be careful, especially if your budget is tight.

LED Grow Lights Q&A

1. How do LED lights work?

The light you see coming out of one of these diodes is created by the movement of electrons within the semiconductor material that goes into diode construction. This is different from a standard incandescent bulb in that there is no filament you can burn out, that would cause you to have to replace your LED.

This difference also keeps LEDs at lower temperatures, which is safer for plant growth. Most LEDs have a lifespan similar to that of a transistor, which is many, many times the lifespan of a traditional incandescent bulb. LEDs function well as long as they’re connected to an electrical circuit.

2. Problems and Solutions While Using LED Grow Lights to Grow Cannabis

The Temperature’s Too High! What Do I Do?

While this is very unlikely (given how LEDs put out very little heat by themselves and a lot of panels come with built-in cooling fans), you want to examine the environment your cannabis is growing in. Where could the heat be coming from? Invest in a better cover if too much sun exposure is messing up your plans, or buy extra cooling fans to air out the heat.

Even better, plan for these things before you even plant the cannabis (next time), to avoid potential mishaps. Consult customer support if you’re stuck, as they’ve certainly dealt with this type of issue before, and are there to help.

The Lights are Too Near to the Plants! Help!

Every panel has an ideal distance you want to maintain. If you don’t, nasty side-effects may occur, such as a change in the plant’s shape or color, or overall poor health. These are all bad enough to be avoided at all cost, so make sure your lights are farther away.

If you don’t have the necessary workspace to make this adjustment, work on expanding it as soon as possible, for your plants’ sake. If this is too inconvenient, consider purchasing lights that are safer at the distance you can work with, as a compromise. Anything is better than letting your plants just suffer in the incredibly intense light.

3. How Long do LED Grow Lights Last?

The good-quality panels will often clock in 50000 hours with next to no hiccups. This is almost 6 years of work, which is WAY more than you can expect from basic incandescent bulbs or really any other kind of light used for growing cannabis.

CMH lights hold second place with 20000 expected hours, which is less than half, in comparison! This is why finding a high-quality panel that suits your needs is important. Unless something unexpected and drastic happens, you can use that panel for years and years. That way, if you’re selling home-grown crops, the lights pay for themselves tenfold, and you have suddenly turned your hobby into a lucrative business.

4. Do LED Grow Lights Need a Ballast?

In most cases, no. LEDs are so convenient to plug into nearly anything that they’re easy to adjust to your workspace without massive support frames or similar stuff. The lights that do need the help often come with packaged parts that let you assemble it on the spot, so you don’t have to spend hours trying to find a good ballast in some DIY store at the edge of town (have you noticed how you can see a ton of DIY shopping centres near the edge of your town? What’s up with that?). Most other lights do need some sort of assistance, so LEDs prevail in that respect.

5. Are LEDs a Fire Risk?

It is highly unlikely that your LEDs will become a fire risk at any point in their lifetime. The lights are designed to consume little power, emit next to no heat whatsoever and maintain a generally low temperature. Fires that start can sometimes be blamed on the equipment when the real issue was faulty wiring inside the wall or wherever.

If you want to minimize the risk of overheating, use a resistor when connecting LEDs or make sure they’re secured in a way that lets the heat leave the immediate area. As you may have learned by now, this is very easy to do, as LEDs practically help you out directly.

6. Are LEDs Too Hot for Wood Frames?

Simply put, no. While the warmer part of the LED is near the bottom, the diode’s overall heat efficiency doesn’t let it do much if any damage to a wooden surface, especially if placed in a way that prevents this. The same tips for preventing fires work here.

Either use a resistor or check your wiring. Alternatively, improve your cooling system overall to minimize this risk further. Buying plastic-encased panels also completely removes any risk of wood being burned, so relax and stop worrying. The higher your panel quality, the more impossible this issue becomes.

7. Can I Use LED Lights in Combination with Other Lights?

Not only is this possible, but I would also strongly recommend it. Not all lights are equally good during all stages of a plant’s growth, so combining the best of both worlds is a surefire way to end up with healthy, gorgeous looking foliage and big juicy buds.

This is especially helpful if your workspace doesn’t allow you to place all your LED panels at an ideal distance since not following those specifications can at best result in inefficient lighting, and at worst – harm for the plant you’re growing. CFLs, in particular, can be a good variant to include since their ideal distance is very close to the plants.

8. Are LEDs Harmful to the Eyes?

During my product reviews, I mentioned that you want sunglasses for some of those models, so it’s safe to assume that you shouldn’t be staring at your diodes while they’re in use. The blue light emitted by every decent LED product can contribute to eye disease and has been known to disrupt sleep.

LEDs also lack the near-infra-red heat you get from the sun, so they’re less healthy overall than regular lights. Do not handle your LEDs without eye protection, seriously. They may be healthy for your plants, but they aren’t as gentle towards humans.

9. Do LEDs Contain Hazardous Materials for Humans?

While LEDs don’t contain mercury like CFLs, that doesn’t mean they’re perfectly clean. There are some toxicity risks hidden inside, such as lead and arsenic. Obviously, you’re not going to be in direct contact with any of that stuff, but it helps to know exactly what you’re dealing with.

Make sure none of your diodes are cracked, and thoroughly inspect the ones that stop working. LEDs are slowly becoming the #1 light of the future, and people should be aware of what kind of materials are being used. That way, health risks are minimal or nonexistent, and we can all safely grow whatever we want at home.

Conclusion

That was a doozy, wasn’t it? There is so much to know about growing cannabis, even when you specifically examine the lighting aspect of it. Definitely not a hobby for the unmotivated, I’ll tell you that. Hopefully, I’ve managed to ease you into the world of home-growing, as there are a lot of rewards to be gained from this kind of activity. Be sure to let me know if you have any feedback, as I’d love to hear your stories and tricks! I’m also always here to help if you have questions, so don’t hesitate to ask if you have some concerns.

About the Author Emily Taylor

My name is Emily Taylor, gardening is my passion and I’m looking forward to sharing it with everyone. I know that there are millions of people out there want their backyard and garden be attractive just like their front yard, so I am here to help you create your own backyard paradise.

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