What Lights Can Be Used As Grow Lights? 2023 Full Researched
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What Lights Can Be Used As Grow Lights? 2023 Full Researched

by Linus Li on Jan 07, 2023


  1. Intro
  2. Fluorescent lights for growing plants
  3. LED lights for growing plants
  4. High-intensity discharge (HID) lights for growing plants
  5. Incandescent lights for growing plants
  6. Light-emitting ceramic (LEC) lights for growing plants
  7. Others
  8. Which one is the best? Hard to say


Lighting is one of the most important aspects of any garden, and having the right kind of light can make all the difference for plants. Unfortunately, only some have access to high-quality lighting, which can limit their options when it comes to gardening. Fortunately, there are several low-cost solutions out there that can help you provide your plants with the lighting they need.

In this article, we will explore some of the best alternatives to high-end grow lights and help you decide on the best one for your needs.

Fluorescent lights for growing plants

Fluorescent lights are a popular choice for growing plants indoors. They are energy-efficient and produce minimal heat, making them a good option for seedlings and small plants.

There are many benefits to using fluorescent grow lights over other types of light. Fluorescent grow lights:

  1. Are energy-efficient, so you'll save money on your electric bill.
  2. Last longer than incandescent or LED bulbs, so you'll get more use out of them.
  3. Don't produce heat, which is suitable for plants that can't tolerate heat (like tomatoes).
  4. Are available in a variety of colours, so you can match your décor.
  5. Are easy to install and maintain - just plug them into an outlet!

They come in a variety of sizes and shapes, including T5, T8, and T12 tubes, as well as compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).

LED lights for growing plants

LED lights are becoming more and more popular for use as grow lights. Here are some of the reasons why LED grow lights are popular:

  1. They are energy-efficient. LEDs consume much less power than other grow lights, which means they can provide a lower light level without sacrificing the quality of the grow light.
  2. They have a long lifespan. Because LEDs run on electricity rather than heat, they only require replacement as often as other types of grow lights. This means you can save money over time by using fewer replacement bulbs and not wasting time and energy replacing them.
  3. They emit very little heat. Another benefit of using LEDs as grow lights; they produce very little heat, meaning they don't create any problems with temperature or humidity control in your growing area.
  4. They are visible from a great distance. Unlike traditional fluorescent or incandescent lamps, LEDs produce a bright light that is easily seen from a distance. This makes them ideal for use in outdoor gardens or areas where you need to be able to see your plants clearly from a distance.
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High-intensity discharge (HID) lights for growing plants

HID lights are a type of light that use high-intensity discharge lamps. These lamps produce a large amount of light and can be used to grow plants. HID lights come in different types, including COB and LED, and each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

COB lights are the most common type of HID light and are typically used for growing plants indoors. They have a narrow beam width, meaning they produce less light over a larger area than other HID lights. Additionally, COBs have high energy costs, so they may not be the best option for growers who want to save money.

LEDs are another type of HID light, and they are becoming more popular among growers because they have many benefits over COBs. LEDs have a wider beamwidth than COBs, producing more light over a larger area. They also have low energy costs, which makes them ideal for growers who want to save money. Finally, LEDs tend to last longer than other types of HID lights, an added bonus for growers needing long-term lighting solutions.

Incandescent lights for growing plants

There are a variety of light sources that can be used as grow lights for plants. Incandescent, fluorescent, and LED grow lights are standard options.

Incandescent bulbs emit much heat, so they are not ideal for growing plants indoors. Fluorescent tubes produce less heat and last longer, but they don't give off as much light as incandescent bulbs. LEDs are the most efficient type of light for generating photons, or units of energy that help plants photosynthesize. They also tend to be more expensive than other grow lights, but they last much longer and generate more light per watt than any other option.

Light-emitting ceramic (LEC) lights for growing plants

Light-emitting ceramic (LEC) lights for growing plants offer many advantages over traditional light bulbs. These bright and energy-efficient lights are available in a wide range of wattages so that you can find the perfect one for your needs.

Most LEC lights use less energy than typical light bulbs, so they're an excellent choice for environmentally conscious growers. They also have a longer lifespan, which means you will only have to replace them sometimes. Additionally, LECs emit very little heat, making them ideal for warm environments such as grow rooms.

LECs are a great option if you're looking for an upgrade to your current lighting setup. They offer many benefits over traditional light bulbs, and they're becoming more and more popular among cannabis growers.


Here are other some of the most common types of lights used for growing plants:

  • HPS or High-Pressure Sodium Lights:These lights are commonly used in outdoor or indoor commercial farming settings and produce a lot of light per watt. They're also very energy efficient, which is why they're popular among growers who want to save money on their electricity bills. However, HPS lights don't give off much heat, so they're not great for growing plants in temperatures below 68 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • SSL or Solar Spectrum Lights:These lights use a spread spectrum technology that allows them to emit a more comprehensive range of colours than traditional HPS or LED lights. This makes SSLs great for use with plants that need lots of colours (like flowers), but they don't produce as much heat as HPS lights do.
  • LEDs or Light Emitting Diodes:LEDs are now the most popular type of grow light because they produce much light with relatively little energy. They also last forever if you take care of them, which is something you can't say about many other types of lights.
  • CFLs or Compact Fluorescent Lights:These lights are a newer option, and they're becoming more popular among growers because they're very energy efficient. They also have a very short lifespan, so replacing them every few years is essential.

Which one is the best? Hard to say

When it comes to choosing the best grow light for your garden, it can take time to decide. There are so many options available on the market today! Which one is the best for you?

The truth is that there's no definitive answer to this question. Different plants will respond differently to other grow lights; there's only one way to know which light will work best if you try them out yourself. That said, here are a few tips that may help you choose the right grow light for your garden:

  1. Wied beam: Choose a light fixture with a wide beam. A wide beam helps cover a large area, which is crucial if you plan on growing plants in multiple locations in your garden.
  2. Spectrum: Different types of light emit different light spectrums, which can affect the growth and development of plants. For example, blue light is important for vegetative growth, while red light is important for flowering and fruiting. Consider the spectrum of the light you choose to ensure it meets the needs of your plants.
  3. Intensity: The intensity of light refers to how bright it is. Different types of plants have additional light intensity requirements, so it's essential to choose a light that is bright enough to support your plants' growth.
  4. Heat: Some types of grow lights produce more heat than others. If you are increasing heat-sensitive plants or do not have good ventilation in your grow space, choose a light that makes less heat.
  5. Energy efficiency: Grow lights can be energy-intensive, so choosing an energy-efficient option can help reduce your electricity costs. LED lights and light-emitting ceramic (LEC) lights are both energy-efficient options.
  6. Budget: Consider your budget. Not all grow lights are created equal, and the cheapest option may not be the best option for your plants. You want to buy a grow light that will provide adequate lighting for your plants, but spend your money wisely just because you think it's worth it.
  7. Try before purchase: Try different types of lightbulbs before making a purchase. Various types of bulbs are available on the market today, and every kind of bulb has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Experiment with different types of bulbs until you find one that works best for your plants.
  8. Consider your plant's needs: Certain plants require more light than others, and a different grow light is necessary to provide the proper lighting for your plants.

Ultimately, it's essential to experiment with different grow lights until you find one that works best for your garden. With a little trial and error, you should be able to find the perfect grow light for your needs!

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