Investing in a 600 watt grow light could mean the difference between a bumper and poor harvest whether you’re a seasoned grower or hobbyist. Even then, you need to figure out when is the ideal time to mount one in your tent. What follows are tidbits to help you decide.
Many growers start with a 300 watt light. And, it understandable – after all, you’re a beginner, growing one or two plants. But, the need for more light increases as your tent grows bigger. Ideally, a 600-watt model is enough for areas measuring anywhere between 2’ x5’ and 4’x4’.
See, the primary reason for using LEDs instead of traditional lighting is because of low electricity consumption. LEDs use less wattage to generate the same amount of light as their HID counterparts. Plus, they deliver more PAR to your plants per watt of electricity. Sure, a 300 watt LED may not consume a lot of energy, but the case is different with a 1,000 watts model, for instance. Besides, you can use the additional wattage to run cooling fans.
A 600 watt led grow light will not generate the same amount of heat as an 800 or 1,000-watt unit. Of course, fewer watts translate to less heat in your grow room. For starters, one watt is equal to 3.41 BTU/h (British Thermal Unit per Hour), also abbreviated as BTU.
In essence, this means that a 300 watt LED will generate up to 1,023 BRU while the 1,000 model emits 3,412 BTU’s. It is essential to note that the BTU rating may differ from one model to another.
On average, LEDs offer lower wattage per foot in comparison to HID lamps. Keep in mind that you must perfect the art of controlling the amount of heat inside your grow tent. Why? Well, because that’s what determines if your plants will go through the entire growth cycle successfully. Put differently; the failure to regulate the amount of heat in your tent can affect your harvest negatively.
LEDs are up to 60% more efficient at converting the energy generated into usable light in comparison to HID lamps. The high-efficiency associated with light emitting diodes allows them lower the heat inside your grow area while drawing less power.
HID bulbs, on the other hand, convert about 20 to 40% of the energy generated into usable light. The long and short of it is that with a 600 unit, you will need lesser wattage for the same amount of light as traditional units.
As stated, a 600 LED lamp will use a few watts than a HID to provide the same amount of light to your plants. More than that, it will help drive down HVAC operation costs. Also, you will need less air conditioning for larger rooms. Many growers report that LEDs help them reduce their HVAC costs by up to 50% while running their grow room temps up to 10° Fahrenheit warmer.
You can place a 600 watt led closer to your plants than a HID unit of the same category due to the low heat output. In fact, you can hang your lamps a couple of inches away from the plants depending on the growth stage. Also, you may consider placing your bulbs near your plants in grow areas limited by height.
At times, it is necessary to lower your lights above the canopy for more penetration. Even then, be sure to read the manufacturer recommendation as to how close you can get. The last thing that you want to do is to burn your plants due to overheating.
You don’t have to keep changing lighting as your plants grow from one stage to another with LEDs. You need to choose a 600 watt that offers full spectrum though. Remember, a light’s spectrum can affect your plant’s flower density, potency, and quality.
The amount of lighting in your grow area is critical. Your plants need enough for photosynthesis and blooming. It is, therefore, essential that you install the right model with the correct wattage to make the most out of your tent. Don’t hesitate to shift to a 600 watt led lamp especially if you’re growing more than three plants.
I'm Ann Katelyn, Creator and Chief Author of Sumo Gardener. Since I was a child I've always been fascinated with plants and gardens, and as an adult this has developed into my most loved hobby. I have dedicated most of my life to gardening and started Sumo Gardener as a way to express my knowledge about gardening with the hope of helping other people's gardens thrive.