Do LED grow lights use a lot of electricity? The right answer is no, and LED grow lights are among the most efficient lighting options for plant growth.
Simply put, these are special LED lights with customizable and control features to provide a specific light spectrum to support plant growth.
And when you compare them with traditional systems like metal halide and high-pressure sodium, LED growth lights will convert a larger percentage of their energy into useful light.
Additionally, their high efficiency comes with limited heat production and a long lifespan.
Today’s article considers the LED grow lights’ electricity consumption, focusing on how you can lower their cost. Let’s get rolling!
What Are LED Grow Lights?
LED grow lights are customized to produce a special spectrum to support plant growth.
These lights mimic the characteristics of natural light and produce current when light passes through LEDs.
The grow lights are designed with multiple chips, each producing a specific color and wavelength.
Here, the common light colors we use are blue and red, which mainly support photosynthesis and general plant growth.
We find LED grow lights to be multiple times better than conventional light options thanks to their high energy efficiency and lower heat production.
As a result, they experience lower energy consumption, thus attracting fewer power bills.
These lights also have a longer lifespan than the other options and could last over 50,000 hours with little maintenance.
Furthermore, the LEDs are versatile and adjustable, allowing you to dim them for unique light spectra and light condition optimization.
Without any second thoughts, we recommend LED grow lights for commercial and indoor gardening applications.
How Much Electricity Do LED Grow Lights Use?
(Plants growing in a smart farm)
We know LED grow lights for consuming less electricity than traditional lighting solutions like metal halide and high-pressure sodium.
Their energy consumption usually varies based on the growing area, the specific light setting, and wattage.
Generally, expect your LED grow light to consume an estimated 32-50 watts/square foot.
This is way lower than an estimated 100-1000 watts/square foot for the metal halide and high-pressure sodium.
Besides being energy-efficient, LED grow lights emit targeted light to guarantee that a larger percentage of emitted light turns into useful light.
Surprisingly, very little energy percentage is converted into heat; thus, you won’t experience any plant damage due to overheating.
Overall, LED grow light offers an energy-efficient and cost-effective indoor gardening solution with limited effects on the environment.
How Grow Lights Affect Electricity Bill
(Growing succulents under UV LED)
Although growing light affects the electricity bill, factors like the electricity rate, usage hours, and light wattage greatly impact your bill.
You’ll note the wattage rating if you check on your LED grow light. And if it’s not there, we’re certain you’ll get on the manual.
This represents how much power an LED consumes, with a higher rating representing a high electricity intake.
Since we know LED grow lights to be energy-efficient, they consume less electricity than other solutions like metal halides and high-pressure sodium.
As a result, expect a lower effect on your monthly or yearly electricity bill.
How much power your LED grow light consumes daily depends on how many hours you leave it on.
Power consumption increases with the number of hours the lights are on.
We recommend having your grow lights on for about 12 hours daily for optimum plant growth.
But the most important thing would be considering the plant’s specific needs and tailoring your LED grow light to meet the requirement.
For this reason, we recommend using timers to control the period your plant is exposed to light, thus preventing unnecessary energy consumption.
The rate at which your electricity service provider charge in kilowatt-hours (kWh) greatly impacts your power bill.
In most cases, this rate varies based on the utility provider and your location.
We can estimate the bill you’ll pay by multiplying the wattage by the hours of usage and the electricity rate.
For example, if we assume your grow lights have a 1000 wattage and run for 12 hours with an electricity rating of $0.14, the cost will be:
(1000W X 12 hours)/1000 = 12 kWh daily
12 kWh X $0.14 = $1.68 daily
Multiply this value by the number of days per month or year, and you’ll get the monthly or yearly power costs.
How To Lower LED Grow Light Cost
(Young plants in an isolated grow light)
While you’re spending more money to run your indoor garden, other people are getting better results for less.
Below is exactly what they’re doing and what you must embrace.
Select Energy-efficient Lights
We have many LED grow light models on the market, with the energy-efficient option going for a higher initial cost.
However, with this higher initial cost comes a lower operation cost since they consume less power and emit more light.
Also, they produce less heat, thus causing no harm to plants.
Optimize Your Lighting Schedule
You should focus on tailoring the light schedule to the needs and requirements of your plants.
First, determine the growth stage and evaluate the light that supports the plant well.
You can even use a timer to switch on the light only when necessary.
Consider The Light Intensity and Spectrum
(Tropical plants under colored LED spectrum)
Focus on the light intensity and spectrum depending on your plant’s needs.
Remember, different indoor plants and growth phases will need different levels of intensity and spectrum.
We guarantee better results if you provide the right intensity and spectrum.
Also, more energy produced will be useful, thus eliminating waste and reducing energy costs.
Having light panels and reflectors strategically in your garden will promote efficiency by focusing and redirecting light onto your plant.
As a result, you won’t have to use many LED grow lights that would increase energy costs.
When you allow dust or debris to accumulate on your LED grow light, it’ll reduce the efficiency.
As a result, you’ll be forced to adjust the brightness level to get the same results as before.
This will automatically increase the power consumption and energy costs.
Consider Energy-saving Accessories
We have energy-saving accessories like controllers, dimmers, and smart systems to optimize and regulate light usage.
Although they come at an extra cost, using them to regulate the spectrum and intensity can greatly reduce energy costs.
How long should you leave your LED to grow light on?
How long you leave your LED to grow light on should purely depend on the growth phase and specific plant requirements.
For instance, restrict the vegetative phase to 12-16 hours daily and the flowering phase to 8-12 hours daily.
But to be sure of the exact requirements, research or ask for expert recommendations.
At what height should you place your LED grow light?
The height you position the grow light depends on factors like the light fixture, growth phase, and light intensity.
For example, we recommend having the lights 24-36 inches above the canopy during the seedling phase.
However, as the plants grow and enter the vegetative or flowering stages, move the lights closer to about 12-24 inches.
But to be safe, always monitor your plants for signs of heat damage and stress.
What are the benefits of LED grow lights?
We don’t just recommend that you replace metal halides and high-pressure sgrowth growth lights with LED grow lights for no good reason.
Generally, LED grow lights stand out for the following reasons:
- They are energy efficient
- The lights emit less heat
- They don’t have harmful elements, thus environment friendly
- Longer lifespan, thus fewer replacements
- You can tailor it to the plant’s needs
As mentioned, LED grow lights don’t consume a lot of electricity like metal halides and high-pressure sodium lights.
They’re the go-to solution for energy efficiency and low heat emission.
However, increased wattage, usage hours, and electricity rates could increase light consumption.
Therefore, follow our guidelines above to lower your LED grow light electricity consumption and energy bill.