How to choose the right IP rating of LED Grow light for plant growth？-IP rating comparison guide
If you are considering growing cannabis at home, you have probably looked into LED grow lights. They are touted as essential tools for growing plants indoors, but knowing which one to choose can feel overwhelming. The good news is that it isn’t as complicated as it first seems. It comes down to having a bit of basic knowledge about how to choose grow light and weighing it against your knowledge of your grow space. In this article, we’ll break it down so that you know exactly what to get.
What Are LED Grow Lights?
You probably know that LED stands for Light-Emitting Diode. These innovative modern lights are used in many applications in the modern world, from Christmas lights to refrigerator lights, street lights, and much more. One of their most significant uses, however, is in agriculture in the form of LED grow lights.
LED grow lights provide unique benefits to plants grown indoors away from usual light sources. But it is about much more than simply swapping out artificial light for natural light. Because manufacturers can adjust certain factors of LED lights, including their brightness and color, these lights can be even more beneficial than sunlight. These adjustments help provide the perfect light conditions for your plant’s unique needs.
There are many ways to use LED grow lights to help your plants thrive, but the most important thing is to understand what kind of light is needed for your plants.
How do LED Grow Lights Help Your Plants?
Everyone knows that plants need light to grow. But not every plant needs the same amount or strength of light. Some need full, direct sun for much of the day, while others wilt under similar conditions.
The real benefit of LED grow lights is that they make it easy to give your plants the exact type and amount of light they need. Because they are artificial lights, they can also be set on a timer to keep your plants on a healthy circadian rhythm.
Grow lights come in several colors, each of which is uniquely suited to certain plant types. When you use the proper grow lights, your plants can convert the energy into photons much more effectively. This process, known as photosynthesis, helps them produce the necessary nutrients to grow into healthy, mature plants.
So the bottom line: LED grow lights don’t provide some magical, special light that is better than natural light. What they DO do is give your plants the highly specific type of light they need to photosynthesize more effectively.
Grow Light IP Rating Guide
Grow lights are categorized by an IP Rating Guide, short for “ingress protection”. This refers to the effectiveness with which a light can withstand external factors (such as moisture and contact with solid objects) to function properly. This is important because indoor plant spaces such as grow tents tend to accumulate moisture and other contaminants, which can affect a light’s performance. The best way to combat this is to use the proper IP rating for your grow lights.
When you look at a light’s IP rating, it will consist of the letters IP followed by two numbers. The first number describes the light’s resistance to physical contact; the second refers to water resistance.
Here is a simple breakdown of how these ratings work:
(for the first number)
1: Protects against brief, accidental contact with skin
2: Protects against small items and brief skin contact, even if deliberate
3: Protects against larger objects such as some tools
4: Protects against almost all tools, including sharp ones (screws, nails, wires)
5: Protects against contact with large or small objects and dust
6: “Dust-tight” — full protection from any object
(for the second number)
1: Vertical droplet protection
2: 15-degree droplet protection
3: 60-degree droplet protection
4: Protection from splashes at any angle
5: Protection from splashes and streams
6: Protection from strong streams
7: Submersible to a depth of 1 meter for 30 minutes
8: Fully waterproof and pressure resistant
How Choose The Right IP Rating Grow Light For Plant
So with all of this information, what is the best IP rating for LED grow light?
Unsurprisingly, lights with lower IP ratings tend to be more affordable than ones with higher ratings. But that doesn’t mean you necessarily have to spend a bundle on the perfect lights. It comes down to the conditions of your grow room or tent.
When considering what kind of LED grow light to get, ask yourself about fixtures and conditions around your plants.
- Is the room excessively moist?
- How many plants do you have?
- How large is the room?
If you’re only growing a few plants in a room with low humidity, you may be able to use a lower IP grow light. Make sure to consider all these things when choosing the right grow light.
How to Use LED Grow Lights
There is more to using LED grow lights than simply plugging them in and turning them on! You’ll want to make sure they are positioned at least a foot above your cannabis plants. This will ensure that they can get all the necessary nutrients from the lights without getting overheated or drying out.
Plants do have a natural circadian rhythm, so you won’t want them exposed to light all the time. Aim to have a balance of 16 hours on and eight hours off. Many models have timers that you can set to go on and off at certain times so you don’t have to do it manually.
Getting Started With LED Grow Lights
Choosing the right LED grow light for your cannabis plants doesn’t have to be complicated — all it takes is a bit of knowledge and good judgment. You will probably find that the light you choose will be a good fit (and if it isn’t, you will know sooner rather than later!) The right grow light will help your plants thrive under your care, whether you are a first-time grower or a seasoned expert.