High-powered LED products are now taking the market by storm, and the commercial greenhouse sector is no exception. Indoor growers often choose LED lighting options in order to minimize their energy costs while increasing their overall yield and productivity at the same time. When looking for a high quality LED lighting option, you have to consider the following features:
1. An adjustable output spectrum
LEDs are basically dimmable, hence a LED lighting option must allow you to tailor your light output spectrum. It is a good choice if you look for the best LED grow lights which can provide individual brightness controls for each LED color. If you can easily vary the output power of each color, it will be possible for you to simulate seasonal light changes over your plants’ multi-week growing cycle. For example, a bluer light could imitate the summer sun which is essential for your plants’ vegetative phase, while a redder light could simulate sunlight during the fall which is essential for the flowering phase.
2. A driver circuit which provides constant current
In choosing a LED grow light, it is important to consider the electronic circuit which provides it power. The “driver” circuit for a LED light works just like an HID ballast which converts AC into DC at the proper voltage. Its job is to supply a constant DC current even when the LED change constantly changes with time and temperature.
Most simple driver circuits feature a constant voltage which means that the output current would vary depending on the LED voltage. This could only cause early LED failure once the temperature of the LED increases, causing the voltage to drop which will then to the driver supplying more current to respond to the decrease in the LED voltage. This often results to a runaway current which could only destroy the LED. Meanwhile, a proper LED driver circuit only supplies a constant DC current while remaining steady as the LED voltage changes with the changes in temperature.
3.An efficient cooling system
Just like your PC’s CPU, high-power LED grow lights should be cooled with the use of a heat sink and a fan. Since high-power LED lights don’t radiate heat, the metal pad would provide them with the only path for heat to leave. Heat from the LED passes through the metal slug, to the circuit board, into a heat sink then out the surrounding air. It is ideal to look for LEDs which are placed on a metal-core printed circuit board. This technology is able to conduct hundred times more heat as compared to a fiberglass circuit board. It’s actually a necessity for high-power levels which LED grow lights often endure.
You should also make sure that the circuit board is placed to a large heat sink which contains a lot of fins. The presence of many fins could provide more surface area which will dissipate the heat to the surrounding air.
The marketplace for LED grow lights can be confusing at times. You should see what company a particular manufacturer has collaborated with in order to conduct efficacy testing for the product. Regardless if indoor plant growing is your hobby or means of income, you shouldn’t risk your crops or even your budget on poor quality and poorly tested lights.