Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Power of LED Grow Lights

By By Susan Slobac

With the release of hard-hitting documentaries such as Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth and Leonardo DiCaprio’s The 11th Hour energy consumption and its relationship to global climate change has become a prominent issue. What people often fail to understand is that the best solutions are not great actions on the part of a few, but rather small actions taken by the many. For example, if everyone in the U.S. were to replace incandescent lights with fluorescent ones, it could eliminate the need for Middle East oil.

LED Grow lights are another example of a small thing that can make a great difference. If you are growing your own food hydroponically, you’re already taking a step toward saving the planet. The use of LED Grow Lights allows you to take the next step in reducing your footprint on the planet. Not only to they operate at a fraction of the voltage of conventional bulbs (less than 20 VAC as opposed to 120), but they are free of mercury – a highly toxic metal used in metallic vapor and fluorescent lights.

LED Grow Lights are efficient and economical in other ways as well. Unlike fluorescent bulbs, LED Grow Lights require no ballast that will eventually burn out. They also emit “targeted light;” whereas most standard grow lights emit a broad spectrum of light that includes light wavelength that is useless to plant life, LED Grow Lights emit only that part of the spectrum actually used for photosynthesis. This also means far less waste heat, which requires extra ventilation to carry away. It also means less glare; while this useful light is very bright to plants, humans perceive such light as relatively dim. This also eliminates the need for troublesome shades and reflectors.

Although they can represent a greater upfront investment, LED Grow Lights cost substantially less in the long run. In the first place, they are not nearly as fragile as conventional bulbs and fluorescents. Best of all, they are extremely durable – the average lifespan of an LED Grow Light is 100,000 hours – which is as much as fifty times as long as that of conventional bulbs. This adds up to nearly twelve years under normal conditions.

Because LED Grow Lights are environmentally friendly, they will result in healthier, more productive plants. Because they emit very little in the way of heat, LED Grow Lights allow your plants to keep cooler. Plants thrive at room temperature, receiving all the light they require without growth-stunting excess heat. In addition, your plants will suffer less from heat-related root damage that can occur when hot conventional grow lights heat the soil. With LED Grow Lights, your plants will also require less watering.

Across the board, LED Grow Lights allow you to grow more economically and in a more environmentally-friendly way.

Susan Slobac operates a hydroponics garden store. She has detailed knowledge of what grow lights are best for hydroponics gardens. Susan is also concerned with the environment and sees LED grow lights as one alternative solution to the traditional energy consuming grow lights most often used. Susan promotes LED grow lights based on efficiency and performance.

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