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frmrgrl

Household LEDs vs CFLs

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Circumstances have placed me in the situation of building a new grow room.  It occurs to me that I could swap out every CFL I have for a household LED (the ones that look like incandescent bulbs), and gain a lot of light for a very modest change in electricity consumption.  Horticultural LED arrays are just not in the budget.

 

Is anyone using these?

Should I consider them to be about as powerful as a CFL in terms of penetration?

I have a vision of an array of 5 bulbs laid out like the number 5 on dice with cool white bulbs (4000-6500K) on the perimeter, and a warm white bulb (2700K) in the center.

Thoughts?

 

Thanks.

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I've switched to LEDs and am very pleased. I mean actual lights meant for plants, not some bulb meant for household lighting as I think you are indicating.  You can try it, but I think you will be dissatisfied.

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Thanks, halphdunn.  I'm not willing to pay the premium placed on horticultural LEDs...or any horticultural lamp for that matter.  Experience has shown me that household fluoros and HIDs are just as effective at growing plants as their horticultural counterparts, so I can't imagine why a household LED would disappoint.  I've decided to build out using a 1:1 ratio of warm:cool bulbs as opposed to a 1:4 warm:cool ratio.....because that's what I did when using T12 fluoros a long, long time ago.

 

 

Edited by frmrgrl
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Got any updates on this frmrgrl? I'm pretty interested in knowing how it turns out.

 

I have absolutely no answer to give you as I am totally clueless but I would say go for it! It's certainly worth a try.

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Thanks, Lightbringer!  The way I understand them (someone correct me if I'm wrong), they employ a phosphor coated glass for the bulb much like fluorescent lamps.  Fluorescents perform extremely well for horticultural work.  I presume the phosphor coated glass used in LED bulbs produces a SPD similar to that of a fluorescent, so they should be fine in terms of spectral output.  I think they have 350º beam, so I also presume they are similar to fluorescents in terms of penetration.  I have read a few reports about veggie gardeners using them for seed starting indoors.  My goal is to do a bit more than that.

 

My building pace is slow, I won't be ready to use the area for another month or so.  The shelving is finished.  Wiring a dozen sockets together now for the overhead lighting.  Next will be figuring out how I want to configure broadside lights....and how many to use....the space is 2.5ft x 2ft x 2.5ft if anyone wants to chime in.

 

 

Edited by frmrgrl
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It's been awhile but I've been gone for a spell. I'm curious if this experiment was ever completed. I have wondered about using some of these for a similar type space myself. I ended up taking a different route. Would love to compare trials, tribulations, and results.

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Personally I think in the lower to  middle priced end of the market they are all very much alike, just having slightly different spectrum strengths due to the different LED manufacturers they use. When you start going in the the middle to high end priced units they offer a lot of different options that will increase your yield. Unless you have your grow environment dialed in exactly, and know what the specific strains you grow require, there will not be much noticeable difference in what you will achieve in productivity with the lower to middle end units. I think the more important things you need to think about is heat, airflow and power costs. If you are growing in a confined space and heat is a problem then they will definitely be an asset so long as you have enough height to use them. If your environment is on the cold side then you will have to run a heater with them which will negate any power savings from the light and you may as well run a ballast light and get the heat as a bonus to the extra light. I sat down and worked out my costs using a Ballast light against an LED light I have both. The initial cost of the LED compared to the Ballast at 1000W is considerable I just paid $300 for a dimable digital ballast with HPS and HID bulbs compared to $1500 to $2500 for the higher end LED units. Thats a lot of growing you have to do to make up that difference in money, just on power consumption it would take 5 years to re coupe the difference in cost. How much better are the the higher end units compared to the lower, again you are looking at almost double the cost, you will save little on the power use, so the only way you can recoup the difference is in yield production and potency which will not be much if the rest of your grow is not dialed in perfectly.

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/m\ Thanks a million, shadey. Your a nice guy.. Pretty helpful.  Seems I need take more time to do more research, reading grow journal , learn from guys like you.. wwwooo!! thats the style of newbie. Just do not want to cost money on it...lol lol budget for LED grow lights tight..:eek:

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This thread is getting a little off topic but I suppose that's ok with such a small group of people.

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42 minutes ago, GBuds said:

This thread is getting a little off topic but I suppose that's ok with such a small group of people.

 

Yeh I was thinking the same yesterday but I haven't worked out yet, how to separate and move threads. Personally I think cfls are more cost effective for starting off in veg but are a poor mans choice compared to LEDs.

 

1 hour ago, hydrogrow710 said:

I also get a test offer from Marshydro recently on other forums..Just worrying about it an trick...Im still thinking it

That sounds good if they will let you have it long enough to complete a grow, and you have a couple of grows under your belt so you can make a good comparison to non LED lights. As Happy smoke says, spectrum king, kind led, Marshydro and platinum are all good choices of lights. With any product that allows a test period you need to look at costs of sending whatever it is back to the seller which is usually very expensive compared to the cost they charge for sending it to you because they get special rates for shipping so much product. Some people will keep an item because of this so be careful, their is no such thing as a free lunch :) Yes dont rush buying expensive things it took me 3 month of re search for the best buy for my money.

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22 hours ago, Shadey said:

 

Yeh I was thinking the same yesterday but I haven't worked out yet, how to separate and move threads. Personally I think cfls are more cost effective for starting off in veg but are a poor mans choice compared to LEDs.

 

That sounds good if they will let you have it long enough to complete a grow, and you have a couple of grows under your belt so you can make a good comparison to non LED lights. As Happy smoke says, spectrum king, kind led, Marshydro and platinum are all good choices of lights. With any product that allows a test period you need to look at costs of sending whatever it is back to the seller which is usually very expensive compared to the cost they charge for sending it to you because they get special rates for shipping so much product. Some people will keep an item because of this so be careful, their is no such thing as a free lunch :) Yes dont rush buying expensive things it took me 3 month of re search for the best buy for my money.

 

Cant agree you more bro. It says free tester.totally free. No shipping fee. Email from [email protected]  Especially for growers who using HPS and HID or CMH.  Whatever, Im still thinking. Have you ever tested some lights for some brands?

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No I didnt, I just took a chance as I saw LED's were getting some good write ups and as I am tight with my money didnt want to increase my electric bill drastically lol

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Idk hydrogrow710 but methinks you are advertising for mars hydro. I'm down to test one of these units for you tho...been wondering about the 300.

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On 1/11/2018 at 8:49 AM, Shadey said:

Yeh I was thinking the same yesterday but I haven't worked out yet, how to separate and move threads.

 

I do believe you and I don't have that ability. The global mod or all mods have far less ability than I remember...

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On 2018/1/13 at 6:50 AM, GBuds said:

Idk hydrogrow710 but methinks you are advertising for mars hydro. I'm down to test one of these units for you tho...been wondering about the 300.

 

Hi GBuds, sorry you must get me wrong bro. Im just the newbie hanging around and hope I can find some cheap or less cost lights to continue my growing after get robbed...:cry::cry::cry: :cry:

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