How Many Lumens Do You Need For Hydroponics? (Explained)

Choosing the right lighting for your hydroponic system is essential for the healthy growth of your plants. In our blog post on How Many Lumens Do You Need for Hydroponics? Explained, we discuss the different factors that influence the lighting needs of hydroponic plants, including plant type and growth stage.

The right type of grow light is essential for indoor gardening and hydroponics.
Different types of plants have different light requirements, so it’s important to choose a grow light that can provide the right amount and spectrum of light.
LED grow lights have several benefits, including energy efficiency, a long lifespan, and the ability to provide a full spectrum of light optimal for plant growth.
To use grow lights effectively, it’s important to position them at the correct distance from the plants and provide the right amount of light each day.
Lumens affect plant growth, and the optimal lumen output will depend on the type of plant being grown.
Vegetable seedlings and other “full sun” plants require a minimum of 2000-3000 lumens per square foot of growing space.
If growing a single standard tray of seedlings, a grow light that emits 3000 lumens is sufficient.

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How Many Lumens Do You Need For Hydroponics?

Many people have a difficult time understanding how many lumens they need for their indoor hydroponic gardens.

The answer depends on the plant you are growing and whether or not it’s an indoor or outdoor variety. For example, if your goal is to grow lettuce indoors in a small space, then you will only need about 50 watts per square foot (or around 200 watts total). However, 7000 to 7500 lumens per square foot is preferred for most plants.

However, if you are trying to grow basil or parsley outdoors during summer months when there is plenty of natural sunlight, then 30-50 watts per square foot should be sufficient.

Generally speaking though, it’s best to follow this rule: The average amount of light needed by most plants for optimum growth is about 1/4th (25%) of what would be considered full sun exposure outside under direct sunlight conditions where no clouds cover them at any point during the day.

However, some species may require more while others might need less depending on their specific needs at any given time based on seasonality factors such as daylight hours available due to weather conditions affecting solar radiation levels throughout each month’s cycle during one year’s cycle length periodicity interval cycle periodicity interval cycle.

Everything A Beginner Needs to Know About Grow Lights

What Is The Best Type Of Bulb For Growing Plants In Your Hydroponics System?

CFLs are the cheapest option, but they do not last as long and do not put out as much light.

LEDs have a long lifespan, but they are more expensive than other bulb types and offer less wattage per dollar spent.

T5s give off more lumens per watt than other bulb types, making them ideal for growing taller plants with large leaves that need more light to thrive.

T8s can be used in any hydroponic system, regardless of its dimensions or size. They also emit a high amount of lumens per watt when compared to other bulb types like CFLs or LEDs (two times more).

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What Is The Best Way To Measure Light Intensity With A Lux Meter?

A lux meter is a device used to measure light intensity. It can be used to accurately determine how much light your plants are getting, which will help you determine the best way to grow your plants.

  • You’ll need a few things:
  • A lux meter (available for sale at many hydroponic stores)
  • A measuring tape or ruler (to measure the distance from the plant)
  • A timer (to count seconds)
  • A thermometer (to measure the temperature of your room)

How Many Watts Should I Use For My Indoor Hydroponic Garden?

If you are using a single bulb, the answer is simple: just measure it with a lux meter. If you are using multiple bulbs or LED lights, use the calculator below to make sure that your lighting system provides at least 20 footcandles of light intensity at plant level (1 footcandle = 10.76 lux).

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How Much Time Per Day Should I Give My Plants For Light Exposure?

While the amount of light your plants need varies based on their stage of development, it’s best to give them as much exposure to natural sunlight as possible. 

For example, if you’re growing a seedling indoors in a soil-based system, you should expose it to 12 hours of direct sunlight per day. 

Once the seedling has reached its vegetative stage and grown into a young plant (about 1 foot tall), reduce the exposure time by half (6 hours). 

When your plant has reached its flowering stage, increase exposure time by another 6 hours (12 total) in order to allow for photosynthesis. 

This will ensure that all stages are healthy during their growth cycle so they can produce fruit or flowers at an optimum rate!

Can You Mix Different Types Of Bulbs Together?

Yes, it is possible to mix different types of bulbs together. As long as they are within the same color temperature range (for example, between 5500K and 6500K), then this will work just fine.

However, it would be unwise to mix bulbs that do not have a similar spectrum or color temperature because this could cause your plants to become confused about when it’s time for them to start flowering and flowering.

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Do Led Lights Emit Enough Heat To Damage Plants?

Since the light emitted from led lights is more focused than that of fluorescent bulbs, they can be placed closer to plants and still provide optimal illumination. 

So even though led lights produce less heat than fluorescent bulbs, there’s no need for them to be placed further away from your plants in order to avoid burning them. 

With this in mind, it makes sense that led grow lights are often more efficient because they don’t give off as much heat as conventional fluorescents do. 

On top of this, led grow lights use less energy than other types of lighting systems so they’re better for the environment and save you money on your electric bill each month too!

Is It Better To Use Fluorescent Or Led Lights In A Hydroponic System?

It is a common misconception that led lights are always more efficient than fluorescent. In fact, this can vary depending on the number of lumens you need to achieve in your grow space, as well as how much money you want to spend on your grow lights.

If you need fewer than 200 lumens per watt, then LEDs will likely be more cost-effective because they use less electricity and last longer than fluorescents. 

However, if you need more than 200 lumens per watt then it’s best to go with fluorescents since they’re cheaper and easier to replace when they burn out.

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What Happens If Your Plants Get Too Much Light?

Too much light can damage your plants. If you’re growing with LED lights, watch for signs that the plant is getting more than it needs:

  • The leaves will turn yellow and fall off
  • The stem will become brown or die back
  • The plant will begin to look burnt at the tips

Are Led Lights Better Than Fluorescent Tubes For Growing Plants Indoors?

So, are you considering LEDs over fluorescent lights? If so, here are some reasons why you should stick with LEDs:

They have a longer lifespan. The lifespan of the average LED bulb is 50,000 hours, compared to 10,000 hours for fluorescent bulbs (source). 

That’s nearly 4 years’ worth of continuous use! This means that over its lifetime an LED lamp will have produced less waste and cost less money in energy bills than its equivalent incandescent counterpart.

They’re more energy efficient. LED lights use up to 90 percent less energy than standard incandescent bulbs and can save you hundreds of dollars each year on your electric bill (source). 

These savings come from the fact that LEDs convert power directly into the light without generating heat as traditional lamps do; this reduces both electrical consumption and air conditioning costs since there’s no need for cooling fans or vents when growing plants indoors using hydroponics systems.

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So, the answer to the question of how many lumens you need for hydroponics is: it depends. It depends on what type of plants you’re growing, where they’re being grown, and how much light they need to thrive. 

As long as you keep in mind all these factors when shopping for bulbs, then you should be able to find one that will work perfectly for your system!

Further Reading

Using Grow Lights for Indoor Plants: This comprehensive guide discusses the different types of grow lights, how to choose the right one, and tips on how to use them effectively.

What Grow Lights to Use for Hydroponics: This article provides an overview of the different types of grow lights available for hydroponics, including their benefits and drawbacks.

How Many Lumens Do LED Grow Lights Produce?: This article explains how lumens affect plant growth and discusses the optimal lumen output for different types of plants.


What are grow lights?

Grow lights are artificial light sources designed to mimic the natural light spectrum that plants need to grow. They are commonly used in indoor gardening, hydroponics, and vertical farming to provide light for plants when natural light is not sufficient.

What types of grow lights are available?

There are several types of grow lights available, including fluorescent, high-intensity discharge (HID), and light-emitting diode (LED) lights. Each type has its own benefits and drawbacks, and the choice of grow light will depend on the needs of the plants being grown.

How do I choose the right grow light for my plants?

When choosing a grow light, it’s important to consider factors such as the type of plant being grown, the size of the growing area, and the light spectrum emitted by the grow light. Different types of plants have different light requirements, so it’s important to choose a grow light that can provide the right amount and spectrum of light.

How do I use grow lights effectively?

To use grow lights effectively, it’s important to position them at the correct distance from the plants and to provide the right amount of light for the plants being grown. It’s also important to use a timer to ensure that the plants are getting the right amount of light each day.

What are the benefits of using LED grow lights?

LED grow lights have several benefits, including their energy efficiency, long lifespan, and ability to provide a full spectrum of light that is optimal for plant growth. They are also more cost-effective in the long run compared to other types of grow lights.