9 Tips for a Successful Transition from HPS to LED Grow Lights

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9 Tips for a Successful Transition from HPS to LED Grow Lights

HPS lights have long been considered the industry standard for lighting in horticultural applications. HPS is so widely used that many greenhouses and indoor setups are designed specifically to accommodate HPS lighting systems.

In the past five years, LED grow lights have gained a lot of attention in the horticultural community. It is undeniable that it has many advantages over HPS lighting, such as less energy consumption and longer life. So more and more growers are switching from HPS to LED technology.

Today, we will talk about how to seamlessly transition from HPS to LED grow lights.

Regulate the Temperature of Your Grow Room

Regulate the Temperature of Your Grow Room

You may need to invest heating equipment to raise the temperature of your grow room in the winter because LED grow lights generate heat differently than HPS fixtures. HPS grow lights emit approximately 80% of their energy as heat, so the temperature of your grow room will naturally rise. LED grow lights emit less heat than HPS ones. So growers who have historically relied on the heat from HPS lamps to reduce their heating costs will need to make up for it during the winter.

Take Advantage of Increased Light Intensity

Take Advantage of Increased Light Intensity

As I mentioned before, HPS fixtures emit a lot of heat, preventing growers from putting the lights too close to their plants. This typically limits the maximum light intensity that plants receive. Since LED grow lights emit less heat than HPS, growers can place them closer to the crops. This means growers can offer more photons to the crops without burning them, driving maximum growth.

More Dehumidification

One thing you’ll need to do when transitioning from HPS to LEDs is dehumidify. LED grow lights are generally more efficient than HPS at converting electrical energy into light energy, and they produce less heat, so your air conditioner or fans don’t have to work as hard to maintain a given air temperature. You may find that your grow room environment becomes more humid, especially in the second half of the life cycle, when plants are larger and transpiring more. Therefore, you may need to invest in dehumidification equipment to directly offset high humidity levels. This is especially true for sealed rooms with elevated CO2 levels.

Add Ddditional Infrastructure

You may need to purchase some additional infrastructure such as wiring, tracks, or trusses to hang your LED fixtures, as there is no one-to-one replacement for HPS to LEDs. You may need 2-3 LEDs per HPS fixture. HID lights use reflectors to create a wide, diffused lighting area over the plants. Since LED fixtures don’t have reflectors, they produce a more directional, more concentrated light distribution, which means you’ll need more fixtures to produce the same uniformity across your plants.

Consider Hybrid Lighting

Consider Hybrid Lighting

Hybrid lighting setups for growers who want to benefit from both technologies at the same time are a go-to solution. When using a hybrid LED and HPS application, this combination provides the best balance between diffuse light distribution and optimal spectra. It gives you the freedom to take advantage of HPS lighting’s radiant heating properties while also enabling LED lights to continue using supplemental light well into spring when daylight hours and outside temperatures rise. By utilizing their current infrastructure, farmers can control costs and save initial capital expenditures by implementing a hybrid lighting system.

Effect of Spectrum on Plant Growth

HPS lighting emits far-red, red, and yellow light. This spectrum causes plants to grow taller with thinner stems and leaves. LED grow lights contain blue, green, yellow, and red light to emit a more balanced spectrum than HPS. The result is a sturdier crop with thicker stems and broad leaves. Keep these differences in mind when planning your switch from HPS to LED grow lights.

Still need Regular maintenance on LED grow lights

While LEDs have a longer lifespan than HPS fixtures, up to 50,000 to 100,000 hours, you still need to perform regular maintenance and cleaning to keep them in optimal working condition and ensure you receive the maximum amount of light. Just like HPS fixtures, dirt and dust can still accumulate on the LED lens, which can reduce the performance of the fixture. To clean LED grow lights, avoid wiping with a wet rag, which will reduce the lifespan, and just use a dry rag or dust brush to gently sweep over the lens to remove any dust.

Improving Space Utilization

When transitioning from HPS to LED, consider reducing your growing space. The low heat and spectral advantages of LED grow lights allow plants to thrive in smaller spaces, thereby improving your growing space utilization.

Watering Schedule Adjustment

LED lights produce less heat, which reduces plant water evaporation by 50%. You won’t have to water as often.

A few things to keep in mind when switching from HPS to LED grow lights

  • Adjusting your growing environment (temperature, humidity, CO2, watering, and nutrients) is critical to helping your plants take advantage of the extra light intensity.
  • More hours of light are not always better. If plants can’t use the extra photons efficiently, the added light energy can cause oxidative damage to the plant’s photosynthetic machinery, reducing the plant’s ability to photosynthesize.
  • Optimize your growing parameters for planting with LED grow lights. This helps avoid metabolic bottlenecks that lead to photoinhibition and helps promote fast, healthy growth.
  • Monitor light intensity. Since LED grow lights are usually closer to the crop canopy than HPS, you will need to observe your plants for signs of burn or it is recommended to use a PAR meter to measure PPFD at the canopy.

About Us

For the past 17 years, we have been committed to researching LED grow lights and improving quality LED lighting solutions for our customers at home and abroad. Contact us today to seamlessly switch from HPS lights to LED grow lights.

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Anne Zhang

Anne Zhang

Anne is a senior electronics engineer at Casyoo, a professional LED Lighting solutions manufacturer. With 10+ years of experience in the LED grow lighting industry, she aims to help growers and researchers around the world get a better understanding of LED grow light technology so as to increase their crop yields.
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