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Grow Lights – LED vs. HID Operating Costs


The first time I saw the price of a LED light, I won’t lie, I got a bit of sticker shock. I had been growing with HPS and MH lights for years, and was looking into getting an LED light because I had heard good things. I did some research, and the initial price for an LED grow light is a bit deceptive.

Yes, the initial price is more expensive, but the costs to operate a LED light compared to other lights is much less. In the end, it’s actually cheaper to run a LED light electricity wise. Another factor that needs to be taken into account is that LED lights put off so much less heat than other lights. I know for me, especially during hot summer months, I would use so many fans to mitigate the heat that came off the HPS and MH lights. Those are costs that need to be considered.

Another cost is bulbs. With an LED light, you have the benefit of using the same bulbs for a long time. A HPS and MH bulb needs to be changed often, and are very expensive if you use quality ones. Below is a chart that I came across that shows how much more it costs to operate other lights compared to LED lights. Over the course of a year, especially considering fan and bulb prices in addition to operating costs, an LED light is actually cheaper in the long run.

G8LED Technology vs HID Daily Operating Costs


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Johnny Green


  1. Yes obviously! The led lights are the latest technology in the world and most efficient source of lighting because of its less consumption of lighting and less cost so we should use the led lights for making the world Eco friendly.

  2. Research means using ALL different types of strains, not just the ones that are the most popular. Science has many layers so before we call the entire LED industry WRONG, we need to be realist and tell ourselves, NO, I did not try every cannabis strain that is in the world. Until you can say you did this, you need to pull your brakes back.

  3. This is what I seen about a year ago; we bought up 3 warehouses and 25 trucks; And got it going with these lights they’re really well made, the company is great when it comes to support so yeah this is a valid post. If you’re looking for P’s hit me @ Xensii@outlook.com

  4. One obvious omission here, is the yield. What was the yield per KW-hour? Economics 101 says that you must state the bottom line to know if you made a profit or not.

  5. And this is the problem with prohibition. I shouldn’t have to move to a state that allows it. I should be able to live in the area I like where my rights follow me wherever I go. Not move to where the rights are.

  6. Vincent Nibblin on

    If you are growing with the worry of prison, you should move to a medical marijuana state, in any state the amount of plants growing decides your fate, check your state laws, using a dead airspace lined with reflectix will protect against detection, build a room within a room with a 2 foot dead air space around it for protection it works,

  7. Not everyone is in this to sell and make money. Personally I’d rather save the costs and minimize my risk of detection for the minimal increase in density and yield.

  8. I am so glad you brought up Lumigro pro 650 lights, because their entire series has 0 UV lights built in, that’s why they even tell you on their site they are not designed to be a stand alone growing light only an enhancer.

  9. Vincent Nibblin on

    Everyone here in Cali likes HPS better thats why, EVERYONE uses them, WHY? bigger, dense buds = more yield = more money $$$$, same goes for my friends growing in Oregon and Colorado.

  10. I didn’t say that, all I’m saying is that the technology has evolved enough to where its on point with HPS and MH lights, it still comes down to personal preference and always will. If you like your lights better by all means keep using them more power to you.

  11. Humboldt Billy on

    Well it seems your the expert and all the growers that still use hps are really stupid, thank god we have you Alex to save us from our profound ignorance

  12. I have never and will never rep any LED company, I speak only from personal experience, it all comes down to the ratio of lights including UVs until recently a lot of companies didn’t include UV’s in their sets at all, and because of that they were yielding much lower.

  13. Fulltime Grower on

    Alex here in Cali we have money to try everything and we have, LED does not produce more or even equal HPS ,everyone would use it since they last longer even through the upfront investment is higher. After all we are in this to make money. I have a feeling you are a rep for an LED company, nice try!

  14. Alex, with all due respect, I have done a controlled study, I am a grower with over 15 years under my belt, I am a grower for Harborside Health Center in Cali, I own 4 Lumigrow pro 650 lights, they are wonderful for veg, however their cost and lower yield make them poor choice for our needs. I have a MS in Horticulture and know first hand the advantages and downside to LED lights as they exist today.

  15. Yes a controlled grow on BOTH sides, which makes it a perfect experiment. So let’s take your points apart 1 by 1 shall we. First this is done in a REAL controlled setting therefore since marijuana is still illegal they could not possibly use it. Second they have successfully proven on all counts that the spectrum that yields out the most lumens from all grow cycles is much higher in LEDs. Finally just because you don’t like the truth doesn’t make me a troll, it just makes you an idiot.

  16. Vincent Nibblin on

    Post a video that shows a controlled grow and yields, not once do they mention cannabis, who could afford these units that are growing basil, I CALL BULLSHIT! post the proof on troll on!

  17. I honestly don’t know why everyone’s up in arms about the costs, you can buy a really decent LED lamp for just over $100 sure it only covers a 4×4 but for starter plants it’s still amazing, and on the quality we have to disagree entirely, with LED’s in my experience it’s much higher.

  18. LED might be the future but it 100% isnt yet, there are better LEDs they could use but cant due to cost. One day LED will be the way but until then HID will always give better results IMHO. I cant wait till they are ready to replace HID because dealing with summer is a bitch and i bet there are a few growers out there that would love something to run through the hot summer days. Vape weed everyday :)

  19. They might be someday, they do have spectral control but they do not have the power of hps, i have seen the proof with a lumens meter. I own a grow store and have tested everything on the market.

  20. I have done a personal controlled study, led produced around 35% less , it supplies better spectrum but does not penetrate the canopy as well as hps. Great for vegetative growth, best to mix led and hps if you can afford it, it not stick with hps.

  21. LEDs have a greater energy to light ratio… less watts are lost to heat.
    plus you can fine tune the spectral output..
    these are the future of indoor growing.

  22. Lets see a controlled study on yields using the same strain and nutes and same wattage! There is not a study because
    it would show led does not produce the same yield and bud density

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