What is a grow light timer?
A grow light timer decreased the workload of the grower, allowing for automation of lighting in the indoor garden. Without a grow room light timer, cultivators often find themselves feeling chained to their garden. These timers allow for more freedom, and cut down on human error by establishing consistent light periods.
If you are looking to optimize your grow room for 1 or 2 lights, these timers will be perfect for you. If you are outfitting a larger indoor garden, or a commercial greenhouse, you will be better suited with a grow light controller.
Choosing the best grow light timer
When selecting a timer for the lights in your grow room, it is important to consider the electrical system in the garden. There are timers with 1-2 outlets, which are perfect for small, hobby grows, and there are timers for larger grow rooms with 3-10 outlets. This will come down to how many grow lights you plan to employ.
Supply voltage of the grow light timers ranges from 120 Volts to 277 Volts. Most small household grow rooms will use a 120 supply Volt, but some larger operations will require the popular 240 supply Volt.
Deciding which timer is best for you will also come down to the features you want included. Photocell allows for more automation of other components of the grow room that work on the same schedule as grow lights. For example, a timer with photocell will shut off exhaust fans and CO2 generators during the lights off period, and reactivate all necessary equipment when the lights come back on.
Some timers are required to be hardwired directly to your electrical system, and you should consult an electrician prior to installing these. Other features to consider are:
- High temperature shut-off, which turns off grow lights if temperature exceeds a safe range.
- Hot start time delay, which protects lights during a power failure
How long should plants be under grow light?
Plants will need different light cycles depending on the stage they are in. A general guideline is:
- Vegetative growth-18 hours of light, followed by a 6 hour dark period. Some growers opt for 24 hours of light while vegging. This simulates the long days of summer and encourages robust, leafy growth.
- Flowering-12 hours of light followed by 12 hours of darkness. This simulates the changing of sun light during fall, and induces heavy blooming.
If you want to learn more about grow lights, visit our learning center! If you have any questions about grow light timers, controllers, flip boxes, or any of the parts and accessories we carry, give one of our experienced growers a call today at 888-815-9763.