Do LED Grow Lights Produce Heat?
You’ve got your soil, your seedlings, your fertilizer, and a fantastic indoor grow space. You also have brand-new LED grow lights, still in the box, to help make your indoor growing dreams a reality. Grow lights are a wonderful invention that enable people to grow healthy plants inside all year long, no matter how much natural sunlight is available in the space!
As someone new to growing plants indoors, you may have a lot of questions about how exactly these LED grow lights work. For example, you may be wondering, “I know that grow lights produce light for my plants, but do LED grow lights produce heat?”
It is a common myth that LED grow lights do not produce heat. In fact, some companies that manufacture LED grow lights even help propagate this myth by claiming that their products do not produce heat! This is false. In fact, there are three main reasons why LED lights produce heat. The three main reasons are imperfections in the diode’s crystal structure, the presence of internal reflection, and the fact that the lights exist in a closed system.
Let’s first talk about the structure of LED lights. There are minor flaws in the crystal structure of the diode of the lights. The diode is the long tube of the light that conducts electricity in one direction. Electricity flows through the diode to generate light, but because of these small structural imperfections, some of the electricity is instead converted to heat.
The second major reason that LED lights produce heat is due to a small amount of internal reflection that is present in the diode. This means that some of the light generated by the electricity flowing through the diode does not make it out into the air and is instead reflected back into the structure. The reflected light is then converted to heat.
The third and final reason that LED lights produce heat is because some of the light that exits the diode will be absorbed by physical objects present nearby in your grow space. As the objects absorb light, some of it is converted to heat. This is because your grow room is considered a “closed system,” which is a physics principle. This means that if no light leaves your grow space, almost all of it will eventually be converted to heat.
Another basic physics principle, the Law of Conservation of Energy, confirms what was just covered above. This law asserts that energy can be neither created nor destroyed; it can only change forms. When your LED grow lights produce light, it can be absorbed by your plants. When plants absorb light energy, they convert it into chemical energy and store it in sugars in the process of photosynthesis. Alternatively, when objects in your grow space absorb light energy, they convert it into heat energy.
In conclusion, LED grow lights produce less heat than many of their counterparts but nonetheless, they still produce some heat. This is why height is a consideration in how high you hang your grow lights; you don’t want to burn your precious plants!