7 Best Grow Lights for Indoor Plants in 2023: Reviews & Top Picks
Limited outdoor space and poor weather don’t have to keep you from enjoying a full array of thriving plants. A grow light lets you bring the garden inside, offering the sun’s nourishing power in a controlled area. Even expert gardeners lean on grow lights when they need to keep plants away from pests, frost, and other outside hazards.
Replacing the sun’s influence is no small task. It takes a high-quality light to get satisfactory results when you have several plants depending on you. Get started outfitting your ideal inside space with our reviews of the eight best grow lights for indoor plants.
A Glance at Our Winners in 2023
|Best Overall||MARS HYDRO TS 1000W||
|Best Value||PARFACTWORKS PAR1200||
|Premium Choice||SpiderFarmer SF2000||
|Best Desktop Grow Light||Bseah Grow Light||
The 10 Best Grow Lights for Indoor Plants
1. MARS HYDRO TS 1000W – Best Overall
The MARS HYDRO TS 1000W hits all the right notes for anyone requiring an undersized grow light to carry plants through their whole lifecycle. The full spectrum light encourages fast growth and abundant yields. Dimmable LED bulbs provide uniform lighting for tents up to 3’x3’ in area. A new reflective hood offers an improved refraction angle for more intense light.
The quality for the price and its versatility makes the TS 1000W the best overall grow light for indoor plants. It works on 120V and 240V setups, and it’s possible to daisy chain up to 60 lights as your needs expand.
2. PARFACTWORKS PAR1200 — Best Value
The looks aren’t impressive, but the PARFACTWORKS PAR1200 gives you all the features and performance you could want from a 2’x2’ grow light. As the best grow light for the money, the PAR1200 doesn’t deliver as much intensity as the Mars Hydro TS1000W, but the full-spectrum LEDs provide enough to sustain seedlings through to harvest.
The PAR1200 is an excellent light for beginners, but PARFACTWORKS includes everything you need to daisy chain more lights. Since it only runs on 120 watts, the 1000-watt light is energy-efficient and uses an aluminum heat sink to deflect heat and protect your plants.
3. SpiderFarmer SF2000 – Premium Choice
The SpiderFarmer SF2000 may be a pricier option, but the value is hard to beat. With a 55,000-hour lifespan, it exceeds lesser models in longevity while also providing superior performance. The high-quality Samsung diodes give you uniform lighting and excellent efficiency of 2.7 µmol/J.
One lamp covers a 2’x 4’ area, but you can daisy chain up to 100 units via a controller. On a single dimmer box, you can operate up to 60 connected lights. The units don’t produce much heat or noise due to a passive cooling design, and concentrated diodes along the edge ensure the most uniform PPFD.
4. Bseah Grow Light — Best Desktop Grow Light
|Coverage:||10 inches per bar|
Convenient control is the Bseah light’s essential selling point, with 10 dimmable modes and three switch modes being only a few of the features that earn it the title of best desktop grow light. The yellow/white light promises a full spectrum capable of promoting growth from germination through fruiting.
The lamp attaches to a countertop with a clip, and you can get up to four adjustable goosenecks on one unit. It’s a sturdy design that’s easy to raise or lower without the concern of a light falling and damaging your plants.
5. VIPARSPECTRA XS2000
In truth, the VIPARSPECTRA XS2000 could have taken the top spot among the best grow lights, but it falls short for a few reasons, like its 3-year warranty and 240W power usage. In fairness, the power consumption is forgivable given its impressive 1845 µmol/m²/s PPFD, which is higher than the SF2000 despite being less expensive.
The most notable drawback is the missing daisy chain feature. The unit is solid with a powerful 576-diode light for indoor use and a respectable 2.4 µmol/J efficacy. The dimming switch is accessible and flexible in a range from 5%–100% brightness. If you could connect several under unified control, the XS 2000 would likely be at the top of this list.
6. MARS HYDRO FC-E4800
The most expensive of the bunch is the hands-down highest quality grow light as well. The MARS HYDRO FC-E4800 is a 9-square-foot, 2,646-piece spider-style grow lamp, drawing 480 watts but delivering a superior 2.8 µmol/J efficacy. It’s easy to use, adjustable, powerful, and a perfect growing solution for beginners and experts alike.
The unit’s open design and durable aluminum body supply exceptional heat deflection. There’s plenty of room to play with the setup, thanks to the adjustable light bars, convenient dimming switch, and daisy chain capability. You can string up to 20 lights together.
7. Abriselux A1500 LED Grow Light
Another excellent value, the Abriselux A1500 offers the flexibility, durability, and full color spectrum of units twice its cost. Its 2.6 µmol/J efficiency is fantastic for the price, as is the 1346 µmol/m²/s PPFD rating. The aluminum construction is water-resistant and heat-dissipating, an overall stout build for the money. The two essential drawbacks are a lack of a daisy chain option and the inconvenient dimmer switch placement atop the unit.
Buy’s Guide: Selecting The Best Grow Lights For Indoor Plants
Types of Grow Lights
LEDs are a favorite among growers for their long life, efficiency, and low heat output compared to fluorescent and incandescent lights. They’re also less expensive and easier to use than high-priced commercial solutions.
Many LED grow lights, and all of the hanging lights listed here, are full-spectrum grow lights, meaning they offer the color range plants need to photosynthesize, grow, flower, and fruit through white light. The best grow lights focus on supplying blue and red light, the two most crucial colors to promote growth. Blue light is critical in early growth stages, while red takes over during later phases to promote flowering. Some lights also include low levels of infrared light to help the red light create more robust plants.
What Are PAR and PPFD?
Two essential measures that manufacturers like to advertise are PAR and PPFD, which relate to the light’s intensity. Photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) describes the light wavebands that plants use to grow or the amount of light in the 400–700 nm range.
In grow lights, photosynthetic photon flux (PPF) measures the amount of usable light (light in the PAR zone) that it generates. In general, the higher the PPF, the better the light is at feeding the plant, though going too high (above 2,000 µmol/m²/s) can also hinder growth. Photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) concerns how much of the usable light gets to the plants, which will change when you adjust the dimmer or the distance between the light and plants. Compare PPFD diagrams between models to find the most intensity for the money.
How Long Do Grow Lights Stay On?
While most plants can thrive in 6–8 hours of direct sunlight, they need much more time under artificial light to yield the same results. Lights typically need to stay on 12–16 hours each day. Given the operating time, selecting a high-efficiency set is essential to save on your electric bill, especially if you plan to daisy chain several together.
- Related Read: 15 Best Types of Vegetables to Grow Indoors Under Lights
The MARS HYDRO TS 1000W is the best overall grow light for indoor plants, offering a faultless blend of reliability, flexibility, and intensity for an excellent price. Our best value pick is the PARFACTWORKS PAR1200, and we believe it’s the best light for beginners. Your unique space, plant varieties, and budget should factor into your next purchase, and it’s crucial to remember that no product is a one-size-fits-all solution. But by starting your search with these grow light reviews, you’ll be sure to find an ideal setup for your indoor garden.
Featured Image Credit: Amazon