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Lowering Grow Room Electricity Costs

Lowering Grow Room Electricity Costs
Lowering Grow Room Electricity Costs

Indoor cultivations have high upfront costs, in addition to expensive recurring costs to operate. Growers are always looking for more ways to lower their costs, so check out these tips for some ways to save.

Switch To LED Lights

VOLT® Grow VL-1 & FL-1 LED Horticulture Lights

Switching from traditional HPS fixtures to LED lights will significantly lower your electricity costs. LEDs are more energy-efficient and allow the same; high light output while using less power. You can see exactly how much you would save when making the switch using VOLT Grow®’s Energy Savings Calculator. Since LEDs also produce much less heat, you will spend significantly less on your HVAC and cooling costs after you buy LED grow lights. You also save money on lamp replacement costs; since LEDs have a lifetime of 50,000+ hours (close to 10 years of use) compared to HPS lamps having to be replaced only after 8-12 months. Lastly, LED fixtures are eligible for rebates, which allows you to have anywhere from 20% to 90% of the total cost of the LED grow lights you purchase refunded by your local utility company, depending on your local guidelines. Read our article “Opportunities For Rebates With LED Grow Lights” to learn more about claiming your rebates.

Switch Your Lighting Schedule

Light Schedule

Many growers are unaware that utility companies offer a time-of-use (TOU) plan to reduce strain on the power grid. With this plan, different rates depending on what time of day the energy is being used, rather than having one flat electricity rate. Electricity rates decrease when there is less demand to encourage people to use electricity during non-peak hours. You can also lower your power bill by running your light cycles during non-peak hours with cheaper energy rates—which are typical during the night— but vary depending on your specific utility company.

Stagger Cooling Equipment

Growers can save by staggering when different cooling equipment turns on and starting the lowest energy-consuming equipment first. If all your cooling equipment turns on at once, yes, the temperature will drop very quickly, and soon the systems will turn off, but you just peaked your electricity because systems consume the most energy to start up, which will then affects your whole month’s bill. Instead, you should start by having just the fans or one unit turn on, then if the optimal temperature is still not reached, start up the more powerful systems. This will allow you to maintain your desired temperature by only using as little power that is necessary.

Hydronic Cooling Option

Hydronic cooling is a cooling method that removes heat from the space by using chilled water that circulates the space. The water is cooled by a chiller and then pumped through a series of pipes to air handlers, which causes heat in the air to transfer to the water and cool down the space, and then the water circles back to the chiller. Water has a much greater heat absorption and capacity compared to air, which is why this hydronic cooling method is much more efficient than traditional HVAC systems and can help you save significantly in the long run.