LED vs HID Grow Lights: Which Should You Choose?

The confusion between the two grow lights namely,  LED vs HID grow lights have been going on since the surge of LED are exposed to the marketplace. Even the dilemma of which of the two types of grow lights to use has evaded the online forums and sparks debate among veteran and aspiring growers. Looking back, HID grow light will surely win this battle, however as the emergence of LED grow lights started, there has been an unclear answer to this because the LED grow lights have been boasting its advantages as well. 

Choosing the best grow light to use is the most crucial decision for a growing to do as their decision would lead to either produce higher or lower yields and either healthy or unhealthy plant condition. Therefore, we will understand in this article about LED vs HID grow lights and which of the two you should choose to prevent from experiencing unexpected cultivation consequences and wasting a fortune. 

Grow Lights 101

High-Intensity Diode (HID) Grow Light

HID, an abbreviation for High-Intensity Diode grow light, has been around for decades now and generally the main choice of the light source of cannabis cultivators. It has been recognized to produce great products and the rate of growth is much quicker. Generally, this variety of grow lights are divided into two types, including the MH and the HPS grow lights. The usage of each grow lights will be depending on the stage of the growing process is taking place. 

Light-Emitting Diode (LED) Grow Light

LED or Light-Emitting Diode in the longer term is a type of grow light that is also an effective grow light to boost the production and condition of the cannabis plant. Compared to the HID grow lights, the LED have also a fair share of advantages to offer in terms of efficiency, and power consumption. However, between the two popular light sources, LED vs HID grow lights, the users of LED lights have experienced lesser production amounts. It is similarly important to note that due to the popularity of LED grow lights, there are some fake LEDs rampant in the market. Avoid these products as they provide great disadvantages to your crops. 

Which Should You Choose Between LED vs HID Grow Lights?


If you are torn to choose which of the two, LED vs HID grow lights, then think about its air conditioning capacity. If you prefer much lesser management and issue regarding cooling of the grow area, the LED greatly shows an advantage in this category. This type of grow light is productive to cool off itself without having to count exclusively on the air conditioning system of the specified cultivating room, thus there will be minor issues encountered in terms of humidity and overheating. This is valuable when using it in the long run. 

Intensity of Heat

If you are interested to choose according to the heat capacity of a grow light, out of these two, LED vs HID grow lights, the most advantageous option will be HID as it should do this job efficiently. This type of lighting source is known for its infamous capacity for producing heat. However, this heat advantage could lead to temperature and humidity issues if there is no proper ventilation and airflow around the growing area. Nonetheless, if you choose LED, there will be lesser expenditure on the installation of ventilation, as the heat capacity of LED is less intense and should be cooler around the area. 

Production and Harvest

When torn with these two, LED vs HID grow lights, and your priority is the amount of production and harvest by the end of the growing process, then the better choice is the LED grow lights. I did mention the word better on this matter since both grow lights have a promising capacity to produce and multiply the production amount. Looking back, the HID grow lights are relatively prominent in delivering such and have ascertained its significance in terms of the amount of harvest. Nevertheless, as time goes by, the improvement of LEDs have been incredible and contradicted to HID’s, they are presently better on the production side. 

Cheaper Cost

Usually, when we talk about the affordability between these two, LED vs HID grow lights, this matter generally favorable on the side of HID. This is why many amateur growers still opt for HID grow lights, especially when under a tight budget as they are economic and efficient. While the LED grows lights are quite expensive, this may take up much cost and not adequate for those with limited funds. Regardless of its efficient energy-saving capacity, the amount of an LED light is still very costly. So, if your priority is to purchase within the budget, then HID is a great choice for you. 


If you are eyeing the quality and durability of a grow light, either LED vs HID grow lights, the approval stooped further on the LED. A typical grow light made from LED, could survive from 50,000 hours of lighting up to 100,000, whereas the HID grow lights could only last up to 10,000 hours maximum when utilized. If this matter is a priority to you, LED grow lights are a far great investment to choose over HID grow lights. 

Simplicity of Operation

When concerning simplicity in installation and operation is what you are aiming for, the confusion among these two choices, LED vs HID grow lights, the clear winner will be LED. HID grow lights will compel you to do plenty of practice and may further comprise extra adjustments just to establish them appropriately in the growing room. Yet, when you decide on LED, it is extremely manageable to install and expects no bunches of adjustments and practices. 

Coverage of Light

Due to the intensity of the light and heat emitted by the HID, among these two choices, LED vs HID grow lights, the matter of light spectrum coverage usually approves more on the latter. The light from HIDs can penetrate deeper into the plants, even on hardly exposed areas. This is the main reason why HID is renowned over the years regardless of the emergence of LEDs in the market. While the LED grow lights may require pruning the cannabis plants to achieve and even distribution of lighting throughout the entire growing area. 

Choosing Between LED vs HID Grow Lights

Both of the grow lights have their advantages and disadvantages to offer. Nonetheless, when choosing the decent grow lights for you, take a moment to reflect and evaluate your objective and goals. If you are in a location wherein the management of temperature is hard, then grow lights made of LED are the best practical option and still produce a great amount of output. Also, it is a great choice for those seeking to keep the cost of the overall running expense within the budget and do not care much about the upfront cost. 

On the other hand, the HIDs will be a considerable choice if you are aiming for high-intensity lighting and to maximize the output of your cannabis plants within the space of your growing area. 

Final Words

When deciding on which is most advantageous, LED vs HID grow lights, the consideration might be varied according to your preferences. However, it is undeniable that LEDs have tremendously improved and expanded for years already since its initial introduction on the market and constantly been upgrading its features to suit every grower’s needs. Compared to the HID, it has become superior among other grow lights and has proven its advantages to efficient cannabis cultivation.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply