The moment has arrived…
You’ve decided to bring a grow tent to your home.
But you don’t want just any tent. You want the BEST grow tent setup possible.
Well, let me tell you… YOU’VE COME TO THE RIGHT PLACE!
We know EVERYTHING there’s to know about grow tents, like how to set them up, adjust them to perfection, and how to get the best out of them, so everything goes neatly with your plants.
This won’t be a quick read or a brief guide. It will be as comprehensive as it gets but still easy-to-read so you can learn it all.
So, are you ready? Check below!
What is a Grow Tent?
Many people know them as indoor greenhouses (even though that’s a different thing). Other people know them as grow rooms (which is sort of true).
While a greenhouse is often a walkable area outdoors and a grow room can be anything from closets to bedrooms and even part of a kitchen, a grow tent is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a plastic piece of equipment that goes indoors to provide a suitable environment for plants.
An ideal grow tent would boast grow lights, carbon filters, trays, netting, hangers, vents and fans, plus hoods and a few extras.
It can be of pretty much any size, but they’re often small, like a pantry. They can fit in almost any room and provide extra space for growing plants safely.
Grow tents make indoor spaces as livable as possible for plants that would otherwise struggle in their germinating, growing, blooming, or yielding periods.
Why Use a Grow Tent?
What makes grow tents so worthwhile is how easy they are to prepare and work with, regardless of what you’re using them for.
Yet, there are still many more benefits to consider. Below, we go over their most sought-after:
It’s probably the most critical part of a grow tent: it enhances the light intensity, humidity, and temperature.
And lastly, it prevents gushes of winds and pets from damaging plants. It keeps the whole environment safe so you can grow any plant without problems.
Easy to Set Up and Break down
Without using drills, installing permanent objects, or making changes to your house that you may eventually regret, grow tents are highly convenient.
Even a large grow tent of over 12 square feet will be a piece of cake to set up. If it takes you more than 2 or 3 hours, then that’s probably your fault.
And if all that wasn’t enough, you’ll have to spend NOTHING. Once you buy a grow tent, setting it up is free of cost.
Cheap in the Long Run
You will probably find grow tents a bit expensive at first (some are pretty cheap still). But in the long run, they’ll save you TONS of money.
This includes electricity, soil, arrangements, home optimizations, and, more importantly, time. They’ll save you a lot of all these things, so you can invest them somewhere else in the long run.
Accessible & Space-Efficient
Last but not least, grow tents save A LOT of space.
More importantly, they’re accessible, so you can check your plants and make arrangements without any struggle.
What Size Grow Tent to Pick?
Sure, grow tents will save you a lot of space at home while using whatever they need as efficiently as nothing else can.
Should you get just any grow tent size then?
Before you choose anything, it’s VITAL to know where you’re placing it first. For rooms that are big enough to fit a car, you shouldn’t worry. But if the room is small, measure before picking.
Generally, grow tents come in square or rectangular designs. The smaller ones can be about 4 by 4 and 6 feet high, while the largest can be over 10 by 10 feet and 7 feet tall.
ALSO: Do you want a grow tent that lets you peek and walk inside (large tents), or you prefer something purely visual (small ones)?
Best Grow Tent Setup: What Do You Need?
With all the basics covered, let’s give you a heads-up of all the things you need to make a grow tent work.
A Quality Grow Tent
It is obvious, sure. But we want to repeat this because you don’t want just any tent. For the BEST setup, you need the BEST tent.
That’s why you should check our best grow tent for gardens article first. It will teach you EVERYTHING to know about grow tents, so you can pick the BEST one effortlessly.
More importantly, you’ll find a list of grow tents that you’ll find nowhere else. We picked them because of their quality, so you’ll make no mistake with any of them.
If you don’t pick one of those, at least make sure you’re picking something great. It’s worth knowing that going low quality and cheap is like shooting yourself in the foot. So be careful.
Grow Lights and Reflectors
Once you’ve picked the right grow tent, go for the reflectors and grow lights. There are different types of grow lights to choose from, though.
For example, you can find the standard fluorescent grow lights, ideal for their super-intense warm color. There’s also the HPS grow light, perfect as supplementation for the tent. And sure enough, the unbeatable LED grow lights are always there to help you out.
If you’re going for something more traditional, HID and incandescent lights may also help you out.
What should you strive for? Power and efficiency. For example, LED, HID, and fluorescent lights are all excellent alone. But LED consumes a lot less than HID, while fluorescent lights consume A LOT of electricity.
Then you have supplemental ones like HPS lights. These won’t be too helpful by themselves but may work as add-ons to keep the light at the right level without spending much on electricity.
TIP: The lights should be sufficiently potent but not too much. For that, consider lights between 200 and 400 watts for small tents and higher-watt lights up to 1,000 watts for larger tents.
Vents and Fans
You probably want the grow tent to be at a specific temperature. For that, you’ll have to use fans and vents.
Ventilation is probably 50% why you’re using a grow tent in the first place. Alongside lights, they make for a HUGE portion of whether the plants grow safely or not. It helps keep humidity at the right level and prevents temperatures from going too high.
Generally, you only need a sufficiently potent fan, a few extraction vents, and a well-designed ventilation system (that allows air to flow around).
Filters and Odor Control
Like vents and fans, you also need filters. These are often hooked to the ventilation system, sometimes a bit apart as extraction systems.
The focus? Avoid bacteria and unwanted contaminants from staying inside the tent. Given it will remain close for 99% of the time, this filter can be a life-saving addition.
As a general rule, a carbon filter with the right ducts will get the job done. A fan can help to keep odors down as well.
Meters and Measuring Tools
How do you know the temperature inside the tent? Easy, you use a thermometer. The same happens with humidity and a hygrometer.
Other people also like adding timers that automate fans and lights, as well as knobs so they can control the intensity as necessary.
Hangers and Straps
Where are you installing all the lights, fans, vents, filters, and tools?
Here’s when hangers, straps, trellises, and other similar gear enter.
There are tons of different ways to go here. Some grow tents come with their own set of hangers and straps, while others come with none, so you’ll have to buy them separately. Either way, they’ll be essential, so you don’t want to miss them.
How to Set Up a Grow Tent
Let’s say you’ve gathered ALL the equipment necessary to start your grow tent. Now let’s teach you how to make them work.
Follow these steps:
Prepare the Space
Start by cleaning EVERYTHING. I repeat, everything where you’re placing the grow tent.
The focus is to prevent any contaminant like bacteria or fungi from staying behind and possibly infecting the grow tent as you’re setting it up.
Here, we recommend using chlorine and similar cleaners in the area.
Also, don’t forget to prepare the space, make it comfortable and suitable for the tent. You don’t want it to be unleveled or shaky later (which could cause damage to your plants).
And lastly, make sure it is a place where you can install pumps and with outlets close (lights and fans will need them).
Once you have the place ready, you can proceed to the assembly process.
Assemble the Grow Tent
Every tent you’ll find out there comes with its own instructions. We can’t tell you anything other than to follow those.
However, it’s always worth knowing how the process goes most of the time. It’s usually like this:
- Start by identifying the pieces (mainly the clamps/brackets and the poles).
- Assemble the frame as needed (follow instructions carefully).
- Tighten and adjust the frame as necessary, making sure it stands sturdily.
- Proceed to put on the cloth (mylar and/or plastic cover).
- Check for any type of entrance beforehand. Make sure they’re all closed.
- Then you can start attaching hangers, ropes, straps, trellises, nets, or whatever to finish.
This process may take you anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 hours or so, depending on the size and your experience.
Set up the Lights
Done with the grow tent barebones? Continue with the lights.
As simple as hanging them on the holders/hangers and setting their controllers (if any). In some cases, hanging them directly from the grow tent is a worthwhile tactic (if there aren’t hangers around).
There’s really not much to this. Or is there?
Typically, you only need to make sure the lights are pointing to the right place. The focus is to ensure the highest light intensity possible.
Apart from that, you can set up the lights in ten minutes or less.
Prepare the Ventilation
Once you’re done with the lights and the basis of the tent, you can proceed with the ventilation system.
This one is a bit more complicated than the rest. Here’s how it goes:
- Start by checking the vents in the grow tent. Discover them and loosen them up.
- Now connect the fans and/or pumps to the ducts as needed. Make sure the pieces fit firmly together to prevent any disconnection later on.
- Proceed to install an internal fan if you want. Connect everything else to electricity.
- Check that the ventilation is working. You should see the duct system pulling air out of the tent. The interior fan should spread air around.
If everything is working neatly and the installation of ducts and fans seems ideal, you’re almost done setting up that tent.
Check the Interior Environments
This is the final part and probably the trickiest.
Here, you need to make sure the environment inside the tent is PERFECT and nothing less than that.
How do you do that? Install all the equipment and test the interior.
Here’s how to do that:
- Begin by installing your thermometer and hygrometer. Place them in a central position, preferably close to the plants and away from the lights/fans.
- After that, start the ventilation system and let it work for a while. You should let everything season up for about 30 minutes.
- Come back and check whether the environment is ideal for the plants you want to grow (humidity, temperature, and airflow).
- In the process, check that the grow tent doesn’t have any leaks. And more importantly, make sure the lights, fans, and ducts are all properly installed and working to perfection.
- If everything seems okay, then you can close it and let it work for a while (30 mins to an hour). Check again and make sure it’s working neatly.
Once you’ve checked everything and it seems fine, you’re done. You can bring your plants in.
As you can see, preparing the BEST grow tent setup is not much of a problem as long as you know what you’re doing.
It won’t be a piece of cake as a beginner grow-tent user. But it won’t be rocket science either.
As long as you follow our advice, recommendations, and brief guides, you’ll have an easy time setting it up. More importantly, you’ll have a blast in the process.
So, now that you’re aware of how to set up a grow tent, what are you waiting for? It won’t build itself!