If you’re thinking about setting up your very own indoor cannabis set up but you don’t have much experience, you probably have a lot of questions. What are the materials needed to grow cannabis indoors? How much will it cost? These are two of the most frequently asked questions regarding growing cannabis indoors.
We’ve decided to write a full post on the exact materials needed to grow cannabis efficiently and affordably for all of the beginners out there that are a bit overwhelmed.
Materials needed to grow cannabis indoors | The first step
Before buying anything, the first thing you’ll need to do is figure out where you’re going to set it up. Are you using a full room, a wardrobe in your house, or a grow tent designed for cannabis growing? Depending on your chosen method, you’ll have to spend more or less money.
You need to calculate the amount of space you’ll need while also keeping in mind the fact that you’ll need to be able to move about and get to your plants and devices. You’ll also need to think about where you want to place the intake and outtake lines for your extraction fan.
Once you know where you’re going to grow and how you’re going to distribute the space, you’re going to need to make a shopping list.
Materials needed to grow cannabis indoors | The Shopping List
Shopping lists are highly recommended so that you don’t end up spending more than you need to spend on unnecessary or expensive things. If you take your time to have a look at the current market and options, you can save quite a lot.
Materials needed to grow cannabis indoors:
- Grow tent or reflective sheeting if growing in a room or wardrobe.
- Lighting kit designed for growing cannabis.
- An extraction fan to remove stale air.
- An odor filter in accordance with the strength of your extraction system.
- A fan for moving air around the room/tent.
- Pulleys for raising and lowering your lights.
- A timer for turning the lights on and off.
- Thermos-hygrometer to control the humidity and heat.
- 10m of pipe for your inline and extraction fan system.
There’s a longer list with more things that we didn’t mention, as they are usually things that everyone has at home anyway, such as duct tape, clamps, screwdrivers and other bits and bobs.
Materials needed to grow cannabis indoors | Step by Step
We’re going to have a quick look through the items we mentioned earlier on our shopping list so that you can figure out for your own which models work best for you and which ones you don’t need.
1- Grow tents / Reflective sheeting
In order to grow cannabis indoors, your plants need absolutely no light during their “night time” which is why it’s incredibly important to use a grow tent or set up a wardrobe so that no light can get it, or even better, a whole room – but this can be a daunting task.
If you’re planning on using a grow tent, there’s no need to worry as they’re fully sealed so that no light can get in. If you’re growing in a wardrobe or in a room, you will need to cover every inch of the walls in reflective sheeting for grow rooms, making sure that absolutely no light can get in.
- For wardrobes: you will have to cover all of the walls (not the floor or ceiling) of your wardrobe. You’ll also need to make two holes – one for each side of the extraction. It can be a good idea to compare different grow tents by size when choosing the right one.
- For rooms: it honestly may be too expensive to fully cover a room with reflective sheeting. We recommend starting at the bottom until the height you expect your plants to grow to, which is usually around 1.2-1.5m. You’ll have to make absolutely sure that no light is getting in from the door or the window.
2- Grow lamp / Lighting kit
When growing cannabis indoors, you absolutely have to use some sort of lighting system potent enough for your plants to believe that they’re outdoors, allowing them to grow and flower perfectly.
Your choice in lighting kit also depends on the amount of money you’re willing to spend, the space you have available and the amount of cannabis that you want to grow, as well as how strong you’d like it to be. Keep in mind that you’ll also be spending more on your electricity bills; a 250w HPS light uses much less than a 600w HPS light.
Once you’ve decided where you’re growing and you know how much space you have, you’ll need to buy a grow lamp that is in accordance with what you need. We’re going to have a look at the different types of bulbs that are generally used when growing cannabis and how much space each of them can cover.
Type of lamp, strength, average yield and space covered:
- 250w: 150g, covers 80x80cm at 25-30cm from your plants
- 400w: 300g, covers 100x100cm at 40-50cm from your plants
- 600w: 450g, covers 120x120cm at 60-70cm from your plants
- 100w: 80g, covers 80x80cm at 40-50cm from your plants
- 200w: 150g, covers 100x100cm at 40-50cm from your plants
- 400w: 350g, covers 120x120cm at 40-50cm from your plants
- 150w: 150g, covers 80x80cm at 20-30cm from your plants
- 315w: 315g, covers 100x100cm at 30-40cm from your plants
- 630w: 630g, covers 150x150cm at 40-50cm from your plants
The yields mentioned above are the average numbers obtained under normal growing conditions. Professional growers can definitely harvest more than that, and beginners will most likely harvest less. When it comes to the lamp distance, this can also depend in the growing conditions and your plants’ health. These numbers are simply a guide.
3- Indoor extraction system
Extraction fans are essential when growing cannabis indoors for two reasons. The first reason is that your plants need fresh air; they can’t sit in the same air for too long. All plants need certain levels of CO2 and Oxygen, which they use for different processes depending on the time of day (if it’s daylight or nighttime). The second reason is that if you don’t have an extraction fan, heat will build up in your grow room which is disastrous.
When buying an extraction system you’ll need to take down how large your grow room is (in cubic meters) and how strong your grow lamps are. There are other factors that influence the type of extractor you’ll need, and it can be quite hard to find the absolute perfect extraction system. Things like the temperature in your grow room, the temperature outside, the type of lighting and many others can also influence the extractor fan. We’re going to show you a quick solution to figuring out the type of extraction that you need.
If you’re going to be growing cannabis in a 1.2×1.2x2m grow tent, you’ll need to use this equation:
1.2×1.2×2 = 2.88 x 60 = 172.8m3. This is the strength that your extraction fan will have to reach to be as effective as possible.
This calculation is done by taking into account the temperature outside your grow room and your lamp strength. In this example, the temperature is 20° and the lighting system is 600w:
600/1.28 = 468 m3/h is the extraction speed that you need due heat difference indoors and outdoors.
This calculation allows you to keep the temperature in your grow room at a 4C° difference compared to the outdoor temperature. If you’re taking in 20C° air, your grow room will stay at 24C°.
4- Inline fans
Inline fans are just as important as extraction fans, although if your extractor is strong enough it can create negative pressure which can cause air to come into your grow room without any sort of extra inline fans. This only works with Grow Tents, as they tend to come with passive breathing holes, although if you’re using a room or grow tent you’ll need to sort out air in-take yourself.
In order to calculate the inline fan strength you’ll need to calculate a fourth of your extraction strength. So, if you have a 1.2×1.2x2m grow tent and a 600w lamp, you’ll need a 468m3/h extractor. So, for your inline fan you’ll need to calculate 468/4 which is 117m3/h – this is the type of intake that you’ll need.
5- Carbon filter for indoor growing / scrubber
When you grow cannabis indoors the biggest giveaway is usually the intense aroma that cannabis plants let off during their flowering period. If you don’t want anyone calling the cops on you, we highly recommend installing an odor filter of some sort.
In order to know what type of filter you’ll need, you’ll first need to know what inline fan and air filtration system you need. We did this earlier, so let’s skip to it; we know that the 1.2×1.2x2m grow tents need a 468 m3/h fan. Now, all you have to do is find an odor filter with the same sized opening and slightly stronger.
This means that the perfect odor filter for this set up would have a 125mm opening and should be almost 500m3/h. This avoids any mishaps with the filtration system, which can happen if the filter strength is less than the actual extraction itself, causing air buildup. If this were to happen it may be fatal for your plants, especially if you don’t realize that it’s happened.
The extraction fan may break due to overexertion and your plants may get sick due to breathing old, stale air – you may even have some problems yourself, as the smell will begin to build up and depending on the legality of your situation, the police may get involved. Remember that your odor filter should always be slightly stronger than your extraction fan when it comes to m3/h.
If you have an extraction system then you’ll also need an inline fan systems need ducting which needs to be durable, flexible and fully opaque, and obviously the same width as your inline fans and other devices such as filters.
For your inline system to pull as strong as possible, your ducting will need to be as straight as possible. Every bend in your ducting system means that you’ll lose a bit of strength, around 50%, which can reduce your carbon filter and end up stinking up your building as well as being quite bad for your plants, providing them with less fresh air than they need to successfully grow.
Having a fan in your grow room is an absolute must when it comes to the materials needed to grow cannabis indoors. Two of the biggest factors that fans affect are plant breathing and the heat in the room or tent.
Proper ventilation is incredibly important for plants to breathe, and an oscillating fan does wonders for rustling your plants’ leaves which induces breathing. If you grow plants with absolutely no fan or any sort of air movement in the room, your plants will grow super weak, as a slight breeze helps them to get stronger and hold up more flowers. Plants grown indoors without a fan are also more susceptible to insect and fungi infestations.
Fans can also help to remove some of the extra heat in your grow room generated by your lighting system. Excess heat near the tips of your plants can cause them to grow thin and wiry and their flowers may end up opening up and losing quite a lot of terpenes.
Pulleys aren’t really that incredibly important but they are super practical. Pulleys allow you to raise and lower your lighting kit and reflector whenever you want. Many people set up a rope system to save a bit of money, but honestly pulleys aren’t that expensive when it comes to how much easier they make it to get stuff done around your grow tent or room.
Having a timer in your grow room means that you don’t have to manually turn the lights on and off every day in order to keep your plants in the growth or flowering periods. It’s pretty impossible to do for so long, anyway. Timers aren’t that complicated, just make sure to get a decent one; if you decide to cheap out and get a bad or faulty timer, it may not work correctly and end up completely ruining your plants.
Thermos-hygrometers are designed to give real-time readings of the relative humidity in your grow tent or room, as well as the temperature. These devices are vital when it comes to giving your plants the right parameters to grow in – cannabis plants need a specific temperature and relative humidity during each period in order to develop properly.
Most thermos-hygrometers also keep a record of the highest and lowest of both readings, so you’ll know if something is wrong when it comes to your plants’ night cycle. This makes it much easier to know exactly what it is that your plants need in as far as their environment.
Materials needed to grow cannabis indoors | Conclusion
As you can see, the materials needed to grow cannabis indoors are varied but not that complicated. You essentially just need 10 things to successfully grow cannabis indoors. The only things we left out of this post are the seeds, substrate and nutrients. Well, what are you waiting for? Get to it, make your shopping list and take your measurements. There’s nothing more satisfying than growing your own plants from start to finish. See you next post!