How Do You Clean A Grow Light Reflector in 2 Steps

Don’t feel nervous about, “how do you clean a grow light reflector” since you could do it in two simple steps. You might catch yourself in the greenhouse in a dilemma and afraid that you might do it wrong, but it’s a foolproof task. Nonetheless, it would be best to know that there are different kinds of residues that could stick to the reflector, so it’s essential to know the tips for them as well. 

It’s crucial to have a grow light in the greenhouse because light affects the plants’ growth and productivity. But for the lights to do their job well, never overlook reflector maintenance. The University of Vermont Extension mentioned how significant reflectors are, especially with the amount of light the plants will receive. 

How Do You Clean A Grow Light Reflector in 2 Steps

How Do You Clean A Grow Light Reflector Correctly

One can conclude reflectors are mandatory for all indoor lights. If the reflector is dirty or broken, it will directly reduce the grow lights’ output by up to 20%. In turn, the grow lights wouldn’t be efficient, and plants won’t conduct photosynthesis

 

Step #1. Prepare materials

First, prepare your microfiber cloth and a mix of bottled water and 70% isopropyl alcohol. The emphasis is necessary on using these same materials. For example, using other materials for wiping the reflector might scratch the surface, so skip towels even though they might seem soft. 

You can’t use tap water for the cleaning solution, but you can replace bottled water with reverse osmosis water. This is because tap water, depending on your location, has substances and minerals that can damage the surface or leave a residue. 

 

Step #2. Wipe gently

Next is wipe the grow light reflector gently until there is no more residue on the surface. If you’re struggling with removing everything, you can replace the cloth with another microfiber towel. Add a small amount of water onto it to help remove the leftover cleaning material and dirt. 

Don’t get impatient if it takes you more time or towels to thoroughly clean the grow light reflector. Some dirt has built up and is trickier to remove. Over time, make it a habit to clean the reflector after each harvest, even though they don’t seem too dirty to the naked eye since even dust can affect its efficiency.

 

Heavy soil

For heavy soil and even dirt and grease, the mixture of alcohol and water should help remove them from the reflector. If you notice residues after wiping, soak a cotton ball in water and use it to take them out. Citrus cleaners should also address stubborn residues and stains that built up over time. 

One might be tempted to scrape off the stains and buildup, but they will damage the reflectors. At the same time, do not assume you can replace citrus cleaners with highly acidic ones or use white spirit to exchange methylated spirits. Other cleaning products labeled for specific uses and ultrasonic cleaning systems will also cause more damage than good to your reflectors.

 

Light soil

Light soiling is manageable with citrus cleaner diluted with water by following manufacturer instructions for the cleaner. It’s crucial to dilute the product first and avoid other cleaners like vinegar, alkaline, and neutral products. When wiping, be careful not to touch the surface to prevent fingerprint marks and use new and clean cotton cloth every time. 

 

Dirt

You are lucky with dirt and dust since compressed air or a soft duster can remove them from the reflector. There’s no need to wipe harshly and maintain gentleness even if the materials are easy to remove. Additionally, don’t forget to check if the duster you’re using is clean beforehand.

 

How to clean a PL light system reflector?

What if you need to clean a PL light system reflector? For this case, remove it from its fixture and flush the inside and outside with water. You might also find it more convenient to use a low-power hose to remove most dust and dirt. 

After the initial cleaning, fill a basin with 1 part vinegar to 100 parts water for submersion. Gently clean the reflector with a soft brush to remove residues and grime from pesticides, condensation, or foliar sprays. The next step is to use another basin filled with clean water to rinse off the previous solution. 

Finally, rinse the reflector in a basin with distilled water. This will take care of hard water residues and keep the surface clean. You can repeat all the steps if you still find residues on the reflector. 

 

When To Replace A Grow Light Reflector?

After a year, you can consider replacing the reflector as even maintenance leads to the degradation of the material. This is a better approach to do regularly than needing to replace the whole fixture. Your regimen and the environment are factors for the replacement of the reflector. 

 

Conclusion

Greenhouse maintenance is necessary to ensure the optimal growing environment for the plants. This includes knowing the answer to how do you clean a grow light reflector. The grow light reflector is easy to clean with a solution of alcohol and water partnered with a microfiber cloth for wiping. 

Depending on the dirt and residue on the reflector, you might also need to use cotton, diluted citrus cleaner, or a simple duster. Overall, never neglect the maintenance of grow light reflectors since they affect the efficiency of the lights. This makes them correlated with the growth and productivity of the plants. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up to our newsletter!