Do I Need a Grow Tent?

Mar 14, 14 Do I Need a Grow Tent?

Growing indoors offers you incomparable control of the growing environment: you can manage the temperature, amount of light, and even the color of light. That being said, grow tents offer you even more control. But why would you need a grow tent, and what advantages do they offer?

Grow Tents?

“What are these grow tents you speak of?” Well, grow tents are exactly what they sound like: tents that are specially designed for growing indoors. Grow tents are perfect for rooms where the temperature can fluctuate, or in spaces not really designed for indoor growing, like a garage or a closet.

Gorilla-Grow-Tents-GGT33Grow tents give you the ideal environment for growing: flood-proof floors and heavy-duty doors with zippers covered by thick Velcro panels designed to create an air-tight seal, keeping the odors and pests in and the air out. While many grow tents feature walls with a silver coating that reflects the light produced by your grow light fixtures, therefore preventing hot spots, some grow tents utilize adjustable ports for intake and exhaust ducting, keeping the air inside your grow tent fresh and circulated.

Hydrohut  IG3028Many grow tents, like the ones offered from Gorilla Grow Tents, feature a height extension kit, which is great for two reasons: one, it gives your plants more room to grow, and two, since heat rises, the heat generated from your grow lights will rise to the top of the tent instead of hovering right above your plants, which isn’t the best thing for them.

Grow tents come in all sorts of sizes, giving you the ability to choose the one that’s right for you. Whether you’re growing just a handful of petunias or a complete vegetable garden, the bottom line is that there’s a grow tent that meets your needs.

The Advantages of Grow Tents

As mentioned above, apart from total control, grow tents offer more advantages than just growing plants in a spare closet.

  • A major upside to using grow tents is pest control. While some of those pesky critters may find their way inside your science experiment, it won’t be anything compared to growing outdoors or in an open environment.
  • We here at 1000Bulbs.com are all for energy efficiency and lowering your electricity costs. That being said, grow tents are very efficient. Many grow tents feature a reflective inside coating that reflects light. The great thing about this coating is that light is reflected off the walls instead of being dispersed,  so your plants are exposed to a greater concentration of light than they would be, say, in your closet next to a pair of sweaty shoes.
  • There are some flowers that feel the need to release strong odors and allergens, offending the senses of those throughout the house who may be sensitive to such things. The best way around that is with a grow tent. Grow tents are completely sealed, which translates into odor control for you.

Which grow tent are you thinking of getting? Tell us in the comments below, or connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, Pinterest, or LinkedIn!

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DIY Rope Light Word Art

Mar 06, 14 DIY Rope Light Word Art

Do you have boring, vacant wall space in your home? Have you been wanting to put your creativity and inner craftsman to the test but have had no idea where to start? Then you should definitely consider adding a personal touch to your home décor by creating your own unique LED rope light sign.

LED rope light is long-lasting and easy to configure into beautiful, loopy lettering. Plus, you can adjust the size of the letters to cover medium to large amounts of wall space that would otherwise require a large, expensive painting or various amounts of smaller artwork to fill. Spell out your family motto, an important value, or your child’s name and immediately alter the ambiance of any room to match it.

Here’s what you need:

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Once you have all your materials, plug your LED rope light into the wall to make sure it is working properly.
  2. Plan where you want to hang your word. Use a ruler, measuring stick, or other tool to draw a straight line where you want the bases of your letters to rest. (Keep in mind where the nearest outlet is and which end of the rope light you will plug into the outlet!)
  3. Configure the rope light into the word you want on the floor in front of your wall. Use weights to keep it your letters in position while you tape your letters in place.
  4. Attach your rope light word to the wall with more heavy duty tape, making sure the bottoms of your letters are touching the baseline you drew earlier. (Hint: You or your partner holds each letter in place while the other tapes it down.)
  5. After your word is taped to the wall, repeat the following steps for each letter:
    • Choose a corner of the letter to start on.
    • Remove the tape holding it to the wall. The other pieces of the letter that are taped to the wall should hold the majority of the letter in place.
    • Remove the tape that was holding the letter in its shape and use zip ties to hold it together instead. If you opted to use an incandescent rope light, make sure all the tape is removed before leaving your word on for long periods of time.
    • Visually gauge the places where you will need to attach your clips to the wall (usually where the tape was) and mark these places using chalk or a pencil.
    • Place your clips into the proper positions and screw them in.
    • Snap the rope light into the clips and pick another section of the letter to repeat the process until you finish your word.
  6. Once you’ve completed attaching your word to the wall, cut off any excess rope light that you don’t need (look closely at the cut marks on the rope light) and cap off the end of the rope.
  7. Plug in your LED rope light. Voilà! You’re done.

That’s it for this tutorial. Have you done any awesome DIY projects using ropelight?  Tell us in the comments below or on FacebookTwitterGoogle Plus, or Pinterest!

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The Impact of Lighting on Learning and Productivity

Mar 05, 14 The Impact of Lighting on Learning and Productivity

We already know that lighting has a substantial effect on our moods, making us feel less energetic on dull, cloudy mornings than on bright, sunny days. But what if I told you that lighting also has an effect on our cognitive abilities, such as learning and productivity?

In a 2010 case study on students in a German primary school, the Philips lighting company put this question to the test with their SchoolVision dynamic lighting system. This system allowed teachers to vary the brightness or color mood of their classrooms according to the time of day or activity, the goal being to see if changing the lighting in certain situations would result in different classroom behaviors. Below is what they found.

There were four main light settings, Normal, Energy, Focus, and Calm, all of which were expertly engineered to encourage either a stimulating or relaxing environment.

  • Normal had a standard intensity level and color tone, creating an ideal setting for regular classroom activity.
  • Energy had a higher intensity level and a very cool color tone, helping invigorate students when they needed to be more active such as in the mornings or after lunch.
  • Focus had the highest intensity light and a moderately cool color tone, aiding concentration during challenging tasks such as quizzes or tests.
  • Calm had a standard intensity light level and a warm color tone, bringing a relaxing ambiance to individual work or quiet time.

Using the recommended settings over the course of one year, teachers saw a 35 percent improvement in reading speed with almost 45 percent less errors than the control group. Hyperactivity was also reduced by up to 76 percent under the Calm setting, a figure that the control group did not come even close to. These numbers definitely seem cubicleto support the conclusion that lighting produces psychological effects that impact our attention span, concentration, and behavior. Moreover, they also correlate with other studies that prove that the same is true not only for children in a classroom setting, but also for adults in the workplace. For instance, in the late 1980s, the lighting system in the U.S. post office in Reno, Nevada was renovated to swap its harsh, artificial light for softer, more natural light. The upgrade not only resulted in $50,000 in energy savings, but productivity increases (such as much faster mail sorters and lower error rates for machine operators) that were projected to boost company revenues by up to $500,000 per year.

Unfortunately, the effect of light on behavior is less easily measured or studied than energy savings, so findings like these are rarely considered when a school or business is implementing a new lighting system. Although interchanging warm and cool color tones and varying light intensities throughout the day like with the SchoolVision system would probably be ideal, even a simple swap from dim, harsh lighting to softer, more natural lighting in the workplace can clearly make a big difference in enhancing job performance.

Could your workplace benefit from dynamic or natural light? Does lighting affect you differently at certain places or times of day? Tell us in the comments below, or drop us a line on FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or Google Plus!

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1000Bulbs.com’s Energy Savings Calculator Shows Benefits of Energy Efficient Lighting

1000Bulbs News Ribbon

In order to help their customers better understand the cost benefits of switching to energy-efficient alternatives, Internet lighting retailer, 1000Bulbs.com, has created their own Energy Savings Calculator to accompany all compact fluorescent and LED lamps on their website. Earlier this year, the last phase-out of general service incandescent bulbs enforced by the Energy and Independence Security Act of 2007 took effect. Due to these incandescent bulbs no longer being produced by manufacturers, the demand for energy-efficient lighting that meets EISA standards is growing rapidly.

Launched in January of 2014, the 1000Bulbs.com Energy Savings Calculator has the ability to show customers everything they need to know about the savings that comes with energy-efficient lighting. By taking the wattage of the individual CFL or LED replacement, the wattage of its incandescent equivalent, the number of bulbs being replaced, and the rate charged per kilowatt-hour, the calculator automatically computes the amount customers can expect to save over the life of a single CFL or LED. As the first online lighting retailer to have a calculator of this kind, 1000Bulbs.com is committed to educating consumers on the many positive aspects of upgrading to energy-efficient lighting.

LED and CFL Energy Saving Calculator

1000Bulbs Energy Savings Calculator

“We want to make sure that our customers feel confident before making an investment in the products we carry,” says 1000Bulbs.com CEO Kim Pedersen. “Our new Energy Savings Calculator provides the important cost and savings information they need in order to feel that making the switch to energy-efficient lighting is the right choice.”

1000Bulbs.com Energy Savings Calculator,for LED and CFL Bulbs

1000Bulbs.com Energy Savings Calculator Extended

For customers who are looking for more in-depth savings analysis, the calculator can be expanded to show the total kilowatts and kilowatt hours saved per year, the total amount saved on energy costs per year, and the number of months before they can expect a payback on their investment. This Energy Savings/ROI calculator features customizable fields that can be adjusted to accommodate each client’s unique lighting needs and specifications.

Although energy-efficient bulbs are typically more expensive compared to incandescent bulbs, they have been proven to last up to 50 times longer, consuming only a fraction of the energy used by their incandescent counterparts. While it used to take years, it now only takes a matter of months to see payback for the purchase of an energy-efficient bulb. The 1000Bulbs.com Energy Savings Calculator assures customers that the savings incurred over the life of an LED or CFL will more than make up for any initial and future maintenance costs.

About 1000Bulbs.com: 1000Bulbs.com is an award-winning Internet-based lighting retailer. The company offers everything from simple, household light bulbs to cutting-edge specialty lighting systems. Nationally recognized for growth, innovation, and customer satisfaction, 1000Bulbs.com is an influential force in the lighting industry.

Feel free to leave a comment or reach out to us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus or LinkedIn!

Contact:
Kim Pedersen
1000Bulbs.com
972-288-2277 Ext:207
ceo(at)1000bulbs(dot)com

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How to Liven Up Any Room with Lighting

Feb 12, 14 How to Liven Up Any Room with Lighting

One of the easiest, yet one of the most overlooked, ways to enhance key areas of your home is with lighting. With a little tweaking and a few additions, you can liven up your space, making rooms seem bigger, making ceilings seem higher than they actually are, etc. Below are a few simple tips we’ve collected to transform the mundane into the extraordinary.

Wall Washing

Some key players in wall washing are recessed cans and eyeball cans. Typically six inches in diameter, these are used mainly to flood an area with light, such as in department stores and theaters. Even though these are found commercially, they’re great for residential applications as well.  Wall washing serves two purposes: aesthetic appeal and task lighting. Washing a wall gives the impression of an expanding space, making the room feel larger, which is great for those smaller spaces, while also calling attention to all those pictures on the wall or your stone fireplace.

wall washingDoes having sloped ceilings means you’re left out of the fun? Not at all. This just means you’ll need those eyeball cans (these allow you to adjust the angle of the fixture as you see fit) mentioned above and will most likely need either need lamps with a wide flood or a very wide flood beam angle.

While it depends on how much space you’re wanting to light, it’s generally best to opt for bulbs that have either a “flood” (FL), “wide flood” (WFL), or “very wide flood” (VWFL) beam angle such as R/BR bulbs. Bulbs with these beam angles are great for covering wide areas, creating an overlapping of light.

*Note: if you don’t already have recessed fixtures, these can be easily installed. However, it’s probably best if a licensed electrician performs the work for you. This way you can rest assured the work is done correctly and safely.

Accent Lighting

The possibilities are endless with accent lighting and it’s a great way to add depth to any room.  The key to great accent lighting is to ensure there’s light coming from multiple angles: from down lights, to table and floor lamps, to under cabinet lighting on your bookcases in your bedroom or living room. A nice touch is LED tape light on the back of bedroom accent lighting1your TV, which not only calls attention to the TV, but also adds a unique flair.

The picture on the left is a pretty good example of utilizing light from multiple angles. Notice the wall sconces on each side of the bed, which give off light vertically and horizontally, while the recessed light above the bed directs its light downward. The eyeball can above the bookcase neatly displays the picture, books, and the few knick knacks on the shelves.

Ceiling Uplighting

In the battle against poorly-lit rooms, shadows are your enemy, as they make your space look small and drab. Defeat those pesky shadows with a well-placed floor lamp in the corner of your room, providing you not only with task lighting, but directing the light upwards, eliminating dark spots. A great way to make your ceilings seem higher than they actually are is to utilize overcabinet lighting. You can accomplish this in a multitude of ways, with LED rope light or plug-in fixtures.

Which of these tips will you use to liven up your home? Let us know in the comments below, or drop us a line on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, LinkedIn, or Pinterest!!

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How Lighting Affects Your Mood

Feb 07, 14 How Lighting Affects Your Mood

Ever feel “not quite yourself” when there’s a lack of light, but can’t quite put your finger on it? Ever notice how your mood seems to improve when you’re in a brighter room? This isn’t your imagination. Studies have shown that light levels do in fact affect our disposition. But how does light affect your mood, and how can you adjust the lighting in your home to improve it?

Low Light = Low Mood?

As mentioned above, low light levels do indeed affect how you feel. While I won’t throw a bunch of science-y terms your way, there are a few terms you should become familiar with: melatonin and serotonin.

Melatonin also helps control weight gain.

Melatonin also helps control weight gain.

Melatonin is vital in controlling your sleeping and waking patterns and is typically highest around bedtime, while serotonin affects many functionalities, such as sleep, appetite, memory, mood, and depression. Specifically, serotonin has a hand in affecting your happiness.

There are both psychological and physiological side effects linked to poor lighting. For example, poor light conditions can impact the amount of melatonin that’s produced, therefore creating an imbalance within your body: the more melatonin that’s produced, the levels of serotonin decrease, as more serotonin is converted to melatonin. So in poorly lit rooms, melatonin levels may be higher, which can cause you to feel depressed and drowsy.

On the contrary, higher levels of light can get your body back in balance, increasing your levels of serotonin and are sometimes even used as a therapy to alleviate common emotional issues.

Lighten Up!

In what ways can you boost the mood in your home? Does this mean you have to transform your home into the surface of the sun so you’ll be cheery all the time? Not quite. Below are a few ways to brighten things up and make the most of your new-found knowledge of serotonin and melatonin:

  • living room sunlightSince bright light can actually give you more energy and increase alertness, it’s recommended to either dim the lights or use warmer color temperatures (2700K to 3000K) to wind down in the evenings.
  • If you’re looking to boost your mood, consider switching to full spectrum light bulbs (5000K), as these types of bulbs mimic natural light. If you’re not a fan of bulbs with this color temperature, try some cool white bulbs with color temperatures between 4000K and 4100K.
  • Do you like your current lineup of bulbs just the way they are and don’t want to trade them out? Try opening some blinds. The influx of natural light will have almost the same effect as the full-spectrum bulbs.

Did you put any of these tips into practice? Let us know in the comments below , or give us a shout on Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook, Pinterest, or LinkedIn!

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