Beginner Guide: How To Set Up A Grow Tent
Table of Contents
- Construct the Tent Frame with Cloth
- Find Your Desired Ventilation Setup
- Suspend Your Grow Light System(s)
- Setup Your Fan(s) and Timer
Growing plants is a wonderful experience. Growers get to germinate their seeds and watch them grow into healthy plants which they then get to harvest. It is a holistic experience that is best done with a grow tent.
Grow tents make it possible to start growing no matter what season or what bio-region you live in. Grow tent kits enable growers to get started quickly. They come with everything you need to get started the day the kit comes in the mail.
With these kits, you will not need to do extensive research for various products. But, while grow tent kits do come with everything you need to hit the ground running, it's understandable to feel overwhelmed after you sign for the package. That's why we're here! Here is our guide to the best grow tent setup for beginners.
Grab The Tools You’ll Need
Inside the grow tent kit, there should be a list of what is included and what tools you will need.
Regardless, if you don't see that list or want to plan ahead of your tent's arrival, the following tools are almost always going to be needed:
- Flathead & Phillip's head screwdrivers. (Screwdrivers will be needed primarily for attaching ventilation components. The type of screwdriver you'll need will depend upon the grow tent itself.)
- Wire cutters. (Also, for the ventilation set-up, wire cutters are often needed to cut and customize the air ducts.)
- Tape measure.
Unpack The Grow Tent Kit
Organization is key when setting up a packed grow tent kit. Before you begin to construct any part of your new grow tent, first unpack everything inside the box.
We recommend using a large table or a cleared-out space to do this. This will give you the a good idea of everything that you have for the set-up steps. It also makes it easy to confirm that you received everything. Sort everything into categories to give yourself a clear picture.
Construct the Tent Frame
Begin assembling your grow tent by constructing the metal or plastic pieces that comprise the frame. Simply follow the included manufacturer's instructions. You may need to use one of the aforementioned screwdrivers, or some grow kits come with an Allen wrench and hex screws.
Once the frame is constructed, move the whole set-up to your desired location. Then add the included covering. Make sure that all zippers work freely and inspect seams for defects before continuing.
Find Your Desired Ventilation Setup
All grow tent kits will come equipped with an exhaust fan and carbon filter for the ventilation system. Choose a convenient place at the top of the tent and securely hang the filter and fan as noted by the manufacturer's instructions.
Once these are installed, use the measuring tape to determine the distance between the filter and the exhaust fan's intake. Then measure the distance between the exhaust and ventilation opening.
Use your wire cutters to cut the included ducting to the necessary lengths to fulfill these distances. Finally, install the air ducts as recommended by the included instructions.
Suspend Your Grow Light System(s)
Lighting is a critical component of the grow tent, and it is incredibly important to get the right lights. Lights that are too big can generate too much heat while insufficient light will prevent plants from maturing. Your grow tent kit will come with a decent beginner light kit but don't be afraid to do further research and experiment with different bulbs.
After hanging the lights, attach the hoods via the included mounting hardware. Make sure each lighting hood appropriately directs the light towards your plants.
Finally, organize all wiring that runs from your outlets to the lighting system. Use zip ties where possible to bundle wiring and keep it away from any watering equipment or system you have.
Setup Your Fan(s) and Timer
Follow the manufacturer's instructions to configure the timers for the fan and lighting system. Over your first week, you should periodically check in to ensure that your timers are correctly turning the lights and fans on and off.
One of the most frequently asked questions that pops up when people are researching the best grow tent setup for beginners is, "can a fan be left on 24/7?" The answer is it depends. The fan and ventilation system in your grow tent is necessary to keep an incoming supply of carbon dioxide and to regulate the humidity within the tent.
While seeds are germinating and just starting to grow, you won't need to heavily vent the grow tent because the plants at this stage are not going to be using a high amount of carbon dioxide. So if you want to control costs and keep them low, you can have the fans turn on infrequently at this point. However, towards the end of the flowering stage, you will want to have fans going 24/7 to keep humidity down and to push oxygen out and carbon dioxide in.
This brings up the second most frequently asked question, "do you need an intake fan for a grow tent?" The answer is yes and yet it is commonly overlooked by the un-inquisitive. An intake fan ensures that your plants are getting the carbon dioxide they need to thrive.
Double-Check Your Work
You're almost done! Always perform a final safety scan whenever you assemble a device. For your grow tent, you will want to make sure your electrical connections are secure, the ventilation system is properly connected, and there are no cords or wires on the floor or on places that may get wet.
Grow tent kits are a fantastic way for anyone to get into indoor horticulture. Just remember that it is important to follow the best grow tent setup for beginners.
If you set up your grow tent correctly -- and we know this article helped show you how! -- then the rest is your learning experience.
Best of luck growing and be sure to subscribe to the newsletter or return for more growing information. You can also find great grow tents available on our online store at Kumans Tek.