Grow Tent Buying Guide: How to choose the perfect tent
If you’re looking for a new, or perhaps your first grow tent - you’re in the right place! Check out our grow tent buying guide and tips on how to choose the perfect grow tent!
Grow tents are the essential part of every small indoor grow. Having a grow tent as a part of your indoor growing operation will hugely increase your yields due to all the possibilities grow tents bring to the table.
Growing outside has many flaws, which is why many growers have switched over to greenhouses and growing indoors. It gives the grower almost complete control over the environment and the many processes which happen while growing.
However, growing indoors has its own downsides as well. Many growers can’t just dedicate a whole room to growing just a couple plants. Ventilating a whole room can be hard and costly, lighting as well. And then, there’s the issue of smell as well.
Having a grow tent can circumvent all of those issues, but we’ll talk about that later on.
Why should I get a grow tent?
A grow tent is every grower’s best friend. It will allow you to create a small ecosystem for your plants to thrive in, and get the most from the genetic potential in your seeds.
You’ll be able to manipulate lighting, ventilation, watering, and all other aspects of growing a lot easier and thus create the perfect biom for your plants.
How to choose the perfect grow tent?
Choosing the perfect tent is never easy. It depends on several criteria which will ultimately tell you how to choose the perfect grow tent. Let’s have a look at them!
How many plants are you growing?
Size is usually the main factor when making a decision. Size depends on the number of plants - if you’re growing more than a few, you’re going to need a bigger tent. A 4’ x 4’ grow tent can only fit 9 pots, or 4-9buckets depending on their volume.
While you may be able to fit a large number of seedlings and young plants for a while, you’ll have to think ahead and find a place for them once they start growing.
What strain are you growing?
Certain strains are known to grow tall, while other strains like to grow bushy. This stems from their genetics, so keep that in mind when getting your seeds. Strains which have lots of Sativa genes will most likely grow tall, while those with Indica genes tend to grow bushy.
You should also take into account if the plants you'll be growing are photoperiodic or autoflowering. This is important because autoflowering plants tend to be smaller than photoperiodic ones, meaning that you can fit more autoflowering plants inside of a tent. But, since they’re smaller they also yield less than photoperiodic strains.
If your photoperiodic plants grow too tall, you can always try topping, LST or some other form of training to keep them from outgrowing your tent, or poking into the lights. Just be mindful of the branches you’re cutting, and don’t cut too late into the veg phase.
Growing in soil or a hydroponic system?
Soil pots usually come in 1-gallon, 3-gallon and 5-gallon versions, and you can only have one plant per pot if you don’t plan on repotting it. If you’re using the tent just for seedlings and young plants, you can fit several pots within the tent. Once they grow to a certain size, just repot them and move to a bigger tent!
Hydroponic systems can also take up a lot of space, depending which one you’re using. Switching to hydroponics is a big step, but it is a certified way to increase your yields while using pretty much the same space you would with soil pots.
White lining or silver Mylar?
Aside from the poles, the most important part of the grow tent is the lining. There is a debate going on between growers, manufacturers, and everyone else whether white or silver lining is better for your plants. Both have their pros and cons.
Silver lining, commonly referred to as Mylar, is better if you want more PAR light reflection, which will improve your plant’s photosynthesis. However, silver lining creates hotspots, and white lining doesn’t. White lining distributes the light a lot better which means that the light will reach all parts of your plants more evenly.
5 best grow tents
Considering all the variables we’ve just mentioned, here’s our pick for the 5 best grow tents currently on the market:
Growbuds 2’ x 4’ grow tent
The Growbuds 2’ x 4’ grow tent is a great pick for beginners looking to experiment with tents and get familiar with indoor growing. It’s a small tent, being only 5ft tall, which means you’ll be able to fit it pretty much anywhere.
Similarly to most popular grow tents, the Growbuds 2’ x 4’ has a silver lining made of Mylar, and a layer of 600D canvas, making it light proof and resistant to tears. The outside is made of black textile, and together with the floor tray will help keep your tent completely waterproof and inconspicuous.
The capacity of this grow tent is 2-4 fully grown plants, depending on their genetics of course. Once your plants mature and you get ready to harvest it, you can take cuttings from the plants and clone them, making use of the tent while you’re getting ready for your next grow.
Our 2’ x 4’ tent comes at a price of $102 making it one of the cheapest grow tents of this size on the market.
AC Infinity CLOUDLAB 844
4’ x 4’ grow tents have been the “industry standard” for years, if not decades by now. There’s a reason why 4’ x 4’ grow tents are popular among growers - they give the grower so much versatility and space.
The AC Infinity CLOUDLAB 844 grow tent is made of durable, heavy duty steel poles which give your tent a very solid skeleton. The poles are 50% thicker than the industry standard so that growers can hang any type of lighting, without it compromising the integrity of the grow tent.
With this grow tent you’ll be able to grow up to 9-10 plants, or maybe even more using the Sea of Green technique. It will allow you to make that next step and make significant improvements to your operation. You’ll be able to get the most from this tent by combining it with LEDs and a simple ventilation system to reduce the odor coming from the plants.
Gorilla Grow 4’ x 4’ grow tent
The Gorilla Grow 4’ x 4’ grow tent is by far one of the most popular and commonly used grow tents. What makes them so popular, and unique, is that they are taller than any other on the market. Aside from their Shorty line, Gorilla’s tents are made to be 6′ or tallerl, typically 6′ 7″ or 6′ 11″.
On top of that, their most unique feature is that they can be extended to be even taller, with their tallest models being almost 9ft tall. The 4’ x 4’ Gorilla Grow tent is 6’11’’ tall, and that’s more than enough in most cases. The additional height can reportedly reduce the temperature within the tent up to 10F.
The 4’ x 4’ version has 4 ducting ports, and 3 electrical ports, and the poles are extremely sturdy, which makes it very easy for growers to set up lighting and ventilation.
Gorilla Grow tents are simply put top of the line grow tents which are highly praised among growers and their peers. This creates a serious demand for them, which in return pumps up the price.
However, if price is not an issue, and you’re simply looking for the highest quality grow tent, look no further than the Gorilla Grow 4x4 grow tent.
Gorilla Grow 24” Clone Tent
Taking care of seedlings and clones is never an easy task, and many growers take it to heart when some of their young plants don’t make it. So, why not increase their odds by getting them a grow tent specifically designed for nurturing clones?
Highdrogro 5’ x 5’ grow tent
The Highdrogro 5’ x 5’ grow tent is a lot different than the tents we’ve mentioned so far. It has clear window panels on three sides, which can be covered with roll-up blinds. The interior of the grow tent is almost completely white, which can help with the light distribution.
This is by far the biggest tent on our list, both in terms of the growing surface are, and the volume of the tent. It’s 5’ x 5’ base, combined with the 6’9’’ height will allow you to grow big plants which give massive yields.
The white lining gives this tent a completely different approach to light distribution. It will glare comparably less than silver linings, and won’t create any hotspots. It will also make it easier for your LEDs light up lower branches and hard to reach spots.
Should I get a grow tent kit?
If you don’t have any lighting or ventilation equipment, and you plan on getting serious with indoor growing, you should definitely get a grow tent kit. Grow tent kits are a great solution to get started, and get a discount while doing it.
Most grow tent kits offer a tent, a ventilation system with a grow light and then some more accessories, such as pots or grow mediums. In most cases you’ll have to supplement them with other components like nutrients, and such.
Are grow tents worth it?
Grow tents are worth every single dollar you’ll pay for them. They have a very versatile role in home growing and will pay for themselves in the long run. For sceptics and beginners there are less pricey options. Try it out, see for yourself - and if you think it’s just not for you, then you can sell it and get some of your money back.
How much can a 4x4 grow tent yield?
4x4 grow tents are a very common choice among hobbyists because they’ll allow you to fit lots of plants. The question of how much they will yield depends entirely on your skill as a grower, the strains you’re growing, the nutrients and lights you’re using, and so on. However, using a grow tent will definitely increase your yields because you’ll be able to exert more control over the plant’s environment.
Do grow tents hide smell?
Yes, grow tents will partially hide the smells your plants create. However, they don’t fully remove the odor from the room if you don’t have the appropriate ventilation system in place. Certain tents are better than others at keeping the smell somewhat localized. Gorilla Grow tents are known to be made of the thickest material (1680D) which has a thread number 3-9x higher than other grow tents on the market.
How do I get rid of the smell in my grow room?
If you already have a grow tent, and you notice odor leaking from your tent you might want to invest in some tubing, a CO2 filter and an inline fan. Grow tent ventilation is a pretty big part of growing indoors and something you should definitely invest in if you want to reduce odor.
If you don’t have a tent but a grow room, you’ll have to create some serious airflow with some HVAC units and bigger gear. Grow rooms are notoriously hard to properly ventilate and maintain a good climate in. They require a big budget and lots of work, so it might be a better call to just invest in a couple big tents and a good ventilation system.