Growing marijuana indoors can require a lot of manual labor. If you can, it’s worth it to automate as of the process as possible, starting with your grow light system.
As your plants go in and out of different growth stages, they require different amounts of light. You can use a grow timer to automate your grow lights to turn on and off, so you don’t have to manage the process by hand.
We’ve researched the most popular grow light timers on the market to help you find a model that fits your needs.
Last Updated: March 18, 2020
Our Top Picks For Grow Light Timers
#1 GreenLaren Indoor 24-Hour Mechanical Outlet Timer
The GreenLaren Indoor 24-Hour Mechanical Outlet Timer is a responsive and reliable choice of a grow timer.
It comes with adjustable time tables as well as an auto-off function, so you don’t have to worry when you leave the lights on for extended durations. The unit comes with a two-prong outlet and a programmable timer. You can easily program the timer to turn on or off in increments of thirty minutes.
Once plugged in and programmed, the settings will automatically repeat daily. Also, the manual override allows for easy manual use. Each package comes with three timers that you can use in three different growing environments. The timer is well-suited for LED bulbs and fluorescents.
- Easy to program, press pin down to turn on and up to turn off
- Features forty-eight-hour cycles for on/off programs
- Allows you to set the timer in thirty minutes intervals
- No technical controls, just turn the knob to set the time
- There’s an override switch on the top for manual control
- Helps to save energy as well as reduce utility costs
- It is a little bit noisy
#2 Canagrow Outlet Timer
The Canagrow Outlet Timer is a great option if you’re worried about saving energy and reducing the power consumption of your indoor grow room.
The unit is not just a light timer, but a power strip allows you to automate anything you plug into it. It’s explicitly designed to meet the needs of indoor grow rooms and can accommodate lights, oscillating fans, and other appliances.
It features a heavy-duty digital display with clearly defined control buttons and a large outlet timer readout that is super easy to read. The timer is designed to control up to twenty groups of switches (on/off). You can easily set several timing combinations, including weekly, daily, hourly, and group of weeks.
Apart from the fact that the settings repeat automatically every week, the unit allows you to back up the settings in case you experience a power failure. There is a mode button that allows you to manually turn the device on and off after or before the set time. Just in case you make changes on your schedule.
- Remarkably versatile and customizable design
- Short interval time settings and simultaneously controlled outlets
- Daylight saving mode extends battery life
- The large digital readout is super easy to read
- The mode button allows you to operate manually
- Can control up to twenty groups of on/off switches
- Its operation gets noisy in the long-run
- May fail to support some two-prong devices
#3 Nearpow Dual Digital Light Timer
The Nearpow Dual Outlet Digital Timer is another timer that is easily programmable to meet the needs of your grow space. This is a three-prong timer that can independently control different appliances in your grow room, such as grow lights and fans.
It comes with two independent grow light controller outlets, a large digital readout, and well-defined lighting controller buttons. The entire device features fireproof ABS insulation, making it one of the safest we’ve seen. Also, it uses a rechargeable backup battery that is long-lasting and will kick in if there is a power failure.
There’s vacation mode that allows you to program the timer conveniently in case you will be away from your indoor garden for a while. Daylight saving mode preserves energy, and child-lock function ensures your kids don’t interfere with the settings in case they find their way to the grow groom.
Setting the timer is easy. Just press the second, minute, hour, or week buttons to program time. The digits are visible on the LCD display when setting time.
- Comes with two independently controlled outlets
- Offers up to eighteen separate schedules
- It is seven-day programmable with up to fifteen choices
- Fireproof ABS material makes it safer to use
- The long-lasting backup battery allows you to save settings
- Random vacation mode allows you to keep the lights on when you are away
- Runs silently
- The instruction manual is not very intuitive
#4 Dewenwils 2 Pack Indoor Outlet Lamp Timer
You can save energy and money and add a little extra convenience to your grow room by introducing the Dewenwils 2 Pack Indoor Outlet Lamp Timer.
This two-prong timer is compact and lightweight with clearly labeled control buttons, including time, on, off, hour, min, and reset. The device is engineered with a highly vibrant LCD readout that is not only clear but also super easy to decipher.
You will always be able to automatically turn on your grow lights in time with this masterpiece. You will never miss a schedule when you have this timer in your indoor garden.
It is one of the easiest units to program. You’ve got five easy to use control buttons. You only need one set of daily repeat settings.
Unlike mechanical units, this digitally programmed timer will hardly generate any annoying ticking noise in the long-run.
- Lightweight, compact design that is easy to carry
- Compatible with most grow lights, including LED, CFL, and incandescent
- Five easy to use control buttons allow for quick one set of daily repeat settings
- Compact but with a big, simple to decipher digital readout
- Digitally programmed to run quietly
- Does not come with a manual override
#5 Century 2 Pack Indoor Digital Timer
The Century 2 Pack Indoor Digital Timer is versatile as well as customizable. You can effortlessly set up to eight on/off programs for the separate two grounded outlets.
The most impressive feature of this timer is that it allows you to select individual days or opt to use one of the preset combination days. There is a daylight saving mode that you can easily engage by one press of a button. It also has a backup battery that comes in handy when there is a power failure.
Like others, it has a vacation mode that allows you to keep the lights in your indoor garden when you are away from home.
- Allows you to set up to eight on/off programs
- Comes with two outlets for connecting two light sources
- You can choose between preset combination days or individual days
- Random vacation mode ensures your grow lights are on when you’re away
- Daylight saving mode helps you conserve energy
- The built-in backup battery comes in handy during power failure
- Manual override allows you to operate the device manually
- It is possible to receive a defective product
Best Timer for Grow Light: Buying Guide
There are several timers you can choose. However, you need to be selective in choosing a model that will be safe and reliable. Here are a few features to consider:
Mechanical versus Digital
Mechanical timers are a bit old school, but they work. You won’t get as many customization options as you would with a digital timer, and you may be limited to just setting specific on and off hours.
Most mechanical timers on today’s market are fitted with a control knob/dial. You turn the dial to set the timer. These timers tend to function similarly to mechanical alarm clocks. They feature a mainspring that operates the device but have minimal safety features.
When compared to digital timers, manual designs can only manage a limited number of zones. They may be suitable for grow lights, but inefficient for more complex appliances. They also don’t function during a power failure. So, you have to reset them every time you have a power outage.
Digital timers a much better solution for indoor growers. Unlike their mechanical counterparts, digital models come with LCD readouts and an array of built-in functions. Digital versions are fitted with control buttons that are easy to navigate. All you have to do to program the timer is press the appropriate button.
The most contemporary digital timers allow you to program settings for different days of the week. They are the perfect choice for those who like to sleep out on Friday night. You will even come across digital models that allow different weekly patterns for different times of the year.
Plug-In versus Direct Connection
When shopping for timers, you’ll come across plug-in timers and direct wire connection timers.
As the name suggests, plug-in models do not need any installation. All you have to do is plug them into the wall socket to power. Direct wire connections need a hard-wire connection/installation into the device you want to use them with. While they are more complicated to use, they allow you to control several devices and offer extra programming options.
In addition to a good grow tent and hydroponic system, your LED grow lights are a crucial aspect of your grow operation. When choosing a timer, we recommend using one with a digital design and substantial safety features. Any of the timers on our list make excellent choices for an indoor grow room. It’s just up to what you are looking for and the budget you’ve set for yourself.
A timer is a lifesaver for any indoor grower who wants to save time and energy and protect their indoor plants for overexposure.