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 polytunnel in a dilemma and afraid that you might do it wrong, but it’s a specific task. Nonetheless, it would be best to know that there are different kinds of residues in the UK environment 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 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. The water’s requirements for tap water, depending on your location, have substances and minerals that can damage the surface or leave a residue.
Step #2. Wipe gently
Next is to 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 clean the grow light reflector thoroughly. 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.
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 tempt 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 labelled for specific uses and ultrasonic cleaning systems will also cause more damage than good to your reflectors.
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 a new and clean cotton cloth every time.
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, please 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. Distilled water 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. Replacing 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.
Greenhouse maintenance in the UK is necessary to ensure the optimal growing environment for the plants. Maintenence 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. Efficiency makes them correlated with the growth and productivity of the plants.