Where Should I Put the Exhaust for My Grow Tent?
Each grower has a unique take on indoor cannabis cultivation. How you decide to set up your tent exhaust will likely be dictated by such factors as crop size, harvest frequency, and equipment needs.
Proper air circulation is one of the most important variables for indoor cannabis cultivation. Whether you have a commercial operation, or a small hobbyist grow, having the appropriate humidity and temperature levels is critical for success. Tent growers regulate these variables with inline-fan exhaust systems.
Some growers opt to place inline fans and carbon filters within grow tents, while others choose to position them on the tent’s exterior. While both options work for regulating indoor garden environments, they each offer their own perks.
While grow tents are extremely convenient, they do present challenges with limited sizing. As such, most indoor growers position their exhausts according to the available space in their grow tents. These spatial constraints change with such elements as equipment choices, as well as available square footage within the home.
Limited Size of Grow Tents
Grow tents come in a variety of sizes, but generally aren’t don’t exceed 10ftx10ft. While tents are extremely convenient to set up, it can be difficult to position needed cultivation equipment within their tight confines. Not only do grow tents offer little room to work, but you cannot hang wall fans or electrical outlets on their fabric walls.
When you add additional pieces of equipment to a tent operation, available space becomes a big issue. To illustrate, if you are considering growing hydroponically, you will need to address the space issues that arise with extra hoses, pumps, timers, and electrical cords. Similarly, air-cooled HPS lights are extremely bulky and likely impossible to fit inside certain tents with an inline fan and carbon filter.
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Hanging Inside the Tent
Hanging an exhaust and carbon filter inside a grow tent is the most traditional way to regulate the environment of these small indoor gardens. With this approach, your inline fan pulls hot and humid air through the carbon filter and expels it outside of the tent.
Running your fan and carbon filter inside your tent is the most efficient way to use these pieces of equipment. Inline fans work their best when unobstructed (even bends in ducting lessen their efficiency). Using an inline fan to push air through a carbon filter on the exterior of your tent will lessen the efficiency.
By situating your inline fan and carbon filter inside your tent, you can direct stale air directly outside a vent or window. This ability is lost with exterior exhaust setups, as air forced through a carbon filter is impossible to control and manipulate. As such, interior exhaust setups are the only option if you want to expel stale air from your tent and entirely out of your home.
Noise control is also a major benefit of interior exhaust setups. When you place your inline fan and carbon filter outside the grow tent, it is impossible to reduce the noise of moving air and running equipment. Interior exhaust systems not only allow you to redirect this air in a precise fashion, but they also give you the option of using a silencer, such as an AC Infinity Duct Fan Silencer.
Mounted Outside the Tent
It is safe to say only a small percentage of cannabis growers choose to place inline fans and exhausts outside of grow tents. The biggest motivator for this atypical setup is creating additional space inside the tent.
When you situate your exhaust system outside your tent, you pull air from inside the garden and push it through the carbon filter situated on the exterior of the tent. While you sacrifice control over where the stale air is directed, you open up a good deal of room inside the tent.
There are various reasons why someone might want to create more space inside of their grow tent by moving the exhaust to the outside. If you are running a CO2 system, you might not be able to fit all the required equipment into the available space. Other people like to have more room to work inside the tent, or simply don’t want to keep hitting their heads on bulky fans and carbon filters!
Summary: Where Should I Put the Exhaust for My Grow Tent?
Each grower has a unique take on indoor cannabis cultivation. How you decide to set up your tent exhaust will likely be dictated by such factors as crop size, harvest frequency, and equipment needs. For some growers, the choice simply boils down to preference.
No matter what your motivation for choosing an exhaust setup, you still must consider the space and infrastructure of the home in question. If you have a large home and can dedicate an entire room to your operation, an exterior exhaust is a viable choice. Because you have a larger total area, you can give your plants more room to grow by placing equipment outside the tent. However, people with less available space will likely have to keep all the equipment inside of their grow tent — including inline fans and carbon filters.
While grow tents are extremely convenient, they still require some basic design considerations. If you are unsure if an interior or exterior exhaust setup is best for your tent garden, it's likely a good idea to experiment until you figure out what works for you. The best tent growers find a happy balance between ease of use and creating conditions where cannabis plants thrive.
AC Infinity is the foremost name in air delivery systems, designing and developing the latest innovations in cooling and ventilation technology. They offer a suite of quiet inline fans that automate the growing progress and track key metrics. Visit acinfinity.com or contact [email protected] to learn more.
Written by Kent Gruetzmacher | Writer, Owner of KCG Content
Kent Gruetzmacher MFA is a Colorado-based writer and owner of the writing and marketing firm KCG Content. Kent has been working in the cannabis and hydroponics space for over a decade. Beginning in California in 2009, he has held positions in cultivation, operations, marketing, and business development. Looking specifically to writing, Kent has worked with many of the leading publications and marketing agencies in the cannabis space. His writing has been recognized by such icons as Steve D’Angelo and Rick Simpson.