This article contains affiliate links, and any purchases made through those links may result in a small commission.
We're just getting started with home hydroponics so didn't want a hydroponic system that was expensive or complicated. The two basic choices for home hydroponics were five-gallon bucket kits or rectangular three-gallon tub kits. The tub kits were more expensive so the five-gallon kit prevailed. There were another two options for the five-gallon bucket kits: a one-pot lid or a four-pot lid. The four-pot lid seemed like the better option because the one-pot lids are available for purchase separately, but the four-pot lid only comes in a kit. We plan to grow mostly lettuce so the plants don't need a huge amount of space, and should work well in the four-pot lid. The final decision was a Viagrow DWC (deep water culture) five-gallon bucket bubbler system, which wasn't crazy expensive at $38 (with free shipping). It came with everything except the hydropnic nutrients.
For a beginner, this kit is enough to get started on the road to growing hydroponically without having to spend a lot of money. Any new venture has a learning curve and at some point we all need to jump from written (book) learning to hands-on learning. This hydroponic kit is basic, but it allows beginners interested in hydroponics to learn by doing without having to spend a lot of money.
There are several choices when it comes to buying a one-pot home hydroponic kit, but the four-pot kit seems to have only two choices: Amazon or Home Depot. Be sure to read the description for what's included in the kit, as the images aren't always accurate. The Amazon hydroponic kit only shows the DWC bucket and an air pump, not the accessories. The Home Depot hydroponic kit shows nutrients, but if you read the description the nutrients aren't included in the kit. If you to buy a separate a one-pot lid without the five-gallon pail, you can buy that separately for around $8 from Amazon.
Here's our basic unboxing and setup of the DWC hydroponic kit: