The 10 Best Garden Hoses
This wiki has been updated 29 times since it was first published in March of 2015. Regardless of the size of your backyard or the climate you live in, you can make year-round plant and lawn care a simple and efficient endeavor by using one of these handy garden water hoses. We looked for models made from durable materials that can handle extreme weather conditions, and that are equipped with resilient fittings that can withstand high water pressures without leaking. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
July 15, 2020:
Garden hoses should make your life easier, not harder, so we looked for models that had smart features that should do just that. For example, the Water Right Professional Coil immediately retracts once you stop pulling on it, so you won't need to waste any time with a hose reel, and the Dramm ColorStorm has a hexagon shape on the exterior that makes it easy to grasp securely, even if your hands are wet.
As the some of the names imply, the Aterod 75-Foot Expandable, TBI Pro 50 Expandable, and GrowGreen 91-GHB are all expandable, which means that they offer length when you need it, but are also compact for easy storage and quick coiling on a reel or hanger.
If your kids often drink from the hose, as most of us did as children, then you'll want to turn to the Water Right Professional Coil and Water Right 400 Series, both of which are made from an NSF- and FDA-certified polyurethane resin that is free of lead, phthalates, and other toxic chemicals. The Cesun 50FT SS and Legacy Flexzilla are also marketed as being drinking water safe.
Those that are looking for a traditional rubber construction that is tough enough to withstand years of use and sun exposure will want to check out the Briggs and Stratton 8BS100. It remains flexible in below-freezing temperatures and won't be harmed by hot water. That being said, it is heavy and unweildy.
While we were impressed with the seemingly high-quality of TheFitLife Flexible last time around, we have been proven wrong about it. There are simply too many complaints of it failing over time in a variety of ways, including the fittings springing leaks and the casing pulling away from the inner tubing. The Titan Premium suffered from similar issues, so it, too, had to go.
April 23, 2019:
Regardless whether a lawn stretches across several acres or you have a small patio or backyard to deal with, a garden hose is an essential piece of equipment. That said, there are several qualities any garden hose should have, including superior flexibility, an ability to withstand extreme temperatures, sturdy connectors that help prevent leaks at both ends, and preferably options that aren't prone to kinking. I did my best to focus on all of these qualities.
I maintained the Water Right 400 Series due to its lightweight profile and chrome-plated brass fittings for increased longevity. It's also available in several colors. I decided to add the TBI Pro 50 due to its multi-layered latex inner core and high-denier exterior fabric, both of which can help the hose deal with high-pressure watering tasks. This means it is well-adept at handling all types of jobs like bathing a dog, washing a car, or watering the lawn. The Legacy Flexzilla leverages its patent-pending SwivelGrip male and female connectors for seamless attachment to most water spigots, while the hybrid polymer inner tubing is drinking water safe, making it both a functional and fun product to use if you have kids playing out back during the summer months. Additionally, this hose can lie flat without that annoying coil memory that many of its cheaper counterparts suffer from. I know from experience that extremely heavy rubbers not only have the propensity to crack, but just getting those things to unwind and coil back up is a feat of engineering in and of itself. The puncture-resistant outer steel shell on TheFitLife Flexible makes it a great option for use on properties with a lot of thorny bushes and other sharp objects through which the hose must navigate to do its job. I maintained the Briggs and Stratton Premium for its ability to withstand extreme temperatures, while the Gilmour Flexogen has a burst rating of up to 500 PSI. Finally, I maintained the GrowGreen 91-GHB for its pressure-resistant latex and adjustable nozzle with up to 8 different spray patterns.
Mercedes Textiles Myti-Flo While it may have been designed with fire fighters in mind, rather than the average home gardener, the Mercedes Textiles Myti-Flo can still be a smart choice for someone who wants something that will stand up to almost anything man or Mother Nature subjects it too. It has a low friction-loss lining for maximum flow, is resistant to most chemicals and UV deterioration, and it is available with an abrasion- and mildew-resistant treatment. Plus, you can choose from multiple lengths and diameters. mercedestextiles.com
What Makes One Hose Better Than Another?
Keep in mind that the longer the hose, the more difficult it will be to roll it up or uncoil it.
Hoses are like extension cords, in that your first concern should always be the length. It pays to measure the distance from your spigot to all the places where you'll need a hose to reach. If that distance exceeds one hundred feet, you can either buy an industrial-length hose, or buy two or more hoses that you can, in turn, hook up to one another. Keep in mind that the longer the hose, the more difficult it will be to roll it up or uncoil it.
The next area you want to consider is thickness. Standard garden hoses measure one half of an inch in diameter, and while this is fine for general gardening purposes, you may want to look into a 3/4-inch hose should you need to deliver more water and pressure.
If you only need to use a hose every once in a while, a vinyl hose might do the trick. Vinyl hoses are cheaper than their rubber counterparts. Vinyl hoses are also more compact, lighter, and less prone to kinks. With that said, vinyl hoses don't provide as much pressure as a rubber hose does, nor are they as durable to stand up to the elements.
When choosing attachments, be sure to read the product descriptions. Your primary concern with this is making sure that the nozzle will be a perfect fit for the diameter of your hose. If you have environmental concerns, look for hoses that come advertised as BPA and phthalate free. If you want to avoid any risk of bacteria in the hose's water, look for a model that features antimicrobial protection.
Four Garden-Hose Hacks That Will Save You Time And Money
Here are four ways to get the most out of your garden hose, even after it's faded and worn with holes:
First is the Toothpick Plug. Assuming your yard hose springs a pin leak, stick a toothpick in the hole, then snap the toothpick off. You can reinforce it with some duct tape, but the principle is that the water will then cause the wood to swell, closing off the leak until you've got an airtight path.
Just be sure that the holes are aligned and that you can clamp the hose on either end to keep it straight and upwardly faced.
Next up is the Tree-Branch Rack. Kinks are the primary cause of garden hose leaks, so one way to avoid them is by rolling up your hose, then finding a nearby tree branch, and draping the wrapped-up hose around it.
Third is the No-Frills Sprinkler. If you've got an old hose that you're willing to sacrifice, drill a hole into the rubber - or plastic - every two feet or so, starting approximately ten feet from the nozzle. Once you're done, you'll have yourself a sprinkler. Just be sure that the holes are aligned and that you can clamp the hose on either end to keep it straight and upwardly faced.
Fourthly is the Rubberized Grip. When a hose is no longer usable, you can cut it into pieces, any of which can be used to create a soft grip that you can wrap around a paint can handle, or even the chains of a swing. You can also use a piece of hose along with a length of wire and two pieces of wood to stake a newborn tree. Finally, you can wrap a length of hose around any outdoor cords, thereby protecting them from getting stepped on or being run over by a vehicle.
A Brief History Of The Garden Hose
There is something very American about a garden hose, whether it be the idea of spraying down a lawn or hooking up the nozzle to a sprinkler and watching the kids jump back and forth. The garden hose is white-picket fences. It is that dream house in the suburbs. And while there are many other hoses, including an air hose and a brake hose, a garden hose is the most connected to who we are and what we do.
This is especially helpful when someone has a spread-out lawn or a driveway that is longer than one hundred feet.
Hoses have been around for centuries. Conceptually, hoses represent a closed, tubular means of transport, usually for some form of liquid or gas. Most hoses are made out of reinforced rubber to withstand several bars of pressure. In addition, most garden hoses are designed using what are known as male and female connectors at either end. The male and female connectors from hoses of the same size can be hooked up to one another, allowing for an increase of the apparatus's length. This is especially helpful when someone has a spread-out lawn or a driveway that is longer than one hundred feet.
The typical garden hose is hooked up to a spigot. As of the turn of the 21st century, most people tend to use what are known as quick connectors to hook their hoses up automatically (without any need for screwing). Quick connectors also allow for the connecting of a second apparatus to the spigot. This reduces the pressure, but it also increases the amount of work that can be done.