A hose is a must-have for completing your yard work tasks, but storing it can be a real challenge. The ideal place to keep your hose is on a reel designed especially for the job. With the best hose reel, you can keep your garden hose stored safely away so it’s always ready and waiting for you.
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Table of Contents
Why Use a Hose Reel?
A garden hose is a piece of equipment that helps keep your yard and landscaping in top shape. It would be a shame for it to detract from the look of your yard. Unfortunately, that can be a real possibility if you don’t store your hose on a reel.
First of all, a reel helps your yard look organized. Rather than leaving your hose in a coiled pile, you can return it to its assigned storage spot whenever you’re finished with it. When you’re ready to use it again, you’ll know exactly where to find it.
Additionally, using a reel helps prevent damage to your property. A hose left sprawled on the lawn can kill the grass underneath it. Plopping the hose on a concrete patio is no better. If you do that, dirt and stains can build up underneath the hose.
Types of Hose Reels
Before shopping for a hose reel, it’s a good idea to determine which style of reel will work best for your needs. A good way to evaluate this is to think about how much space you have available and how portable you want your reel to be.
This style is designed to be permanently affixed to a wall. You might place a reel like this on the back or side of your house or garage. It is a good idea to choose a spot that is near a spigot so that you can leave the hose hooked up to your plumbing system even when it’s not in use.
For storage purposes in the off-season, you might also want to place a wall-mounted reel on the wall of your garage. If you’re using this reel only for winter storage, you probably don’t need it to be within reach of a spigot.
This type of reel is an independent fixture that sits on the ground, so you don’t need to drill into your wall in order to use it. This style does, however, require some space in your yard. You may want to place it in an area with gravel, concrete, patio blocks or mulch so that it won’t ruin your grass. As with a wall-mounted fixture, it is worthwhile to place this type of reel near a water spigot.
Freestanding hose reels often have wheels on the bottom. This offers some portability to move the reel from one spot to another throughout your yard. Just keep in mind that you’ll probably always need to keep it in close proximity to a faucet.
3. Hose Reel Winding Systems
There are also different winding methods to consider when shopping for a hose reel. When trying to decide among these, think about how much work you want to put into pulling out your hose and putting it away again.
This type of hose reel is essentially a large hook for hanging your hose. You wind your hose around the hook for storage, and you unloop it yourself when you want to pull out the hose. This is sometimes known as a “hose butler.”
This style also requires effort from you, but it’s less work than a storage hook. With a crank-style reel, you turn a handle to wind up the hose or unwind it. You can also tug on the end of the hose to unwind it and lead it to the spot where you want the water.
There is a fair amount of muscle that’s required for operating a reel like this, so consider a different variety if you don’t have a lot of strength in your hands and arms. If your reel is placed on the ground, you’ll probably have to stoop to operate the crank.
With a built-in spring, giving the hose a short, sharp tug is all that it takes to initiate the winding process. The reel takes care of the rest of the job for you.
To stretch out the hose, you can lead it to the spot where you want it, and it will smoothly unwind. Once you reach your destination, the reel will automatically lock the hose into place.
If you have an electrical outlet near the place where you want to keep your hose reel, you could consider getting a plug-in variety. The power supply makes deploying or putting away your garden hose a fully automatic process. Even if you need to extend the hose to its full length, you can do this effortlessly with a powered reel.
Powered hose reels are often recommended for those who use their hoses quite often, such as people who use them for commercial applications. However, for those needing a simple reel for basic use, powered varieties can be cost-prohibitive.
8. Covered Hose Reels
Many hose reels have a basic spool design, and the hose is always exposed. This style is functional, but it may not fit the aesthetic of your yard.
If an exposed hose is a concern, consider purchasing a covered hose reel. With this type of hose holder, the spool is contained within a box. The hose feeds through an opening in the front of the box. This style is sometimes called a “hideaway reel.”
Covered reels are usually made of durable plastic. They come in neutral colors in both light and dark shades, so you can pick one that coordinates with the look of your home and yard. Some have interesting textures that add visual interest to the design.
In addition to being attractive, covered reels are also good for your hose. They help keep sunlight and rain off of it. Being protected from the elements may help extend the life of your garden hose.
Other Features to Consider
When shopping for a garden hose reel, you may want to consider some additional features that could enhance your yard work experience.
- Anti-kink design: A reel may have a special guide that ensures that a hose does not become crimped or twisted as you roll or unroll it.
- Material: Tough plastic is a common material for hose reels. However, if it coordinates better with the look of your yard, you may want to look for a metal reel.
- Correct size: Some hoses are longer than others, and not every reel will accommodate every hose. If you have a long hose, make sure that the reel has the capacity to wind the entire thing. If you have a commercial-grade hose, you may need to purchase a heavy-duty reel.
- Leader hose: This is a short section of hose that runs from the spigot to the reel. The full-length hose then attaches to the reel.
- Storage basket: If you have special nozzles or sprayers that you sometimes use with your hose, consider getting a reel with an attached basket or shelf.
The 5 Best Garden Hose Reels
Start your hose-reel shopping with these five top-rated models.
1. Yard Butler Deluxe Heavy Duty Wall Mount Hose Hanger
For a minimalist approach to storing your hose, consider the simple design of the Yard Butler. This metal bracket mounts to the wall and can hold up to 125 feet of 5/8-inch hose. It comes in a variety of colors and patterns, so you can pick the design that best coordinates with your backyard.
There are no moving parts to the Yard Butler. Instead, when you want to use your hose, you unwrap it to the desired length. The simple design of the reel makes it easy to wrap the hose back up without kinks or twists when you’re ready to put it away.
This wall mount garden hose reel is made of tough steel and has a powder-coat finish. In addition to using this device for water hoses, you can also store electrical cables and other cords on it.
2. Suncast SMW200
This attractive reel keeps your hose tucked away in a resin cube with a wicker pattern. It is available in a soft shade of brown that may complement the look of your wooden deck or brick walls, and Suncast makes a full line of coordinating yard items in the same wicker pattern.
Up to 225 feet of garden hose can fit on the Suncast reel. There is a side crank for coiling or uncoiling the hose, and a built-in guide helps the process run smoothly. The top of the storage box lifts up in case you need full access to the hose.
The hideaway reel arrives fully assembled, so you can load your garden hose onto its spool right away. The base measures 22 inches by 21 inches, and the unit stands 21.5 inches high.
3. Flo-Master 65HR8
This retractable garden reel comes with everything you need for outdoor watering. In addition to a spring-loaded reel, you also get a sturdy 65-foot hose and an adjustable spray nozzle. There is a 5.5-foot leader hose included as well.
The Flo-Master is a good choice for the best wall mount hose reel because it has 180-degree swiveling capabilities. This feature allows you to guide your hose all around the yard. The reel can easily be unattached from the mounting bracket to take it to another part of your property or to tuck it away in the garage for off-season storage. A carrying handle makes this process even easier.
The Flo-Master reel is a covered system, so your coiled hose is always tucked away from the elements. A guide on the automatic retractable water hose reel makes for smooth winding, and just a quick tug starts the coiling process.
4. Liberty Garden Products 704
For a classy garden look, consider the decorative hose reel from Liberty Garden Products. It is made of rust-resistant cast aluminum and features an ornate design. A bronze powder-coat finish completes the attractive look.
This crank-style reel mounts to the wall of your home or garage. There is a 5-foot leader hose so you can hang the hose holder at a comfortable height above the spigot.
The unit has an integrated shelf that you can use for storing tools and supplies. It matches the intricate design of the spool and has a small lip to help hold items in place. The shelf measures 7 inches by 14 inches.
5. Eley 1043
Gardeners who like to move their water hose around the yard will appreciate the convenience of this Eley hose reel. It has two tough rubber tires that will never get a flat, and it has a comfortable handle that you can use for pushing or pulling the unit from one place to another.
This is a metal hose cart with a tube-style frame. It is made of an aluminum alloy that resists rust. Its powder-coat finish gives it an attractive bronze appearance.
The leader hose that goes between the spigot and the cart is 6.5 feet long to give you plenty of freedom of movement. You can store up to 150 feet of 5/8-inch hose on this reel or add an Extra-Capacity Kit that gives it space for 225 feet of hose.
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To keep your yard neat and organized, store your water hose on a reel. The best hose reel is one that looks nice, is easy to use, and can support the weight and length of your garden hose. Whether you opt for a stationary holder or a moveable cart, a reel will come in handy whenever you work in your yard.