If you have a large property with plenty of plants that need taking care of, you know the trouble that watering all of them with a water hose poses. However, the worst part comes at the end, when you have to pick up the full-length of the hose, sometimes more than a hundred feet, and put it back into the garage. It can be a nightmare and take up more time than watering the plants with it – and then you have to do it all over again tomorrow. At that point, you might find you also didn’t store it properly and it’s now tangled, so just taking it out eats up half an hour of your time.
If all of that is true, it might be time for you to get a garden hose reel. It will help you cut down on the time you spend on managing your hose or hoses. Although they aren’t a necessity, they can certainly be incredibly helpful and a lot of people aren’t even considering using them. We are here today to show you how beneficial the best hose reels can be for you.
Why Buying a Garden Hose Reel?
There are many different benefits to a hose reel over just throwing your hose on a barely organized pile, and we will go over a few of them.
The first one is that it will simply save you a lot of time that you usually spend on untangling the hose or on trying to carefully wrap it into a loop that keeps falling apart. You can just sit back and let the hose reel do the job for you, even more so in the case of completely automatic reels.
Then there’s the matter of space – a hose kept in a hose reel will take up far less space than one thrown into a pile and left on the ground or messily hung from a nail on the wall.
Having your hose nicely stored in a reel also helps with the longevity of the hose as fewer tangles and cracks will appear in it due to improper storage. With a hose reel, you can expect your hose to last for longer than it would have otherwise.
There are other benefits to owning a garden hose reel, but if we listed them all we would be here all day. The most important thing is that there are basically no downsides to owning one as it will only improve your day-to-day gardening routine.
However, not all garden hose reels are up to snuff, and you might find yourself in an awkward situation when buying one for yourself as you won’t be able to spot the difference between a good, useful reel and a terrible one. Being well-informed is the first step to fixing that problem and that’s one of the reasons we wrote this article, to inform you. So, we gathered some of the best products on the market at this time, compared them to one another and offered our impressions and opinions on them. We also peppered in some user reviews in there for good measure. With all that info, you won’t go wrong when buying a garden hose reel for yourself. So, let’s see how good the products we picked are.
Meet the Best Garden Hose Reels
The Good: It’s a nice-looking and heavy-duty hose reel that mounts on the wall.
The Bad: It isn’t portable and has some issues with its construction.
The Bottom Line: This is a quality product at a decent price. It does come pre-built, though you might have to fix it up a bit before using it.
The Good: Portable, looks nice and has an automatic winding function as well as a hose guide.
The Bad: The automatic winding is slow and the reel only works with light hoses.
The Bottom Line: It’s a decent product with neat functionality, but it only works with some hoses.
The Good: It’s a great budget hose reel that takes in a lot of hose.
The Bad: The materials it’s made from are flimsy and the hose guide creates more trouble than it’s worth.
The Bottom Line: While it is a decent product for people on a budget it’s flimsy and some parts of it don’t work properly.
While you can find out a lot from this summary, there is more detailed information below that you should also check out.
All of the Factors Considered
Garden hose reels seem simple on the surface but there is so much more to them than you think. There are plenty of variations on the core design and that might make it difficult to pick the right one for you in the immeasurable sea of different products that are out there. That’s why we decided to help you out with that – here are some of the most important things you should look for in your garden hose reel.
As with many other garden tools, the materials it is made of are an important aspect to consider when buying. Getting a tool that will be durable and last for a long time is important to most people. In the case of garden hose reels, one of the most important things to consider is how corrosion resistant the materials are, as they will often be exposed to water as a matter of course. It’s also important that the different moving parts of it won’t come loose, bend, or break off during use. You should look at how solid the construction of the reel is before buying it – try it out if possible as well.
This refers to the maximum length of hose the reel can hold. Usually, it will be paired with the thickness of the hose, as smaller lengths of thicker hose will take up more space.
Picking a hose reel that exactly fits your hose is not the right way to do it, though. The hose will expand or contract often due to changing temperatures and it needs some extra space to “breathe” so to speak. To that end, you should pick a hose reel that can hold a hose that’s 25 to 50 feet longer than the one you have.
In essence, having a hose reel that is bigger is almost never a downside, unless you lack storage space. So, consider all of this and pick according to that.
There are a few different types of hose reels when it comes to portability. First off, there are those that aren’t portable at all and are mounted on walls or similar spaces, and their main benefit is the fact that they take up less space. Then there are the ‘box’ types which can be moved but must be moved by carrying and usually take up the most space. There are also types that have wheels so you can constantly move them around as you go across the yard, but they are often unstable and might tip over, requiring you to constantly fiddle with them.
It all depends on how large your yard is and what you use your hose for, in essence. If you have a huge yard you might opt for a hose reel with wheels, but if your yard is relatively small, a wall-mounted reel might work best.
There are few different methods that garden hose reels use when it comes to pulling the hose back onto the spool.
Manual ones are the most common, having a crank on the side which you turn to pull the hose back up. This is the slowest method, but one that allows you the most control in storing the hose and avoiding tangles and cracks.
There are also those that use an automatic or semi-automatic system to wind the hose back up. They utilize various power sources – some use batteries, others are constantly pulling the hose back into them using a spring or a similar mechanism while there are also those that use water pressure. Automatic hose reels save you more time but they can have a lot of trouble with longer hoses and might cause cracks in the hose accidentally if you leave them completely to their own devices.
In essence, you should pick what you consider to be the most useful and safe method.
Hose reels seem like simple tools, but they can offer a host of additional features that might be useful.
For example, some have an additional shelf or storage space in them that you can use for your hose accessories, allowing easy access to different nozzles, for example. There are also reels that use a hose guide to ensure that the hose is wound evenly onto the spool. And so on, you get the point.
Multiple other additional features can be found on different reels, and you should try and pick one with features that seem like they will be useful to you.
Now that we have informed you about the most important aspects when it comes to hose reels, here’s how our handpicked products ranked in those aspects.
In-Depth Reviews of Garden Hose Reels
This reel is made from cast aluminum that is resistant to rust and features aluminum and brass plumbing fixtures that have a durable coat finish. It is a rather sturdy hose reel overall and can take plenty of punishment. Though it is a bit shoddily put together, you should tighten it before use.
This reel can take in around 125 feet of 5/8-inch hose. Due to being an open reel, though, it can actually hold more than indicated, if you tighten it up a bit to make sure it doesn’t fall off the wall.
Wall-mounted, Manual Hose Reel
This is a wall-mounted reel, meaning that it’s not portable, but it is far more stable than portable reels and can hold a lot of hose, more than is indicated. It’s also hand operated, allowing for more control, even though winding the hose takes more time.
Neat Shelf for Extra Parts
As far as additional features go, this reel has only one. The shelf on it, good for storing additional add-ons for the hose, is a decently useful feature, though nothing exceptional.
Who Should Buy This Product
This is great product for people with smaller to medium-sized yards that want a reel which will be functional but also look good on their porch. It’s a heavy-duty product that will handle a decent amount of hose and that is durable, for the most part. It also comes at a decent cost and with a nice additional storage shelf on it.
What to Watch Out For
It’s a wall-mounted hose reel, so it’s obviously not portable at all, even though it still works fine. There are also some issues with its construction, as the screws can loosen at times during use, and others parts of it can also come loose leading to leaks and the handle falling off at inopportune times. It is fixable, but it can be an annoyance.
Overall, it’s a good-looking and durable heavy duty hose reel that almost anybody can afford. It works well and it looks nice on the patio. However, it is not that well constructed, so you should check how it’s all connected, even though it comes pre-built. Other than that, it’s a decent hose reel.
This hose reel is made from durable resin that holds up well and is mostly resistant to water damage. However, it’s not as durable as metal would be and you shouldn’t put too much pressure on it.
The capacity of this hose reel seems decent; it can hold around 125 feet of 5/8-inch hose. However, this is deceptive as it is a boxed model, meaning that it can actually hold less. The fact that it doesn’t work with thicker hoses is also a minus in this regard.
Automatic, Water-powered Hose Reel
It features an automatic winding feature that uses water pressure for power. However, that makes the winding process rather slow, and as mentioned, it doesn’t even work with thicker hoses.
Portable Boxed Model
This is a boxed model meaning that you can carry it with you out in the field, but you have to carry it by hand as it has no wheels or anything similar.
Hose Guide Winds The Hose Evenly
The hose guide makes sure that the automatic winding goes without a hitch and the hose stays straight during the entire thing. Still, it won’t do that for thicker hoses at all.
Who Should Buy This Product
This product is ideal for people who don’t want or can’t put any effort into winding the hose manually and want a fully automatic process. It even has a hose guide, ensuring that you won’t have to watch over the process. It can also hold a decent amount of hose, is rather portable and comes at a decent price.
What to Watch Out For
The automatic winding is nice, yes, but it is also incredibly slow due to the fact that it uses water pressure for the process. It is faster to use a manual hose reel and wind it by hand than to wait for this to finish. It also only works with lighter hoses and anything more heavy-duty is out of the question, limiting its usefulness.
On the surface, this seems like a great hose reel due to the fact that it is completely automatic and well-constructed. However, the automatic winding feature is slow and this reel only works with lighter hoses which greatly limits it. It’s still a good product, but if you have a thicker hose you should look elsewhere for a fitting reel.
It claims it is constructed from durable resin and the box sure is, but other parts aren’t. There are problems with the reel squeaking and the handle falling off all the time, due to shoddy materials.
It can hold up to 175 feet of a standard 5/8-inch hose, or so it claims. In actuality, it can hold a bit less, due to being a boxed model, but it is still an impressive amount.
Manual, Boxed Hose Reel
This is a manual hose reel that’s held in a box. It doesn’t have wheels but it can be carried around if needed and you have to wind the hose by hand. It all works decently well.
Hose Guide Causes more Problems
The hose guide doesn’t work well, though, and it constantly moves back and forth. You end up having to take care of both guide and the hose while winding, creating more work instead of helping you.
Who Should Buy This Product
This is a great product for people on a budget because it doesn’t cost a lot and it will work great with almost any hose and it can hold in plenty of hose as well. It looks nice, doesn’t seem like a cheap product so you won’t have to be embarrassed about it and it works decently.
What to Watch Out For
The main problem comes from the cheapness of the materials used in its construction. Because of that, it is rather shoddy and some parts of it don’t function well – for example, the handle falls off too often. There’s also the issue of the hose guide which actually creates more work for you instead of making the winding process easier.
For the price, this is a decent product that does what is advertised and has great capacity, better than some more expensive products. However, that cheapness can bring you issues, since the materials it is made from are flimsy and some parts don’t function. It can still do good work for you, but not for long.
The Best Pick – Liberty Garden Products 704
Picking just one garden hose reel as the best is an unrealistic proposition. Different people don’t value different things equally and something that one might consider to be a top-of-the-line product, someone else might completely disregard as trash. It’s all a matter of opinion in the end.
However, it’s far easier for us to offer our opinion on the best garden hose reel when it comes to the three products we presented here. Out of them, we honestly think that the best one is Liberty Garden Products 704, by far. It just offers the best experience out of all the products, without any major flaws. Yes, it does have some downsides but most are easily fixable. It only won’t work for you if you need a portable hose reel, but otherwise, it is clearly the best.
So, that’s the hose reel we picked as the best one, in our opinion. However, you are not obliged to share that opinion and you should simply use all the info we presented here to pick the hose reel you believe is the best. It might be one of the products in this article, as they are all still fine reels, or it might be something completely different, it’s entirely up to you. We just hope we were able to be of some assistance to you. If this article helped you in any way, please share it around so others can find it as well. Thank you for reading and have a good day!