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Although you may think that your typical garden hose isn’t packed full of features, you’ll be surprised by how much they’ve improved over the years. This is because many manufacturers are now integrating clever design features such as kink resistance, microbial protection, expandable designs, and so much more into their hoses to stand out from the crowd.
If you want to upgrade your hose, you’ll want to ensure it’s long enough. To ensure this is the case, you’ll want the hose to reach each corner of your lawn and the driveway for washing your car. Generally, most hoses are around 15 metres long, but most manufacturers will offer multiple lengths to best suit your requirements. You may also wish to coil your hose pipe with a reel when it’s not in use, and most brands will also offer a reel as a “complete package”.
To assist you in selecting a garden hose, our handpicked selection lists top-performing hoses, chosen based on our first-hand experience using standard and expandable hose pipes and those that come with reels. Our testing and up-to-date research further ensure the quality of our recommendations.
Our Top Picks At A Glance:
Best Wall-Mounted: Hozelock Garden Hose With Auto Reel
Whether we are watering our plants or washing the car, the use of a garden hose is essential, and over the years, we have tried and tested a wide range of hoses.
In terms of our testing, we tested how easy the hose is to set up and use, the quality of the construction and hardware, and its portability. Whilst testing, we used multiple hoses that were offered by some of the most reputable brands in the UK. These hoses included a standard hose and reel setup, a wall-mounted reel and an expandable hose.
Archie Rich/DIY Works
Archie Rich/DIY Works
Depending on your personal requirements will determine the best type of hose for you. For example, an expandable hose is a great option for small to medium-sized gardens, but if you wish to store away your hose neatly after use, we would recommend either a cart or a wall-mounted reel. We currently own multiple garden hoses, but our favourite is the wall-mounted hose, as shown in the video of our hose that we posted on our YouTube channel below.
To keep up our commitment to reviewing and testing the latest garden hoses (for this article), we are continually testing the latest options from top brands in the UK. This means that when we notice a brand has released a new and improved hose, we will attempt to buy it and put it to the test where applicable.
Archie Rich/DIY Works
Archie Rich/DIY Works
As well as testing and our experience using multiple garden hoses, we also based our recommendations on the latest research and several factors. Some of the factors that we took into consideration included the type, length options available, build quality, supplied fixtures and fittings, additional accessories, warranty and value for money.
Hozelock is the market leader when it comes to garden hoses in the UK and they produce multiple types of hoses that are suitable for each and every application. Thisautomatic reel designin particular is one of their most popular options and it’s available in multiple hose lengths that range from 10 to 50 metres.
Unlike other Hozelock hoses, this model is designed to be wall mounted and it includes a bracket for easy removal and storing it away when it’s not in use. The bracket is easy to install and it only requires two screws to hold it on the wall.
180 degree pivot for easy mobility
Premium 3 layer hose construction
Powerful spring that automatically retracts the hose without kinks
Child lock to prevent misuse
Includes all the fixtures and fittings to install it
Multiple hose length options
Two side compartments for storing accessories
Requires installing to a solid wall
Although it comes with a premium price tag, this wall-mounted option is one of the best on the market and it’s completely worth spending the extra for the intuitive design. As it’s produced by the Hozelock brand, you also have complete peace of mind that spare parts are readily available if you ever need them too.
The popularity of an expandable garden hose has exploded over the last few years. This is mainly because theyrequire no reels and shrink down in sizefor storage without any kinks. The FlexiHose is by far the most popular and highly rated expandable hose in the UK and it’s available in lengths ranging from 15 to 30 metres long.
Along with the hose pipe, the brand includes an 8-pattern spray gun and a 3/4-inch solid brass fitting for the installation.
Lightweight and flexible construction
Double latex pipe that promises zero leaks
High strength polyester self retracting wall
Withstands 12 bar of pressure
Expands to three times it’s size
Lifetime replacement guarantee
Relatively expensive when compared to other garden hoses
Overall, the FlexiHose is the best expandable garden hose on the market with multiple hose lengths available. Although expensive, it’s built to the highest of standards and it also includes a matching branded spray gun.
3. Best All-Rounder: Hozelock Garden Hose With Cart
A more affordable Hozelock option is the brand’s hose that’s connected to a manual reel. It’s available in lengths of 20, 30 or 50 metres and itcomes fully assembledout of the box, which makes setting it up nice and easy.
Unlike other cheaper manual reels, the Hozelock construction is well-made and allows for quick rewinding of the hose.
Durable plastic hose reel
Portable with wheels and a handle
Premium triple layered hose
Multiple hose length options
Includes a 2 year guarantee
During testing, we found that when fully extended, it does require a bit of effort to wind it back in without jamming or overlapping in the reel
To conclude, the Hozelock manual retractable reel is an excellent all-round garden hose that offers the best value for money. It’s made using the highest quality materials and is designed to last many years with its durable construction.
Karcher is another huge UK brand that produces a range of popular hose and reel options. The CR3110 model in particular they offer is fairly unique as it features a compact design that can be wall mounted or remain as a portable unit.
10 metre hose length
Storage available inside the drum
On-board outlet to stop the water flow
Includes 2 “AquaStop” connectors
Easily removable for transportation
Ergonomic carrying handle
Only available with a hose pipe length of 10 metres, which only makes it suitable for small gardens
If the 10-metre length of the hose integrated into the CR3110 setup isn’t an issue, this Karcher hose and reel is the perfect option for space saving. It’s packed full of intuitive features and it’s the best compact option on the market.
5. Best Value: Running Bulls Expanding Garden Hose
A more affordable expandable garden hose is the new and improved Running Bulls option, which isavailable in 50, 100 or 150 feet length options. According to the brand, it’s able to expand up to three times its original size and it’s backed by a one-year warranty and 90-day money-back guarantee for complete peace of mind.
Included with this expandable hose is a spray gun, 3/4 and 1/2 inch brass connectors, a wall hanger and a storage bag. It really is the complete package and with all the items combined, it offers outstanding value for the money.
Lightweight and easy to store inside of the supplied bag
Durable latex core and 600D polyester webbing construction
Spray gun with 7 adjustable settings
Multiple hose length options
Suitable for all UK standard taps
During testing, we found the spray gun could've been improved
To conclude, the Running Bulls expandable hose is a cheap yet high-quality optionthat’s available in multiple length options to best suit your requirements. When compared to similar-priced alternatives, this expandable hose offers far better quality and it even includes a spray gun which many budget options don’t provide.
6. Best Wall-Mounted Runner-Up: Karcher HR7320 Hose
Another Karcher garden hose is the HR7320 model, which features a manual retractable reel. It has a clever design that can be easily mounted to the wall as well as an integrated storage box for any extra accessories. Unlike other wall-mounted constructions, this garden hose has the benefit of being easy to remove for using it as a portable reel.
Space saving design
Easily removable drum
Heavy duty and built to last
20 metre hose length
Includes a spray nozzle and installation hardware
Relatively expensive when compared to the alternatives
Overall, it’s a high-quality garden hose with a clever reel design that’s easy to install and use. The only drawback is that it comes with a premium price tag but the quality of the construction and clever design makes it a great investment.
Garden Hose Buying Guide
A garden hose is something that you’ll find in the majority of UK homes. This is because they are a requirement for most gardening or car cleaning tasks, and they are available in a range of designs that are portable or can be mounted to the wall.
To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below guide regarding garden hoses.
Types of Hoses
When choosing between the different types of hoses, you’ll find that there are standard (rubber/vinyl), expandable and flat types. Thestandard garden hoseis made from a durable rubber or vinyl construction and it includes multiple layers for durability. They also usually come as a package that includes a reel or a cart, and they offer great value for money.
The other popular type is anexpandable garden hose, which is becoming very popular in the UK due to its extra-long length. They are designed to expand three or four times their length as the water pressure is applied, and they also come with a range of benefits, such as ease of storage and handling due to their lightweight design.
Flat hosesare another type that are similar to what the firemen use, and they are often available in very long lengths. However, we didn’t include any of this type within this article due to the fact they easily kink and tangle.
One of the biggest decisions to make when purchasing a garden hose is deciding upon a length that best suits your requirements. You could have the best garden hose on the market, but if it doesn’t reach the end of your garden or around your car, it can be very frustrating to use.
Rather than approximately measuring the length of the lawn and driveway,many people make the mistakeof buying the longest garden hose available. However, if the extra length isn’t required, it can be hard to move around, require more storage space, reduce water pressure, and are often more expensive to buy.
Therefore, to avoid the mistake of purchasing a hose that’s too short or too long, simply measure the total length of the lawn and driveway from the outside tap.
Not every garden hose will come with a spray gun as part of the package and you may need to purchase it separately. If you do need to purchase a spray gun, look for one that’s a universal fit for all UK garden hoses. You’ll also want to check that it includes multiple spray patterns and an ergonomic anti-slip grip.
If you are on a budget, it may be tempting to leave out the hose reel. However, the reel isn’t just for keeping the hose tidy because it also reduces wear, makes it easier to store and also helps to rewind the hose without kinks.
Most reels for garden hoses are made of plastic, fibreglass or metal, and they feature a cylindrical reel for coiling the hose. They can also bemanual, automatic or even electricfor winding the hose back into the reel.
Regardless of the type of reel you decide to use, all of them can be mounted to fixed locations such as the wall, but this is dependent upon your personal preference.
Hose Connections and Adapters
Before you can begin to use the hose, you’ll need to connect it to an outdoor tap and this may require an adapter that sits between the hose and tap. It’s important to note that the adapters may need to be purchased separately, and if you plan to connect the hose to apressure washer, you will also need a matching adapter to fit that too.
The majority of connectors and adapters are standardized in the UK, which means they are readily available. However, it’s strongly recommended that you opt for brass or other high-quality metal over plastic alternatives.
There may be occasions where you need to transport the hose to another location, or you may have multiple outdoor taps. This makes a portable design that’s lightweight and easy to move around very beneficial. The best options for portability are hoses that are connected to a cart reel and have wheels at the bottom for easy transportation.
Anti-kink and Tangle Free
There is nothing worse than a garden hose that constantly kinks or tangles and stops the water from passing through. Not only is it frustrating but it can even cause the hose to crack or split when under large amounts of pressure.
Therefore, it’s highly recommended that you purchase a hose that’s specifically labelled as having an anti-kink or tangle-free design to avoid this frustration.
Garden hoses are very versatile, and you can often purchase many additional attachments. For example, you may wish toconnect a garden sprinkler, a specific spray gun or a pressure washer to the hose. Therefore, to ensure that there are no issues, check to see whether the brand offers these attachments and that the hose is a standard UK size.
Using a garden hose is fairly straightforward, and with the correct spray gun, you can use it for multiple applications. However, there are some best practices that we advise that you follow to maintain the hose.
The first of our tips is that you shouldalways drain the hose after it has been used. Water that’s left standing inside of the hose can increase the chances of bacteria or algae growth. It can even cause the hose to split whilst winding it up into the reel due to the amount of pressure it’s under.
When it comes to storing the hose, you should also ensure that it’s left in a cool location and not in direct sunlight. This helps to prevent the hose from hardening or cracking from UV rays or heat.
Investing in the best garden hose that you can get your hands on can make a huge difference. This is because they’ll be longer lasting, offer more functionality and be much easier to use than some of the cheaper alternatives available.
All of our recommendations above are suitable for a range of budgets and include the main types of hoses. If possible, we recommend buying reputable branded hoses because spare parts and other attachments are readily available.
If you require further information regarding our garden hose recommendations, feel free to get in touch, and we will try to provide our assistance where possible.
Written By Archie Rich
With a robust background as an apprentice at a renowned gardening firm, Archie has blossomed into a self-made gardening specialist at DIY Works. His passion for cultivating thriving green spaces is matched only by his unwavering commitment to sharing expert advice and inspiring fellow gardening enthusiasts.