How to Find the Best Hose Reel for Your Needs

Introduction

Taking care of your garden, washing your car, or cleaning up the outside of your house is made much easier when you have a good hose to use. But, what do you do with that hose after you’re done using it? Chances are you leave it around the yard, pile it in a messy pile, or shove it into the shed to get it out of the way. Instead of tripping over your hose or struggling with untangling it every time you use it, look around for the best hose reel for your home.

A hose reel is an easy way to store your hose when you’re not using it. Hose reels keep the hose in great shape while also getting it out of the way in an attractive, functional way. No more tangles, tripping, or ruining your hose. These things are meant for convenience, so you can expect that you’ll have an easier time using them than dragging a heavy hose around and dumping it in a pile all the time!

What Are the Types of Hose Reels?

There are two general categories of hose reels, although there are many individual characteristics of each different type. Here are the two main types:

Manual

When a hose reel has a manual operation, it means you will do the winding up yourself when you are putting the hose away. Most manual hose reels have a large crank handle that helps you get the hose back on the storage section fairly easily.

Automatic

Unlike a manual hose reel, an automatic hose reel operates with an electric crank that winds the hose up for you. All you have to do is activate the mechanism and wait for it to wind up for storage.

How to Choose The Hose Reel

Here are the things you should consider when you’re looking through hose reel reviews for yourself:

Capacity

How large of a hose reel you get will affect where you can store it. Some reels are too large to be stored easily in a shed. You may need to be selective about how large of a hose reel you get, depending on where you plan to store it and how much hose you need to store.

Weight

If you need something a bit lighter, look for a smaller reel that won’t weight as much. Some of them are very portable, but if they weight too much for you to handle than it won’t matter. The mounted, no-mobile hose reels can weigh more without issue, because you won’t regularly be moving them.

Automatic or Manual

I already discussed what the difference is between these two types, but there are some reasons why you might want one above the other. Manual hose reels are usually lighter, although you need some patience and a little bit of strength to use them well.

Automatic hose reels are very convenient to help you wrap the hose back into storage. But, the downside is that you need to keep them near an electrical source. Most automatic hose reels are not portable, since they need a power source in order to reel the hose back up properly.

Portability

If you have a larger yard, it’s a good idea to get something that is more portable. Features that enhance portability include wheels, lightweight designs, and small size. The more portable your hose reel is, the better it will be for use in a large yard. If you have a smaller yard or area to use the hose, you may not need a portable device.

Top 5 Hose Reel Reviews

Product Name

Image

Manual or Automatic?

Capacity

Weight

Portability

Our Rating

Liberty Garden Products Non-Rust Aluminum Mounted Hose Reel

Liberty Garden Products

Manual

125 Ft.

14 lb.

Stationary

Suncast Hose Hideaway with Smart Trak Hose Guide & Bin

Suncast Hose Hideaway with Smart Trak Hose Guide & Bin #CPLSTB200B

Manual

225 Ft.

21.6 lb.

Stationary

Suncast Aquawinder Hose Reel

Suncast RSW125D Aquawinder 125-Foot Capacity Hose Reel

Automatic

125 Ft.

22 lb.

Stationary

Suncast Hosemobile Garden Hose Reel

Suncast 175-Foot Capacity Hosemobile Garden Hose Reel Cart, Bronze/Taupe JNF175BD

Manual

175 Ft.

12 lb.

2 Wheels

Liberty Garden Products Industrial 4 Wheel Garden Hose Reel Cart

Liberty Garden Products

Manual

75 Ft.

36 lb.

4 Wheels

This is an attractive, decorative hose reel that mounts directly onto your wall. Not only does it look great, but it’s actually very functional with an easy to use crank lever and a 5-foot leader hose to connect to your water spigot.

The reel comes fully assembled when you order it, so there’s nothing you need to do except attach it to the wall. It’s made from powder-coated aluminum and decorated with an antique style finish, making it a long-lasting material with a beautiful appearance to add to your yard. This is one of the few hose reels you might find that won’t be an eye sore.

However, the fact that it’s completely non-portable and requires being attached to a wall no less than 5 feet from the spigot can limit your options about where to put it. That is not ideal for every home, so keep it in mind.

Pros

  • Can fit some thicker hoses without issues
  • Looks great on your home
  • Cheaper than a lot of competing reels
  • Rotates smoothly and easily

Cons

  • Mounting hardware and accessories are not included in the kit
  • Some upkeep is required to maintain the finish
  • Lead hose can get caught in the swivel if not lubricated well

If you’re looking for something that will protect the hose against the elements all year around while also looking a bit more inconspicuous, this is a great choice. It is a contained unit with the hose safely tucked away inside the hard plastic shell.

You can manually crank the hose back in using the swivel lever on the side of the container. Everything is assembled for you when you order this hose reel, including the leader hose already being attached for your convenience. All you have to do is attach your hose and start using it.

Be careful when you’re reeling the hose back in, as it sometimes reels in poorly and may get a bit tangled up. When the hose is tangled inside, you can accidentally topple the hose reel over when you next try to pull it out.

Pros

  • Convenient hopper on top to store nozzles and sprinklers
  • Good value for the money
  • Product doesn’t often spring leaks
  • Works well with many different types of hoses
  • 225 foot capacity can store a large hose

Cons

  • Design is not particularly user friendly, and can result in tangles in the hose
  • Some quality control complaints about handles and smaller pieces breaking

Instead of cranking a handle to wind up your house, this device has a clever water-powered reeling mechanism that doesn’t require any connection to the electricity. All you have to do is flip the switch, and it will wind up your hose for you without any snags or issues. It also has the Smart Trak hose guiding system, which keeps the hose on the right track instead of allowing it to tangle inside.

The set has a leader hose, discharge hose, and a fully assembled hose reel all together in the package. Made from a durable resin material, this hose reel is set to last for years in any weather conditions.

Most of the interior parts are made from plastic. While it is sturdy enough for a while, some of the finer pieces, such as gears and connectors, get too strained under any use and will warp or break. These pieces are hard to replace.

Pros

  • 2 stakes are included to help with ground installation
  • Hands free winding mechanism is so easy to use
  • Can accommodate thicker hoses of similar lengths
  • Hose tucks away nicely inside the box and out of view
  • - A hose guard may be installed to stop the hose from winding past a certain point

Cons

  • Hose reel needs to be operated separately from the main hose line itself
  • No backup manual power, so you are in trouble if the water winding system not functional

Anyone in the market for a smile, portable hose reel to use at home may find this Hosemobile from Suncast to be a good fit. It has a long 175 foot capacity, but also has wheel to make sure you can roll it around wherever you need it in the yard. It’s a convenient way to get your gardening, car washing, or whatever else done without having to drag the hose around from place to place.

You can connect a leader hose of any length to this hose reel, so that you can full take advantage of the mobile capabilities. Connection points between the leader hose and the main hose are sealed to be watertight, helping you to avoid a leaky hose.

Pros

  • 2 foot leader hose included with the reel
  • Reel comes completely pre-assembled
  • Easy to move around the yard
  • Keeps your hoses safer than if they were coiled on the ground
  • Design is easy to use and not complicated to figure out

Cons

  • Made with plastic parts that can sometimes snap under stress or pressure
  • No compatible with some non-kink hose designs
  • Hoses of 100 feet or more can put stress on the reel, unless you use thinner hoses

For the person that wants to go all over the place with their hose in the yard, this Liberty Garden hose reel is an ideal option. It’s got four large wheels on the bottom, making it the most portable choice on this list. It moves around any type of terrain more easily than many other portable hose reels, which is why it can be very helpful if you have a big area to cover and don’t want to drag your hose around everywhere.

Instead of plastic construction, this is made from powder-coated steel, which makes it both durable and long-lasting. It will hold up against the elements and any strain you up on it while using it. All small pieces are either made from brass or galvanized steel, so all the moving pieces will work properly for many years.

Pros

  • The low center of gravity helps it not to tip over
  • Ideal for large-scale use, such as in commercial industries and by professional landscapers
  • Fits up to 300 feet or standard 5/8” inch hosearound the yard
  • Winds hose up properly without kinks and tangles
  • 5 foot leader hose is included
  • Easy to move around the yard, no matter what kind of terrain is there

Cons

  • Some O-rings may sprout small leaks
  • Parts of the device may start to rust if you don’t use a paint protection of some sort

Conclusion

In my opinion, the Liberty Garden 4 Wheel Hose Reel Cart is the best choice from this list. It’s very portable, easy to operate, and long-lasting. The manual crank works as it should without tipping over the reel, and it holds a good deal of hose. When you’re done using it, you can just tuck it away near the hose connection, since it’s fairly small and lightweight. These are the reasons I feel it’s the best hose reel you can get for your hard-earned money!

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Dianne T. Lampe
 

Hi there, I’m Dianne! Welcome to a one-stop shop for your gardening needs. We aim here to offer up a very wide range of information about many aspects of gardening. From flowers and planting through to vegetables and accessories, find all the information you need here. We have a true passion for everything green. We’re highly motivated to develop this site continuously and offer any insights we can alongside useful facts and handy hints. Please get in touch and let us know what you would like us to cover. Thoughts and feedback are always welcomed. Enjoy!

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