Best Garden Hoses: Picking The Right Hose For You

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With such a wide array of options to choose from, and only small differences in how they look, it’s tempting to just purchase the cheapest garden hose you can find.

However, garden hoses have many small differences that have a huge impact on how easy the hose will be to use and how long it is going to last.

The best garden hoses on the market will last for five to 10 years. Unfortunately, most people who purchase lower quality hoses wind up replacing it every year because of rot, cracks or leaks. While there are some issues that you can repair, it makes more sense to purchase a quality garden hose to begin with.

If you’ve already invested in the best hose reels and nozzles, it makes sense to invest in a quality hose as well, doesn’t it!?

This guide will go over the best garden hose based on what you want it to do and how you will use it. Let’s get into it!

What to Consider When Choosing a Garden Hose

There are several factors you need to consider when buying a garden hose. Ideally, you’ll buy one hose and it’ll last you almost a decade. That makes it important to consider all of the factors when making your purchase.

Length

Longer isn’t always better. As a result, you need to consider how long of a hose you really need. If you purchase one that is too long, it will be heavy and difficult to store. Most gardeners can get away with a 50′ to 75′ hose. If you need to go above that, it’s sometimes better to get two 50′ hoses and couple them together instead of buying a larger 100′ hose.

Hose Diameter

The most common diameters are 5/8″, 3/4″ and 1/2″. This measurement refers to the width of the interior of the hose, rather than the outside.

Material

Garden hoses are most commonly three materials:

  • Vinyl – This is usually reinforced with a type of radical cord and is the most inexpensive option, but it’s not as durable as other materials.
  • Rubber Rubber hoses are the best material overall. They can carry hot water and resist ozone deterioration and cracking, but are heavy and more expensive.
  • Reinforced – These hoses are usually reinforced with some type of mesh lining and can resist to splitting and kinking. They can also withstand higher levels of water pressure.

Strength

The strength of a garden hose is measured in regard to “burst pressure.” If you are going to be using a sprinkler or nozzle. find a hose that has a rating of over 350 psi to avoid bursting your hose.

Flexibility

It is important to purchase a garden hose that is flexible, which will ensure it can easily go around corners and be stored more easily.

Couplings

The end pieces on a hose are the couplings. While many hoses come with plastic, these will break more easily. As a result, you need to choose hoses with metal couplings, ideally brass if possible.

Types of Garden Hoses

When you begin searching for a garden hose, you are going to find there are several types to choose from. Learning a bit more about each option can help you determine what you need.

Lightweight Hoses

A lightweight or light duty hose is typically made from vinyl. The best lightweight garden hoses are going to be reinforced with multiple piles (layers) or reinforcing mesh, which will help prevent kinks. They usually have plastic fittings and are offered in thinner diameters. However, the upside is the price. They are much more affordable than other garden hose options.

If you are trying to garden on a budget, don’t plan on using the garden hose often or don’t need an extremely long hose (these are typically 50 feet long, or less), have lower water pressure or don’t plan on using a hose nozzle or sprinkler, then the lightweight garden hose is a great option.

Regular Hoses

Dramm ColorStorm Premium 50’ x ⅝” Garden Hose

Sale
Dramm 17006 ColorStorm Rubber Garden Hose, 5/8" X50', Berry
  • Premium quality rubber hose
  • Hot water resistant up to 160 Degree F
  • Resists kinking
  • Coils easily even in cold weather
  • Crush proof, nickel-plated coupling

This is an extremely tough, rubber hose that can stand up to any elements in your yard or garden. One of the most appealing factors that set this hose apart from other in its class is that you can find it available for sale in six different colors.

Briggs and Stratton 50’ Heavy-Duty Rubber Garden Hose

Sale
Briggs and Stratton 8BS50 50-Foot Premium Heavy-Duty Rubber Garden Hose
  • 50-feet length
  • Crush-proof heavy duty couplings
  • Industrial-style reinforcing for high burst strength
  • Nickel plated brass male and female coupling
  • Rubber washer for watertight connections

Designed to last, this hose features nickel-plated brass couplings, along with a thick rubber body. It will remain flexible, even when temperatures drop outside. You can use this hose with hot water up to 200 degrees Fahrenheit, without worry of damage and it is made in the USA.

Scotts MaxFlex 50’ x ⅝” Heavy Duty Garden Hose

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Swan Products Green Scotts SMF58050CC MaxFlex Heavy Duty Garden Hose 50 ft, 5/8 Diameter
  • A durable hose that will last throughout the seasons, using...
  • Designed with a co-polymer material that makes it durable...
  • Features a burst strength of 500 PSI allowing use for tough...
  • Hose uses Lay-Flat technology that prevents the hose from...
  • Lightweight and easy to roll up and store; hose measures 50'...

This hose is lead-free and safe for drinking. It is made with heavy-duty aluminum couplings and offers reinforcement at the end that attaches to the spigot. A unique feature is that this hose offers a 500 psi burst strength, which is higher than other options on the market today. Thanks to “lay-flat” technology, this hose is kink resistant.

NeverKink Series 4000 50’ x ⅝” Commercial Duty Pro Garden Hose

Teknor Apex Neverkink, 8844-50 PRO Water Hose,5/8-in x 50-feet
  • Guaranteed Not to Kink or Tangle
  • Heavy Gauge Power Coil
  • Industrial Strength Lead-Free Aluminum Couplings Leak &...
  • Contains Microshield to Prevent Mold and Mildew
  • Remains Flexible Down to 45 degrees

 

According to a statement released by the manufacturer, this hose is guaranteed not to kink. It features a coiled collar at the end that attaches to the spigot, along with lead-free aluminum couplings. It is designed to prevent the development of mildew and mold and has anti-microbial features. This hose is made in the USA and remains flexible to 45 degrees.

Tuff-Guard Kink Proof 50’ x ⅝” “The Perfect Garden Hose”

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Tuff-Guard The Perfect Garden Hose, Kink Proof Garden Hose Assembly, Green, 5/8" Male x Female GHT...
  • 50-foot garden hose assembly for watering applications,...
  • Extruded three-ply construction with a polypropylene double...
  • Thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) tube contains braided...
  • Machined brass male and female Garden Hose Thread (GHT)...
  • 100 pounds per square inch (psi) for maximum working...

 

One of the most unique features of the Tuff-Guard hose is it superior exterior flexibility, which is provided by the polypropylene double helix coil. While the hose is flexible, it is also designed to resist kinks providing you with a smooth watering experience. Other features include machined brass couplings and a 300 psi burst pressure.

Gilmour Flexogen 50’ x ⅝” Super Duty

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Gilmour 874501-1001 Flexogen Super Duty Garden Hose Gray 5/8 inch x 50 feet, Gray
  • Patented 8-layer construction with reinforced core maximizes...
  • Crush-resistant and corrosion-resistant brass connections
  • Stainless steel spring prevents kinks at the spigot
  • Made in the U.S.A. and backed by a lifetime warranty

When you purchase this garden hose, you also receive a lifetime replacement guarantee. It will remain flexible, regardless of the temperature (even when it drops below freezing). The hose also comes with a brass collar and couplings, as well as a burst strength rating of 500 psi.

Flat Hoses

The flat garden hose is extremely similar to a fireman’s hose. This type of hose is round when it is full of water, but will flatten down when the water is gone. They are usually lightweight and easy to roll up. These hoses are self-draining and take up much less storage space than conventional hoses; however, they may be somewhat challenging to store if you don’t use a hose reel.

There are some flat hoses that are sold with a hose reel, but if they aren’t you can check to see if they will fit with one you already have or one you can purchase separately.

Since the best flat garden hoses are extremely flexible, you will discover they offer a number of things you should be aware of. They are usually made out of vinyl, which means this type of hose will kink and puncture much more easily than other types and they have a lower pressure rating. If you are pulling the hose around a corner, you may find unrepairable damage occurs. Additionally, you have to have the entire hose unrolled before you turn on the water, which can be cumbersome in some situations.

It is best to use flat garden hoses when storage space is a problem, and the hose is going to be stretched in a straight line over a surface where they aren’t many things that could snag it. In most cases, these are not the best option if you are going to be using them frequently.

Expandable Hoses

Chances are you have seen an ad on television that features scrunchie hoses that will expand up to three times their length when they are filled up with water. These are typically extremely lightweight, weighing about a pound, and offered in bright, fun colors. They have a small diameter and provide adequate water flow compared to traditional garden hoses.

While they will expand as the packaging claims, as time passes, these hoses often stop contracting fully. This leaves you with a stretched out hose that can be difficult to store or coil. Make sure that if you open up the nozzle after the hose has expanded, it is going to shrink as the pressure inside of the hose falls.

If you happen to leave the hose, while full of water, in the sun or have higher water pressure, an expandable water hose may rupture because of the flexible and thin inner tube.

While all that is true, there are many people who enjoy using expandable hoses because they are so lightweight. It is best to store them out of the sun and treat them with care. They often have plastic couplings that are crack-prone. However, some of the hoses come with brass couplings, which are more weather and use resistant.

TruTec 75′ Expandable Garden Hose

Newest 75 Foot Expandable Garden Hose, Strongest Expanding Hose with Triple Layer Latex Core, 48 Ply...
  • STRONGEST EXPANDABLE WATER HOSE with proprietary triple...
  • STAINLESS STEEL SOLID CONSTRUCTION HOSE HOLDER (Patent...
  • PREMIUM QUALITY SOLID BRASS CORROSION RESISTANT FITTINGS....
  • HEAVY DUTY METAL NOZZLE built to last. Adjust pressure for...
  • OUR CUSTOMERS SAY: I love getting FREE shipping, It's Magic,...

This is a quality expandable garden hose that is designed for use in lawns and gardens of all sizes. If you are looking for a durable, easy to use hose, then this is one you should consider. It is also more affordable than some of the other options available on the market today.

Metal Hoses

A metal garden hose is a puncture and kink proof garden tool that is made out of industrial stainless steel. It is lightweight and available in 25 to 100-foot lengths. The hose is always cool to the touch and remains corrosion and UV resistant.

Some of the most relevant problems with these hoses is rolling them up for storage. The metal makes them hard to store, which can be difficult for those who have limited space for garden tools. Also, compared to other hoses, these are much more expensive.

The reason they have gained in popularity is their high durability. They can be used on virtually any terrain without worry of damage or other issues. This makes the higher price tag worth the investment.

Gilmour Flexogen Heavy Duty Hose

Sale
Gilmour Flexogen Premium Garden Hose 1/2inx50ft
  • 500PSI burst strength guarantees long hose life
  • Patented tri-extrusion construction for maximum durability
  • Polished cover resists dirt-collecting abrasions
  • Anti-microbial layer guards against mold and mildew
  • Lifetime warranty

The most affordable metal garden hose you’ll find is the Gilmour Flexogen at 50′ length. It has a burst strength of 500 PSI, which is far more than you’ll ever subject this hose to. It’s made from a combination of an inner tube, foam, spiral-wrapped nylon, an inner core, more foam, and then an outer coating. You can’t ask for a better-constructed metal hose.

Soaker Hoses

A soaker hose is used most often for garden irrigation purposes. The best soaker hoses are made out of recycled plastics and rubber and feature porous walls. When you turn the water on, it will ooze through countless small holes present in the hose. This allows water to seep into the surrounding dirt.

You can lay your soaker hose directly on the ground, but it is best to put it beneath a mulch layer. You can also bury it under the surface or six inches deep in vegetable beds.

You will find soaker hoses offered in a number of lengths and diameters. The bigger hoses are often difficult to work with, and they aren’t flexible. You will have to use garden stakes to keep the hoses in place and it is best to lay the hose in the sun for a while to help and soften them before you use them in the garden.

A soaker hose is the best option for areas that are level and short. If you are using a larger soaker hose, then you will need to make sure that you have sufficient water pressure to make sure that the water is seeping out the whole length of the hose you have used.

Dramm ColorStorm 50’ Premium Soaker Hose

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Dramm 17010 ColorStorm Premium 50 Foot Soaker Garden Hose, Black
  • Soaker hose
  • Conveniently water gardens and beds
  • Evenly waters from beginning to end
  • 50 foot Soaker Hose made from recycled material
  • Thoroughly waters using 90% less water than conventional...

Crafted out of recycled material, this hose features extra thick walls to reduce the potential of spurting, as well as nickel plated brass fittings. It is also sold with a lifetime guarantee.

Miracle Gro 50’ x ⅜” Premium Soaker Hose

Swan Products Miracle-Gro MGSPA38050CC Premium Soaker Hose 50 ft with Push on Fittings, 3/8"...
  • A soaker hose ideal to get to the root of your garden,...
  • Delivers moisture straight to the roots when you bury the...
  • Built in water restrictor regulates the inner PSI, ensuring...
  • Soaker hose constructed of 65% recycled material and is...
  • Fittings include 2 male connectors with caps and 2 female...

There are no attached couplings sold with this hose. When you purchase it, you can cut it to the length that you desire and then insert the friction fit, female and male fittings that are provided. Since the hose is sold with two of each end, you can cut the product into two different hoses if that is what you want to do.

Melnor Flat 25’ Soaker Hose

Sale
Melnor Flat Soaker Garden Hose; 25 ft.
  • Backed by a Melnor 2-Year Limited Warranty. Melnor stands...
  • FLATTENS FOR EASY STORAGE - The compact design dripper only...
  • EXTREMELY FLEXIBLE AND VERSATILE - It gets water right where...
  • EASY CONNECTION - Included rust-resistant end cap allows...
  • FITTING SIZE 3/4 INCH - Fits standard garden hose thread

Designed to be a flat soaker hose, it is crafted out of mesh/woven material and sold with plastic couplings. This is not a soaker hose that you would bury, but it is much more flexible than the rubber soakers and works with homes that have lower water pressure.

Gilmour Flat 50’ Soaker Hose

Sale
Gilmour Flat Weeper Hose in Shelf Display, 50ft
  • Snake through rows of new seedlings or under mature...
  • Create an easy DIY watering system by burying the hose under...
  • Made of 100% environmentally-friendly recycled vinyl
  • Clog-resistant fabric cover for consistent soaking
  • 7-year warranty

The exterior of the hose is covered in fabric but made from a perforated PVC liner. This hose is ideal for homes that have lower water pressure that remain under 60 psi. It is very similar to the design and look of the hose mentioned above, the Melnor flat soaker.

Apex 100’ Soil Soaking Hose

Sale
Apex, 1030-100, Soil Soaker Hose, 100-Feet
  • Right to the Root!
  • Up to 30% water savings
  • Weeping pores allows for even soaking directly to roots
  • More flexible for easier handling & winding
  • Lays flat for easier placement

This soaker hose is unique to the other options available for sale today. It is crafted out of vinyl to provide exceptional flexibility. You can purchase this hose in several lengths, including 100 foot, 50 foot, 75 foot and 25 foot. This hose is also manufactured in the United States.

Gardener’s Supply Snip-n-Drip 50’ x ½” Soaker Hose System

Gardener's Supply Snip-n-Drip Soaker Hose System, Drip Irrigation With Fittings 1/2 Inch by 50-Feet...
  • BENEFITS-Easily create an efficient and convenient watering...
  • MULTIPLE USES- Perfect for Elevated Raised Beds and VegTrug...
  • EASY SET UP-Set it up in minutes, and then leave it in place...
  • MATERIALS- PVC garden hose, recycled rubber soaker hose,...
  • INCLUDES- 50' of 1/2" soaker hose, 25' of 1/2" garden hose,...

These hoses are ½ inch and able to be customized to meet your unique irrigation needs. All you have to do is cut the pieces to the desired lengths and then connect. When you purchase this hose, you will receive 50 feet of ½ inch soaker hose, as well as 25 feet of ½ inch garden hose and one quick connect coupler, one faucet adapter an end cap and eight hose couplers.

Raindrip 50’ x ¼” Porous Soaker Tubing

Raindrip 015005T 1/4-Inch by 50-Feet Porous Soaker Tubing
  • Soaker tubing
  • Flexible porous tubing waters trees, hedges and garden areas
  • Connects to 1/4-Inch barbed fitting and needs 1/2-Inch or...
  • 1/4-Inch by 50'

This hose is most commonly used as part of a larger drip irrigation system. It features ¼ inch porous tubing. In order to use this hose, you will have to buy ¼ inch barbed fittings and make sure that you provide a water supply line that is ½ inch, or bigger. However, this is an efficient option for watering your lawn or garden and simple to get started with.

Drinking Water Safe Hoses

If you have plans to drink out of your water hose, or if you let your pets do this, then you will need to make sure you choose one that doesn’t leach any harmful chemicals.

The majority of garden hoses available on the market today are made with various materials, such as plasticizers. While these will provide a hose with flexibility, they also contain a number of chemicals, such as phthalates, lead, and BPA. These can get into the water inside the hose. Even though these chemicals are not going to harm your plants, they can be dangerous for humans and pets.

To avoid these issues, look for the best hoses that have been labeled as being “drinking water safe.” At the very least, find a hose that is labeled as “lead-free.” In many cases, you can find these sold for recreational purposes, such as for use with RVs or boats. These types of hoses are considered non-toxic, and they have been FDA approved as having an inner core that will not leach any harmful chemicals.

Camco 50’ x ⅝” Lead-Free Drinking Water Hose

Sale
Camco 50ft Premium Drinking Water Hose - Lead Free, Anti-Kink Design, 20% Thicker Than Standard...
  • Heavy-duty hose is 20 percent thicker than standard drinking...
  • Drinking water safe, lead free, BPA free, phthalate free and...
  • Machined fittings and strain-relief ends for added...
  • UV stabilized for longer life and made with NSF certified...
  • Compliant with all federal and state level low lead laws....

If you are looking for durability, then you will find this hose, which is 20 percent thicker than others on the market, delivers. This hose doesn’t leave any significant plastic taste in the water, which makes it great for drinking. It also features nickel-plated brass fittings, along with strain-relief ends, which provides even more durability to the hose. It is manufactured in the USA.

Water Right 50’ x 7/16” 400 Series Polyurethane Drinking Water Safe Garden Hose

Sale
Water Right 400 Series Polyurethane Slim & Light Drinking Water Safe Garden Hose, 50-Foot x...
  • Soft, flexible, slim, lightweight, & effortless to use. Will...
  • NSF and FDA certified polyurethane resin for safe drinking...
  • Contains no lead, BPA, Phthalates or other toxic chemicals.
  • Industrial grade brass chrome-plated, lead free fittings are...
  • Flexible in all weather conditions from sub-freezing...

Featuring collars and fittings on each end of the hose that are chrome-plated, this hose is durable and efficient. It can handle a flow rate of four to five gallons a minute and is sold in four different colors.

Plastair SpringHose 25’ x ⅜” Lead-Free Drinking Water Safe Hose

Sale
Plastair SpringHose PUWE625B9-M-3-AMZ Light EVA Lead Free Drinking Water Safe Marine/RV Recoil Hose,...
  • Ultimate recoil memory: springhose extends and retracts to...
  • Max-flow fittings equipped with anti-salt water corrosive...
  • Drinking water safe made from virgin-grade polyurethane...
  • Durable, polyurethane hose construction is resistant to...
  • Measures 3/8-inches by 25-foot springhose for marine RV...

Primarily designed for marine use, featuring fittings that are not going to deteriorate in salt water, you will also find this hose is great for smaller areas in your garden. Keep in mind; it will only stretch out to approximately 15 feet, so you need to purchase a longer option if you require additional reach.

Coiled Hoses

If you are interested in a great space saving option, then a coiled hose may be ideal. This type of hose will form into a tight spiral that will pull together when it isn’t being used. They are typically offered in much shorter lengths – between 15 and 25 feet – but there are some companies that offer longer options.

Due to the coils, these types of hoses will not stretch out to their entire length. For example, if you purchase a 25-foot hose, you may only be able to extend it to about 15 to 20 feet. Make sure to consider this if you are planning on purchasing one.

Additionally, storage of this type of hose can be difficult. You can store them on a reel, but if you put them in a storage bin or large pot, they can become tangled easily. There are also stand up hangers and wall mounted hangers that make hose storage a bit easier.

It is best to use coiled hoses for watering and in small locations. You will find they are great options for a balcony or patio area where you need to store the hose out of the way.

Now that you are familiar with the various types of hoses available, you may want to know more about each one and what products are recommended. Here you can find a few options for each type of water hose above to consider. Being informed is the best way to make an educated decision regarding the hose you ultimately purchase.

Water Right 50’ x ⅜” Professional Coil Garden Hose

Water Right Professional Coil Garden Hose, Lead Free & Drinking Water Safe, 50-Foot x 3/8-Inch,...
  • Manufactured in the United States using 100% lead-free, top...
  • Hose stretches comfortably to about 43 feet; Features 12...
  • Lightweight hose is perfect for smaller watering needs on...
  • Specially engineered strain reliefs on both hose ends to...
  • Solid chrome-plated machined brass fittings provide a...

Using this hose is easy thanks to the 12-inch section of straight hose that is provided at each end. It features a collar and brass fittings that are chrome plated and is considered drinking water safe. This hose can stretch to 40 feet and is manufactured in the USA.

Flexon 50’ Coil Hose

Sale
Flexon PCH5850 Coil Hose, Green, 50 feet
  • The aqua coil hose from flexon is a self coiling garden hose
  • Features a coil spring hose protector and solid brass...
  • Weather resistant outer cover
  • This coil hose is also UV resistant; Measures 5/8-inch...

Offering solid brass compression couplings and coil spring hose protector, this hose also offers a faucet adapter. At its widest point, it measures 5/8th of an inch in diameter. It is somewhat of an oval in shape.

Gatorhyde 50’ Coiled Garden Hose

This is extremely similar to the Water Right hose and provides safe drinking water. It features nickel-plated couplings and is made in the United States. It is crafted out of 50 percent all recycled materials.

Go Forth and Buy Your Hose

A quality garden hose is an asset for any home. You should compare the process of shopping for a garden hose to purchasing an extension cord. You always need to think about the length of the hose first. It is a good idea to measure the distance from you actual wall spigot to all of the places that you are going to need to use the hose. You also need to look at the thickness of the hose. If you are only going to use a hose every once in a while, then make sure to find one that is durable, but you don’t have to spend too much.

With the information here, you are going to be able to find a quality hose that is going to meet your needs and watering goals. Keep in mind, if you are using a hose often or on rough terrain, find one that is more durable and offered with a warranty. This will be the best option for your yard and ensure that your hose lasts and works for as long as you need it to. Finding the right hose will pay off in the long run and be worth the investment.


The Green Thumbs Behind This Article:


Kevin Espiritu
Founder

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Last update on 2018-12-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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1 thought on “Best Garden Hoses: Picking The Right Hose For You”

  1. I have a hose seems to be reinforced rubber, internally has a star shaped rubber infill, colour is green with two thin orange stripes down the side. Could someone please inform me if in fact this is a garden hose and of what type. Also what type of hose attachments would I need.

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