What Are the Different Types of Garden Hoses?

Lori Kilchermann

There are a wide array of garden hoses to choose from, and many are designed for specific tasks, such as the soaker, weeper and sprinkler hose. Options when selecting garden hoses include a variety of colors, diameters and lengths. Hoses also vary by their special features, such as mold resistance, burst strength and resistance to kinking.

Man mowing the grass
Man mowing the grass

A spring coil garden hose can be stretched out to use, then automatically returned to its shortened, coiled shape. The spring coil hose eliminates the need for hose reels because of its coiling component. It also may be easier to manipulate for some users than a long, straight length of hose.

Soaker and sprinkler style garden hoses are typically flat hoses with numerous holes on one side. When water flows through the hose, it is dispersed through the holes rather than out the other end. To use as a soaker, the holes are positioned downward and the water flows directly into the ground. To use the hose as a sprinkler, the holes in the hose are faced upward instead of down, allowing the water to spray out of the holes.

One benefit of a soaker hose is that the water can be directed exactly where it is needed. Some soaker or weeper style garden hoses are designed to be buried in gardens or flowerbeds. The hoses are constructed from long-lasting, durable materials. They enable direct watering without evaporation.

Garden hoses come in varying lengths, colors and diameters. While green is a common color for garden hoses, other options include white, yellow and black. Color choice is typically personal preference. While some consumers prefer the standard green to blend with their lawn, others prefer brighter colors, such as yellow, to help easily locate the hose and avoid running it over with a lawn mower.

Some garden hoses are designed not to kink, and others offer mold and mildew resistance as well as lifetime warranties. Garden hoses are typically used and stored outdoors, so some manufacturers even offer hoses which are suitable for use in sub-freezing temperatures. The exterior surfaces of many hoses are polished and treated to resist surface abrasions and stains.

Hoses featuring multi-ply construction offer extra strength for increased water pressure as well as durability and sturdiness. Most garden hoses are equipped with brass couplings on each end to enable a variety of hose accessories to be used. Hoses are typically made so they can accommodate a spray nozzle, watering wand or sprinkler on one end and be connected to a water source on the other.

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Discussion Comments


Is there any such thing as an eco friendly garden hose, maybe one that is made from a material besides plastic? I just feel kind of weird using a plastic tube to put water on all of my flowers and vegetables. Feels like there should be a more natural way.


@Profess - I have this garden hose that automatically retracts into a metal housing that you set up next to the spigot. That way, when you are watering, you only have to pull out as much hose as you need and it stays straight. When you are not using it it is rolled back up and stored safely.

I was a little more expensive than your average hose but I have had it for about 6 years now and it works great. If you buy quality stuff you have to buy it less frequently.


I feel like I end up buying a new garden hose at the start of every summer. By the time I dig the old one out of the shed I find that it is full of kinks, rips and that it is hopelessly tangled up. I end up going and buying another cheap one and then the cycle begins again.

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