We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Fire Hose?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGEEK is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGEEK, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A fire hose is a hose which has been designed to deal with very high pressure, so that it can be used to rapidly deliver flame retardants to a fire. Fire hoses are extremely sturdy and heavily reinforced, since they must be able to work at pressure levels which can reach 300 psi (20 bar), with a burst point which can be as much as four times higher. These hoses are sold by companies which produce firefighting equipment, and they can be quite costly.

Being able to deliver water or chemical flame retardants to a fire is a critical part of fighting a fire, both to put the fire down and to prevent it from spreading. The earliest versions of the fire hose date to around the 1600s, when the Dutch first developed this firefighting tool as a replacement for bucket brigades. Over time, the fire hose has evolved to handle more pressure, with hoses in a wide variety of widths being available for different purposes.

To make for easy storage, fire hoses are usually flat so that they can be folded or rolled neatly. One end of the hose is designed to connect to a water source, with some hoses having adapters to fit various taps. The other end of the hose has a nozzle which can be adjusted to modulate the force of the stream of water. When a fire hose is filled and the nozzle is flipped open, the pressure can be enough to knock someone over, which is why firefighters often work in pairs or groups with a hose.

In large structures or facilities prone to fire, fire hoses are often installed at convenient access points along the walls and connected to a standpipe. If a fire breaks out, someone can open the compartment which houses the hose and turn it on, quickly accessing a supply of water which can be used to contain the fire. These fire hoses are classically folded accordion-style to make them easy to deploy, although some are mounted on spindles.

Fire trucks have loose hoses which can be attached to fire hydrants or standpipes at the site of a fire, along with hoses which can be attached to the truck itself, or to tankers filled with water or flame retardants. Some fire trucks have hoses which are designed to be attached at all times, so that firefighters can pull up, jump off, turn the hoses on, and get going.

This firefighting tool is a critical part of the arsenal at a fire station. Firefighters regularly inspect their hoses to ensure that they are in good working condition, replacing or repairing damaged hoses, as a damaged hose can be a major problem at a fire.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments

Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Read more
WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.