What is a Hose Reel?

Mary McMahon

A hose reel is a gardening accessory which holds a coiled hose and pays out lengths of hose as needed for watering. When watering is finished, the hose can be wound back up onto the reel for tidy storage. Many nurseries and home supply stores stock hose reels, and if customers cannot find what they are looking for, they can also check Internet sites which sell garden supplies.

Man mowing the grass
Man mowing the grass

There are a number of styles of hose reel available. Some are designed to attach to a wall or to sit on a stand over a spigot, while others are set up as rolling carts which can be pulled around the garden. A hose reel can also lie or sit on the ground. In all cases, the reel is designed so that a hose can be coiled around a hollow core.

The reel unwinds as someone tugs on the hose, paying out a length of hose as needed. When someone is finished, there are several options for rewinding. It can be done by hand or with a crank, as is common on basic designs, and other models are electric or use a water-powered engine to reel the hose back in. Totally closed hose reels may work more like a measuring tape, with the hose being pulled back in when someone flips a switch and releases the hose. The more sophisticated the process for retracting the hose, the more expensive the hose reel tends to be.

There are a number of advantages to using a hose reel. Avoiding kinks is an obvious bonus, and the hose reel will also keep hoses tidy for storage. Enclosed hose reels will additionally protect hoses from the elements, limiting the damage caused by exposure to sunlight. Hoses which sit out in the sun every day often develop cracks and splits which can cause leaks. Reels can also be easily used to transport hoses in a compact bundle.

When selecting a hose reel, people should be careful to select a product big enough to hold a hose of the length and size they would like to use. It also pays to buy a sturdy product which will withstand years of use. Cheap, thin plastics, for example, will tend to fail, causing the hose reel to break. People may also want to think about whether they want the hose reel to mount somewhere, or to be a portable item which can be used to carry a hose around the garden.

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