You certainly don’t want your garden hose piling, twisting, and getting damaged, right? Well, that’s why it’s preferable to maintain your tools and equipment so that it can last long.
A garden garden hose reel, a cylindrical spindle that you can mount your garden hose on, protects your hose. Not to mention, you wouldn’t have to worry about a pile of long hose interfering with your garden’s aesthetics.
A gardening hose reel can be a real game-changer, so follow along as we tell you about our top picks so that you could pick the best hose reel for your needs.
You might also like: Best Garden Hoses That Don’t Kink
The Best Garden Hose Reel Right Now
Finding the best garden hose reel is tricky because it differs from one person to another. Your perfect garden hose reel could be a hose reel cart, but someone else’s could be a retractable garden hose reel.
In short, it all boils down to your usage, budget, garden size, and prioritized features. With that in mind, we’ve put together a comprehensive hose reel review and guide with a diverse collection.
1. Best Overall: Suncast Swivel Smart Trak Hose Hideaway
The Suncast Swivel Smart Trak Hose Hideaway is our personal favorite. Its closed storage space protects the hose against the elements. Also, it’s durable and contributes to the hose’s durability.
Decor Interiors president, Bill Ferris, states that synthetic resin is an excellent choice for outdoor containers with high durability, puncture resistance, UV resistance, and water resistance. And sure enough, the reel is made of synthetic resin.
Additionally, the hose reel is easy to maneuver with a swivel base for smoothness and coordination. Concerning its measurements, the reel is about 26x21x30 inches, fit for standard width hoses up to 225 feet.
Closed storage space for a shielded hose
Made of synthetic resin, making it very durable, water-resistant, UV resistant, and puncture-resistant
This is a feature that will make people want to actually buy the product because it’s awesome.
Swivel base for easy maintenance and maneuvering
Fits standard width hoses up to 225 feet
May be expensive compared to other hose reels
2. Best Heavy-Duty: Eley Wall-Mount Garden Hose Reel
You can depend on the Eley Wall-Mount Garden Hose Reel to do some heavy-duty hosing. That’s partly because it’s sturdy and can be fixed to brick, concrete, and other walls.
The hose reel puts an end to your doubts about wall-mounting, as you can configure it for perpendicular or parallel accessibility and reach tricky corners. Not to mention, its accessibility and mounting options are varied.
The downside is that the reel’s water isn’t safe for drinking. Also, it isn’t suitable for direct mounting to pressure-treated lumber walls for its corrosiveness. However, you can overcome that with mounting standoffs.
Can be mounted to brick, concrete, and other walls
This is a feature that will make people want to actually buy the product because it’s awesome.
Can be configured for perpendicular and parallel accessibility and reach difficult spaces
Various mounting and accessibility options
Not a drinking water safe system
Needs mounting standoffs to be mount to pressure-treated lumber
Not the best for 24-inch stud width
3. Best Portable: Strongway Garden Hose Reel Cart
If you have a large garden, the Strongway Garden Hose Reel Cart is the one for you. As a portable hose cart, you can use its easy handle to cover your garden’s every inch. It also features a swivel grip that adjusts the hose direction when winding and unwinding.
Furthermore, the hose reel cart has excellent hose capacity, as it can contain 400 feet of 5 to an 8-inch hose, and it comes with a 6 feet leader hose.
Nevertheless, like most portable reels, it isn’t very durable, so don’t take the 7-year lifetime warranty to indicate its longevity.
Perfect for vast gardens, as it can cover large areas
Handle with an easy pull-behind design
Swivel grip that adjusts the hose direction
Excellent hose capacity (400 feet of 5/8-inch hose) and comes with a 6 feet leader hose
Not the most durable but isn’t less durable than other portable hose reels
4. Best Hideaway: AMES NeverLeak Cold-Weather Resistant Hose Cabinet
AMES NeverLeak Cold-Weather Resistant Hose Cabinet is ideal for locations with extreme weather, placed inside a weather-resistant cabinet that’s simple to put together. Moreover, its slatted design prevents rain from hitting it incessantly, causing corrosion.
Not to mention, the hideaway design can carry up to 150 feet of hose. And the product includes a durable leader hose, along with a hose guide as well. We also can’t forget the aluminum never-leak water system that resists cross-threading.
There’s nothing to critique about this cabinet except for its high cost, which is understandable considering all it has to offer.
Weather-resistant cabinet to protect the hose reel against the elements
Slatted model to reduce corrosion
Can contain up to 150 feet of hose
Comes with a durable hose guide and leader hose
Aluminum never-leak water system to avoid cross-threading
A bit costly for most people
5. Best Value: Sorbus Manger Garden Hose Holder Stand
People who want the most value will be interested in the Sorbus Manger Garden Hose Holder Stand. It can take up to 5 to an 8-inch garden hose that’s 125 feet and doesn’t disappoint on construction. It can certainly withstand extreme weather conditions.
And with no leader, you can merely connect the hose and the spigot. You’ll find its three anchor points effective in fixing the hose stand in place.
There’s barely any reason not to buy this hose holder stand as long as your soil is in good condition because its anchor points might sink a bit in a not-very-solid ground.
Can hold up to 125 feet of 5/8-inch garden hose
Good construction quality with a curved design and a thick steel construction
Can handle extreme weather conditions
You can attach the hose directly to the spigot
Has three anchor points for steadiness
Not very good for soft ground
Why Use a Hose Reel?
You might argue that a hose reel isn’t really a necessity. But there are four main reasons winding your hose on a hose reel is loads better than letting your hose pile haphazardly.
If you think you’ll save money by not buying a hose reel, think again. A fluid hose is made of rubber and likely to wear over time. Contrarily, a hose reel keeps your hose protected, shielded from the sun, and out of the way. It won’t be tangled, damaged, or cracked.
This way, it’ll last longer and remain in good condition. In other words, you’ll be saving the cost of premature hose replacement, making this a wise investment.
When it comes to products for residential use, the main priority should be safety. People bump into and trip over their hoses more often than you’d think, hurting themselves in the process.
And if you live with an elderly or have kids or pets, a hose sitting around is just an accident waiting to happen.
Rolling the hose up and storing it over a hose reel will save you many safety hazards and serious injuries.
Not to mention, it’s safer for your plants because you won’t overwater them to death by accidentally leaving the wayward water hose running. That’s because the hose reel will serve as a reminder for you to collect your hose.
We value your time, so you better believe that if a product were to make your gardening chores more manageable, we’d be all over it.
With a hose reel, you hand over some of the cleaning-up to the appliance. To illustrate, you won’t have to untangle or unravel your hose, water your garden, or roll it up when you’re done.
And that’s not counting the extra features that may come with a garden hose reel, like adjusting the hose’s direction or baskets for gardening tool storage.
By facilitating the handling and storage of a hose, a hose reel does all the heavy lifting, leaving you the simple job of operating it.
Leave it up to a piling hose to make an unnecessary clutter. But we’re all about organization. And what better way is there to keep your hose looking neat than to roll it over a hose reel? Reducing clutter in your garden will enable you to enjoy an organized, stress-free zone, which is the point, after all.
Pro Tip: If the aesthetics of your garden is a priority to you, it’d be best to get a decorative hose reel. They’re designed to enhance your patio or garden’s visual appeal.
How to Choose a Hose Reel
There are several things you need to consider before choosing a reel.
It’s crucial to consider your garden hose capacity when buying a garden hose reel. That’s because some fit small hoses of about 100 feet, whereas others hold larger ones of 250 feet.
Pro Tip: Any hose reel has suggested upper limits for water hose sizes, but you might want to take their recommended maximum size with a grain of salt. To be on the safe side, aim for a reel that’s a bit larger.
As for the hose length, the hose reel should be able to carry a water hose 50 feet longer than yours so that it has enough space to contract and expand.
Reel Construction Quality
One thing you should never overlook in a hose reel is its quality because that’s what will determine its durability and longevity.
Stainless steel is the sturdiest material and arguably the superior choice. It doesn’t break easily, making way for more risk-free motion. Metal and rubber are durable too, and they’re cheaper.
Plastic is probably the most affordable material. It’s flexible, but you have to decide if it’s strong enough to handle your usage and weather conditions.
Hose Construction Quality
In case the hose reel you have your eyes on comes with a hose, we’ll give you an idea about the materials used and the best among them. Typically, rubber hoses are more durable than vinyl ones. Not to mention, they facilitate the passage of hot water.
Pro Tip: You can learn about a model’s build material from the product’s specifications.
A leader hose is a good match for a garden hose reel. That’s because you can put the reel away from the spigot and make use of the full leader hose length to water your garden.
You can find a leader hose of any hose length from 3 feet to 10 feet and even more. To decide on the appropriate leader length, consider where you’ll store it and its distance from the water faucet.
Pro Tip: If you intend on drinking from your hose, your leader hose and garden hoses need to be drinking water safe
Portable vs. Stationary
You need to choose between a portable hose reel and a stationary hose reel. A portable hose reel has wheels. So, you can reach your garden’s every corner, even if you have a large garden. Not to mention, it’s easy to store and doesn’t take up much space.
However, a stationary hose reel or wall-mounted hose reel is a fixed sturdy structure. It’ll do the job as long as you have a small garden or long hose, allowing you to water your garden fully without moving the garden hose reel.
Furthermore, a manual hose reel is suitable for storage because it probably has handles and takes up no space.
Manual vs. Automatic
On the one hand, a manual hose reel, also known as a non-retractable garden hose reel, is an economical option compared to a retractable hose reel. In fact, it’s probably the cheapest kind. You save money but exert effort.
This reel should suffice if you have a small garden or short hose. After all, you’ll be mounting and looping the water hose over the garden hose reel with a hand crank.
On the other hand, an automatic garden hose reel or retractable hose reel is more expensive. But an automatic hose reel saves you energy and maximizes your comfort with a garden hose that reels in by itself. Also, it’s ideal for de-spooling your garden hose.
Closed vs. Open Storage
A closed hose storage reel, referred to as a hideaway hose reel, provides you with sheltered storage space in the hose box for the hose pipe.
After separating the spray gun, you can store the hose inside the container, which conceals and protects it against stark weather conditions. Therefore, a hideaway garden hose reel is durable and long-lasting in extremely cold or hot regions. You can retrieve it later through the container’s lid top.
As for open storage hose reels, you leave the hose visible and vulnerable to the elements.
Optional Features (Basket, Swivel Base, Guided)
If you’re looking for a stationary hose reel, it can have an attached basket in which you can put your essential gardening tools, such as an extra hose nozzle, cultivators, and gloves.
Pro Tip: Perhaps, a bin for storage would be better than an open basket thanks to its weather protection.
If you want free movement in multiple directions for a stationary hose, a swivel base is where it’s at. You won’t have to alter the hose direction when unwinding it from the garden hose reel, as it’ll spin automatically.
Finally, a hose guide protects the hose from kinking when it’s winding or unwinding.
Is a Hose Reel Needed if You Have an Expandable Hose?
This is a valid question, and you’ll see why if you understand the features of an expandable hose.
Expandable hoses extend up to three times their length when water runs through them. And they shrink back to their original size afterward, which makes them compact and easy to store.
They’re flexible and dependable, and their lightness makes them easy to maneuver. In addition, these hoses kink and knot way less than your average rubber hoses.
All of these features may lead you to question the need to buy a hose reel altogether. Although expandable hoses don’t require hose reels the way regular rubber hoses do, they still have use for them.
Mainly, an expandable hose requires protection against the elements, perhaps even more than a rubber one due to its vulnerability. This is where a garden hose reel comes into play with its storage capacity.
Pro Tip: Be careful not to pair an expendable house with a retractable reel because that might damage the hose’s stretchy material. Instead, you can mount it on a manual reel.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most common questions that people have:
Is a Hose Reel Worth It?
A garden hose reel is more than worth it. You can find anything from a metal hose reel with a durable powder coat to a garden hose reel cart with hand crank control. Not to mention, a garden hose reel protects the hose, prevents kinking, and makes it easier to store.
What’s Better, Wall Mounted or Portable?
Portable hose reels are arguably the superior choice. With wheels, you can move them around to water large gardens. Since they can service broad areas, one portable reel can do the job of two wall-mounted reels. And you can pull it from one spigot to the next when you’re watering your plants.
Do Retractable Hose Reels Work?
Sometimes, you’ll find retractable hose reels that work manually. That means you’ll need to use a lever or handle to wind the hose. If you have a small hose, that isn’t a concern. However, manually reeling in a 100 feet long hose might cause you to wonder if investing in a retractable hose reel was worth it in the first place.
How Long Should a Garden Hose Last?
A quality garden hose should live 5 to 10 years if you’re taking good care of it. An otherwise piled or uncovered hose will get damaged and need replacing a lot sooner than that.
Therefore, investing in a garden hose reel is one of the best ways to extend the life of a garden hose. And that’s just scratching the surface of how to extend the life of a garden hose.
Can You Buy a Hose Reel Without a Hose?
Not only can you buy a hose reel without a hose, but it’s more common for steel reels to be sold separately from hoses. And that’s more practical and easier. Also, you’ll find the buyer’s manual detailing the appropriate ranges when it comes to hose capacity, length, and width for each hose reel.
- If you want your hose to be well-protected, the Suncast Swivel Smart Trak Hose Hideaway is the best hose reel for you.
- For a fixed, sturdy hose reel that reaches tricky corners, check the Eley Wall-Mount Garden Hose Reel.
- The Strongway Garden Hose Reel Cart is ideal for large gardens.