Best Hose Reels
A garden hose is the key to keeping your landscaping perky and green even in those oppressively hot summer months, and it is also a great way to easily clean all of your outdoor surfaces such as your patio. The downside to these gadgets is that they take up quite a bit of room, and they can be annoying to wind up and put away yourself. Making a small investment in a hose reel will not only make putting it away a breeze, but a lot of these are designed to have additional storage or surfaces to store all of your important garden gear all in one place. In this buying guide, you will find some of our favorite picks that will make your life easier this summer, as well as adding a little bit of style to your outdoor space.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 5 hrs of research
Swivel base and additional stakes keep it secured to the ground
Made from UV resistant materials
Top 10 Picks
1. Suncast CPLSSM200B
Swivel base and additional stakes keep it secured to the ground
Made from UV resistant materials
Some users feel it takes a lot of elbow grease to wind it up
Some feel that the hose connector is not long enough to place it where they wanted
This was one of our favorite options because it not only provides an excellent place to store your line, but it will also protect it from harmful UV rays. Plus, it is designed to stay in place while you unwind it, and wind it back up when you are done using it.Read more
One of the more impressive features about this product is that it is capable of holding an impressive 225 feet of line. It measures to be 26 inches long, 21 inches wide, and 24 inches high.
Ease of use
Just like using a fishing rod, users will simply need to turn the lever at the side of the unit to wind and unwind your line. It has a swivel base to keep the unit from moving as you use it, and it also as a set of stakes to secure it into the ground. The downside about these stakes that it means will also move around a bit if it is placed on a concrete patio.
The entirety of this unit, including all of the components, is made from a UV resistant plastic. This means that users will be able to leave this design out in all sorts of weather conditions and feel confident that it will hold firm.
We love the boxed designs because it means that users will have a place to store all of their gardening tools such as pots, shovels, and bags of soil up off of the ground and in a place where they know they will not be misplaced.
The cost of this unit runs about in the middle of the road. It isn’t the most expensive out there, but it isn’t the least expensive either. Considering the smart design of this option, we feel that it is a great deal.
This was one of our top picks because it has a sharp design that will be an excellent accent to any outdoor area, and it is made from materials that will keep your gardening gear safe and secure.
2. RL Flo-Master 65HR8
Doesn’t require a crank to wind it back up
Some users report their unit has lasted them for over 6 years without any complaints
Some users report having a little bit of trouble getting their unit to retract
The hose that is included is a little skinnier than some users would expect
We loved this option because it is not only really easy to use and mount, but it also makes it perfect for those that are working with a limited amount of space in their backyard. Instead of using a crank to wind it back up, this unit is spring loaded so it will do all of the work for you.Read more
This unit can only hold about 65 feet of line, and users must use the line that is included with purchase. It is 20 inches long, 13 inches wide, and 23 inches long.
Ease of use
Our favorite part about this design is how simple it is to use. Initially, you will have to employ the use of some tools from your toolbox to mount the main bracket to a sturdy wall. Once the bracket is in place, simply place the unit on the base, and secure it with a metal rod. Pull your line out, and you are ready to spray. When you are done, give it a little tug like you would a seat belt, and it will roll itself back up.
The mount for this unit is made from quality metal, and the main unit is composed of a durable plastic that will hold up even in bad weather conditions.
What users really love about this design is that it doesn’t take up a lot of space in their yard, and it has a simple and compact look. Plus, once mounted it can swivel 180 degrees making it perfect for every corner of your yard. When you are done for the season, simply pick it up from the base to store it in the garage.
This unit has a little bit of a higher price tag than some of the more affordable options, but we feel that it is worth the added cost because it comes with a line and a nozzle with you purchase.
Hands down, this is our favorite choice because it requires very little work from the user. It is simple to install, it can swivel to fit your needs, and a simple tug on the line will bring it right back up where you found it.
3. Rapid Reel
Made from high quality materials
Sports 10 inch never flat tires
Holds up to a lot of abuse
Comes with a 10 year warranty
There are some that found it a little difficult to assemble
Simplicity and functionality is the name of the game when it comes to this design. This unit may not have the sharp design appeal as some of the other options out there, but it is made from high-quality materials that are built to handle whatever you can throw at it.Read more
This unit can accommodate a line that is about 100 feet for ¾ inch thickness, or 150 feet for ⅝ inch thickness. It weighs about 33 pounds when empty.
Ease of use
Yes, you are going to bust out your trusty toolbox to put this unit together, but the good news is that users report that it is fairly easy. Once assembled, simply turn the crank at the front of the unit to wind and unwind your line. The tires at the base make it easy to travel around your yard with this unit without fearing getting stuck in muddy soil.
The one thing that we loved about this design is that it is made from high-quality materials that are made to stand the test of time. The frame is constructed with a high-quality powder coated metal. It also sports 10 inch flat free treaded tires. What is even better is that all of the line connections are made from metal.
This unit struggles a little bit in the style department. While this will not add any style or character to your outdoor space, it will provide a mobile base that can easily be wheeled into the garage when you are having the family over for a cookout and need to clear up some yard space.
HIgh-quality materials mean a higher price point, and that principle applies to this model. This is one of the more expensive designs out there on the market, and will likely set you back as much money as you spent on your gas leaf blower. However, if you need something that is made from high-quality materials and is easy to use, we feel that this is well worth the padded price tag.
It may be a little on the expensive side, but this unit is made built to last. From the easy of the metal crank wheel to the 10-inch tires, you will find little faults in this option. Plus, if you do happen to find any faults, it is backed up by an impressive 10-year warranty.
4. Suncast RSW125D Aquawinder
One touch to wind your line (no crank needed)
Sleek rattan resin frame
Some users feel it is very hard to pull the line out
Users do not like that it uses 4-8 gallons of water simply to wind it up
Suncast is making our list yet again with their smart Aquawinder design. This box option has a sharp design that will look great on any patio, and it has an internal water-powered mechanism that will wind your line back by itself when you are done using it with just the flick of a button.Read more
This unit can hold a line that measures to be up to 125 feet if it is ⅝ inches in thickness. It stands to be about 24 inches tall and weighs just over 16 pounds when empty.
Ease of use
Using this design is one of the easiest products out there on the market. It arrives fully assembled, so it will be ready to go right out of the box. Simply hook it up to hour outdoor spigot, and pull the line out to your desired length. When you are ready to wind it back up, press flick the switch located on the side and a water-powered mechanism inside will wind it up for you.
We liked the exterior of this product is made from a dark brown rattan-style resin that might actually match some of your outdoor patio furniture.
As we already mentioned, this unit has a rattan style to the exterior of the box that makes it look like just an ordinary table or piece of patio furniture. Instead of having a square box shape, this unit is a slimmer rectangle that makes it easier to fit into smaller spaces.
What we liked about this option is that while it sports a crankless design, it still comes in at an affordable price point. While it isn’t the most affordable option out there on the market, we feel that it is offered at an excellent price point.
If you are looking for something that has a boxed footprint that is just a little more narrow than most, and has an automatic winder so that you can save your elbow crease for these deep-rooted weeds, this is an excellent option that comes in at a reasonable price.
5. Liberty Garden Products 712
Made from high quality materials
Easy to mount
Swivels 180 degrees
Wire storage basket is perfect for gloves and other gardening tools
Does not come with mounting hardware
A little expensive
This option is great for those that don’t have a lot of outdoor space to work with. It mounts to an exterior wall, and has an easy to use crank that will make keeping your plants hydrated and your patio clear of clutter simple and easy.Read more
Just like many other standard options, this unit can hold up to 125 feet of a line that is ⅝ inches thick. It measures to be about 20 inches high, 19 inches wide and stands to be 22 inches high.
Ease of use
What we found from past users is that this unit is pretty easy to install. Simply mount the base to a flat surface somewhere in your backyard or a post. Once all of the lines are connected to the main water source, you can wind and unwind the line with the sturdy crank found on the side of the unit.
The entirety of this unit is made from high-quality powder coated metal that will hold up quite well throughout all 4 seasons. The crank is made from the same high-quality metal, but it has the addition of a soft rubber grip to make using it just a little easier.
While this unit has a basic utilitarian design, we liked that it looks quite sharp and modern when mounted to a post or the side of a building. It also has the addition of a storage basket on the side to hold important gear such as gloves, shovels, and trowels.
This isn’t the least expensive option out there on the market, but we feel that the slightly padded price tag is worth it considering the quality of materials used and innovative design.
For the price, this is a great option, and it is perfect for those that are working without much room in their backyard. It is just a little bit more expensive, but the addition of a storage basket as well as a rubber coated grip for the crank make it worth it in the long run.
6. Suncast Hosemobile
Wheeled base makes it easy to move around and take in and out of storage
Can hold 175 feet of line
Difficult to wind
All of the fittings are made from plastic
For those that are looking for something that is more affordable, but still comes from a trusted brand, this is going to be your best bet. It sports a small frame that it mobilized by wheels that makes it easy to travel to various parts of your yard.Read more
What is impressive about this unit is that it is able to whole quite a bit more line than some of the standard designs, with a capacity of 175 feet of line that is ⅝ of an inch thick. It weighs about 12 pounds and is 20 inches high.
Ease of use
There is no need to bust out that old toolbox because this unit comes fully assembled and ready to use right out of the box. All you will need to do it hook up the main line to your outdoor spigot and you are ready to go.
The material used to make up this model is lightweight plastic. This material is very durable in the cold winter months and the hot summer sun, but the lighter weight makes it more difficult to hold in place while you are winding you line up after you are finished working the yard.
This unit has a simple design that serves more of a utilitarian function without bringing any additional style to your outdoor space. On the bright side, the wheels on the base make it easy to roll into storage when you are having company over for a cookout.
The most impressive feature of this design is its price point. This is, by far, one of the most affordable options out there on the market.
This is a great choice for those that want to keep their tools nice and organized, but don’t want to spend the higher price points as some of the higher end models. The downside to this option, however, is that the lightweight material makes it a little difficult to wind and unwind.
7. Liberty 710 Navigator
Swivels 180 degrees, and it able to be easily locked in place
Table on the top is perfect for holding tools and potted plants
Easy to crank
A little expensive
Some found that it will rust over time
What we loved most about this option is that it has a nice design that will add a lot of charm to any outdoor space, but it also is very functional and has a few extra features that you might not often see on other options out there on the market.Read more
Just like many of the other designs, this unit can hold about 125 feet of line that is ⅝ of an inch wide. It weighs 14 pounds and is 23.5 inches deep.
Ease of use
You will have to employ the use of some tools to mount this unit to the side of our house or to a post. The bad news here is that the mounting hardware is not included with purchase.
We like that this unit is made from a high quality steel that has a bronze powder coating to protect it from rusting out in the elements. The crank has a rubber handle to make it easier to wind up your line.
The style of this unit is what we like most about it. It has a decorative wheel along the sides that make it look as well as a table on the top that is perfect for holding gardening tools or even a place to display potted flowers.
The cost of this unit costs quite a bit more than many of the average priced options, but the higher price point is well worth it for a product that has a great design while also offering a high function frame that is easy to use.
We love this option because it will help store your tools while offering a lot of style and charm to your yard. Plus, because it mounts to a post or on the side of your house, it won’t take up any room on your patio.
8. Power Products USA
100% money back guarantee
Easy to roll up
Only holds 50 feet of line
Some had difficulty mounting it
Where this product really shines is in how easy it is to use. It comes with a hose that works only for this shell, so you will not be able to use your existing line. It mounts to the side of your house, and with a simple tug will roll itself back up into the shell with very little effort on the part of the user.Read more
The downside of this option is that it has a line that will only reach about 50 feet, which pales in comparison to standard options that can reach about 125 feet. It weighs about 20 pounds, and it 10 inches wide which makes it incredibly compact while not in use.
Ease of use
This is one of the things that we liked most about this product, and it makes it perfect for older users that may have trouble generating enough elbow grease to roll up their line with a crank. Once it is mounted to the side of your house, all you will need to do is pull out the line, and then give it a quick tug like you would a seatbelt when you are ready to roll it back up.
The shell of this unit is made from a good quality plastic that will hold up in all sorts of weather conditions. Unfortunately, this model uses a plastic mount as well to hold it in place. While this plastic will hold it securely in place, users have to make sure that they mount it perfectly evenly to avoid it losing strength over time.
The gray shell of this unit is made to blend in with your surroundings and fit neatly against your house. We like that it can swivel 180 degrees and can fit snugly against your house when not in use.
While the cost of this unit is just slightly higher than many of the averagely priced options, we feel that the slightly higher price point is well worth it based upon the innovative design, as well as the inclusion of a special 50-foot line.
This unit does have a few downsides, but for users that don’t need a long line, this unit will be an excellent addition to their gardening needs. We love that it is lightweight, easy to use, and comes in at a great price point.
Easy to mount- comes with mounting hardware
Unique black and orange shell
Over time, so users ran into trouble pulling the line out of the shell
What users really like about this design is that it has a bulkier black shell with orange accents that will mount to the side of your house or on a post for easy access without taking up any room on your patio.Read more
This unit can only hold up to 65 feet of line within the shell. While this might not seem like a lot, it is about 15 feet more line that users would normally get with designs that have the line included in the unit.
Ease of use
What we really liked about this unit is that the mounting hardware is included with purchase (which is something that a lot of companies do not include, surprisingly). Once it is properly mounted, users will simply pull out their needed amount of line, and then just give it a quick tug to roll it back into place.
While the shell is made from a high-quality black and orange plastic material, all of the connections and components are made from metal to ensure that they won’t break or snap on you, even when exposed to the elements for extended periods of time.
While the style is something that may not match your rustic rattan patio furniture, it has a sharp style that has a look reminiscent of your lawn power tools such as a mower or leaf blower.
The cost of this unit is just a little bit more than some of the more affordable options, but not by much. Considering that you will receive a warranty card in case anything goes wrong with your unit, we feel that this is an excellent deal for the price.
For those that are looking for something that is easy to use, and is made from high-quality materials that will stand the test of time without breaking the bank, this is a really great option.
Can be placed on the ground or mounted
100 foot line included
Included nozzle breaks easily
Some feel that the line is made from a flimsy material
What we really liked about the Goplus option is that it gives users the option to either mount it to their house, or place it on the ground. It has a style that it a little different than some of the other options out there on the market, and users love that it is very easy to use.Read more
This unit can hose about 100 feet of line within the casing, and users cannot use their own line inside of the unit. It stands about 18 inches tall and weighs in at just under 30 pounds- making it one of the heavier options out there on the market.
Ease of use
Users can opt to mount this unit to the side of their house or to a post (hardware is not included) or they can simply place it on the ground and the 360 swivel base will prevent the unit from being knocked over while in use.
The line is made out of 100 percent PVC, and the shell is made out of high-quality plastic. What users really appreciate in this model is that the connections are made from metal parts, so it means that there will be less of a chance of a leak from cracked plastic components.
The style of this is just a little different. It uses white and gray plastic in a flat rectangular box that looks a lot like a closed off box window fan.
The price of this unit is a little bit more than the averagely priced options on the market but we feel like it is well worth the cost. Users will have the option to select whether they want to mount it to their house, but it still has a swivel base so that they can place it on the ground and use it without fearing it will tip over.
If you are looking for a great house for a hose that you don’t have yet- this option is going to be your best bet because it comes with a 100-foot line already housed inside the high-quality plastic shell.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Whether you have acres of rolling hills, or a little postage stamp of a yard, we have found products that will fit the needs of all.
The capacity of a unit determines how much line it can comfortably hold. From what we discovered, the average length of line is about 125 feet. Products that have over 125 feet of line are considered to be above average, and are typically used for very large yards. Products that have under 125 feet of line capacity are a little on the small side, and are ideal for smaller yards. Typically when we see products with a line capacity of under 125 feet, this is usually for the wall mounted options that come equipped with their special line that is included with purchase. We also checked the weight of each unit. When it comes to yard tools, lighter options typically mean that they are easier to use when working in the yard, but lighter isn’t exactly a good thing when it comes to these products. We wanted to make sure that we found products that had a little bit of weight to them- especially for the ground options- to ensure that they won’t topple over while you are trying to unwind or wind up your line. Lighter options were generally accepted for the designs that mount to the side of your house or on a post, but proceed with caution with lightweight wall mounted, because plastic mounts are a recipe for trouble in the long run.
Ease of Use
These products are designed to make you life easier, so we made sure to only select designs that were easy to use, as well as assemble.
This was the most important feature that we considered, because if it isn’t easy to use, then you are more than likely to continue to just leave your line on the ground after a long and tiring day of gardening. We want you to conserve all of your energy for pulling up stubborn weeds, and not waste it on a stubborn and sticky crank that always seems to get snagged. That’s why we made sure that select designs that an easy to use crank that had a smart design, or opted for products that could find themselves without the need of any effort on your part. While we included self-winding options on our list, they were necessarily our favorite. What we discovered is that these options were more prone to error and became less responsive over time, as seen by many users reviews that we had combed through. When an enclosed and self winding option becomes snagged, users will have to burn precious daylight prying open their product to find where the snag lies. With self cranking options, snags are easier to spot and there is less of a risk of it breaking down. Plus, some self winding options use over gallons of water just to wind it back up, and many users do not feel it is acceptable to them to waste that much water for something that they could do themselves.
These products are going to be left outside in the rain and snow, so we made sure that they were made from materials that could hold up to whatever mother nature could throw at it.
Just like any other outdoor lawn gear, you want to take a look at the materials that were used to make it. For the most part, products that were made from resin, plastic, or powder coated metal were generally considered acceptable. These types of materials are made to withstand cold temperatures, and some of the plastics can protect your line from damaging UV rays in the heat of the summer months. There is one thing that we made sure to consider, however, that could become a problem. When it comes to mounting hardware, brackets, and connections, you are going to want to ensure that you use metal materials. For mounting brackets, it is simply a matter of securely staying put. Plastic mounts can be used, but users will have to be extra careful to ensure that it is completely level and even or they run the risk of it falling. Metal line connections are important because these products are going to be outside all year in the elements. If they are made from plastic, they could crack and break either in the cold winter months, or become weak under hot UV rays in the summertime. If you have a leak where the water meets the connection line, your product will become useless (unless you run down to the hardware store and pick up a few replacement parts).
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Blasting your plants with a heavy stream of water isn't always healthy. The addition of a nozzle or water wand can help disperse the water in a more manageable manner. These attachments will make it easier for you to give the right amount of water to each plant.
Make sure that wherever you store your garden hose is not in the sun. The sun can either dry out the hose, if it is made from PVC, and cause it to crack or it can even melt the hose and leave residue on your hands.
Making sure that you get the right size is going to not only help you get the most out of your line, but it is also going to make it a lot easier to use. Shorter lines are perfect fot smaller yards, but it is also great for older gardeners that might have a bit of trouble working with longer lines.
Other Factors to Consider
While style isn’t something as imperative as ease of use or materials, it is still something that we considered. You no doubt take a lot of pride in your lawn, so it is only natural that you want to purchase something that will be as functional as it is stylish. What we found is that there are two schools of thought when it comes to these products. They are either designed to bring a little bit of style to your outdoor space, or they are made from materials that are made to blend in with the surroundings. The latter is typically composed of plastic in neutral colors such as tan and brown, so it may just blend right into the background. More stylish option include box models that are made to look like a simple storage box. Users typically place these options on their patio, and the rattan resin material may even match your existing patio furniture. We really liked the mounted options that had a table or storage basket on top. These models were not only incredibly functional and easy to use, but they also brought a little bit of old world charm to any outdoor space.
We want to save you a little bit of money where we can, but not at the risk of sacrificing quality. From what we found, these products can get a little pricey, and even some of the more affordable options cost about the same amount that you would spend filling up your gas tank. So, be prepared to dish out more money than you may have intended to spend on one of these products. The good news is that the additional cost is going to be well worth it in the long run, because not only will these products last for a very long time, but it will also protect your line from sun damage or from deteriorating from laying on the ground all summer. When conducting our research, we made sure to select options that ran about in the middle of the road in terms of price. However, we also included a very affordable option for those looking to save a little bit of money, as well as higher priced options that have a lot of charm as well as superior functionality. It is up to you to determine how much you want to spend on one of these products, and any option on our list is going to be an excellent investment in your yard.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Are they difficult to assemble?
From what we discovered, many of these styles require absolutely no assembly when the arrive to you in the mail. Many of the free standing options will require the user to stake it into the ground if they are placing it on a soft surface. Designs that have wheels typically have a little bit of assembly, so keep that in mind if opting for a more mobile option. Styles that affix to the side of your house or a post require the use of tools to secure the bolts in place. It is worth noting that many of the options out there- even some of the higher end designs- do not come with a set of mounting hardware included with your purchase. Be sure to check the contents of each package to ensure that it comes with the right tools you will need for installation, or you are going to have to make an additional trip to the hardware store.
q: Should I purchase one with a crank, or one that retracts itself?
Anything that claims to do all of the heavy lifting for you may initially seem like it is going to be the better option, but there are some drawbacks to the self retracting designs that you might want to consider first. Most of these options are spring loaded, and some have a water pressure operated system inside that uses water to wind your line. The downside to the water powered options is that they can be terribly wasteful, and on average waste between 4-7 gallons of water just to wind it back up. The downside to the spring loaded options is that they aren’t always reliable. Sometimes you line might wind up at just the wrong angle to cause it to get caught or tangled. If that happens, it means that you will have to take the casing off of your unit to sort out the tangled mess waiting for you inside. Opting for a design that you have to crank yourself may mean that you will have to do some manual labor, but it will also mean that you won’t have to worry about your line getting caught, or wasting any precious water.
q: Can I leave them outside all year?
If you live in a part of the world with harsh and cold winters, you might be wondering whether or not you will be able to leave it outside during those cold months. You can, in fact, leave them outside during the winter, but there are a few steps you must take to ensure that your product does not become damaged. The first thing you need to do is turn off the water to the unit. Once the water has been shut off, lay your line out to ensure that no water will be left in the line. Water left in the line will freeze as the temperature plummet, and that means that it could cause your line to crack. With all of those precautions completed, it is perfectly safe to leave your line and your reel outside all year.
q: Will it work with my existing hose?
The answer to this question lies with the style of product that you purchase. Many of the smaller, wall mounted options often come with their own line, and users will not be able to swap in their own design into the casing. If you already have a line that you love, we suggest selecting an option that doesn’t come with its own line. Installing your unit to the mount is fairly simple and straightforward. Simply connect the line to the outdoor water supply, and then connect your line to the base. We found that some users came across a little bit of difficulty when faulty connections, but they can often be purchased at your local hardware store.
q: What can the storage trays and baskets be used for?
You might have noticed that many of the options on the market have additional trays or baskets located along the top. The box models have an entire flat surface that users can use for outdoor storage. While some users like to use their box designs as an additional table to display potted plants or lawn decorations, some like to take the more functional approach. Some users place all of their gardening tools on the top of the box or in the included basket, such as gardening gloves, spades, trowels, hoes, and even watering cans. If you keep all of your gear safely in one spot next to your water supply, taking care of your lawn this upcoming season will be a cinch.
q: What is the benefit of the caddy design?
As you may have seen, there are three different styles on the market: the box design, the mounted design, and the caddy design. This option has a set of wheels on the back so that you can easily move it. Why would you want to opt for this design? Often, gardeners just want to use their line in a small space without the need to unravel the entire line. The addition of wheels along the back will allow users to access their water source without letting their line out. Plus, the mobile design makes it easier to roll it over into storage if you are having your family over for a cookout and you need the additional patio space.