No Crank Hose Reel - Any experience?

Agawam, MA(Zone 6a)

I'm thinking of purchasing one. Has anyone tried it. What do you think?

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

Sorry for the late response.I'm probably too late, but I just found your post. I have the type that uses water power to rewind the hose. I've had mine for about 5yrs and am very happy with it. The only thing I don't like is the size/bulk of the apparatus. There is never enough garden space, so I often lament the fact that this thing takes up the space of a small shrub. Also, sometimes I look with envy at those copper or stone bowls designed to hide a garden hose and provide decorative appeal at the same time. My auto hose real is basically a giant, off-white colored, plastic cube. It's not unsightly but neither is it particularly attractive.

That's about it for negatives. For some 5 years of heavy gardening the thing has continued to work flawlessly. I have one that handles around 200ft of hose. I have the max footage in it. My hoses are the heavy duty (kinkless - yeah, right) types. Moreover, given our relatively mild temps I leave the hose and reel out year round (exposed to a temp range of 22F-105F along with full sun and high humidity. I do not drain it prior to exposure to freezing temps.) and in my extreme laziness I often leave the hose stretched across the yard for days in extreme heat, sunshine, cold, etc. Regardless of how rigid and inflexible the hose becomes, all I have to do is turn on the water and pull the lever, and the reel winds the hose neatly away once again. One winter a squirrel dragged all manner of sticks and branches from the compost pile into the enclosure of the hose reel and built a huge nest in there. The next time I tried to use it all those sticks jammed the mechanism. After about 5 minutes spent removing the nest debris, the reel worked perfectly again.

Despite the drawbacks of size, material (plastic), etc. I will probably buy another one for the front (side) yard. As it is I rarely use that faucet because I hate to fight with the hose, kinks, winding, rewinding, etc. I never hesitate to drag out the backyard hose (the one in the auto reel). The reel allows the hose to unwind smoothly and easily with a simple pull and rewind again with the pull of a lever.

I looked around on line to see if I could find you a pic of mine but without success. After 5 years I suspect it has been updated a bit.

Savannah, GA

Just found this forum. We got a "water-pressure-powered" hose reel, probably the one described by scutler, and I couldn't live without it. I have arthritis in my hands and wrists, and I'm 5'2" so wrangling heavy hoses is NOT my thing at all. All I have to do is make sure that the hose isn't going to travel over any plants I want to keep around, and the combination of the water-powered reel and no-kink (really!) hose takes care of the rest. We have one in the front and one in the back, and I bless them every time I have to water. You won't be disappointed if you get one. I only hope that you sign on again and read these responses.

Tempe, AZ(Zone 9b)

Is there a brand name on your reels?

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I bought mine from Amazon. Although it is no longer available (they probably have new/better designs out now), here it is:
It's from Hydro Industries. According to Amazon, I bought it in Mar of 2004 so am pushing 5 years of ownership. If that is different that what I stated above, I was relying on recall above. Mine stays outdoors year round. I don't drain it in winter or anything like that. Note that our winters are fairly mild with temps only down to about 28F on occasion. It still works just like it did on day one.

The only thing I don't like about mine is the size issue. It is rather boxy and takes up valuable planting space. Other than that I have decided that I can't live without it and would buy another one in a heartbeat if this one died. I believe I have 200ft of hose in mine but am not certain of that. It is very reliable, having never failed to reel the hose back in. It also takes care to roll the hose neatly back and forth across the spool. If the size/space is not an issue, I would recommend it in a minute - if they still offered it, that is.

St. Louis County, MO(Zone 5a)

Just might ask for this for Christmas.

KC Metro area, MO(Zone 6a)

They still make them. I got the cube shaped one and also bought one that is more of the regular reel shape and size. I got both of them at a local store that sells extra stuff from regular stores. We haven't used ours yet but we are looking forwards to trying them.

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Me, too. Anybody locate one yet? (You're supposed to put away your hoses in the winter? And drain them? Nobody told me!)

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I never put my hoses away. They have been outside since I got the auto-winding hose reel. I'd like to say that they spend most of the winter rolled nicely away in the 'thing', but that's not always the case either. I drag them out to refill the birdbaths and sometimes leave them out for a day or two - since it's so much trouble to pull the lever on the reel and watch them rewind themselves. ;-)
But I suspect that you get much colder weather up there than we do down here.
When I'm smart (which isn't always the case either), I do run outside and disconnect the hose from the faucet on nights when it is going down to freezing.

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

I remember my mom used to do that every winter, but I don't know that we do! (Turn off the outside water in the winter...) First I lived here with my lazy deadbeat husband, and I was in a wheelchair. Then I evicted him and was a single mother in a wheelchair. My current husband was fine (i.e. able-bodied) when i met him, but he since broke his back and developed very bad cataracts. I don't know if he's thought about turning the water off in the winter.

Hughesville, MO(Zone 5a)

Thnaks for your input, Pepper. We live close enough together that what works for you should work for me.

No. San Diego Co., CA(Zone 10b)

DH wants to know what happens to the water used to power the hose for winding up? IOW, does it waste water? We're in a drought here and will soon be under water restrictions, so we can't waste any. I would dearly love to have a couple of these.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

The unit comes with another length of hose, 5 ft or so I guess, that attaches to the outlet and allows you to redirect the water [used to power the reel]. Water is routed to this outlet only when you engage the real, so it isn't a great deal of water, but, with a normal annual rainfall of 52in per year that's probably easy for me to say. Anyhow, yes the water used to power the reel is 'wasted' in that it goes out through the outlet hose; however, you could direct that hose to a bucket and collect the waste water for reuse elsewhere. Note that the outlet hose does not have the normal hose connectors. It is merely pushed over the outlet where it fits tightly enough to stay put and make a good seal, at least that is how mine works.

(Having some difficulty articulating some of this. PLMK if it is unclear and I will try again.)

Fresno, CA(Zone 9b)

Carrielamont, also check out the product at . I've had mine for nearly 10 years and love it. It is spring loaded and simple to initiate retraction. I absolutely love it, found it locally. Visitors are always amazed by and envious of my having it ^_^ .

Be certain to check out the annotated hose dimensions involved in the units. Many of the units note that the hose size is 1/2 inch, rather than 5/8 inch. While the unit may accommodate a 5/8 hose, the length it holds will be shorter, I suspect. I HATE 1/2 inch hoses, I seem to lose the hard pressure I often want from a hose, but it would doubtless be adequate for most irrigation needs.


No. San Diego Co., CA(Zone 10b)

Thanks, scutler, that's what we thought. We discussed several ways we can re-route/re-use the water - some easier than others!

Good to have that tip about the hose diameter, Linda!

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Thanks, Linda! (Sorry to ignore you folks - I was out of town and am waaaaay behind!) It looks good...

Columbia, SC(Zone 7b)

Yardiac also seems to have the no-crank ones as cheap as I have have seen
Here is a 150' open reel one for 80 bucks. did not see what shipping costs, tho

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