Garden Hose Reels On Test - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine

8 of the best garden hose reels on test

Need a new hose reel? See which models our experts scored best.

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Our expert testers review hundreds of garden tools and equipment to whittle down the top products on the market. Here, we’ve put garden hose reel kits to the test and come up with our recommended list of the top performers.

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Each model has a detailed list of pros and cons for clarity and has been rated according to preparation and storage, handling and performance, quality and features and value for money.

Every hose in the list below has scored a minimum of four out of five stars or above, so you can be assured of their quality and performance.

If you’re looking for a hose to help clean the patio, you may also be interested in our guide to buying the best pressure washer.


8 of the best garden hoses on test

Browse our best garden hose reels below:

Hozelock Pico Reel

Our rating: 4.75 out of 5

Hozelock Pico hose reel review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Hozelock Pico hose reel review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Fully assembled
  • Versatile, connects both ends
  • Comfortable, easy to use, excellent spray gun
  • Long warranty

Cons:

  • Feeder hose fiddly to tuck away

Our experts judged this a Best Buy in the mini reel category as it was compact, lightweight and good value. The hose is easy to rewind and has handy features such as drip-free storage with a parking port. There’s also an easy to use and adjustable spray gun with five spray pattern options. Plus, this hose comes with a five-year warranty.

Kärcher Compact Hose Box

Our rating: 4.5 out of 5

Karcher Compact Hose Reel review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Karcher Compact Hose Reel review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Sturdy, enclosed, with non-drip storage
  • Versatile connection, additional feeder hose
  • Can be used with Kärcher pressure washer

Cons:

  • Feeder needs tucking under bracket

This sturdy and compact hose is supplied fully assembled and is enclosed in a smart square box. The nozzle and handle are detachable and there’s an additional two metre feeder hose as well as wall-mounting bracket, so you can store it out of the way. Although it’s slightly awkward to rewind, we awarded this hose Best Buy status and judged it to be the best for storage. It is guaranteed for one year.

Hozelock Fast Reel

Our rating: 4.5 out of 5

Hozelock Fast Reel Review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Hozelock Fast Reel Review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Completely assembled, enclosed reel
  • Sturdy, stable, exceptionally easy to rewind
  • Neat non-drip storage
  • Long warranty

Cons:

  • Largest, heaviest and dearest

The automatic self-layering feature on this hose made it extremely quick to wind and unwind, despite being the longest we tested. The casing fully encloses the hose and feels both sturdy and stable. This was the heaviest and priciest hose on our expert test, but it does come with a five year guarantee. Overall we were impressed and awarded it Best Buy status as the easiest large hose to use.

Gardena Hose Reel 30

Our rating: 4.5 out of 5

Gardena Hose Reel 30 reviews - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Gardena Hose Reel 30 reviews – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Lightweight yet very stable frame
  • Very easy to carry
  • Good twist-grip nozzle
  • Long warranty

Our expert testers found this hose comfortable to use and carry as it remained stable while unwinding. The hose is lightweight but still felt sturdy and we liked the angled connector which reduces the chance of kinking. There’s also five-year warranty and we awarded it Best Buy status, as the best lightweight larger reel.

Gardena Terrace Hose Box

Our rating: 4.25 out of 5

Gardena Terrace hose reel review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Gardena Terrace hose reel review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Large diameter hose, sturdy enclosed reel
  • Uncoils and rewinds very smoothly
  • Long warranty

Cons:

  • Expensive for length
  • Lacks storage features

The hose arrives complete and ready to use, however it comes fully off the holder and can be fiddly to re-coil. Our testers were impressed with the twist-type spray nozzle as well as the long five year warranty. It can also be hung up, which makes it useful for storing.

Claber Kiros Kit

Our rating: 4.25 out of 5

Claber Kiros Kit hose reel review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Claber Kiros Kit hose reel review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Less assembly than most
  • Light for its length, and long hose for price

Cons:

  • Handle fiddly to fit
  • Kinked occasionally

This hose has a durable aluminium frame but was still lightweight and it arrived connected to the reel. While it was smooth to unwind, the hose did require extra attention to prevent kinking. The handle was tricky to fit although it did need less assembly than most others we tested and it was smooth to unwind. It is guaranteed for two years.

Hozelock 2-in-1 Hose Reel

Our rating: 4.25 out of 5

Hozelock 2-in-1 Hose Reel review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Hozelock 2-in-1 Hose Reel review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magaxine

Pros:

  • Sturdy, and smooth to pull out/rewind
  • Long warranty

Cons:

  • Heavier than most
  • Not ‘ready assembled’ as described

Our testers found that the hose pulled out easily and rewound comfortably thanks to the rotating crank handle. The sturdy frame with parking port is useful, as is the wall-mounting option for storage. This model was heavier than most others and could be fiddly to fit onto the reel. However, there is a five-year warranty so we included this in our best garden hose reel list.

FloPro Classic Hose Reel

Our rating: 4 out of 5

Flopro Classic Hose Reel review - BBC Gardeners' World Magazine
Flopro Classic Hose Reel review – BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine

Pros:

  • Two handles, very easy to carry
  • Good quality hose, smooth to unroll/rewind
  • Greatest capacity, and parking port

Cons:

  • Some awkward assembly
  • Nozzle didn’t adjust easily
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This hose is stable when unwinding and unrolls smoothly. There are also useful features such as two metal handles for carrying and a parking port. While it was difficult to attach the hose inside the reel, our testers found the rotating handle comfortable to use and thought the hose felt good quality. It is guaranteed for two years.