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6 Best Retractable Hose Reels for 2024 | Australian Guide

If you’re one of those gardeners who just leave hoses sprawled out across the garden for weeks at a time in summer, only to trip over next time you need to rush out, then it’s probably time to think about automatic retractable hose reels.

We’ve had a look at some of the best selling hose reels, and worked our way through reviews, but first, I want to share some thoughts that will help you find the right hose length so you don’t find yourself lost and confused next time you’re searching for a new hose reel.

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Best Retractable Hose Reel for 2024

Product


Our Rating

Price

1. Hoselink Hi-Flow 25m Retractable Hose Reel

Hoselink Hi-Flow Retractable Hose Reel
Top Rated Best Retractable Hose Reel in Australia

2. Hozelock Auto Reel with 25m Hose

Hozelock Auto Reel
Premium Choice Retractable Hose Reel in Australia

3. Plantcraft 30m Retractable Garden Water Hose Reel

Plantcraft Retractable Garden Hose Reel

4. Hoselink 30m Retractable Hose Reel

Hoselink Retractable Hose Reel

5. Gardena 25m Retractable Hose Reel

Gardena Retractable Hose Reel

6. Hoselink 10m Compact Portable Hose Reel for Small Gardens

Hoselink 10m Portable Hose Reel

What is a Retractable Hose Reel?

What is a Retractable Hose Reel

I’m an advocate of cutting down on mains water use. It’s a more affordable way to garden, and better for the environment, but in seasons of extreme drought, every garden needs a hose even if you’re connecting to a water butt.

Retractable hose reels are a great way to keep your garden tidy, save space, and protect the life of your hose, whether you’re buying a reel with a hose included, or buying a reel to use with your existing hose.

By utilising some basic spring mechanisms, retractable hose reels safely guide your hose back into its housing with next to no effort, unlike traditional garden hose reel, which needs manually winding.

When you buy a retractable hose reel, the hose pipe supplied with the reel is usually more resistant to kinking too, which prevents it catching as you wind it back in.

Do I Need a Retractable Hose Reel?

Best Retractable Hose Reel Reviews

Wall mounted hose reels are super useful ways to keep your hose tidy, but manually winding hoses back on themselves every time you use them takes time and effort and, if you’re at all clumsy like I am, scraped knuckles as you wind against the wall. 

The spring wound reels that have become popular in recent years save your hands from scraping on the wall but most importantly, by saving time, mean you’re much more likely to wind your hose back in at the end of an afternoon in the garden.

I’ve lost count of how often I’ve tripped on a hose because I’m too lazy to wind it back up. It’s hard to justify the effort when you’ve been gardening for five hours and know you’ll be back out to water tomatoes in the morning, but the ease of retractable hose reels takes the excuse of sheer laziness away.

How to Use a Retractable Hose Reel

How to Use a Retractable Hose Reel

To use your retractable hose reel, you simply pull it out of the housing as far as you need to, and then start watering. On most hoses there will be a coloured strip at the end of the hose to show when you’re nearing the end of its length.

It’s important not to exceed the maximum length of the hose as it will damage the mechanism. When you want to return the hose to the reel, gently pull and release and the spring mechanism will do the rest of the work.

With almost all models of retractable hose, it’s important to pull your garden hose out level with the hose reel to reduce friction, but we’ve had one for a few years now and they do hold up to some particularly lazy use.

Best Retractable Hose Reel Reviews

1. Hoselink Hi-Flow 25m Retractable Hose Reel

Hoselink Hi-Flow 25m Retractable Hose Reel


As well as looking good, this hose reel can actually improve watering efficiency in the garden. The 14mm hose adjusts the flow of water from low-pressure systems making washing the car, or cleaning windows much easier. This hose is the best on the market if you have low water pressure.

The spray gun is superb too. Not only is it really well built, but the retractable hose spray gun from Hoselink is really smooth when changing between each flow setting, and creates great pressure for reaching deep borders.

The casing is made with UV-stabilised materials, stainless steel parts and no-burst hose fittings for long lasting durability. 

Pros

  • 25m hose
  • High-quality no-burst hose fittings
  • Durable case
  • Automatic reel
  • Looks good
  • Improves water pressure

Cons

  • N/A

2. Hozelock Auto Reel with 25m Hose

Hozelock Auto Reel with 25m Hose


I really like Hozelock, so I’ll try to rein in my enthusiasm for the brand a bit here. The only thing I don’t like about this retractable hose reel is the price, at almost double the price of other 25m hose reels.

The hose is super durable, and the retracting reel seems really well made so I’d be surprised if it ever got caught or tangled.

Hozelock also makes anti-kink hoses as standard, so the hose itself shouldn’t snag on itself or cause blockages by folding in on itself, which is a big plus.

If you’re happy paying a little extra, this is one of best retractable hose reel we’ve seen.

Pros

  • 25m hose
  • Durable hose
  • Safe automatic retraction
  • Wall mounted

Cons

  • Expensive

3. Plantcraft 30m Retractable Garden Water Hose Reel

Plantcraft 30m Retractable Garden Water Hose Reel


Plantcraft is a budget version of the Hoselink model, but for a relatively unknown garden brand I was pleasantly surprised with this retractable hose reel. It is made from UV resistant materials, so it is durable being mounted in a direct sunlight area.

It comes with durable brass fittings, and a brilliant spray gun with adjustable water pressure. The gun is fairly basic, but well made, so don’t expect it to do everything, but it will last forever if properly cared for.

The return on the hose is really smooth too, so for almost half the price of other automatic retractable shoes it’s a great buy.

Pros

  • Good value
  • 30m hose
  • UV Resistant
  • Safe automatic retraction
  • Hose gun included
  • Wall mounted

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Thin walled hose

4. Hoselink 30m Retractable Hose Reel

Hoselink 30m Retractable Hose Reel


Hoselink are a specialist hose maker based in Australia, so their hoses are UV resistant, extra tough, and generally built to hold up to the weather conditions here far better than any other brand.

This retractable hose reel comes with a really well built spray gun with multiple water pressure settings and nine spray patterns, but what I like most of all is the smooth return on the retractable hose that feels massively safer than anything else we’ve reviewed.

Pros

  • 30m hose
  • Durable hose
  • Safe automatic retraction
  • Wall mounted
  • Hose gun included

Cons

  • N/A

5. Gardena 25m Retractable Hose Reel

Gardena 25m Retractable Hose Reel


The only reason I’ve downgraded the score on this hose is its price. For a relatively short hose to cost almost three times as much as similar hoses from other great brands feels extortionate.

Before I discovered its price I rated it as a 4* retractable hose, and it was the best retractable hose reel in this list.

It’s by far the most durable hose in our reviews, and the reel casing itself is really well built, with a really smooth nozzle included in the purchase too, which has great water pressure. But unless you’re really not bothered about how much you're spending, there are definitely cheaper hoses that will do the same job.

Pros

  • Great value
  • 25m hose
  • Durable hose
  • Trusted Brand
  • Safe automatic retraction
  • Hose nozzle included
  • Durable parts
  • Wall mounted

Cons

  • Very Expensive

6. Hoselink 10m Compact Portable Hose Reel for Small Gardens


Hoselink 10m Compact Portable Hose Reel


If you’ve got a small yard, or a few pots around the patio then choosing a shorter hose can save you a ton of cash. This value hose from hoselink is packed with all the great features of their longer models but is compact, easy to store, and lightweight.

The hose length is only 10m,which makes this hoselink retractable hose reel ideal for small gardens. So if you’re short on space, and want to save some cash, opt for something top quality like this. With most other hoses being 20m plus this 10m hose is a desired length for small yards.

Pros

  • Great value
  • Automatic reel
  • Good quality fittings
  • Durable case

Cons

  • 10m hose length

Our Top Picks - Best Retractable Hose Reel 

Best Retractable Hose Reel for 2024

Top Rated Best Retractable Hose Reel in Australia
Hoselink Hi-Flow 25m Retractable Hose Reel

Source: hoselink.com.au

I know it’s not the wisest thing to do to pick my favourite retractable hose reel based on its nozzle, but I love this hose’s attachments.

Hoselinks 25M Retractable Garden Hose Reel's hose looks great and improves water efficiency when watering your garden, but has high flow and great pressure for washing your car or your houses windows.

As well as looking good, this hose reel can actually improve watering efficiency in the garden. The 14mm hose adjusts the flow of water from low-pressure systems making washing the car, or cleaning windows much easier.

The retractable hose nozzle from Hoselink is really smooth when changing between each flow setting. It is easily installing wall mounted.

Premium Choice Retractable Hose Reel

Premium Choice Retractable Hose Reel in Australia
Hozelock Auto Reel with 25m Hose

Source: amazon.com.au

If you’re going to invest in a hose, invest in a brand you can trust. I’m also pretty impressed with the price of the Hozelock Auto Reel with Hose too.

Even though it’s only 25m, it’s really well built and will stand up to the summer sun if you forget to reel it in. Its wall mount is great too, with 180 degrees rotation to give you a few extra inches of pull when you reach its limits.

Retractable Hose Reel FAQs

Which is the best retractable garden hose?

There are so many variations between hoses, from price to materials, so it's impossible to directly compare most brands. But, when you pitch value against quality, the best retractable garden hose you can buy on a budget is the Hoselink 10m Compact Hose Reel.

Hoselink always produces excellent irrigation products, and their budget-friendly retractable hoses are no different.

Is a retractable hose reel worth it?

Retractable hose reels are worth every penny. Not only are they handy garden gadgets, but they actually make gardening safer. Their easy-to-use sprung systems make them perfect for busy gardeners, and despite their higher price tag, you’re almost always guaranteed a decent quality hose as part of the package.

How much does a retractable hose reel cost?

Retractable hoses vary in price, but typically cost between $60 and $300 depending on hose length, build quality, and where you buy them. Bunnings hoses are pretty. Price is generally a reflection of length, and extra features (like UV-resistant rubber, and kink-resistance).

How long do retractable hoses last?

Retractable hoses should last for over ten years if treated properly. Most of the hoses in our reviews come with a five-year warranty to cover all defects. To extend the life of your retractable hose, make sure it is always wound in properly and drain all water from the shoe before winter to prevent freezing.

How do you fix a retractable hose reel that won't retract?

Retractable garden hoses are built around a powerfully wound spring. If that spring catches or the tension of kinks or retained water in the hose itself prevents the hose from reeling back in, you can fix a retractable hose reel by releasing the water.

If that doesn’t work, pull the full length of the hose out, and slowly guide it back in to realign the hose.

Do retractable hoses have to be wall mounted?

Most retractable hoses are designed to be wall mounted, which helps them to retain an even tension, and reel in properly. However, there are some retractable hoses, particularly for smaller gardens, that are free-standing or have optional wall mounts included.

Do retractable hoses lose pressure?

Retractable hoses will lose pressure over time, and should not be left out in the sun for long periods. While they are ok for occasional use with hose timers, cooling and expansion in the sun’s heat will eventually reduce the strength of the hose walls.

Do retractable hoses break easily?

Due to having more moving parts than standard manual hose reels, retractable hose reels break more often, but with proper care and maintenance, they will last a lifetime.

Just consider the longevity of the hose when using it, and wind it back in after each use.

How do retractable hose reels work?

Retractable garden hoses work in the same way as a standard tape measure. Their springs are loose when the hose is wound up, and when it’s pulled out the spring locks in place until it’s pulled and the mechanism is released.

This simple mechanism makes them incredibly long lasting as there are very few breakable parts.

Can you use a pressure washer with a retractable hose?

Yes, you can use a pressure washer with a retractable hose. Retractable hose reels are often confused with expandable hoses, and while it’s possible to use high pressure water tools with expandable hoses their cheaper pipes can buckle and blister with the pressure. Retractable hoses are made from sturdier pipes.

For more garden watering tools, check out our buying guide and reviews below:

Best Retractable Hose Reel Australian Buying Guide

Get the Best Retractable Hose Reel For Your Garden

Retractable garden hoses are a useful tool, but cost at least twice the price of standard hose reels, so they are a luxury purchase for gardeners who want to tidy up their outdoor spaces and save time, rather than a necessity for cost cutting gardeners.

If you’re concerned about safety in the garden a retractable hose reel is definitely a sensible purchase, and I’ve become particularly reliant on ours over the last couple of years.

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About the author 

Gary Clarke

Hi, I'm Gary Clarke, gardening enthusiast and former landscaper. I have had privilege of sharing my gardening knowledge at Aussie Green Thumb since early 2020.

I have a passion for using native Australian plants in Aussie gardens and I always try to promote growing fruit trees and vegetable gardens whenever possible.

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