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The 11 Best Expandable Garden Hoses

Updated

For this 2023 update, we tested four different expandable hoses to compare with our previous top picks that we learned had been discontinued. Our new top pick is the zero-G hose. Although it is not marketed as an expandable hose, since it inflates when filled and deflates when emptied, it’s exceptionally well-made, lightweight, almost indestructible, and can withstand over 900 PSI. Another excellent choice is the XHose Pro, the first expandable hose on the market. It has solid brass connectors, a double latex core, and a high-performance and durable DAC-5 fiber exterior.

Our Top Choices

Best Overall


zero-G

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Also Great


XHose Pro

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For this 2023 update, we tested four different expandable hoses to compare with our previous top picks that we learned had been discontinued. Our new top pick is the zero-G hose. Although it is not marketed as an expandable hose, since it inflates when filled and deflates when emptied, it’s exceptionally well-made, lightweight, almost indestructible, and can withstand over 900 PSI. Another excellent choice is the XHose Pro, the first expandable hose on the market. It has solid brass connectors, a double latex core, and a high-performance and durable DAC-5 fiber exterior.

Outdoor watering cans are compact and great when you have just a few pots to water, but what if you want more water volume without having a huge garden hose? Over the years, we’ve tested many garden hose nozzles and other hose types before on our garden hose review, which included flexible steel hoses, heavy duty rubber hoses, and other materials. While there were some very compact options with flexible steel hoses, we were interested in just how compact and flexible expandable hoses could get, so we put the most popular expandable garden hoses we could find to the test watering our garden.

The 11 expandable garden hoses we tested

ProductPriceQuality of Brass FittingsEase of StorageLengthsOverall Performance
zero-G$$$$5/54/525', 50', 75', 100'5/5
XHose Pro$$5/55/525', 50', 75', 100'5/5
Flexi Hose$$$$5/55/525', 50', 75', 100', 125'4/5
Silver Bullet$$$N/A1/525', 50', 75', 100'2/5
Joey's Garden (Discontinued)$$5/55/525', 50', 75', 100'5/5
The FitLife (Discontinued)$$$5/55/525', 50', 75', 100'5/5
Gardguard (Discontinued)$$$2/55/525', 50', 100'4/4
WhimsWit (Discontinued)$$2/55/525', 50', 100'4/4
Aterod (Discontinued)$$$2/55/515', 25', 50', 100', 125'4/5
HOSPAIP (Discontinued)$$2/55/525', 50', 75', 100'4/5
Junredy (Discontinued)$$2/55/525', 50', 75', 100'2/5

Important features to consider

It can get downright mind-boggling to find an expandable garden hose that’s right for your gardening needs. A simple search pulls up hundreds of expandable hoses, and many — if not most — are identical.

The first expandable garden hose was purportedly invented by Michael Berardi, who took out patents in 2011 and 2012 for his “XHose” before selling them on TV in a series of home-shot infomercials. Lawsuits followed from several other “inventors,” which set off a storm of copycat hoses made in China. The XHose was upgraded to the XHose Pro, and it too was ripped off by no-name brands.

When we were deciding which expandable hoses to test, we went with the most popular ones that get the highest ratings. The major problem with this, however, is that almost all of the well-reviewed hoses on Amazon are copycats, and after about a year (or less), the Chinese manufacturers cease producing them, which in turn means they’re quickly out of stock.

The absurdity of the situation came to light when testing hoses for this 2023 update. We ordered five hoses, tested them, and in a single day’s time when we began writing this update, three of the hoses had been discontinued, including the hose we chose to re-test. For some reason, expandable hoses are the most volatile products to buy on Amazon, so in short, buyer beware.

Fortunately, our two top picks are manufactured by reputable and long-standing companies, and during testing, these quality hoses had certain features you should look for when shopping.

Solid brass fittings

Almost all of the hoses we tested claimed to have solid brass fittings. They certainly looked like brass, but most were clearly of poor quality and cheaply made. ¬†Zero-G, XHose Pro, and Flexi Hose, however, had solid and weighty brass fittings.¬† If you’re shopping for a hose in person, you can definitely tell the difference between the real thing and a rip-off by holding the fittings in your hand.

Material

An expandable hose’s outer material is usually made of an extremely flexible and tough polyester fabric, called Dacron 3750D. It’s firmer and denser than other materials and protects the hose’s inner latex core. When fully expanded the Dacron 3750D is smooth and solid.

Inner core

An expandable hose generally has at least two inner cores made from latex. Although the exterior fabric protects the core from puncture, the core can still get abraded over rough terrain. A second or third inner latex core prevents leakage should the first layer fail. However, too many inner cores require more water pressure to fully expand the hose, so look for an expandable hose that has no more than four inner latex cores.

Length

We tested hoses that were 50 feet in length, but expandable hoses are also available in 25, 75, and 100 feet. Remember that the listed length is how long the hose will be when it’s fully expanded by water pressure. Lower water pressure can affect the hose’s length, so it’s a good idea to buy an expandable hose at the next length up.

Compact and lightweight

Probably the most attractive feature about an expandable hose is that when it’s not full, it’s very lightweight and compact. A 50-foot hose shrinks down to 17 feet when emptied and can be coiled up and hung on a rack or reeled onto a hose reel in a minute or two. Remember, though, that when you plan to water your lawn or garden, before turning on the water, uncoil the hose to its full length away from young or delicate plants, or they could get damaged when the hose rapidly expands.

Nozzle

Almost all expandable hoses come with a nozzle that has multiple spray patterns. The nozzle is a nice add-on, but it is prone to calcification and rust over time.

Hoses tested for this update and discontinued

Along with the other hoses previously reviewed that we learned were discontinued some time in 2023 (see below), we tested two other hoses that went out-of-stock during our testing period.

1

zero-G

Zero-G expandable hose

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The zero-G hose is not strictly speaking an expandable hose. The manufacturer takes pains to make sure you know that it’s not expandable with a warning on the packaging. For this 2023 update, we tested a 25-foot zero-G, and it’s true that it doesn’t expand or retract. Instead, the zero-G inflates when filled with water and deflates when emptied. When deflated, it doesn’t shrink in size, like an expandable hose does, so it will be the full-length you purchase. But when deflated, the zero-G goes practically flat and can be easily wrapped tightly around a hose rack or into a neat, compact bundle.

The surprisingly lightweight (it only weighs about 1/4 pound) zero-G has a flexible inner core to prevent kinks, and its outer jacket is made of woven fiber that can withstand 600+ PSI without bursting. When filled, the hose expands to a very dense 5/8″ and feels sturdy and puncture proof like a well-made rubber hose. The connectors are made of high-grade aluminum with brass fittings that are apparently crush-proof up to 900 pounds.Read more…

Also, as is not the case with many hoses, the zero-G is safe to drink water from. Unlike most of the expandable hoses we tested for this update, the zero-G is made in the U.S. and has a substantial reputation and won’t be suddenly going out of stock.


2

XHose Pro

XHose Pro expandable garden hose

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Despite its confusing marketing, the XHose Pro is definitely a higher-end product in the expandable hose category. As mentioned earlier, the XHose was the first expandable hose on the market and has been poorly copycatted ever since. Sometimes called X-Hose, Big Boss XHose Pro, or XHose DAC-5, this “As Seen On TV’ hose has a latex core and and outer jacket made from what the manufacturer calls DAC-5 (trademarked) fiber, which, from our research, seems to be a highly durable polyester.

The X-Hose has all the best qualities of an expandable hose: lightweight, tough inner core, compact, and fitted with high-grade brass connectors. We did find, however, that the faucet connector (and its on/off lever) was much thicker and stronger than the connector for a sprayer attachment.Read more…

The XHose holds up to 500 PSI, and when filled with water flowing, the hose had some pliability and its spray was less powerful than the zero-G hose. The XHose does not come with a sprayer, so you’ll need to purchase one separately. But that said, the XHose Pro is absolutely a top-of-the-line expandable hose.


3

Flexi Hose

Flexi Hose

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The Flexi Hose was the most expensive hose we tested, but we rated it one step down because of its small cheap nozzle. However, it does have high-quality, solid brass fittings that didn’t leak while watering the lawn. The Flexi Hose has four latex inner cores, which may need increased water pressure to work properly. As with other hoses, the core is protected by an outer layer of 3750D fabric to prevent abrasions and punctures.

The Flexi Hose was designed to withstand hot outdoor temperatures up to 113F, so it should be stored in the garage or a shaded area to prevent the sun from destroying the outer fabric’s integrity. The Flexi Hose is available in 25′, 50′, 75′, 100′, and 150′. The 25′ hose is available in black, bright blue, brick red, and grass green.


4

Silver Bullet

Silver Bullet garden hose

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The double-trademarked Original Pocket Hose Silver Bullet proved to be more of a hassle than what it was worth. The company is very cagy about the hose’s materials, and the best we were able to find is that the casing is a double-braided fiberglass fabric. Despite the Silver Bullet’s rather questionable popularity, there are thousands of complaints that after a short time, the Silver Bullet bursts a leak.

The Silver Bullet is similar to the original XHose, which also had an accordion-like outer material that expands when full. When the Silver Bullet is emptied, however, the fabric doesn’t shrink tight enough, which made it impossible to coil the hose as compactly as the other hoses on our list. The Silver Bullet’s manufacturer claims that the hose’s aluminum fittings make it safe to drink from, but in the small print, it’s stated not to do so because of possible bacterial buildup.Read more…

The fittings are encased in a 4″ long plastic case, which made twisting them onto the faucet a laborious process. Another weird and outdated “feature” is the Silver Bullet’s turbo-jet nozzle that you need to twist to get a jet stream or a spray, just like the hose your dad or granddad had. Fortunately, this nozzle is removable and can be replaced with a more modern nozzle.


5

The FitLife Flexible Hose (Discontinued)

Fitlife flexible garden hose

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When fully expanded, The FitLife hose feels as smooth and solid as a traditional rubber hose but at half the weight. This was definitely the sturdiest hose that we tested. Like the Joey’s Garden hose, The FitLife has solid, premium brass fittings that easily attached to the spigot, and the connection proved to be leak-free. It has a triple inner latex core, wrapped in tightly interwoven 3750D fabric that serves as a tough barrier against rocks, thorns, and sharp corners. The FitLife weighs 2.7 pounds, and like the Joey’s Garden hose, it expands to three times its size when filled. Again, maneuverability around the garden was somewhat limited when the hose was completely filled.

The smallish 8-spray-pattern nozzle that comes with The FitLife doesn’t seem to be as well-made as the hose itself. But it does have a rubberized grip and a unique feature that took some getting accustomed to, which we ended up liking. The nozzle doesn’t have a squeeze trigger like most nozzles but instead has an ergonomically placed lever on top for shutting the water flow on or off with your thumb. When the hose was emptied and shrunk, we wrapped The FitLife hose around our hand and stored it away in a small space. Another great choice for an expandable hose, The FitLife hose is available in 25′, 50′, 75′, and 100′.


6

Joey's Garden Expandable Hose (Discontinued)

Joey's Expandable Garden Hose

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Right out of the box, you can tell that Joey’s Garden expandable hose is a quality product. Starting out with the brass fittings, which are solid and well-made with high-quality brass. The 3/4″ fittings connect easily and securely to the outdoor water faucet and the included spray nozzle. The brass fitting that’s attached to the nozzle has a black level for controlling water flow and for emergency shut-off if needed. The nozzle is about one-third smaller than the nozzles of the other hoses we tested, but it still had a powerful spray jet that reached the street side of the sidewalk about 20 feet away.

The hose weighs 3 pounds unfilled and is made of a double core of latex, surrounded by stretchy Dacron 3750D fabric, both of which have been designed and tested for endurance. When filled with water, the hose rapidly expands to three times its size and stiffens so it’s nearly as solid — but not as heavy — as a regular garden hose, which can make maneuvering around hedges and shrubs a challenge. When water flow is turned off, and the hose is emptied of residual water, the hose is flexible and collapsed enough to be coiled around your hand, like a very friendly garter snake. The Joey’s Garden expandable hose is definitely a quality product and stands out as the best of the seven hoses we tested.


7

Gardguard (Discontinued)

Gardguard expandable garden hose

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The Gardguard flexible hose is made from cheaper materials and isn’t of the same quality as the top three on our list. The GardGard’s outer fabric is 3300D, a lesser-grade fabric, reinforced with glass, that isn’t as durable as 3750D. Another clue that this is a bargain-basement variety is the brass fittings, which are certainly made of brass but are half the weight and thickness of better-quality hoses. Attaching the brass connector to the spigot was a bit tricky since its threading didn’t seem to fit. But after two tries we succeeded, and when fully expanded to 50′, the hose showed no signs of leakage.

The bonus for the Gardguard is that it had a decent nozzle with 10 spray functions and a thumb control lever, and it shot out a gushing jet spray. The Gardguard hose is available in 25′, 50′, and 100′, and the nozzles come in either blue or yellow. The Gardguard hose comes with a plastic hose holder and storage bag for outdoor storage or for storing in the garage.


8

WhimsWit (Discontinued)

Whimswit flexible hose

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Laughably marketed as a 5-in-1 hose, the WhimsWit flexible hose is basically the same as the Gardguard hose; in fact, it has an identical instruction manual. It has a three-layer latex interior that’s wrapped in 5750D material and has lightweight, cheaply made brass fittings. However, that said, we had no trouble attaching the fitting to the spigot, and the connection was secure.

If you’re wondering what makes the WhimsWit hose 5-in-1, the company is actually counting the number of pieces that are included: the hose itself, the trigger nozzle, a storage bag, a hose rack, and — incredibly — the three replaceable rubber gaskets. The best that can be said is that the 50′ hose is less than 30 bucks. The WhimsWit is available in 25′ 50′, and 100′ lengths in blue or orange.


9

Aterod (Discontinued)

Aterod garden hose

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It’s obvious that the Aterod expandable hose is made by the same Chinese manufacturer of the WhimsWit hose but has been rebranded under a different name. (We now have three of the same instruction manuals in our kitchen drawer.) The Aterod is identical to WhimsWit in every way, but it’s not marketed as 5-in-1.

The Aterod comes in a few more sizes — 15′, 25′ 50′, 100′, and 125′ and in different colors, yellow, blue, and green. The Aterod costs slightly more, but when deciding whether to buy this hose or the WhimsWit, just flip a coin.


10

HOSPAIP (discontinued)

HOSPAIP green expandable hose

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The mellifluously named HOSPAIP hose went out of stock a week after we purchased it. It was better than the Junredy hose, but was pretty much identical to the other discontinued copycat hoses. The HOSPAIP came with the same plastic hose wrap, the same sprayer, the same carry bag (why this is even included is a mystery), and even the same instruction pamphlet. It did well in our testing, but based on the durability of expandable hoses over long-term testing, we give it less than a year before a leak will spring.


11

Junredy (discontinued)

Junredy expandable hose

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The Junredy expandable hose had a sturdy brass-colored metal fitting on the sprayer connector and a flimsy metal connector for the faucet, which accounts for why it leaked. It came with a very cheap and flimsy plastic sprayer with settings in pictographs, presumably so non-English speakers could still use it. A few of the pictographs resembled each other, so we went through them all to figure out the type of spray the attachment would produce. In doing so, we discovered that the sprayer leaked, not from the metal connector, but from the spray settings.


Gene Gerrard, Writer

Gene has written about a wide variety of topics for too many years to count. He's been a professional chef, cooking-appliance demonstrator, playwright, director, editor of accountancy and bank-rating books, Houdini expert and dog lover (still is). When he's not writing for Your Best Digs, he's performing as a magician at the Magic Castle in Hollywood.

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