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Buying a good garden hose.

I'm sick of buying "kink-free" rated garden hoses that constantly kink. Another problem is that they flatten out on the hose reel, so I have to unreel the whole thing just to get good water flow. How do I select a hose that really works?

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First, stop reading (and believing) the marketing hype on the hose packaging. Instead of reading the specifications (which don't correlate to hose quality at all), perform your own tests on the hoses right in the store. Remove a few twist ties from the hose packaging and unroll about 2 ft. of hose. Then coil it back against itself to see if it kinks. A hose that kinks in the store will kink even easier after it's been baking in the sun all day (photo above).

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Next, compare the wall thicknesses of different hoses by bending them at a 90-degree angle. The hoses with thicker walls will be harder to bend because they're made with more material. Sure, they cost more, but they also last longer. Finally, check the quality of the connection fittings. You want solid "crush-proof" brass fittings (see photos at left), as opposed to flimsy stamped-brass fittings. That way the ends won't get destroyed when Junior drives over them.

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Before you leave the store, make sure you reassemble the packaging on the hoses that failed the test.

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Title Annotation:QUESTION
Publication:The Family Handyman
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2010
Words:230
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