If you spend much time in the garden, you know how frustrating a poor quality garden hose can be. Although a top-of-the-line garden hose isn't inexpensive, you can purchase a good quality hose that will serve you well without breaking the bank. Take some time and shop around, and find a garden hose that won't end in a wrestling match every time you use it. Often, just a few dollars can make the difference between a hose that will last a short time and one that will last many years.
Determine how long your new garden hose should be, as buying a hose that is longer than necessary means additional expense and will be harder to drain and coil. Hoses are available in lengths of 25, 50, 75 and 100 feet. If you need a longer hose only occasionally, it may make more sense to buy a short hose that you can connect to your longer hose when you need the added length.
Ask to test the hose before you purchase it. Uncoil the hose and try to form it into a "U" shape. The hose should be lightweight, flexible and easy to handle without kinking. Some hoses are made of rubber and others are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), but the best hoses are constructed of a combination of synthetic rubber and PVC and will be reinforced with rayon or nylon mesh.
Look for a garden hose with brass couplings on each end. A brass coupling with an octagonal shape will be easier to tighten, but a round shape will also work well. Avoid hoses with plastic couplings, which are easily broken and usually don't last long.
Purchase your garden hose from a reputable dealer, and if you can afford it, look for a hose with a lifetime guarantee. Although the hose may cost a few dollars more, it will be more economical in the long run.