Pros: expands and shrinks on its own, lightweight, kink free, abrasion resistant
Cons: thin 1/2" hose, plastic connectors, made in China, may burst under pressure
Turn it on - it gets longer and stiff. Turn it off and it shrivels up like, well, a man in a cold shower! All sexual innuendo aside, this hose really does work "As Seen on TV."
My wife hates having to roll and unroll our heavy-duty 5/8" hose from its hose reeler. So I thought I'd make her happy and get the very lightweight Pocket Hose. The 25 footer is too short for our front yard, so I decided on the 50 footer. They also make 75' and 100' models.
In my online search of both the Pocket Hose site and Ebay, I realized that there's another (very similar) expandable hose to the Pocket Hose... the "American-made" (blue) X-Hose. The basic idea behind both hoses is that you turn on the spigot and the water pressure elongates the hose and (conversely) when you turn off the spigot and empty the hose, it shrivels back up to its original shape. I must stop with the guy in cold water jokes.
The hose arrived in a plastic bowl-shaped plastic package. Now it should be mentioned that the instructions suggest that the hose should be detached after every use but I find that a bit annoying. Also the hose when it’s fully expanded plumps up to only a half-inch size hose which would seem a bit thin. But the outer skin of the Pocket Hose provides a durable surface. I was worried that dragging the hose along a corner of stucco might cause damage to the house and I’m here to tell you it does not.
In my situation I should’ve actually listened to my inner self and purchased the 75 foot hose not the 50 footer. 50 is 10 feet longer than my original garden hose in the hose reeler, and still doesn’t quite cover the entire front of my property. So my suggestion is to use a tape measure and really measure out exactly how long your hose needs to be before you purchase.
The instructions also warn that you should not turn the hose on without the lever on the outlet in the off position unless, of course, you have a spray nozzle that requires manual manipulation to turn it on. Because what you'll end up with is a hose that will dance all over your yard like a Water Wiggle (remember those?)
Other warnings include, "Do not drink from the hose." I can remember the good ol' days when we could all drink from a hose without any worries. Another warning is that you can’t use the hose with any water pressure above 80 psi. You're not supposed to use the hose for commercial applications, with hot water or with a pressure washer.
They even have a little paragraph about limitation of liability so you can’t sue the company. And it reads, "Liability limited to this purchase price of this product TeleBrands Corporation shall not be liable for any incidental or consequential damages or any implied warranty on this product. Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of incidental or consequential damages so the above limitation or exclusion may not apply to you.”
STORING your pocket hose appears to be a little bit of work as well because they’re asking you to take off the nozzle and remove the connection from the spigot every time you use it. Asking that is a little bit much to ask of most people.
I have used this hose a few times to water the front yard and wash my wife's car. It performs as expected, but I spent some time worrying about the hose being pressurized and just sitting there not being used - as if it would burst at any second. It never did. I purposely meandered all around my yard - around rose bushes and a small half-wall of stucco. The hose performed like a champ - it never tangled or kinked up.
When the 50’ Pocket Hose is empty it shrivels up to about the size of a salad bowl. Obviously the 25 footer is a bit smaller while the 75 and hundred foot hoses are obviously a bit bigger. We hang our hose on a hose hanger connected to the stucco but I’m sure terracotta bowl outside would suffice.
The tag on the hose gives even more warnings:
"In warmer months, drain your hose completely and store it in a shady area. In colder months, make sure to drain the hose and store it indoors." For a hose that suggests constant attaching/detaching of the connector, they really should've used brass couplings in lieu of plastic.
WHAT WE LOVE ABOUT THE POCKET HOSE:
It’s very lightweight, it stores very easily and when you turn off the water pressure (and empty the hose with the spray nozzle) the hose reels itself back in! No need for a hose reeler!
WHAT WE DON'T LIKE ABOUT POCKET HOSE:
The couplings are plastic and while they may appear to be heavy-duty plastic, I still prefer brass couplings.
Another issue might be in the event the hose gets damaged because I feel that this hose is absolutely not repairable due to the technology of the accordion action every time it’s used.
At the end of the hose, there’s an on/off lever which is a moot point if you’re using a spray nozzle. I’m assuming it’s meant to be used if a spray nozzle is not attached.
I ordered my pocket hose on eBay. The reason is that it actually came out less expensive by a few dollars. On the Pocket Hose website, they only sell the 25 footer for $12.99 (plus $7.99 shipping). You'll have to search for the other sites that sell the Pocket Hose. On the "As Seen on TV" website, the 50 footer runs $19.99 $7.99, the 75 footer runs $32.99 S&H and the 100 footer runs $39.99 S&H.
On eBay, the prices do vary but I found a vendor who sells the 50 foot hose for under $25 with FREE shipping - about $3 cheaper. It shouldn't cost $7.99 to ship an item that weighs less than a pound - especially within the same state.
And don’t buy into the sales gimmick of "buy one get one free" because (invariably) they charge you about what the other item costs. It's a joke - it’s almost like bait and switch because you wind up paying for the "free" item. The "As Seen on TV" industry must really think many consumers are just stupid enough to fall for those shenanigans. A good way to gauge how much the actual retail price (should be), is what they charge you for the "free" item's shipping & handling.
It should also be noted that many different vendors on eBay include things like spray nozzles or various adapters. I would purchase your accessories at a hardware store or home center, because it's cheaper in the long run.
UPDATE: I realized that buying a 75' hose would not have been the move to make. Since these hoses are so light and easily moved, I decided to buy a second 50 foot hose and keep one in the front and back yard. That way, if I need a longer 100 footer in the back or front, I can simply connect them.
My wife no longer complains about the front yard hose issue. That (alone) is worth a 5-star rating! The Pocket Hose serves as a very lightweight, easily manageable hose and she loves it a lot more than our original bulky hose – which now serves in our backyard. I'm counting the days until she asks me to get another Pocket Hose for the backyard! Stay tuned.
I strongly recommend this type of hose for boat and watercraft people because space at the marina is at a premium. Truckers and RV owners could really benefit from a hose like this as well. For homeowners it's a matter of preference, I guess.
I rate this hose 3.25 stars out of 5 because there just seems to be too many warnings and safeguards, it's made in China and it appears not to be repairable... AND because after three weeks of service, the hose burst right in the middle!
The Pocket Hose is distributed by TeleBrands out of Fairfield New Jersey. You can find them on the web at telebrands.com. Like most things in this world, I’m sad to report that this product is made in China. Perhaps I'll buy the American-made blue X-hose next time around.
After using the hose six times in three weeks, it burst open today. My stepson was washing his truck - using the hose periodically and the hose failed! Lesson here is to use the hose or shut it off each time, otherwise it just might burst and then it becomes landfill.
I contacted the Ebay seller and they suggested I call Telebrands. I called Telebrands and they told me I had to deal with ther Ebay seller. In the end (and because it was less than 30 days) the Ebay seller agreed to send me a replacement hose. YAY!
The bottom line is that you need to shut off the water supply if the hose will sit for longer than a few minutes. Telebrands needs to make this hose with thicker walls. I can only recommend this hose if you use it to water your landscaping or quick jobs like that - then shut it off when done.
UPDATE #3: May 13, 2013
So after contacting the Ebay vendor, he sent me a replacement hose. I just used it for the SECOND TIME and as I was watering the front lawn, the hose failed - where the hose meets the coupling. I think I'm done with the Pocket hoses. They need to make these things more substantial.
UPDATE #4: May 19, 2013
Since the hose burst right at the point of connection with the coupling, I used my Dremel and cutting wheel to open the black plastic coupling. I was careful NOT to cut too deep - which was a good thing because of the inner nipple. There are two hose layers - a small inner tube and the outer green elastic shell material. I cut both and removed all of the damaged area and saw the nipple that the inner tube should be inserted on. With the help of a small hose clamp, I was able to repair the hose by slipping the inner hose onto the nipple and the I forced the end of the green hose material under the hose clamp. Once I tightened the hose clamp, I tested the hose and I'm happy to report that I'm back in business! But for how long? Now I've instructed my family to only use this hose with the spigot at half pressure.
UPDATE: The company that makes the X-hose (blue version of this hose) is now making the "X-Hose Pro." Brass fittings, stronger hose with a lifetime warranty. FINALLY!
UPDATE 7/25/13: Well, after repairing the hose three times (the end of the hose kept separating) the hose burst open like a water balloon - right in the middle. It's now in our trash can... NEVER AGAIN!