For help & advice call us on 01223 96 94 99

Choosing the Correct Reel

There are many things that will affect your choice of reel.

Things to consider are:-

  • What length & size of hose will you be using?
  • How will you rewind your reel?
  • Who will be operating the reel?
  • What is the reel being used for?
  • Where will the reel be used?

What hose will you be using?

Shorter hose lengths make spring retractable the ideal choice. Manual crank doesn't require any power source and will cover most longer lengths but large bore lengths can become labour intensive for the operator without a motor. For heavy duty applications using long lengths of large I.D. hose motor will be the only choice and depending on the power available we can supply pneumatic air motors, electric motors in 12/24/115/230 DC/AC voltage and hydraulic motors

How will you retract the hose?

There are three main ways, spring rewind, manual crank and motor driven.

Automatic spring retractable

Ideal for shorter lengths of small bore hose. Simply pull out the hose to the required length and the latch keeps it in place. When you are finished, a short tug releases the latch and you can feed the hose back onto the reel.

Spring rewind or auto retractable reels are best for:-

Shorter lengths of hose.

Ease of operation.

Jobs that required a high frequency of hose winding and unwinding.

Multiple mounting positions allow the reel to be used in many different locations such as ceiling or wall mounted, vehicle mounted or in a secure cabinet.

Maximum capacity
40meters of 12mm (0.5") 
30meters of 25mm (1")
15meters of 32mm (1.5") 

Manual hand crank

Hose is stored on a drum and manually wound back onto the reel.

Manual rewind hose reels are best for:-

Price, because of limited moving parts these are our most economical reels.

Where no power supply is available.

Portability, our trolley and cart reels are light enough to be portable (Perfect for agriculture & grounds keeping).

Longer lengths of hose, although consider who will be operating the reel.


Labour intensive, especially with larger bore, heavier hose.

Can be time consuming.

Powered Motor rewind

A variety of motors can be used to power the reel. This system is ideal for much longer, larger hose that would be to much to wind by hand. Also works for intensive winding and unwinding.

Motor powered hose reels are best for:-

Large or long lengths of hose. There are very few limitations on hose with this type of reel

Minimal labour for the operator.


Power supply is needed.

More complicated to set up.

Risk of power failure (Backup manual rewind systems can be added)

Motors available:- 4AM/6AM Pneumatic Air, 12v/24v DC & 115v/230v AC Electric, Hydraulic

What will be going through the hose and hose reel?

Water and air will go through most reels but check carefully as some reels are specifically designed for thicker liquids like grease or corrosive fluids like diesel and Jet A1.

Pressure also plays a factor in your choice of reel. High pressure water especially at hot temperatures require different seals and sometimes a different swivel.

If you are unsure, take a look at our media compatibility chart or call us for advice.

What material should you reel be made from?

A reel should be selected for the application. If it is to lightweight it might not be up to the job but to heavy duty and you could being paying over the odds.

There are 3 main types of hose reel construction.

AW1020-001 UPVC case hose reel in blue1. UPVC - Recoila spring retractable are lightweight and easy to mount and the chemical resistant case can easily be washed down. These are great reels for use in garages, workshops and equipment wash down on farms, factories. If they are fitted with food grade hose they can also make a cost effective solution to food factories and hygienic environments.

heavy duty powder coated hose reel in blue2. Powder coated steel - Suitable most most heavy duty applications both inside & outside. Our reels have a extra hard CPC powder coat and the components are individually coated so

stainless steel manual rewind with direct hand crank handle3. Stainless steel - Salt water, chemicals and fats from food factories are extremely corrosive to even the toughest powder coated reels. For these environments including offshore, we recommend our range of 304 stainless steel reels. While they may appear an expensive choice there is a lot to be said for the super hard stainless steel material far out lasting similar powder coated items.