Our Picks for the Best Garden Hose Nozzles

One of the best garden hose nozzles out there is the SprayTec 9 Pattern Hose Nozzle Sprayer with Pistol Grip Trigger, which has nine different spray settings and rubber grip. A good garden hose nozzle can be the difference between an enjoy experience watering your garden and a wet, soggy experience. Some of the best nozzles available today have front or back mounted triggers and a variety of spray settings, so you can use them for misting seeds or for rinsing out garden equipment. If you like the SprayTec, but want more options, here are a few more of our favorites.

Our 5 Favorite Garden Hose Nozzles

What to Know About Garden Hose Nozzles

There was a time when garden hose nozzles, and hoses themselves, didn’t exist. According to This Old House, a Dutch man, Jan van der Heiden, developed the first hose and nozzle back 1672. His goal was to create something that would help put out house fires, but demand soon grew for his product from the gardening set.

The hose and nozzle have definitely evolved since then. These days, you have a number of ergonomic options when it comes to choose not only a hose, but also the sprayer attachment you put on the end of it. The best garden hose nozzle for you depends not only on the type watering tasks you have planned, but also on your concern about comfort, ease of use, and durability.

Let’s talk about comfort first. Today’s ultimate hose nozzles usually feature one of two trigger styles. There’s the front mounted trigger and the back mounted trigger. Usually, front mounted triggers are easier to operate, since you don’t need as much grip or force to squeeze them.

Another feature that influences the comfort of a garden hose nozzle its material. The original watering nozzles were made out of brass. You can still find brass models or models made out of rust-resistant metals such as aluminum.

One benefit of metal nozzles is that they tend to have a lower price than other styles. One major drawback is the lack of comfort. If you’ve ever held wet metal in your hands, you know that it can be a cold, unpleasant experience.

For that reason, more advanced nozzles often feature comfort grips. They might still be made out of metal, but their handles and triggers are encased in a soft and cushiony rubber or plastic.

Although squeeze triggers are a common feature on today’s nozzles, they aren’t universal. The original nozzle was controlled by twisting its shaft. Some models still feature that design today. How much water flows from the particular nozzle and with what sort of pressure is determined by how far you open it.

More advanced hose nozzles feature a variety of spray settings. Rather than directly controlling the stream or spray with the handle, you twist an attachment on the front of the nozzle to determine the water pressure and pattern of water flow.

The Right Mist for the Right Job

The flow or mist of water from a hose nozzle really determines how long you’re going to spend watering your garden and whether your plants will be happy at the end of it or not. There’s really no one-size-fits-all option when it comes to spray type, so choosing a nozzle that has just one or two spray options will really be limiting what you can do in the garden.

The most convenient type of nozzles might be those that have 10 or so different spray options, which you can easily change by twisting the front of the device.

For example, if you are watering seeds, you’ll want to use the finest mist imaginable. The water should gently fall on the soil, so that the seeds aren’t disturbed. Using a higher pressure spray or a rain shower spray can push the soil about, interfering with the seed starting process.

On the other hand, if you’re watering a bunch of established plants in the garden, you’ll want to soak as much of the soil as possible, all at once. Using the mist setting to water a larger garden can mean that you’re left standing there, holding the hose for several hours.

You also want to be careful about the amount of water pressure coming out of the nozzle when you’re using the hose for other reasons. A high pressure jet of water can make short work of a touch cleaning job, such as rinsing out a dirty wheelbarrow or power washing the deck. But you wouldn’t want to use so much pressure or force when cleaning the windows of your house or when washing your care

Care for a Hose Nozzle

How well you take care of a nozzle will influence how well it works and how long it lasts. When you’re finished using the hose for the day, don’t simply toss the nozzle into the dirt or mulch of your garden. Although some nozzles do have filters in place, constantly throwing yours in the dirt can cause it to clog.

Over time, exposure to the minerals that are naturally found in tap water can cause the threads that connect each nozzle to the hose to develop deposits. The more deposits there are, the harder it is to disconnect nozzle from hose.

A layer of petroleum jelly will help protect the threads from minerals. If you’re having trouble getting a good seal between your nozzle and the hose, the jelly can also help reduce any leaks.

Nozzle Alternatives

Do you need to buy a garden hose nozzle? The short answer is “no.” There are a few alternatives that might be better for you and your garden.

For example, you might be better off choosing a sprinkler to attach to your hose. A sprinkler can effortlessly provide water to a larger garden watered area than a hose and spray nozzle. Another benefit of a sprinkler is that you can turn it on, go do other tasks, then come back an hour or so later.

An old fashioned watering can is another alternative to a hose nozzle. You can fill the can directly from the hose, then direct water to the areas that need it.

Finally, in some gardens, using a soaker hose or drip irrigation system, which supplies water directly to the soil, might be the better or easier option than watering with a hose and nozzle.

SprayTec 9 Pattern Hose Nozzle Sprayer with Pistol Grip Trigger

What features a highly-rated garden hose nozzle have? The SprayTec 9 Pattern Nozzle features a front mounted trigger, nine different spray options and a rubber coated grip.

Although the nozzle is made from metal, it is a specially treated metal that is rust-resistant. Additionally, the rubber coating on the handle helps improve its comfort.

Here’s another great review, by the way:

Since you can adjust the spray pattern to be anything from a gentle, light mist to a high-pressure jet, just by turning the dial on the front, the nozzle’s durable sprayer offers a considerable amount of flexibility. It’s also designed to work with most standard hose sizes. It comes with rubber rings to place inside the coupling to minimize any leaks.

The SprayTec 9 is designed to handle a variety of garden tasks, from watering established plants to lightly misting seeds. You can also use it to rinse out pots and to spray down tools. Although the nozzle does have a jet, high pressure setting, the nozzle itself isn’t intended to be used as a pressure washer.

Photo by Hans licensed under CC0

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