Skip to content

How to clean your garden hose and get rid of sticky debris before spring gardening

To perform proper garden maintenance and watering plants, you should be able to clean a previously soiled garden hose in the spring. Remarkably, garden hoses give the universal detergent water, but still need regular cleaning and care. After prolonged use, a hose can become so dirty that it becomes difficult to use. In addition, drinking water from a garden hose can cause untold infections if you don’t rid it of bacteria. So here are some handy cleaning tips that can help you get the job done.

How to clean and care for a garden hose

cleaning tips garden hose care before gardening in spring

Rubber garden hoses are easier to clean compared to their expandable comrades. Therefore, it is more difficult to keep rubber-free models hygienic, but it is not impossible. Experts recommend cleaning and maintenance of garden hoses every 3 to 4 months. With some home remedies and clever cleaning methods will make this job easier. To do this, you will need buckets, bleach, measuring cups, rubber gloves, mild dishwashing detergent for attachments such as the garden sprayer, as well as cloths, sponge and toothbrush.

Using bleach to clean the water hose.

use bleach as a home remedy and clean garden hose by soaking in bucket

This is probably one of the best methods if you want to clean the inside of your garden hose. Accordingly, the process helps to get rid of all germs, making the water more suitable for human consumption. As an advice, you should try the most natural bleach in the process to minimize the effects of toxic chemicals. Also, it is recommended to put on rubber gloves during the process to protect your hands.


  • First, add water to a large bucket.
  • Then add ¼ cup of bleach to the bucket of water.
  • First, dip the garden hose into the resulting cleaning solution. Inserting the garden hose should be done slowly and easily to prevent the bleach water solution from splashing over eyes, clothing or skin.
  • Afterwards, leave the hose in the solution for approximately 8-24 hours. This will ensure that all insects, germs and debris contained within are neutralized.
  • After this time, soak the hose in another bucket of water for about an hour. Note: This second bucket should not contain bleach.
  • Remove your garden hose from the bucket and then connect it to a faucet.
  • Turn on the faucet and let the water run through it for a few minutes. This will allow you to effectively clean the inside walls. It also still ensures that all germs and any bleach residue are removed when you disinfect your garden hose.

Avoid placing the chemical solution near children, pets or places where they play. This could cause them harm. Also, do not pour the cleaning solution over garden plants or lawns as it could harm their ecological life and kill them. Also, make sure you rinse the hose properly to remove any remaining chemicals .

Use vinegar as a home remedy and use it to clean a garden hose.

put on new hose nozzle from garden hose and get clean water

If using bleach to clean your garden hose isn’t your thing, you could use vinegar instead. Despite its strong smell, the odor miraculously dissipates after rinsing, leaving you with an odorless and infection-free garden hose that is safe for use.


  • Again, use a bucket to fill a large enough container with water.
  • First, pour about half of the distilled white vinegar into the container using the bucket you used in the step above.
  • Then dip the garden hose into the resulting solution.
  • As with the bleach, leave the hose in the solution for about 8-24 hours to remove all bacteria and dirt.
  • Pull the water hose out of the vinegar solution after soaking.
  • Finally, rinse the garden hose with clean running water for about half an hour.

Unlike the above cleaning method with bleach, any residue in the hose is harmless. This is because vinegar can act not only as a food, but also as a natural disinfectant. The stuff produces the best of both worlds and is also an affordable option for cleaning and disinfecting. To help you clean your garden hose and keep it bacteria-free, get in the habit of wiping down its ends with vinegar on a regular basis.

Cleaning method with essential oils

clean dirty garden hose with vinegar

The next method is best for maintenance and care, but can also be used to clean a garden hose. Usually, you can find and buy essential oils like tea tree oil in almost any health food store. You can also use tea tree as a natural disinfectant. As expected, the oils are available at different prices. However, since you will need very little of them when cleaning a garden hose, they are worth their purchase.


  • First, put a few drops from the essential oils on a clean and preferably thin cloth.
  • Use the cloth to wipe down the hose inside and out to kill bacteria.
  • Then let the garden hose rest for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse the treated area as well as the hose by running water through it for a few minutes.

How to clean the attachment for the garden hose.

tips for cleaning and care of garden sprayer

However, a clean hose in the garden also requires a clean attachment. Therefore, you should also know how to clean such attachments so that you can achieve optimal hygiene of your garden accessories.


  • First, remove the hose nozzle and rinse it thoroughly under running tap. This will help loosen any dirt that may have attached to the nozzle over time.
  • Then mix warm water with a mild liquid soap or dishwashing liquid.
  • First, stick the garden sprayer into the resulting detergent.
  • Then let the attachment soak for about 30 minutes.
  • Then scrub vigorously at the holes, using any brush or toothbrush to do so.
  • Once you’ve removed the visible dirt, you can rinse the sprayer and dry it with a paper towel or clean cloth.
  • After that, reattach the attachment to the hose.
  • You’ve finally rid your garden hose of the nagging and sticky dirt, and the next question is how to care for it.

Garden hose maintenance tips

watering plants with strong water jet in the garden

Avoid storing your water hose in direct sunlight. UV rays can damage the outer layer. Water inside can also heat up easily as a result, causing damage to the inner hose. Repair any leaks as soon as possible. This will ensure that the water pressure from the hose nozzle is always optimal.

clean and disinfect sticky dirt and bacteria from garden hose

Do not stop the water at the attachment, but at the faucet. If you rely on the garden sprayer to stop the water supply, water pressure will build up, which can cause your hose to burst in the short term. Also, avoid pulling the hose on the spray nozzle. This weakens the connection between the two parts, which can lead to leaks. Accordingly, a hose reel goes a long way in preventing kinks and cracks.

use hose reel in garden for water hose

Is your garden hose covered with dirt and cobwebs? This is not a cause for annoyance. This happens to many gardeners, whereby they also often decide to buy a new one. However, this does not guarantee you an always clean garden hose. Instead, rather use the methods described above, so that you yourself clean your existing garden hose. In addition, also learn how to maintain this important accessory for extended use in the garden. If you follow these cleaning tips and simple steps, the water from your garden hose will be safe to drink again and it will look almost like new.