Having hinted at the many mistakes I’ve enjoyed over the past days and weeks, I’m spoilt for choice when thinking of any to mention (and get out of my head).
This one started some weeks ago, when I needed a hose to use at my back door. The reason was down to changes I made earlier in the year, dumping my conventional hose for the type that expands in use, and ‘grows’ to 15 metres under water pressure, but shrinks when not in use, and can be stored in a small bucket. It’s a great replacement for an ordinary hose, which stays the same length when not in use, and has to be rolled up for storage, when it takes up a lot of space. Those on wind-up reels are just overpriced, and too expensive. Also, all such hoses get too hard and stiff in winter, and won’t roll up easily.
The only problem I found with the expanding hose was the fact that it always has to expand to its full length in use – which is a nuisance if you’re only a couple of metres from the tap (it still has to be laid out, so it can expand freely), hence the idea of using a curly hose, which stays short unless pulled on.
At the time, I priced a few, and found one close to what I thought I needed, but didn’t get out, so decided to leave it until I needed it.
I happened to be in Wilko, a shop not in my area, when I noticed such a hose for About £12. This was around the price I had found some weeks earlier, so I picked one up.
I had thought the length was find, given as 7.5 metres, or 21.5 feet – about twice the distance I needed, or so I thought.
What I didn’t know was that the length quoted needed lots of imagination.
In fact, although the hose is indeed 7.5 metres long, that length refers to the length of the hose only when it COMPLETELY uncurled and perfectly straight!
In reality, it will only reach about half of that distance as it can’t be fully uncoiled, and the strain on the connections/ends is already extreme once the halfway extension has been reached.
While Wilko will accept returns, by the time I’d unpacked and tried this thing, it wasn’t fit to return, and I’d ditched the packing as well.
Time to go online and have another hunt.
Long story short, I found my local ScrewFix had one similar item in stock and, although it was the same price, was TWICE the length, 15 metres.
Intending to be more careful this time, I collected it, and resolved to check the ACTUAL length before doing anything – it did, in fact, prove to be twice the length of the Wilko item.
Although I wouldn’t have planned things as they turned out, the mistake was not a total loss.
A door gets in the way of this hose from the tap to where it is being used, and the Wilko hose gets me past this unexpected hurdle, with the coupling between the two landing on the edge of the door, and getting around it without catching on the hose coils, and holding it back.
As a bonus, all the parts can be kept indoors in winter, always a good idea with hoses, as water left inside can freeze outside hoses in winter, and ruin a conventional hose if not always fully drained.