Draining Hoses..How Does Everyone Do It?

Yeah, that won’t work. I had t-posts and electric at one place I lived and I used one of the beams on my porch to run it over. Basically, if you can create a rollercoaster effect where you pull the hose up then down, it will drain effectively.

While I’ve never tested my skills in an extreme climate, I’m pretty darn good at draining hoses. I grew up on a farm where we lived and died by our looooong hose and had to know how to do it right. It blew my mind when I moved south and tons of horse people didn’t even understand the concept of draining a hose.

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@Texarkana, don’t you mean a “hose pipe” down here in the South???

Similarly, I’m blown away how many people here in New England don’t drain and then just…give up on their hose for the winter. Or buy $$$ heated hoses because they see it as the only solution to a frozen hose! :open_mouth:


That is why we installed a hydrant right besides the fence where the horses water source is. The goats and other animals get water hauled by bucket and we are just today putting in a water line with a waterer for our beef cows .

Good thing because I forgot to drain the hoses one night this week and had no way to water them the next day until they thawed.

Normally I would just drag the hose so the whole thing is on a slant from one end to the other so the water drains out quickly.

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Am I the only person who keeps reading this topic as the slightly alarming Draining Horses?


No. No you are not.
And when I typed my response, I typed horse instead of hose every time and then had to go back and edit.




We’ve got a specific piece of “equipment”. Looks like a garage ladder hanger with a piece of pvc on it so the hose rolls easily over it. We pull it up and over. If you go too fast it won’t drain fully.

Also, if you have moronic boarders who hook it back up at 8pm to top off Poopsy’s bucket but don’t have the slightest clue how to drain it, it will be frozen in the morning.

Almost as good as the moronic co-boarder I had at a self care barn who left the hose running ALL NIGHT LONG to “keep it from freezing”.


(a) That may work inside a heated indoor space, but it does NOT work in the great outdoors. All she managed to do was to create a lake in my front yard and burst the faucet at ground level.

(b) Only a person who has never paid a water bill in her life would pull such a stunt.


I have a 100’ 1” diameter hose and I blow it out— meaning me - lung power. I disconnect it from the spigot, aim the other end down hill, and blow 2-3 times to get all the water out. The sidebar to this method is knowing, at my old age, I still have the lung power to blow the hose out​:joy::joy:

I agree with @simkie that for 200’ of hose you might be best served with a small air compressor.


We have 3 of this one: Gilmour 829901-1001 Farm & Ranch Hose 5/8 Inch x 90 Feet, Red https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0002IKTYW/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apip_2Rg8kWEsTWfZE

We have three 90ft sections so 270ft. We just use it for our horses water tank though so it stays out and we never roll it up and it never gets moved to another part of the barn for anyone else to use. Fortunately, the hydrant is slightly uphill from the water tank so that makes it a bit easier to drain but you still HAVE to drain it… it’s not enough to just unhook it and leave it.

Once the tank is done filling, I will pull the hose out of the tank and let the hose just run on the grass while I walk up to the hydrant. I’ll shut the hydrant off, unhook it, and then at a slow pace, I’ll walk back the length of the hose running the hose above my shoulder. If I do it right, I’ll see water drain out when I get to the end.

It’s definitely a learning curve for people that have never had to do it. I remember my fellow boarders initially didn’t know that you have to actually walk the length of the hose to drain it and thought unhooking it and hoping for the best was a good strategy. Now that everyone who uses that hose knows how to properly drain it, we never have problems! I also never “top off” the water. I just dump/ scrub/ rinse/ refill every 3-4 days so I think that keeps people from forgetting to drain it. It’s just our rule that September- late may the hose gets drained after each use. Even if you know it’ll thaw out before the next time you use it, you still want to drain it because the water sitting in the hose and freezing will expand and make it crack.


We solved the problem by putting a quick connect fitting on the hose with the strength of a thousand gorillas (read: they can’t get it off), and then taking the quick connect off the hydrant and hiding it.

Voila. A hose they can’t hook up.

They’re free to use a second bucket to get water out of the hydrant and then hoof it to their stall to dump in Poopsy’s bucket. They just can’t use the hose.

EDIT: We have tried. And tried. And tried. To teach people to do this. Problem is “oh I’m so sorry, I forgot!!” doesn’t melt the hose in the morning, and it doesn’t make it where I don’t have to drag it into the shop for the day to melt, and it doesn’t make it where I don’t have to do the “second bucket” method for 20 horses. Better to prevent them from hooking the hose up.


Oh @endlessclimb, I totally get your frustration. I used to do weekend morning feedings at a barn where I could not convince the night feeder to drain the hose, so every time I came to feed (in the winter) the hose was frozen solid and I had to water using a bucket. I finally just brought my own hose.

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I do not understand having to “walk” a hose IF there is a downhill incline from one open end to the other, without any ground depressions serving like plumbing P-traps.

House and barn gutters drain just fine with minimal downward pitches to them. And if you have seen fire hoses being drained after use they are laid out on a slight incline and gravity takes care of the drainage.

Hoses drain fine if the weather is above or even around freezing. If you’re in the kind of weather where you can toss a bucket of water in the air and make a YouTube video of the resultant ice falling to the ground, not so much.


I think the problem is water is cohesive. If the hose is perfectly smooth, in theory it should all drain. But any imperfections such as bends from prior kinks or unevenness in the inside hose lining, and you’ll get some pooling. Since water expands when it freezes, it doesn’t take much leftover water to plug up the hose.

Giving an extra “umph” of gravity to encourage the water to flow out prevents any pooling.

I don’t know about your gutters, but mine certainly have a small amount of standing water that remains despite their slight incline. I’m no expert on fire hoses, but aren’t they generally rolled after draining? The rolling serves a similar function to walking the water out.


If your slope is large enough, that may work. I have a decent decline from the water tub down that fence line. But if I don’t “walk” it first, the slope isn’t enough to overcome the deviations caused by thicker clumps of grass.

Clean, clean gutters are quite smooth, the inside of a hose isn’t, and done properly, are a straight line from the high spot to the downspout, unlike the ground on which a hose is laid.


I used to live in mid Michigan and I used two 100’ flat fabric hoses. They were constructed like a fire hose. They would roll up tight and 200’ of hose fit in a bucket. Rolling them up emptied them out.

Gutters are perfectly straight though whereas a hose is flexible so it’s usually not and it will have bends and waves to it and the water will get stuck in there.

I don’t blame you. Luckily for me our barn is small and there’s only 2 other people besides myself that would use the hose. Those two other people have learned that a frozen hose will drive me effing insane. We had some bumps in the beginning but now everyone knows if you touch the hose you drain it September- May. One of them was still draining it in late June last year and I had to tell them that it wasn’t necessary and they insisted because they’re still that afraid of leaving it frozen.

People just don’t know any better.I know because I remember making that mistake as a kid and having the barn owner get mad at me when I was like 9 but a lot of people don’t grow up dealing with this stuff. My LAST barn the people were such morons about the hose though. They refused to drain it, said they didn’t need to be told what to do and it caused so much drama.


I grew up riding in New Haven n lived in Utica till I was 19. It gets COOOLLDD for sure up back home!!!