Posted: January 6, 2017
Below is a post I originally wrote and shared in June of 2014. I’ve slightly updated it for today. It’s a post I have shared often so I am re-sharing now, so those who are new to my page and my work have the benefit of the information provided. Thanks for reading, friends! – Tamara
Lead is in a lot of things that are made of supple plastics or synthetic rubbers. It is often the ingredient used to treat the product that makes the material supple so that it does not crack or wear as quickly.
Warm (standing) water coming out of your standard garden hose in the summer months will likely have some amount Lead in it. The longer the water sits in the hose, the more time the Lead will have to leach into the water.
If you ARE using a standard hose, please consider flushing it out for at least a full minute with COLD water:
- before letting your children play in the water,
- before watering your garden with it (especially your vegetable garden) and
- before letting anyone (pets included, see article below) drink from the hose.
Better yet: get a MARINE/RV grade drinking water delivery hose. These are usually blue or white (or white with a blue stripe down the side), although more and more hose manufacturers are wising up and upgrading their “regular” green garden hoses to be lead-free.
Marine/RV hoses are used for boats and rvs to hook up to fill their drinking water supply tanks and they are lead-free / food grade to make sure the drinking water sources is safe. They generally cost more money ($25 to $50 vs. the $15 to $30 for a standard hose) but they will not poison your children by contaminating the water. [A reader just posted that she found some lead-free hoses for $8 at Walmart! So I guess they don’t HAVE to cost more!] West Marine stores carry them and another reader told me she found lead-free hoses at a True Value Hardware store as well. If you are buying a new lead-free hose, make sure the nozzle and fittings are lead-free (and drinking water safe) as well.
Below I have listed several good choices I found available today on Amazon.com.
Amazon links are affiliate links. If you purchase something after clicking on one of these links Lead Safe Mama, LLC may receive a small percentage of what you spend at no extra cost to you.
I do not “know” or endorse any of these products specifically, but wanted to share these links with you as examples a quick web search produced (hoses that are similar to the Lead-free hose we own.) You’ll notice that these are mostly blue or white or blue and white, as that is the recognized industry standard for knowing you are using a drinking water safe hose out in the field (when boating or RVing). It looks like this brand “element” is making a solid effort in the field with a large variety of lead-free / drinking water safe hoses, however I have not personally tested or used any of their products.
Pricing is current from the date of this post and may change
- This one is marketed as both Lead-free and BPA-free and is a 25 ft hose for just $9.97
- This one is a 35 foot hose marked as Lead-free, BPA-free and Phthalate-free for $24.97
- Here’s a 50-foot hose marketed as Lead-free, phthalate-safe and drinking water safe for only $19.98
- Here’s a 75-foot Lead-free hose intended for farm use for $45.85
- Also check out this Oregon company that makes lead-safe hoses!
Thanks for reading, happy shopping, and as always, please let me know if you have any questions (I will do my best to answer them personally as soon as I have a moment!)
And some additional reading on the subject ( #LeadSafeGardening):