Using a stainless steel hose for your washing machine is a smart move, but will it last? However, you can also use them for sinks, fuel lines in cars, and more. Yet many people have no clue when to replace them. A huge part of being a savvy DIYer is knowing more about the equipment you’re using. Moreover, replacing things on time is a fantastic way to save money. I’ll help you avoid expensive damages by explaining everything you need to know about your hoses. So you can change them on time, and pick the right equipment for the job.
How long do stainless steel braided hoses last? Stainless steel braided hoses last at least five years. According to most manufacturers, you should replace them twice per decade. However, the steel over rubber design can last much longer than the factory specifications.
How Long To Use Stainless Steel Braided Hoses
Most stainless steel braided hoses last three to five years, according to the manufacturer. It’s important to replace parts after their time has expired even when there’s nothing apparently wrong with them. The ‘lifetime’ of any product is how long the company that makes it expects the product to function at peak capability.
Can a stainless steel hose last longer? Of course, it can. However, that doesn’t mean you should ‘push it.’ If you fail to change hoses at the right time, you might void your warranty. Resultantly, you could end up paying out of pocket for any problems that happen.
Make sure you check the warranty and any manuals that come with your hoses. By taking the time to read the details, you can save yourself time and money.
For a washing machine, I recommend picking up a two-pack of K&J Stainless Steel Washing Machine Hoses from Amazon. Though they’re color-coded in red and blue, you can use these high-quality hoses interchangeably for hot or cold water. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by how durable they are over time. Plus, K&J has a hundred percent satisfaction guarantee. Get yours by clicking here.
About Stainless Steel
Stainless steel is a metal, which means it doesn’t decompose like organic matter. Instead, it corrodes. Micro pitting can happen long before you notice a problem. Although manufacturers have different standards, stainless steel can last for years.
Unfortunately, over time any stainless steel will degrade. Typically, it lasts up to fifty years. However, hoses have issues other than rust or pitting. Because they’re made to move, over time, this puts stress on the braided steel. Bending, vibration, and other-movement will weaken the metal.
Stainless steel is made of iron and carbon, like all steel. However, it’s the ten-point-five percent (or more) chromium that makes it stainless. The composition of the alloy varies depending on how it was created. Unfortunately, ‘stainless is just the name because it’s more resistant to rust. Realistically, you can stain this unique metal, and eventually, it will rust.
Oily fingerprints and other corrosive substances, like water, break down that beautiful shine over time. Once your metal is compromised, it will rust, pit, or even break. Hence manufacturers place a time limit on how long you should use their hoses. No one wants a water, or fuel mess spraying all over.
Life Expectancy of Rubber
Inside every braided stainless steel hose is a rubber hose. Sadly, no weave, regardless of how well made, can carry water or other liquids for long. Instead, the flexible metal layer protects the rubber, not unlike the way rubber cord protectors help prevent thin copper wires in a cord from breaking.
Like steel and other materials, rubber degrades over time. Although it can take up to fifty years for a piece of rubber to degrade completely, it becomes compromised long before then. Cracks and leaks inside the rubber tube core of a stainless steel braided hose should also get a change every three to five years.
Why Braided Stainless Steel Lasts Longer
Braided stainless steel hoses last and work, much longer than regular steel for several reasons. Sure, a solid steel tube would still let liquids flow through, but it doesn’t bend easily. Instead of being able to fit in different configurations, you’d need specially formed pieces. Every washing machine, car, or other areas you used a metal hose for would have to be custom fitted.
The flack of flexibility aside, you also wouldn’t be able to see if there was rust inside. Not being able to disconnect the hose easily is a problem. Clogs and other issues would be much more severe and require a specialist. Furthermore, they’d add too much weight, damaging your connection points over time.
Additionally, you’d need special equipment and skills to connect your ‘hose.’ Welding or threading pieces takes far more effort than connecting mass-produced connectors. Hence, thin wires braided in the round make the perfect solution. You get all the protection of a steel coating, but the flexibility of a (stiff) rope.
If you want solid color-coded hoses, try the Hippohose 6ft Stainless Steel Braided Washer Hoses. Not only are they extra long, but they also come with a ninety-degree angle attachment piece for your washer. More accessible connections make the job a lot faster. Plus, they’re universal fit, so you shouldn’t have any problem getting them on your washer. You’ll love these burst-proof hoses that can handle up to fifteen-hundred PSI. Click here to learn more on Amazon.
How to Choose A Hose That Lasts
As strange as it may sound, a reinforced rubber hose and a stainless steel braided hose last the same amount of time. More accurately, manufacturers suggest replacing them both every three to five years. So why isn’t there a more significant difference?
There’s a massive difference in durability. However, they both have a layer of rubber hose. All this signifies is that the rubber can only take so much before it lets go. Moreover, there’s a third option. Hoses with vinyl braid covers also abound in stores. Some are even cleverly painted to look like stainless steel.
Don’t fall into the cheap materials trap. An un-covered rubber hose is more likely to fail than one with steel braid. Furthermore, unprotected rubber is much easier to damage. Vinyl braid is probably better than nothing, but it doesn’t have the durability and protection a steel braid can offer.
The only time a plain rubber hose is okay is when your washer is outdoors. Although sunlight will degrade the rubber, an outdoor flood isn’t such a big deal. If your hose fails outside, you won’t have much cleanup to worry about.
Find the Right Steel Braided Hose
Generally, you want a braided stainless steel hose. However, you should ask yourself a few basic questions before you choose this style of a hose. More importantly, you need to make sure you get the right one for your space.
- Is it real steel? Bright paint over vinyl won’t make it any stronger.
- Does it contain lead? You shouldn’t use a hose that could poison you. If there’s a small leak you don’t notice, then you could end up with lead on your clothing.
- How much space do you have? If your area is incredibly cramped, a braided stainless steel hose can get kinked and damage the outer material.
- Similarly, what’s the length of your hose? If you have too much, you may need to cut it down or order a shorter hose.
Asking the right questions before you buy can save you time and money. Instead of needing to ship a product back, you’ll get the correct item the first time. Particularly when replacing washing machine lines, you don’t want to have to wait. After all, we all need clean clothes.
The Eastman 48377 Braided Stainless Steel Washing Machine Hose is another outstanding option. The corrosion resistance is excellent in this model. You get four, or six in a pack, so you’ll have spares to change them as needed. Moreover, the chrome-plated brass nut with stainless steel ferrule is made to prevent kinks, and it’s easy to install. Click here to check the reviews on Amazon.
Change Your Stainless Steel Braided Hoses Easily
Swapping out a long-lasting stainless steel braided hose only takes a few minutes. You need a bucket, a cloth to wipe any drips, hose, adjustable pliers, and Teflon tape. Follow the simple steps outlined below, and you’ll be done faster than you think.
First, place your bucket so you can drain the old hoses without a mess. Then turn off the water. You’ll need those pliers to remove the hoses at both ends.
Make sure you wipe up any spills and damp connections before moving on. After that, grab your Teflon tape and new hoses. Check for your rubber washers, then wrap a little Teflon tape around the connectors to help seal the new hoses.
Finally, you need to tighten the new hoses on to the machine and the wall. It’s that simple. The washers and Teflon tape help prevent any leaks, and the rest is mostly to avoid messes.
Stainless steel braided hoses will last much longer than standard rubber hoses because the rubber inside is protected. However, they aren’t perfect. Remember to check and change your hoses regularly to avoid serious and expensive damages.
Sometimes the hose you choose will be the wrong length. Resultantly, you may need to cut it. Unfortunately, a pair of scissors won’t do the job. Luckily, it’s not that hard to cut once you have the right tool. Check out this video for three simple ways to cut stainless steel braided hoses.