Can you afford inexpensive clothes washer hoses?

Nope. Inexpensive hoses cost way too much.

As a home inspector in the Stillwater area, I always look for rubber supply hoses for the clothes washer. When I see them, I always recommend having them replaced. Why? Rubber hoses swell with age under the constant water pressure. After about 5 years, the failure rate of those hoses go way up. You could turn off the faucets that feed those hoses. In fact, the companies that make the washing machines say to. But very few people do.

Insurance claims for water damage repair often start with washing machine hose failure. In fact, flood damage from washers is among the top 5 claims to home insurers, according to the Institute for Business and Home Safety.

Insurance will pay for repairs. After the deductible. When the repairs are done.

There are tubs available that fit under the washer. They work well, and are highly recommended. But tubs aren’t much help for hoses that are spraying water all over.

Like I said, the old rubber ones have a high failure rate. And a hose can emit 6 gallons a minute. I’ll do the math.

2.5 tons an hour.

You’re welcome.

There are hoses that are (relatively) new on the market that have a low(er) failure rate, although “braided stainless steel” hoses have come under fire. It seems that the metal on some of the hoses is subject to corrosion and the jagged edges cut the vinyl lining. Want to learn about a pending lawsuit? (kind of a slow day on your end?)  Click Flowmaster Lawsuit

My recommendation? Floodchek makes hoses that are guaranteed to last 10 years.  Pricey? Geeze. How about $22 PER HOSE? But boy, they do their job. You can learn more at Floodchek Hoses.

Something worth consideration is a water detector that is placed on the floor near the washer and hoses, and a shut off valve that, well, shuts off water. Go figure. Plan to spend around $160 for both. Another link? Sure. Automatic shutoff valves.

The bottom line is that there are a lot of things that can go wrong in a house, and the number of things that need attention continues to rise. It’s not the same kind of house that we were raised in. Hiring a good home inspector can help you stay safe and comfortable in your increasingly complex home.