Exceedingly Helpful Tool: Our Hose Puller

By Carolyn Shearlock © 2015 • all rights reserved

How to Get a Hose Off a Barbed Fitting: Getting an old hose off a barb can be next to impossible . . . unless you've got this tool.

How many times have you had to get a hose off a hose barb and found it next to impossible?

Hoses are a tight fit to begin with, and then if they’ve been clamped in place for years, it can seem like they are welded together. Water hoses, waste hoses, vent lines, engine lines, transmission and hydraulic hoses — all have to be removed at some point.

More than once, Dave would tug and tug, then finally resort to cutting the hose . . . but then he still had to get the old stub off before he could put a new hose back on the fitting.

When I said we were going to be removing our marine toilet this summer and replacing it with a composting head, one of my readers (he requested to be anonymous) told me we had to get a hose puller. It’d make the job of removing all the old hoses from the head, pump, valves and holding tank a lot easier, he said. I put it on the list of things to get . . .

Two days later, I got an email from the reader — he’d been at Sears and spotted one in the tool department and bought it for Dave! He sent it to us (I swear I have the best readers!) . . .

It’s become one of Dave’s favorite gadgets. As he says, you don’t need it all that often, but when you do it saves a ton of time and energy.

It’s pretty evident how the hose puller works. You work the point between the hose and the barb and wiggle it around to break the bond between the two. Often, Dave had to put it in at two or three different points around the barb to break enough of the bond to be able to get the hose off. Then tug a bit . . . . sometimes more than a bit . . . and pull the hose off.

Because it’s bent in a “U” shape, this hose puller works much better than any straight tool such as a screwdriver, ice pick or awl — and it won’t slip and go all the way through the hose, either.

How to Get a Hose Off a Barbed Fitting: Getting an old hose off a barb can be next to impossible . . . unless you've got this tool.

Hose pullers are generally sold for automotive purposes, such as removing radiator hoses. You can also buy them in sets of 4 or 5, each of which is bent differently. For a boat, the “U” one works well for everything we can imagine needing.

Some hardwares and auto parts stores carry hose pullers (although they may just carry the sets and not the individual ones). I’ve never seen one in a home improvement storeand an online search doesn’t them at Home Depot, Lowe’s and similar stores. But Amazon, of course, does carry several including the exact one that Dave has and finds easy to use:

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  1. Another helpful thing I discovered was poor boiling water over the end to soften it a bit….managed to get heavy duty heads outlet hose off with ease by doing that. That tool looks awesome though….gotta get me one! 🙂

  2. Dave Holzknecht

  3. I use the heat gun , or the hair drier…

  4. Purchased! Thank you!

  5. A heat gun is better yet.

  6. Awesome!! Ordering it today!!!

  7. Ordered 3. Thanks for the great tip

  8. geez, it’s been around since the 70’s 🙂

  9. Jason Sinclair

  10. Gary Golden

  11. Hanukkah is coming! 😀

  12. I got mine at Harbor Freight. Works well, but you have to be careful not to pierce the tubing.

  13. I have one. Great tool!

  14. I made mine out of worn out screw drivers,just take to a grinding wheel make the tapered point heat with a torch n bend into shape,free out of old junk

  15. I had to laugh at this because it looks very similar to the hooks I use to pull my tall riding boots on with… I have about a thousand pair because you don’t ever want to not have them when you need them. I guess I know I’ll be taking at least a pair on board with me

  16. Thanks for the link – ordered one today!

  17. Gord Wedman says:

    Looks worth adding to the bulging tool box. For plastic hose a heat gun works well but I don’t think it will work on rubber hose used for engine cooling water.

  18. This thing is great. One of your best recommendations, thanks for finding and sharing!

  19. they work great. No more knuckle busting.

  20. So smart! We always soften them with a heat gun (on low), but the smell of a heated sewer hose is repugnant!

  21. Thats why captain hook had one!

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