When arriving on the scene of a fire, emergency crews have to make quick, on-the-spot decisions for approaching the

situation. Arguably, one of the most crucial determinations that needs to be made is which hose lines are best suited for

the circumstances. Fire severity, type of property, amount of required hose, and suppression tactics are all factors that

influence what size and type of hose should be used. Choose correctly; the blaze has a better chance of being contained.

Get it wrong; the situation can take a turn for the worse. Two essential hoses operated by firefighters are attack and

supply hoses. In this article, the BullDog Hose team highlights why hose size matters when approaching a fire. 

Attack Lines

Attack hoses, such as BullDog’s Hi-Combat II?, Firepower II?, Ultima?, and Fireguard?, are designed to tackle fires in

their beginning stages and offer flexible approaches to different types of fires. The most common attack line sizes that

fire departments deploy are 1.75 inches and 2.5 inches. Both sizes have pros and cons, depending on the situation at hand.

Deciding to work with one format over the other can dictate the effectiveness of the initial suppression efforts. Smaller

diameter hoses require much higher pressure to move lower volumes of water.

When working with the 1.75-inch hose, it is most useful for taking on residential and vehicle fires. This hose size is

much lighter and more maneuverable than the 2.5-inch line. A more compact design makes it easier for firefighters to move

the line through hallways, stairwells, and small rooms. Generally, this hose can be operated by two to three firefighters

and can deliver water around 140 to 200 gallons per minute (gpm). So this is the desired hose to utilize when suppressing

smaller fires. Being relatively easier to manage, 1.75-inch hoses tend to be a ‘catch-all’ when first responding to a

fire. If attempting to tackle larger blazes, the 2.5-inch attack hose should be fielded. 

A 2.5-inch hose line is the best choice when responding to more significant commercial buildings and exterior fires.

With the ability to deliver high volumes of water at 200 to 300 gpm, this hose can take on more of the fire load than the

smaller 1.75-inch attack line. The 2.5-inch hose can be more challenging to control in smaller spaces and is commonly

handled by three to four firefighters. 

Supply Lines

Keeping the attack lines charged and operating at their best efficiency all depends on the supply hoses. These hoses,

like BullDog’s Hi-Vol? and Hi-Vol TPU?, can be found in sizes ranging from 3 to 6 inches in diameter. The bigger supply

lines move high volumes of water from hydrants and fire engines to the attack lines. With the larger diameter, supply hoses

can carry more water at lower pressures. Relocating supply lines can be difficult once the water begins flowing. 

Fire fighting is one of the professions that keeps our nation thriving. But, fire departments around America have to

select the best hoses every year. Budgets might change and the seasons grow warmer, but safety is of utmost importance.

However, not every fire hose works the same due to the fires they have to fight. So, let’s learn about the big differences

between municipal and industrial fire hoses. 

Municipal Fire Hoses

Municipal Fire Hoses are designed for fire fighting that requires kink resistance and critical water flow. Being

lightweight is key, as these hoses often have to deal with shifting terrain and various on-the-job changes. While older and

more standard municipal fire hoses are maximized for normal wear and tear, what about the specialty hoses?

There are a variety of municipal fire hoses on the market to solve any problem your fire department or town might be

facing. Need hoses to be more cost conscious, solutions are available. What about municipal hoses needed to reach high rise

or raised angle structures? There are fire hoses for that as well.

Pumping to high-rise buildings in cities vs. rural settings is also a concern faced by these same municipal fire hoses.

Depending on the structures you protect, you will need to consult with your hose supplier to find out which one works the

best for you. 

Industrial Fire Hoses

Industrial Fire Hoses pack a little more punch than the typical municipal fire hose. They feature far superior heat and

abrasion resistance. Plus, they tend to be able to support issues concerning oil, fuel and chemicals far greater than the

typical municipal fire hose. The industrial fire hoses tend to be flexible and lightweight as well. 

These fire hoses also tend to be optimized to be maintenance free. While that doesn’t mean you won’t have to take

care of industrial fire hoses, it means maintenance demands will be fewer. The practical uses of the industrial fire hoses

remain the same in theory. You’re going to transfer liquid, washdown areas and generally solve problems.

However, municipal fire fighting hose belong to the

typical mental image you have day-to-day fire fighting. Meanwhile, industrial fire hoses are used on air strips, military

bases, heavy industrial factories and related business areas. 

What kind of fire fighting hose are you going to need?

As time marches on deeper into the year and your budget deadline grows close, you will have to address your fire

fighting needs. No one wants to be the person that reaches for a fire hose only not have it be suited for the purpose at

hand. Whether you’re outfitting your local rural fire department or keeping an auto plant safe, you must know the

differences between municipal and industrial fire hoses. 

Is there really a best fire fighting hose?

Well, it depends on the environment and overall purpose. Industrial forestry fire hose can fight all sorts of fires started by various things, but they do this in fixed


Municipal fire hoses save towns money. They also are ready to suction water out of unusual water resources. Then, there

is the method of actual dispersing the fire.

A municipal fire hose extinguishes a fire with limited structural damage and loss of life. The industrial fire fighting

hose keeps fire from accelerating. Stopping the acceleration means it doesn’t spread to other structures that might

combust in a short amount of time. The power in an industrial fire hose will keep a plane from exploding, but it also can

punch holes in an unstable wall during a house fire. 

In the end, the best fire hose is determined by the purpose and the individual. Keep reading and visiting Bulldog Hose

to learn more about the world of fire fighting hose. 

Fire hoses are constantly in demand in our ever-changing world. But, if you’re trying to meet a municipal budget,

where do you turn? Your friends at BullDog Hose have been helping fire departments around the US and Canada discover their

perfect work balance. Finding the needs to meet safety with the durable hoses that would break a fire department’s budget.

Big Hoses that don’t break the bank

When people think of fire hoses, their background changes their opinion of them. Older veteran firefighters remember

the thick monstrous hoses of the 1970s that made high-rises difficult to navigate. While most fire houses have gotten rid

of those bulky behemoths, what are they doing in 2021?

The answer is simple for many fire fighters and fire departments around the US and Canada. They’re struggling with big

hoses from a bygone era that aren’t getting the job done. Couplings are worn or a little off. If that wasn’t enough, the

same fire fighters are having to keep up with changing fire fighting standards.

What is the right size hose for fire fighting and attack?

Fire fighting and fire attack have several unique demands. First, they have to be able to be used and save lives.

Second, the fire fighting hose costs can’t break the Department’s budget. Finally, they have to be perfectly adapted to

fit and attack fires in the most accurate way.

The idea of big fire needs big water is traditionally heard in fire fighting. That has lead to the majority of fire

departments purchasing larger hoses ala something with a 2 1/2 inch handline. While this standard was applied for years

without any consideration towards fire fighting needs, the National Fire Academy found a formula to help you pick the best


Length x Width / 3  x Rate of Involvement

So, let’s say you have a 25 foot length of hose and the width of a building is 40 feet that is 25% on fire.

25 x 40 = 1,000 square feet

1,000 divided by 3 is 333.3

333 x .25 = 83.25 gallons per minute.

The benefits of knowing the right size suction hose


The NFA formula allows fire departments to measure and understand what they need on the fly. While this is helpful for

online and in-person shopping, these modern mathematic applications help your Fire Department save money. Times are tough

and budgets aren’t what they used to be, but every municipality and bigger city needs fire fighting materials.

BullDog Hose has Fire Hoses for Sale

At BullDog Hose, we have many fire hoses for sale. But, which is best for you? While we’ve discussed the need to keep

an eye for the best fit, provided a formula to figure out your needs and guided you in your journey…what’s next?

Examine our Top 5 hoses for Fire Departments

Attack Fire Hoses

Hi-Combat II

Supply Line Fire Hoses


General Fire Hoses

While browsing the marine hose for Sale, don’t forget to

look at the Fireguards

Fireguards are a very aggressive fire hose meant for interior attack. Too often, we see Fire Departments only

concentrating on their immediate needs for external fires. The special weave and flexibility of the Fire Guard aids

transport and helps for specialized fire fighting. During the summer, public fire fighting statements have shown that that

fireguards can assist with waterside related fire needs.

Don’t forget to check out the fire nozzles. Do you need a fog nozzle or a smoothbore nozzle?

Smoothbore nozzles have an open path from coupling to nozzle tip. If you want to create different kinds of streaming

patterns, you’re going to want a fog nozzle. The traditional firefighter will find what they need with a smoothbore

nozzle. However, there is an added benefit to having the ability to apply different kinds of pressure depending on what a

situation needs.

You have a choice in purchasing municipal fire hose

, make sure you pick the best with BullDog Hose.