How to Make Your Golf Clubs Last

Golf clubs do wear out over time but there are plenty of things you can do to extend their lifespan, from cleaning to proper storage. Read on to find out more.

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After working in the golf industry for over 15 years and counting, I have had many customers come buy new clubs because they wear theirs out prematurely. We have to remember that golf clubs are tools and they need to be taken care of. Golf clubs do wear out over time, but here are some simple and cheap ways to make your clubs last longer.

Three golf stand bags rest on the grass
The family that drives together, thrives together. Photo by Rob H.

Cleaning

When you are playing golf, try to keep your clubs as clean as possible, especially the grooves. After you use an iron, grab one of your tees and use the pointy part to clear the grooves out. Some electric carts have a club-scrubbing station on board, so you can use that if it’s available. Once you are home, you should scrub your clubs with lukewarm water and a little soap. I like using a SOS™ sponge or a dish-scrubbing brush for cleaning the whole head. The last thing I like to do is to get a towel with the same soapy water and scrub the grip. The sweat and oils from your hand will wear out a grip fast, so it is best to get all that grime off your grips.

Bag

A golf bag with many spaces for golf clubs, some of which are full
A well-spaced-out bag. Photo by Rob H.

There are a lot of bags out on the market. I would strongly encourage you to find a bag with 14 dividers—this will make sure each club has its own space and is better protected. If the bag is too small, the grips will rub on each other and the heads will hit each other and cause damage. Space is your friend with a golf bag, but do not overdo it.

Grips

A collection of golf grips including blue, orange, grey, and black ones
Orange, blue, grey, black – colors for all. Photo by Rob H.

Even if you take great care of your grips, they are going to wear out. STOP!!! This does not mean you need new clubs. This is your chance to change the grips, to make the clubs yours, or to get a grip that fits you better. (If you need help picking the correct grip, see my article where I discuss how to pick the right grip.) Personally, I love the MCC Plus4™ grips from Golf Pride®. They come in a wide variety of colors and sizes, and are definitely great grips if you struggle with a hook. The standard MCC grip would be a great option if you need help hitting more of a draw.

Headcovers

A collection of golf club headcovers, including one that looks like a character from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Headcovers galore. Photo by Rob H.

One of the easiest steps you can do is to put your headcovers on. Almost all drivers, fairway woods, hybrids, and putters come with headcovers. If you do not like the covers that come with your clubs, there are plenty of companies that make headcovers. Even equipment manufacturers make limited-run headcovers or specialty putter covers. I have a Ninja Turtle on my driver—sorry! I am a ’90s kid at heart. I love being able to change putter covers to keep the look of my bag fresh. I personally like to use Bettinardi putter covers because of their fun, playful designs. Irons typically do not come with headcovers, but you can definitely purchase them for your clubs to prevent damage. The moral here is always cover your clubs.

Storage

The number one issue that golfers face is how to store your clubs. Public Service Announcement: get your clubs out of your trunk! I know you might need to hide a new club from your significant other, but I can think of too many times when I have had to sell someone clubs because their equipment was stolen out of their car.

The weather and heat can also play a huge part in breaking down your clubs. I live near Sacramento, Calif., where our summers routinely get above 100 degrees, which means the air in car trunks will be hotter, while our winters often get near-freezing at night. When clubs are constantly being heated up or cooled down, it stresses the metal in the clubs and breaks down the fibers in the shaft. Sometimes manufacturers will not honor the warranty if you treat your club in this manner, so it is always best to at least get the clubs into the garage or a closet in the house.

The Simpler, the Better

These tips are simple, easy, and not time-consuming at all. The simplest solutions are always the best. Another item you can look into is a groove sharpener. These tools are cheap and easy to use, but be careful—they are sharp! If you are playing in sanctioned golf tournaments, do not use groove sharpener or you could accidentally make your club non-conforming by making the grooves the wrong shape. Another service that is becoming more prominent is club refinishing. This will not cost you as much as a new set, but helps you renew the life of your clubs. These simple steps will help your clubs last longer and your pocketbook will thank you.

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Written By
I have spent 15 years in the golf club industry, most with TaylorMade golf. I have vast knowledge of all brands, components and fittings techniques. ​ My grandmother started me when I was 10, but I didn't pick my sticks up again till my shoulder was blownout from colliegiate Water Polo. I became a g...

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