Broken Golf Clubs: Causes and Solutions

It’s happened to many of us. Our golf club breaks during the swing and our driver head goes flying.

There are many reasons why a golf club can break on you during a round.

Hopefully the cause isn’t you slamming it against a tree or on the cart path after shanking a shot into the woods or thinning one over the green.

Why Do Golf Club Heads Break Off: Reasons and How To Prevent

Defects In The Design

Despite many clubs being created by top branded manufacturers, mistakes do happen. There can be errors when creating clubs and this is why many companies have warranties.

A recently famous case of this involved the TaylorMade SIM driver. Many users complained the club was breaking on them despite being recently purchased. 

Companies do usually require you to send in pictures of a broken product.

If they deem that you smashed your driver on the tee box after a mishit, you’re practically guaranteed to not receive compensation.

Many people will receive a refund or credit though if a natural malfunction occurs.

Employing A Poor Swing

As simple as it might sound, having a poor swing can definitely cause problems with equipment.

If you’re hitting your clubs fat or into the ground over and over, that will certainly hurt them cosmetically.

Despite being built sturdy, a club repeatedly being hit improperly can eventually bend the shaft. Especially if you have a strong swing speed.

Taking lessons or having an experienced golfer show you the ropes will not only go a long way in your golf journey, but they can also prevent you from damaging clubs.

Fake Replicas

The market and worldwide demand for top-end clubs made from brands such as Titleist, TaylorMade, Ping and Callaway has grown largely over the years as the PGA Tour and its professionals have grown more and more popular.

Whether it be 2021 PGA Champion Phil Mickelson and his Callaway Mackdaddy wedges, Norwegian World No. 3 Viktor Hovland’s Ping driver, Tiger Woods’ newly released TaylorMade Stealth driver or Justin Thomas’ Scotty Cameron Putter.

The scenarios above are strictly examples but with a huge audience, it makes it easier and easier for foreign countries such as China to create large quantities of counterfeit clubs and sell them to the masses across the globe.

These replicas are sold for a fraction of the cost but are made from much cheaper materials and can break much easier than the real products of the clubmakers.

Be wary and proceed with caution when shopping on Ebay for used clubs because even sellers in the United Kingdom and United States sell fake products.

Scotty Camerons are some of the most abundantly found counterfeits on the market.

Aging Clubs

Golf clubs don’t last forever, unfortunately.

As we’ve mentioned in previous articles they’re designed to be hit tens of thousands of times. When hit this many times when they’re still in one piece they will produce optimal results if hit correctly.

They might not last this long physically though.

Eventually, the grip will start to unravel and a clubhead could pop off.

Many golfers ask: What causes a driver shaft to break?

Driver heads that sit on a regular flex shaft have a better chance of breaking off than a stiff flex shaft though due to the strength in the metal.

Don’t be surprised if you play often, such as multiple times a week, if a club older than 10 years finally gives out and breaks.

Using Clubs In Cold or Wet Conditions

Many golfers who love and cherish the game will play regardless of the weather.

It might be hard to shoot lower scores but just getting a round in can be extremely enjoyable for most students of the game.

Many iron sets use steel shafts rather than graphite and these steel shafts will rust in the rain or snow after many uses.

Leaving them in the trunk, garage, or shed in humid environments for long periods of time exposes them to humid or negative elements.

This will cause the shafts to rust and make it easier for the clubhead to snap off during play.

A tip to prevent rust is for golfers to dry off clubs with a towel after each use and keep them indoors.

It might seem like a hassle to take up space with a set of clubs but it will preserve the clubs and save the owner money in the long run.

The following video shows how easy it is removing rust from a golf club shaft. The clip will provide instructions on how to do so.

A question often asked among the golf community is: Do graphite shafts break easily?

The answer is: no, they do not.

They are sturdier and lost longer than steel shafts. They’re also lighter and easier to hit than shafts made from steel.

Leaving Your Clubs In The Trunk

After a long round in the heat most people’s initial thought after they arrive home is to relax.

Spending the extra minute or two carrying your clubs into the house can preserve them and save their materials from the negative elements.

Clubs that are kept in the “boot” or “trunk”, especially in hot temperatures during the summer can definitely suffer. Grips are the first thing that can start to melt in the heat.

Although the shafts are built to withstand many variables, sitting in long durations of heat can lead to the clubhead or shafts to damage and snapping off sooner than intended.

Abusing Your Clubs

Some golfers get triggered after hitting one bad shot or multiple bad shots. Some don’t at all.

The game can be very cumbersome and frustrating.

For example, you could hit a great drive down the middle of the fairway and then a nice approach shot, setting yourself up for a short birdie. All of a sudden, the birdie putt is hit too firm and rolls 6-feet past. Now you’re trying to save par.

Different situations such as the one above or a mishit drive out of bounds can lead golfers to snapped golf clubs.

As simple as it sounds, this can destroy clubs among impact or shorten their lifespans.

Not Strapping Clubs To The Cart

It’s happened to many golfers. You’re driving down the cart path and “CLANK!”.

You then turn around and see your precious cargo lying on the pavement.

Strapping in your clubs tight on the back of the cart and ensuring that the clamps are closed can be imperative to preserving the life capacity of your sticks.

Flying

Playing the same old courses where you live can get old.

It’s nice to venture out and ship your clubs on destination vacations to places such as the Caribbean, Major championship venues or classic courses in Scotland where golf was created.

Some airlines can be careless with your clubs and toss them around causing drivers, woods or putters to snap. Irons will usually withstand the pressure.

A way to prevent this is by using a sturdy case that can withstand being thrown around.

What Happens If You Break A Club In Golf: Rules To Follow

Should you damage a club during a round, you’re still able to use that club to finish your round.

How Long Do Golf Driver Heads Usually Last?

According to the Golf Channel, driver heads should last at least five years even if used heavily and often.

How Do You Fix A Broken Golf Club Head?

The following video by eHowSports describes how to replace a shaft and attach a new golf club head.

Doing it yourself will save a lot of money versus taking it to your local golf store or club.

Will Golf Club Maker Replace Cracked Golf Clubs?

Certain manufacturers such as the top brands mentioned earlier including Titleist, Ping, Callaway and TaylorMade will have their own individual warranties.

Make sure to sign up if the offer is present when purchasing or reach out online or by phone if a club breaks.

FAQ

Can a broken club be replaced?

Broken clubs can be replaced during a round provided the damage was not caused by abuse from the player or his caddie but caused by an outside influence or natural force. Another provision for replacing a damaged club is that it should not cause any delay in playing shots.

Is it common for golf clubs to break?

It is not a common occurrence for premium golf clubs to break. The lifespan of quality golf clubs is approximately 10 years. Clubs of lesser quality are likely to break at any time. Some golfers have experienced low-quality clubs breaking during the first round of golf or on the driving range.

Can a broken golf club be fixed?

Broken clubs cannot be repaired. However, if one of the components of the club such as the shaft or grip breaks, the component can be replaced. It is near impossible to fix a grip or shaft but it is easy to replace them.

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Author

Lawrence Smelser has been part of the Golfible writing staff since 2019 and is a freelance golf journalist. Smelser has covered the PGA Tour including the U.S. Masters with Augusta.com. He holds a journalism Bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M and a Master’s journalism degree from the University of North Texas. Learn more about our team at Golfible on our About Us page.

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