Why Golf Club Covers? (Smart Or Foolish – We Find Out)

by Steve | Last Updated: 3 January 2021

Golf club covers are an unusual aspect of the game. Why? Because they inspire such diverse reactions from the golf community.

There seem to be three distinct types of golfers – those who love using club covers, those who are impartial, and those who despise them. Why golf club covers? We’re about to find out.

Golf club head-covers offer a variety of benefits to golfers. Although club covers may prevent some minor chips and damage, they are more of a preferential addition than a requirement. They do protect the clubface and help with longevity of the club.

We’ll dig into a bit of history, and the pros and cons of using golf club head covers here for you today. So, without further to do, let’s jump into the game and see just what the buzz is about with these covers.

why golf club covers

When Did People Start Using Golf Covers?

According to Golf Digest, people didn’t start using golf club head covers until the 1940s.

They were around before that, possibly as early as 1900, but golf club head covers didn’t hit mainstream golf markets until around the time of the second world war.

Today, golfers seem to either love or hate covers, with some going so far as sling insults to those who use them. There are even published articles where the writers wilfully scorn the use of them.

Before we pass judgement, let’s see why people use golf club covers in the first place. It might shed some light upon this dark rough we’ve got ourselves into with these infamous additions to our golf bags.

Reasons to Use golf Club Covers

Although golf club covers are despised by many golfers for reasons yet to be revealed, there are several reasons why those who use them prefer them as a part of their golf equipment repertoire.

  • Reduced paint chips
  • Reduced dents
  • Reduced scratches
  • Reduced noise
  • Increased longevity

Several scenarios allow quality golf clubs to take a beating. One is that the golfer is inexperienced and does a lot of digging into the earth with poor swings.

Nothing destroys clubs faster than repeated digging. But if you have a decent game, then your clubs are only going to take their licks from hitting the ball itself or when travelling around.

If your golf buddies are anything like mine, they enjoy driving around the golf cart. I mean, who doesn’t? Those miniature cars can be a lot of fun out on the golf course. But they do tend to vibrate your clubs around something fierce.

Enter the primary reason why many golfers use golf club head covers. To prevent paint chips, dents, and scratches to the club head during transportation.

Because you know that the most those clubs get beat around aren’t while sitting in your garage, it’s when they are in the vehicle on the way to the course or in the golf cart itself.

One of the other major concerns that those who use golf club covers have brought up is golf clubs’ noise clunking around.

I sometimes get the Montgomorie’s, where I can hear a noise two fairways over, no matter my skill level, which isn’t that bad, I do seem to have problems concentrating and blocking out all the clanging in my backswing. It wouldn’t be so bad if they stopped during a shot.

Also if you are known to play golf with a hangover, and have a headache, the clanging of club-heads are probably more than your tired ears want to deal with.

The last reason golfers commonly use golf club head covers relates to the paint chipping, dents, and scratches during transport. Preventing this sort of transportation damage by using golf club covers increases the longevity of the club head.

Having well protect golf clubs also helps you with resale values if you want to sell them, or part exchange them, when you get your next set.

Naturally, the covers only work to the clubs’ advantage when everything is kept clean and dry. Otherwise, it may induce premature rusting of the club.

Reasons Not to Use golf Club Covers

  • Taboo
  • Aesthetics
  • Time-consuming
  • Rust

Those who stand firm against the use of golf club covers seem to do so with fire in their blood. Many golfers are adamant that club covers are the bane of their golfing existence.

However, the validity of this hatred comes into question when uncovering the root of this egregious sentiment.

It appears as though the negativity felt towards golf club covers stems from three basic arguments.

The first of these arguments is purely subjective, and it has to do with aesthetic appeal. Golf club manufacturers spend an awful lot of time perfecting the look of their clubs.

It is a point of pride with most manufacturers that their clubs appear elegant and sophisticated. Sticking a sock on a refined club head is frowned upon, making the practice taboo.

Time Loss?

The next argument used to lay waste to the concept of using golf club covers is the loss of time experienced by some players while waiting for others to put on or take off the head covers from their clubs.

Indeed the lost time in a game is not necessarily the cover’s fault, but that of the golfer who could easily prepare for their shot while others before them are taking a turn.

And likewise, to put a cover on a golf club can’t possibly reduce the time others play by much if you are quick about it.

Likely the time loss factor would be an issue with golfers who dilly dally and don’t allow the more experienced or more efficient players to play through.

Perhaps golf club covers are taking the scapegoat’s meals when it comes to tardy golfers? You can be the judge of that one.

The last point that I have found while researching the pros and cons of golf club cover use is likely the most valid of all arguments against their use.

The issue with covers is rust. However, again this issue may be attributed to improper use and care of the clubs and covers.

Damp Covers?

If a golf club cover is put on while damp or while the club-head is wet (and possibly even still dirty), the head-cover may trap the moisture near the head. Trapping moisture will expedite the process of oxidation, causing your clubs to rust prematurely.

Again, this argument relies on the golfer’s improper care of the clubs and covers to hold valid. If a golfer is appropriately cleaning and drying their clubs before covering, then this argument is negated.

In adding the time to clean and cover clubs, there may be some ground to argue the debate for time consumption. However, if a swing is proper, the club shouldn’t be getting too dirty. So, the process would be exaggerated by new, inexperienced golfers who could benefit from some coaching

Golf Club Cover Verdict

If practicality trumps fashion appeal, then golf club covers are likely a part of your golf equipment. If you don’t mind people heckling you out on the course, then have at it and get those club heads under cover.

But, if you’re like most golfers who have walked more than a few miles on the courses, then likely you don’t use them.

There are practical reasons why golf club head covers make a lot of sense. If used in a way that doesn’t slow down your game (or someone else’s), then the use of them is certainly a bonus.

That is a bonus for the longevity of your clubs and also for your ears. The choice will not make or break anyone’s game, so really, it comes down to personal preference.

Steve King, the founder of Fore King Golf, started playing golf at the tender age of 29, after years spent playing many other sports and getting dodgy knees. Although late to the game, Steve soon fell in love with the sport and found himself, like many others, addicted to the pursuit of improvement and playing better. He is currently a member of The Kendleshire Golf Club & Hercules Golf Society, as well as running several competitions for Fore King Golf