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Second hand golf balls are still being sold despite golf being a sport for the rich. Rich people can shoulder all the financial implications of the sport ranging from entry barriers, golf gear, etc. For newbies, golf gear is made up of a bag, shoe, pull-cart, and set of clubs, and added to the cost is if you’re one of those golfers who keep losing golf balls all the time! This can add to the cost of your weekly golf outing.

Even if you’re Elon-Musk rich, buying a dozen quality balls every single time will mentally create a setback for you. Now, the question is second hand golf balls necessary?

How long does it take for a golf ball to deteriorate?

Some manufacturers believe their golf balls could last up to 5 years. And, they want their customers to believe the same. That’s 5 years without any deterioration in outlook and performance. But, it’s good to note that environmental factors can play key roles in the longevity of your golf balls. For example, you don’t expect your golf balls to last 5 years when you’re always leaving them in the car boot under the summer sun. Expecting it to last long is asking for more.

In the same breath, manufacturers still advise that you change your golf balls frequently. Why? They say so you are left behind in the latest technological advancement. When golf balls are constantly being used, they suffer a loss of performance. This may explain why some get a couple of second hand golf balls to serve as alternatives.

What is the origin of second hand golf balls?

It should not strike you as surprising that most second hand golf balls once lived their lives abandoned in a pool, lake, or some water hazards. This is likely where they were retrieved from, refurbished, and sold to customers. Many companies that specialize in retrieving and selling second hand golf balls abound.

Difference between second hand golf balls and new ones

General appearance and feel

The general appearance of a second hand golf ball may come with some obvious or less obvious defects such as scuff marks.

Launch speed

Again, not much difference exists between used golf balls and new golf balls when it comes to launching speed. Beyond that, even spin and smash factors are almost the same value.


Not much difference in the performance of a used ball compared to a new one. In fact, six years ago, a comprehensive experiment was conducted to determine this. The result? Used balls performed almost as new balls with no noticeable impact on performance! 

How are second hand golf balls graded?

Surprisingly, used balls are usually graded or classed according to some special scales. In ascending order of quality, they are; value, good, near mint, and mint, or as AA, AAA, and AAAA.

A near mint ball is almost like the new one except for some slight discolorations or some other superficial imperfections. What’s your take? Do you think second hand golf balls are as good as new? Tell us