Drivers Vs 3 Woods – Which One Should You Use?

As you line up to your shot off the tee, there is a common myth that you will be more accurate in your shot if you use a short club. Although, those who have done their research will know that this is not always a guarantee. 

Drivers Vs 3 Woods - Which One Should You Use?

That makes knowing which club to use to get you the best results rather difficult. We have devised this simple guide to let you know when you should be using drivers vs 3 Woods. 

It is not only the professionals who deserve to know the secrets of hitting that all important shot off the tee. Whether you are just starting to know the thrill of getting your ball in the hole and reducing your handicap or are wanting to know more about the equipment of the sport, we have it all below. 

Difference Between Driver & 3 Wood

If you have never held a golf club in your hand then you may have no idea what a Driver or a 3 Wood even are. We are here to make it all simple. 

A Driver is the longest club found in a set of golf clubs and has the largest head out of all the others. This provides you with the ability to hit the golf ball as far as you can towards the green, 

A Driver is typically used when hitting the ball off the tee and is wanting to ensure your ball reaches a good amount of distance. The face angle, also known as loft, is typically between 8.5° and 13°; smaller angles are intended to send the ball on a lower trajectory, whilst larger angles encourage a higher trajectory.

Due to the larger head the golfer can hit the golf ball at the perfect angle when hitting from a tee. This allows both the sweet spot of the Driver and the ball to be raised off the ground slightly. 

A 3 Wood is a smaller version of a Driver. It has a loft between 15 and 18 degrees making it perfect for getting a good distance on the ball when hitting from the grass. 

3 Woods can be used to hit from the tee and allow for a more accurate hit due to their smaller head size. However, it can take some time to learn the difference in heights between the sweet spot of the 3 Wood and the ball on the tee. 

Essentially you should be using both a Driver and a 3 Wood depending on the location you are hitting from and what club you are comfortable using. 

When To Use A Driver Club 

During a round of golf, you’ll frequently reach for this club first. Drivers are made with the intention of giving you distance off the tee. They have the lowest loft angle of all your clubs, which determines distance and trajectory, and are often the longest clubs in your bag.

When using a Driver to hit off the tee you are most likely to get a distance of 250 to 260 yards on average. Depending on your strength and skill when swinging. You are also more likely to hit the green if you hit a Driver off the tee rather than a 3 Wood. 

This means that hitting a Driver off the tee will provide you with more accuracy and a higher chance of hitting the fairway and the green. 

However, you may not want the large, bulky head of a Driver if you are stuck in the rough. The long grass of the rough can drastically slow down your swing by holding onto the head and shaft of the club. 

Drivers Vs 3 Woods - Which One Should You Use?

When To Use A 3 Woods Club 

Often newer golfers may be tempted to use a 3 Wood off the tee as its smaller head gives off the illusion of a more accurate hit. Although, if your hole is more than 225 yards away, this will only cause you to land on the fairway and further away from the green. 

A 3 Wood is more commonly used when hitting a far distance from the grass. 3 Wood clubs tend to have a shorter shaft allowing the golfer more control over their shot. This can be helpful if you find yourself going off course when hitting a Driver. 

Using a 3 Wood club will not allow you to hit the ball as far as a Driver, which is often regarded as a disadvantage. However, if you are just beginning to learn the techniques of using a golf club it can come in handy. 

If you happen to find yourself a considerable distance from the green but know that a Driver will provide too much force, a 3 Wood may be the club to the job. They also allow you to get a more accurate hit when shooting from the grass or rough. 

Driver Or 3 Wood: What’s Better?

When it comes to a set of golf clubs the essentials are: 

  • Driver
  • 3 Wood
  • 5 Wood/ Hybrid
  • Irons- 5,7,9
  • Pitching Wedge
  • Sand Wedge
  • Putter

All of which have their own special uses and come in handy in the weirdest of times. 

Both the Driver and 3 Wood are useful clubs and should be included in your set. Knowing which club, Driver or 3 Wood, are better is a personal judgement. 

In order to discover which club suits your needs better all you have to do is complete a simple test. 

When gearing off to your weekly round of golf pack 2 sleeves of golf balls. Marking one with a marker to ensure you know it is your 3 Wood shots. Select 3 different types of holes and make shots using both your 3 Wood and Driver. At the end of each hole take note of your performance with each club. 

Once you have completed your round take a look at your results for each club and find which one works best for you. You might also observe that one of the clubs is doing far worse than the other in terms of performance. If so, it could be necessary to consult a professional fitter to determine why it’s not operating as it should.

However, you will most likely find that one club will provide you with a further trajectory and more accuracy. Once you have discovered which club is your strength you can begin working on building your skills with the other. Making you a dominating threat on the golf course. 


Overall, deciding whether to use a Driver or a 3 Wood is dependent on the situation and your skills. 

If you are wanting to hit the ball as far as possible then a Driver is a must. However, if you are wanting to cover distance while having a little more control then you may prefer the feel of a 3 Wood. 

In short, both a Driver and a 3 Wood should be kept in your set. Both clubs offer a set of advantages that are sure to come in useful throughout your 18 holes. 

You may have to work at mastering the art of hitting a Driver more accurately or adding more force to get the most out of your 3 Wood but both clubs are a necessity on the golf course. 

Garratt Shmidt
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