Zero Friction Tee Review

The Zero Friction golf tee may be the best of the “alternative” golf tees around. You just can’t break these things!

460cc composite drivers with movable weights. The hybrids explosion (with movable weights). Lob wedges with y-grooves. Golf balls tuned to launch high with less spin. Launch monitors. Huge advances in agronomy.

The golf world has changed dramatically in the past ten years, but a few things have remained the same: the diameter of the hole, the location of The Masters, and the lowly golf tee.

Oh, wait, scratch that last one. Just this year alone we’ve reviewed several new kinds of tees, from the outrageous Brush-T to the fairly traditional Stinger Tee. We even reviewed a biodegradeable tee known as the Epoch-3. Now it’s Zero Friction‘s turn at the tee, quite literally. How does it fare? Keep reading…

Theory
I wrote this for the Stinger Tee review:

The theory behind the Stinger tee is the same as we’ve seen with the Epoch and Brush-T: less tee touches the ball, minimizing clubhead deflection and drag. The ball launches with less resistance and lower spin.

Stringer Tee Review

Zerofriction TeeThe same holds true for the Zero Friction tee: three little posts contact the ball, creating a large pocket of air beneath the ball and little chance of resistance as the ball begins sliding off the tee at impact.

The Zero Friction tee itself is relatively simple, as you can see to the right. Made of a biodegradable material, the tee consists of a tapered end, a post, and three little prongs at the top. You know, just like a regular old tee. Instructions tell you to point one of the prongs down the fairway to minimize drag and, I suspect, to minimize the chance of snapping off one of the three posts with your driver.

This is a rather conventional design, naturally, and one that is easily adopted by golfers. Stick a Brush-T in someone’s hand and they’ll often give you a funny look. The Zero Friction Tee is at least “user friendly.”

Performance
Zero Friction Tees have been used to win several PGA Tour events. Great. Laura Davies tees her ball on top of a mound of earth, so we’re pretty confident that PGA Tour pros could win with anything.

Excel Golf Tee, Inc. – makers of the Zero Friction tee – claim that the Zero Friction tee will enable you to hit the ball 5 yards further and 7 yards more accurately than any other distance tee. Naturally, and as we’ve said in our other distance tee reviews, it’s tough to verify whether these tees provide any additional yardage. After all, we’re not machines, and our swings can’t be counted on to produce scientifically reliable results.

We did manage to put together a somewhat scientific test, however. Ten golfers having handicaps ranging from 5 to 15 each hit 20 balls on the driving range. The tee beneath the ball was randomly and blindly chosen so that 10 shots with both a standard wooden tee and a Zero Friction tee were hit. All other aspects were as controlled as possible – a consistent tee height was kept and so forth. 10 shots were hit with each. Any obviously mishit shots were replayed so as not to affect the averages dramatically.

Balls hit from the standard wooden tee served as the control, and balls hit from the Zero Friction tee were obviously the test subjects. The results aren’t spectacular, but they do indicate some increased performance:

               Wooden Tee        Zero Friction
Distance        253 yards          257 yards
Deviation      13.5 yards         11.9 yards

Zerofriction TeesIn other words, the Zero Friction tee produced, on average, tee shots that were four yards further and about 1.5 yards closer to the center of the fairway than standard wooden tees. Not quite the 5 and 7 yards claimed, but 1.5 yards is the difference between the first cut of rough and the fairway, and four yards is nearly half a club less on approach shots.

I was initially concerned that the height of the tees – a fairly meager 2.75 inches – would not be appropriate for the 460cc drivers, but if you consider that by putting the tee in the ground 3/4″, the center of the ball will be nearly three inches in the air, your fears will subside. In other words, 2.75″ seems to be just enough height to set the ball up high enough for the largest drivers available. Still, it would be nice to see a taller version, if for no other reason than to calm the fears of the über-sensitive.

But One Other Thing…
What we noticed most in testing was that these tees simply did not break. We took a pack of 50 tees to the test site and returned with 49, but only because one “tester” pilfered his after smashing a drive 320 yards. He’s a believer.

I’ve personally played about 20 rounds of golf with four or five Zero Friction tees in my bag. They’re somewhat dirty now, but I still have the same four or five tees I started with. These things are so indestructible (yet biodegradeable?) that I’m having a hard time figuring out how Excel Golf Tee plans on making any money. After all, once everyone’s bought a 50-pack of Zero Friction tees for $4.99, they may never need to buy tees again.

After years of “indestructible” plastic tees, a truly indestructible tee is well worth ten cents apiece. Whether Excel Golf Tees, Inc. likes this or not, that may be this tee’s best feature.

Zerofriction Ball On Tee
The Zero Friction tee touches the ball in three very small spots and provides a cushion of air beneath the ball to further reduce deflection.

Conclusion
My allegiance has shifted: I no longer play the Stinger tees as I once did. I’ve switched full-heartedly to the Zero Friction tee. It may or may not give me increased distance and accuracy, but it does give me round after round of dependability.

Which is more than I can say for my golf swing.

47 thoughts on “Zero Friction Tee Review”

  1. Great article and study of the various tees on the market.

    Enjoyed reading, and I have been experimenting around with all myself. I found two Zero Friction Tees at the Range the other day, and ditto the reviewers sentiments.

    I hit several Drives with the same tee, and they didn’t seem to ‘pop’ up out of the ground and fly forward as much as the Epoch tees.

    Thanks

  2. I found one tee on the course recently, and played about 5 holes with it. My ball was stopping closer to the middle of the fairway while using the zero friction tee.
    I will go buy a bag of these tees.

  3. I’ve been using these for over 1 year now. I think they have improved mt driving accuracy. Great news they now come in a 3 1/4″ version. Now it is my most favorite tee!

  4. The zero friction tee is decent, but the prongs to break every 4 to 5 hits. Launcher Tee is at least equal or better the perfomance hasn’t broke at all. One guy at their website says he has used the same one for 4 months.

  5. I categorically deny what Austin has said. I’ve used Zero Friction tees since I did this review (over one year ago) and have only ever broken four in that year. I’ve logged over 80 rounds since March alone.

    I do not use the ZF tees on par threes (with irons), but I use on every par four and five.

    Austin, this is your second comment on tees (you also commented here), so I am beginning to think you’re not just a casual user, but that you have “Launcher Tee” business interests in mind.

    I will also say that it’s been the experience of everyone I know – including those in the forum – that the Zero Friction tees last darn near forever (a link to that discussion).

  6. Both ZF and Launcher tees are pretty good but I prefer to make my own using Teemorph – available online from http://www.teemorph.co.uk

    This great product allows you to make your own custom designed golf tees and can easily replicate the same effect as Zero Friction and Launcher tees

    As they can be remoulded simply in hot water if they get bent Teemorph golf tees are theretically everlasting and you can also experiment with different designs to find the one that works best with your swing

  7. This tees are built like tanks ….. Unless your burning them they wont be destroyed …. I love it. I still have my whole 50 tees since I bought them 6 moths ago.

  8. Been using this year – lost 1, broken 3 in 12 round of golf! Generally remains in the earth after tee shot or with 6 inches. I love them because I carry 1 spare and a broken one for par 3s. No idea about extra carry but every little helps. 9hcp.

  9. Only problem i have with these tees is sometimes it seems the ball falls off too easily them when teeing them, compared to normal wooden tees. Kind of makes me nervous when im addressing it with driver. I also dont really like them for par threes, as they seem distracting.

  10. I recently heard about the Zero Friction tees and thought that nothing else could hurt my game. I love to play golf, but rarely have the time to play, much less practice. Therefore, it is all practice to me. With that said, I had pick-up the Zero Friction tees…Holy Cow…I have never hit the ball so conistantly in my golfing career. I am hooked on the game, but also hooked on the Zero Friction tees. I just hope that they stay a secret a little while longer.

  11. I have been a believer in these tees ever since my 9-year old wanted me to buy them because they looked so “cool.” These tees truly are indestructable. Occasionally I will shear off the top of the tee when using an short iron on a par 3 due to a descending blow to the ball. Other than that, I have never broken one with a long iron or wood. The only complaint I do have with these tees is that they tend to bend when used over the course of the round or rounds. This results in sometimes having difficulty in keeping the ball on the tee when teeing it up, and my playing partners heckling me. As far as distance, I can’t say either way.

  12. I’m a believer! Most of my golfing buddies use the ZF tee exclusively. I am in the process of cleaning out my bag by giving my old tees away and going with the ZF. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense but ever since I started using it, my average score has dropped several strokes and with my swing, I need all the help I can get.

  13. I use this about one month ago , wow , I never seen any tee’s like this before , it really works for me. Yesterday,I bought another pack to make sure never ran of this amazing tee for my rest of games. I’ll keep this as a secret to all my groups .

  14. Like a lot of Zero Friction tee users i was introduced to them by chance. Having heard about them i was delighted to have found one at the range and saving me the monetary risk of investmenting in a pack in case i did not like them.
    well i love them. right away i felt as though my drives were going straight with more consistency plus that tee lasted for quite awhile right up until i lost it at the same range where i’m sure by now it has been found once again…i think maybe it is that tees destiny to convert golfers into believers…

  15. I have found this tee to really reliable and as everyone has stated…indestructible. I too found on one on the course and tried it and immediately noticed the difference (perhaps it was just a lucky shot I hit, but the ball traveled farther and straighter) that convinced me. I initialled went to the golf store and bought the epoch tee by mistake. The epochs are just collecting dust and I will probably give them away. I am a a Zero fan now!

  16. I used some of these two seasons ago and I wasn’t that impressed for the price difference from a massive bag of good ol’ fashioned wood tees. Any performance gain was minimal, which I believe this review essentially points out.

    As for the durability of the tees, sure they are more durable than wood tees, but I still broke all 5 I had in about a 3 month period. Now, granted, breaking only 5 tees in 3 months of golf is impressive, but they aren’t “indestructible” as some may lead you to believe. I think it really depends on the conditions. I used them during the peak summer months here and the ground can become awfully hard from lack of rain, etc. I think what tends to happen is when the ground is too hard for the tee to pop out, they bend hard on contact and spring back while staying in the ground. After doing that enough I could actually see the stress point in the middle of the tee where the plastic had changed color from the constant stress. Once you could see that it was only a matter of time before it snapped.

  17. I love these tees and have been using them for two seasons now. It’s true, they are in-friggin-destructible. I’ve broken only one over that time and yes they do tend to bend, but jeez, that’s only after a couple of rounds of golf with the same tee – who knows how many wood tees you’d go through in two rounds. My only complaint is that they are hard to see when they come out of the ground. I would love to see them in a flourescent color.

  18. Used it for the first time – I love the way I feel the Ball right off the tee – I swear I was more accurate and consistent. Half way through the round I gave one to my playing partner to test – he fell in love with it. Both of us were hitting stratighter and farther. I agree with the comments about their indestructability – my 50 pack should last me the rest of my life!

  19. One wonders why they sell a pack of more than 5 tees as you’d only about one per year. I have used the same tee for over a year now. Surely that’s not very clever business because they never break!

  20. I was a Stinger Tee believer until one day I found a broken ZF tee on the tee box and used it for the par-3 hole. Then I bought a package of 50 and have since used 1 tee for the last 7 rounds! These tees are truly wonderful…my tee shots have definitely gained more distance and accuracy. I find that the 2 3/4″ tee is perfect for my 460CC driver and a broken tee is perfect for the 4 wood & irons.

    I also liked the fact that they are biodegradable!

    I am convinced and sold…now I just have to clean out my tee bag and put just a few ZF tees in there. 😛 😉

  21. I am convinced and sold…now I just have to clean out my tee bag and put just a few ZF tees in there. 😛 😉

    Hey Golfgal

    I don’t think we’ve met, but I’m also “Golfgal” on this forum. Are there two of us? LOL…I’d love to meet my twin 🙂

    The other Golfgal

  22. All in all….still a tee

    By definition, it really is a tee, but NOT just another tee. I don’t know about distance because of playing on different courses with different wind conditions and not having a (consistant) swing.

    I have worked for the last year on my foward press and late break and I am much longer and straighter while still using a conventional tee. I am talking 40 to 60 yards further than I used to.

    The difference is, that with the Zero Friction Tee, I am hitting my drives with more accuracy than with the conventional tee. To prove it to myself, I hit 50 balls with a conventional tee and another 50 balls using the Zero Friction Tee. I aimed at the three hundred yard marker and noted the shot disburtion. The Zero Friction Tee’s won hands down. The 4-7 yard extra distance does sound good, but where I see it, accuracy is what counts.

  23. My cousin’s friend said that he knew somebody who broke one of these tees. I don’t know whether it’s true or not but that’s just what I heard….Seriously though, these things are indestructible.

  24. In my last review, I said that I wished the tees came in a flourescent color so that they were easier to find. I bought some red ones and found that they are harder to see than the whites. I bought some pink ones thinking that they’d be easier to find, which they are, but I still think that they should make them in flourescent colors. BTW, my buddies kidded me about the pink, I just told them that I am honoring breast cancer awareness by using them, they all just noded their heads and said “wow, that’s cool”

    One last thing about the tees, the red and pink that I use, and the orange that my son uses, don’t seem to be quite as durable as the original white ones. Still the best tees out there.

  25. Ive just started golfing recently and i kept breaking tees until i found a zero friction tee inside the ground fully intact so i decided to try it and it is indestrucible because i was bending it in half and it still wound not break

  26. Ive bought two packs that have lasted me two years. Ive given about a pack away to some playing partners as a “give them a try, you’ll like them”. Love how they last soo long.

  27. I like these tees a lot. I have used them for two seasons. Like stated above, they are very hard to break and when they do break, it is usually one of the prongs that gets sheared off. I haven’t notice any game improvement as a result of teeing up with these, but the durability makes it totally worth the cost. I gave one to a playing partner last year to try and he still has it. He showed it to me last weekend. I only have one complaint. Sometimes I have trouble getting the ball on the tee on the first or second try if it isn’t perfectly straight. It’s a little frustrating to take 20 seconds to do something that usually takes 2 seconds. Pros completely outweigh the cons. These are in my bag for good and with a 50-count, I won’t have to buy any more unless I give them away.

  28. I’ve commented favorably previously. However, lately they’ve started breaking more frequently than in the past few years. I’m getting older, not stronger. Is something going on in the manufacturing process? Still my tee of choice.

  29. Like I’ve said before about their durability, The original whites are virtually indestructible, but the other colors of tees are not quite as durable as the whites. Still, they are much more durable than wood tees. I wish they made them in fluorescent colors though.

  30. I like the tees because of the minimal contact with the ball, but I would dispute the durability claims. I compete in longdrive competitions, and it’s not unusual to shear the top of 20-25 of these tees in one range session. that being said, they are still more durable than regular wooden tees.

  31. Absolutely NO LIE… i bought a pack today at the Golf Course… for no reason other than I found one on a driving range one day… and I hit over 100 balls with that Tee. I used ONE TEE all day today… had my best round ever. mainly due to my drives off the tee. “Straight” would be an understatement. I hit the ball smack down the middle all day long… averaged 270 yds.

    For me… that is 25 yds more than normal. Coincedence? Who knows. I now have a ten’ to fifteen year supply of tees.. I own ONE PACK. of 50. I spent $4.99
    Again.. that story you just read is NO LIE. KB

  32. One last comment… I see that the photo actually shows only 3 prongs.. sorry. But I must respond to the quote by the auther of the article…

    “I was initially concerned that the height of the tees – a fairly meager 2.75 inches – would not be appropriate for the 460cc drivers”
    I used the 2.75″… and I use a 460cc driver..a Callaway “knock off”..
    I have been golfing for 2 years… and the 2.75″ tees were exactly what the doctor ordered.

  33. I like the tees because of the minimal contact with the ball, but I would dispute the durability claims. I compete in longdrive competitions, and it’s not unusual to shear the top of 20-25 of these tees in one range session. that being said, they are still more durable than regular wooden tees.

    If you are trashing 20 -25 tees per outting on the range… honestly… you may need some instruction. I’m a mere rookie… I am still on my same tee that I found three weeks ago.

  34. If you are trashing 20 -25 tees per outting on the range… honestly… you may need some instruction. I’m a mere rookie… I am still on my same tee that I found three weeks ago.

    KB,
    I am a competitive longdriver, using the 4″ Zero friction tees that are available through only select suppliers. At clubhead speeds of 130+ MPH, it is not at all uncommon to shred 20-25 of these tees in a 100 ball bucket. Recreational golfers with 90-100 mph swingspeeds will find these tees quite durable, however. I don’t think I need instructions on how to use them!! LOL Good luck, and enjoy learning the game of golf!

    Eddie Wyatt

  35. KB,I am a competitive longdriver, using the 4″ Zero friction tees that are available through only select suppliers. At clubhead speeds of 130+ MPH, it is not at all uncommon to shred 20-25 of these tees in a 100 ball bucket. Recreational golfers with 90-100 mph swingspeeds will find these tees quite durable, however. I don’t think I need instructions on how to use them!! LOLGood luck, and enjoy learning the game of golf!Eddie Wyatt

    Yeah… i was obviously being envious and blowing smoke… LOL…. But I can give lessons on not how to break these darn things.

  36. I’ve been using ZF tees for a few years now. The design has changed slightly – the tees are bit thicker than a few years ago.

    They are extremely durable. With a normal 85-100mph swing, in rock-hard tee boxes, you might break 1 every 2-4 rounds. You’ll probably lose more than you’ll break.

    Great tees, a bit of high-tech mixed with the traditional feel/instantly usable (unlike brush-tees)

  37. I bought a container of zero friction tees several years ago I put just 3 of them in my bag played many rounds and I still have the same 3 in my bag. They are indestructible. Why buy anything else. Great product I would rate them a 10

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *