4 Best Golf Ball Retrievers on the Market

The best golf ball retrievers will pay for themselves after about 8 golf balls are found. Golf ball retrievers are one of the easiest investments you can make in your golf game. What other golf accessory pays for itself? 

If you play a golf course with quite a few water hazards, a golf ball retriever will help. 

We have gathered a few of our favorite golf ball retrievers in 2022. There is an option on this list for every budget and player type. 

Best Golf Ball Retrievers: Our Top Picks 

Best Overall: Callaway Golf Ball Retriever 
Best Value: Prowithlin Golf Ball Retriever
Best Premium: JP Lann Golf Ball Retreiver
Best For Multiple Golf Balls: Search ‘N Rescue Two Golf Ball Retriever

Best Overall

Callaway 6’ Pocket Golf Ball Retriever

$39.99 $30.75

The Callaway Golf Ball Retriever makes retrieval quick and easy for any golfer; this model fits in your bag and comes in two different sizes. 

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11/29/2022 09:08 am GMT

The best overall golf ball retriever is the Callaway Golf Ball Retriever. We love that you can purchase this in the 6 or 15-foot option. The length you choose will make it easier to grab your ball out of any water hazard. This is a telescoping design, so it will only be 25″ when folded. When extended, it will go as far as 15 feet. 

Callaway put an ergonomic handle on this retriever, making it easy to stand on the water’s edge and fish for golf balls for quite some time. You can also put the included cover on the Callaway Golf Ball Retriever so it won’t damage any other clubs in your bag, and it will stay in great shape for years to come. 

Overall this one is one of the easiest and most user-friendly golf ball retrievers. The stainless steel retriever mechanism quickly grabs a ball, even if the water is dark or the golf ball is difficult to see. 

Best Value

Prowithlin Golf Ball Retriever

$17.99 $13.99

The Prowithlin is not expensive, has a mechanical locking scoop cup design, and is incredibly light and durable; it will be hard to find a better option for the money. 

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11/29/2022 12:07 am GMT

If you are unsure how often you will use a golf ball retriever, looking for a value version may make sense. The Prowithlin is a very affordable golf ball retriever that can be purchased in 6.5 foot or 9-foot lengths. Although this is not the longest one on the market, it will still do an excellent job for relatively close golf balls. 

We love that this model comes with two extra grabbers that can be put on the back of the putter to grab the ball from the hole if needed. The total weight on this model is just half a pound making it a perfect option to put in the side pocket of your golf bag. 

JP Lann has been in the golf industry for many years, and their golf accessories are known for being higher quality and higher performing. The JP Lann Golf Ball retrievers come in five different sizes and get as long as 18 feet. 

The top of the retriever can either be a metal hinge (that will not rust) or the orange pressure cup style. This is a personal preference, and both types can be suitable. Some people like the metal hinge when looking close to the water’s edge and the orange pressure cup when far away. 

Best For Multiple Golf Balls

Search 'N Rescue Two Golf Ball Retriever

If you are serious about your golf ball hunting, Search 'N Rescue is a brand to consider; the Two-Ball Retriever makes fast work of any golf course pond. 

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The Search ‘N Rescue Two Golf Ball Retriever will rescue more than one golf ball at a time. You can move this model along the bottom of the pond or lake, and it will grab any golf ball that comes into contact with it. This is an excellent option for those with a golf course pond in their backyard. 

Search ‘N Rescue brand has many different styles; however, if you are serious about fishing for golf balls, the two-ball style is the way to go. The lightweight model comes in four different lengths, as long as 24 inches. 

Although you can get your money back quickly when you find a few dozen golf balls, this is not the best retriever for getting a single ball from behind a fence or for quick retrieval on the way to the green. 

Golf Ball Retriever Buying Guide: Know Before You Buy 

The great thing about a golf ball retriever is that it will quickly pay for itself; the bad thing is that there are a lot of different features to sort through before you purchase one. Here are a few things you should know before buying a golf ball retriever. 


Almost all golf ball retrievers have some telescoping features. This allows players to open the retriever up fully and pick a golf ball out of the water that is more than 20 feet away. When finished using the retriever, simply place it back in the golf bag. 

The further a golf ball gets away from you, the harder it is to keep the unit steady. You have to get good to pick a golf ball up out of the water when it is more than 20 feet away from you. This telescoping pole design is helpful, but don’t get carried away with the total length you need. 

These golf ball retrievers fold up to fit in the side pocket of your bag, or they will fit in the top compartment. For golf bags that have 15 individual dividers, you can easily fit a retriever in one of the spots. 

Total Length 

The total length of a golf ball retriever varies. Some of the shorter ones start at around 6 feet, and the longer ones are closer to 24 feet. The longer the golf ball retriever is, the heavier it can feel when extended. 

Most golfers find that the 15 to 18-foot range is a perfect amount and allows them to get most of the errant shots they hit. Anything longer than this gets a bit difficult to retrieve. 


A golf ball retriever must be made from anti-rust type material. Most of the time, you will see stainless steel or plastic that can be submerged in the water and not have to worry about the head of the unit deteriorating. 

Another thing to look for in a golf ball retriever is that it is easy to see. Whether the top of the retriever is orange or has shiny steel, it’s essential to make sure that you can see the retriever when under the water. 

Lock Mechanism 

There are multiple options for locking a golf ball into a retriever. Some are a ring-type that the golf ball almost balances on top of; others are like a metal trap that will lock the ball into place. Golfers have preferences about which one of these is better, but you can learn to use both. 

If you don’t have a very steady hand, choose a retriever with a lock mechanism that grabs the ball for you. This ensures that the ball will not slip out as you bring it back in. 

Golf ball fishing can get frustrating if your retriever is not designed correctly. 

Multiple Golf Balls?

Do you need a golf ball retriever that can grab multiple golf balls? 

The good news is that this is optional. If you live near a lake or a pond, it makes complete sense to purchase a ball retriever with the capacity to pick up multiple golf balls. This is an excellent option as it can ensure that you have time to spend looking for balls and retrieving some great options. 

However, for on-course play, especially if you are trying to keep up with the group in front of you, a multiple ball golf ball retriever is not all that quick. The time it takes to get the balls out of the water is a bit much, and you don’t want to hold up the rest of your group. 

Tips For How To Use A Golf Ball Retriever 

Golf ball retrievers seem easy to use, but when you first start using them, you may have difficulty bringing in as many golf balls as you thought you would. Here are a few of our best tips for using a golf ball retriever. 

Watch Closely 

When your ball enters the water, keep a close eye on where it went in. You can save a lot of time if you know exactly where to start looking for the ball. Keep in mind that there is likely some slope to the water hazard, so the ball will have probably rolled a few feet once it hit bottom. 


Having sunglasses with polarized lenses can help to ensure that you can see the golf ball as you are pulling it in. Polarized lenses allow us to see fish in the water, and at the same time, they can help you see the golf ball you are looking to grab. 

Slow and Steady 

When you find your golf ball and have it on the golf ball retriever, try to pull it back in slowly. If you move the retriever too much, chances are you will drop the golf ball and have to start your process over again. When the pole is extended out 15 or 20 feet, it’s hard to keep it balanced, so move slowly. 

It’s Not Just The Water! 

Don’t limit yourself to using your golf ball retriever to get balls out of the water. If your ball ends up just on the other side of an out-of-bounds fends, the retriever is a perfect solution. Most people think of this as something that can save a golf ball from the water, but it is more than that. 

If you want to get your money’s worth out of the golf ball retriever, use it to save golf balls from all over the course. 

What is the best type of golf ball retriever?

The best type of golf ball retrievers is typically those with a small cup that allows a golfer to scoop up the ball. The ring-type mechanisms are trendy and durable long-term, but unless you have a steady hand, you can quickly lose the golf ball in the water with this type of retriever. 

If you play on a golf course with a lot of water, make sure that you are getting a retriever with the correct length. 


Hopefully, you now feel you can choose a golf ball retriever with total confidence. The Callaway Golf Ball retriever is the best option as the grabber mechanism is effortless to use, and the retriever holds up well over time. Golf ball retrievers are not mandatory, but after you recover your first dozen golf balls, you will be pleased about the money you spent on this golf gadget. 

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Joe Morelli

Joe Morelli is the founder of TopRankGolf, a passionate golfer with 25 years of experience playing and coaching golfers around the world. He's dedicated to helping golfers learn and enjoy the game of golf.