Best Fluorocarbon Fishing Lines 2021 – What You NEED to Know & 7 Great Suggestions


All fishing lines are the same, right? Wrong.

In the right circumstances, the best fluorocarbon fishing line will outfish most other types.

Today I’m going to run through everything you need to know about fluorocarbon line, when and where to use it, and I’ll even show you some great suggestions to try!

No need to tie yourself in knots. Read this article, and you’ll be good to go!

Disclosure: At BonfireBob, we recommend products based on unbiased research, however, BonfireBob.com is reader-supported and as an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases if you shop through the links on this page. For more information, see disclosure here.

Why and When to Use Fluorocarbon Line

To answer this question fully, you need to understand the two key qualities of a fluorocarbon fishing line.

And they are?

First, fluorocarbon line has a low refractive index. In plain terms, it is practically invisible when submerged in the water. This makes it a great choice in clear conditions or when fishing for species that are easily spooked.

Its second key quality is that it is really stiff and doesn’t have much stretch. This allows you to feel bites better and gives you greater control over the fish. Fluoro occupies a nice middle ground between stretchy monofilament and the super-hard feeling braid.

Finally, fluorocarbon line is really dense and sinks quickly. It is best used in applications where you are going to be fishing beneath the surface.

To flip it around here’s when you probably don’t want to use a fluorocarbon line…

If you are a beginner, there are better choices. Fluorocarbon can be a little tricky to handle, better to choose mono while you figure out the basics. While fluoro offers loads of advantages, nobody has ever caught a fish with a tangle on the bank.

If you want to do some topwater work, say for fly fishing, fluoro sinks so quickly that it might actually drown your fly.

Speaking generally, here are some great places where fluorocarbon holds a distinct advantage:

angler with rod and reel fishing carps in lake

What are the Benefits and Drawbacks to Using Fluorocarbon Line?

There’s plenty of reasons to love fluorocarbon fishing line, but it also has a few drawbacks. Here’s what’s great… And not so great about it:

Fluorocarbon Fishing Line Pros

  • It is low visibility. When submerged, it is practically invisible!
  • For a given diameter, it is much stronger than monofilament.
  • It sinks well and is perfect for bottom fishing.
  • It has little stretch, making it more responsive for bite detection.
  • It is relatively cheap when compared to something like a braid.
  • It is abrasion-resistant, so it is perfect for fishing around snags and bottom features.

Fluorocarbon Fishing Line Cons

  • It is more difficult to tie knots well using fluorocarbon.
  • It doesn’t float, making it less than ideal for surface fishing.
  • It is prone to ‘memory.’
  • It offers less ‘suspension’ than mono. Hard takes tend to snap the line.

fisherman carp fishing on a sunny morning

What to Look for in Fluorocarbon Line?

I’m going to show you a few suggestions shortly… Here are a few things to look for at a glance.

Coating

You’ll find that good fluorocarbon fishing lines are coated. This makes them more supple and abrasion-resistant, two qualities that you are definitely going to want.

Diameter

The smaller the diameter, the more flexible the line and the easier it will be to handle. As an added benefit, with a smaller diameter line, you’ll be able to fit more on a spool!

Breaking Strain

It is important to choose the correct breaking strain for your setup and the species you are targeting. While with mono, you can go a few lbs lighter, fluoro can be a little unforgiving due to its stretch.

Be sure to pick a breaking strain that stops you from being ‘outgunned’ by a big fish.

Top 7 Fluorocarbon Fishing Lines on the Market 2021

Angryfish Fluorocarbon Fishing Line

If you are looking for the best fluorocarbon line for spinning reels, this could be a great place to start. This particular brand is made with 100% premium Japanese fluorocarbon, giving you all of the good features discussed above.

But wait… It’s pink.

Yeah, don’t worry about that. While visible in daylight as it sinks through the water, the red wavelengths are filtered out. As a result, it will be pretty much invisible when beneath the surface.

This line is pretty stiff with next to no stretch. This is good as it gives you great hook setting capability when something takes your bait.

Pros

  • It is good value for the money.
  • The line is spooled in such a way as to avoid kinks and twists.
  • It sinks really quickly.

Cons

  • It isn’t coated. I’m a little dubious about its abrasion resistance.
  • I wish you got more on a spool.

Takeaway

As a budget fluorocarbon fishing line, this is pretty good. There are better versions out there, but you’ll be paying a little more. For a small reel of less than 3000 size, it would be a great choice.

Berkley Trilene Fluorocarbon Fishing Line

Speaking of premium fluorocarbon lines, you need to check this out.

Berkley is a well-established name in fishing, and with lines as high quality as this, you can see why.

Noting fancy here, just 200 yards of professional, clear, fluorocarbon line. It’s available in a range of breaking strains. I’d go for the optimum of 10lb, giving you plenty of flexibility.

This line is super low stretch and is highly sensitive, making it a great choice for jerk and crankbaits.

The larger spool size per pack makes it one of the best fluorocarbon lines for bass.

Pros

  • A trusted brand.
  • Low refractive index.
  • Great feedback.

Cons

  • It is super springy, be sure to remove the memory if you choose this one.

Takeaway

Berkley is often my go-to choice when choosing fluoro. Simply put, I trust them. This line offers great value and performance. A good all-rounder.

KastKing FluoroKote Fishing Line

OK, look.

I know we are talking about fluorocarbon line… But wouldn’t it be great if you could get all of the benefits with less of the ‘cons’?

Here’s the good news.

KastKing has combined a Polyvinylidene core with a fluorocarbon coating to give you all of the good stuff, with fewer downsides. This line is a little more stretchy but with the same diameter and strength as traditional fluoro.

It isn’t quite as invisible as pure fluorocarbon. Still, I can honestly say I haven’t noticed a significant difference in my catch rate.

One thing I really like is that, because it is coated, it has great abrasion resistance. This could be a worthy choice if you are fishing over rocks, reefs, or rough ground.

Pros

  • A really versatile line.
  • All of the benefits of fluoro with fewer of the cons.
  • Good for fishing rough ground.

Cons

  • It isn’t quite as invisible as pure fluorocarbon.

Takeaway

As with most things in fishing, sometimes you have to make a trade-off. OK, so it isn’t as invisible as fluorocarbon. Still, bearing in mind that you can tie knots easier, get less memory, and have a smaller diameter, I think it is well worth it.

Seaguar Invizx Fluorocarbon 1000 Yard Line

This might seem like a lot.

But I’ve included it for a reason. If you are looking for the best fluorocarbon line for bait casters, you want to ensure that you have enough.

I already said that tying knots can be a nuisance with fluoro. By choosing a bigger spool, you won’t have to mess around joining two lines together. The beauty of these huge spools is that you’ll easily be able to fully spool two or even three bait casters.

One standout feature of this line is how soft it is. It isn’t far away from mono. It is a great choice for those who traditionally have shied away from fluorocarbon because of its springiness.

Oh, and before I forget, it’s USA-made. Regular readers of my blog will know how much I try and support homemade products.

Pros

  • A USA made quality fishing line.
  • Great value with a huge spool.
  • Softer than I was expecting.

Cons

  • Mine started clear but did get dark once I’d used it a few times… That might be me not cleaning it properly.

Takeaway

I’ve had a spool of this knocking around for a while. It’s great if you suffer a breakage as you can re-spool the reel in its entirety and still have line to spare. If you like getting a lot for the money, this might be the one to go for.

Sunline Super FC Sniper Fluorocarbon Fishing Line

Remember when I talked about all the things you should look for in a great fluorocarbon line? This is what I was talking about. This line is used by several professionals and performs really well.

I like the way this spools, but its standout feature is the coating. It is triple resin coated. This gives you great abrasion resistance. I love using this one both as a mainline and as a rubbing leader, especially when fishing over underwater structure.

It also comes in massive spools, making it an ideal choice.

But…

Beware, this is definitely a premium fluorocarbon fishing line. While it is one of the best, you are going to pay extra for the privilege.

Pros

  • Triple coated for best in class abrasion resistance.
  • Huge spools available.
  • Relatively supple and easy to handle.

Cons

  • The only downside is the price!

Takeaway

Look, you get what you pay for. If I was going to choose one line based purely on performance, this is the one right here. It’s up to you whether you think that is worth paying for.

P-Line Tactical Premium Fluorocarbon Line

For something a little more budget, this one is worth a look. P-Line boasts that their line is memory-free and easy to handle.

I find it OK. Not the best I’ve seen, but certainly not the worst. Considering the price, I think it’s a pretty good trade-off, and you’ll get most of the good features that I talked about above.

One thing I really liked was the knot strength. Fluoro can be a little brittle. During a day session, I didn’t have a single failure of any of my knots, including casting 6oz leads with a heavy-duty beach caster.

Pros

  • Great value.
  • Relatively low diameter.
  • Excellent knot strength.

Cons

  • It was a little bit springy. I did get one or two tangles.

Takeaway

As a budget line, I think this is great. When held up against premium lines, I’m not so sure. For the occasional hobbyist or first-time fisherman, it would be a good choice. For the pros, invest in something a little more expensive.

Berkley FluoroShield Fluorocarbon Fishing Line

This one is on the top of my list alongside the Seaguar. Essentially it’s a tossup between these two brands. Do you go for the ‘brand’ or the performance?

This is another coated copolymer line. A thin core on the inside, covered with fluorocarbon on the outside, giving you the best of both worlds.

The ideal application for this would be spinning and lure fishing. Because it is more supple, you’ll be able to easily handle it on smaller, faster reels.

It still sinks quickly and is invisible in the water, making it great for fishing in clear water.

Pros

Cons

  • It was still a little springier than I was expecting.

Takeaway

In all honesty and held side by side, I prefer the Seaguar. However, you might be a Berkely fanboy, and if so, it’s OK. I won’t judge you. Both provide similar performance and are equally priced.

A Quick Guide to Fluorocarbon Fishing Lines

So you are in the market for a new line and are wanting to know what’s what?

That’s good, and it’s why I am here.

Here’s what you need to know. Have a think about the following before making your choice.

Pure Fluoro or Copolymer?

Take another look at the above list.

Go on… I’ll be here waiting.

OK, welcome back, notice anything?

There are a few choices that use something called copolymer. If you don’t know what this is, let me explain.

Copolymer means that there is a blend of materials used in the line’s construction. It’s a way of getting rid of some of the negative qualities of fluorocarbon. You’ll normally find a ‘core’ made of something like monofilament. This is then surrounded by a fluorocarbon sheath or coating.

The beauty of this system is that you get all of the good stuff, but the line is a little easier to handle.

Color

You’ll sometimes see that fluorocarbon line isn’t clear.

Does it make a difference?

Mmm, what I will say is that some color in a line isn’t a bad thing.

Here’s why.

As you descend through any water column, the light is filtered, and certain wavelengths are removed. As a result, that line that was, say, red, or pink, isn’t that color when resting on the bottom.

Colored lines are great if you are fishing in low light conditions and need something easier to see up on the bank.

man fishing on the lake from inflatable boat

Breaking Strain

This is a big one.

Obviously, you are going to need a line that is capable of handling the species that you want to catch…

But there’s more.

If you are just starting out and looking for a great allrounder, here’s my top suggestion:

Go for a 12-15lb line.

Why? Here are the advantages:

  • It will fit on most spools.
  • You’ll be able to fight 90% of the fish you’ll catch.
  • It is easier to handle.
  • Its really versatile.

Experience Level

Let me be honest. Fluoro is not the best starting point for a beginner. Here’s why:

  • It is more prone to tangle.
  • It is harder to cast well.
  • Knots have to be tied perfectly, or they will break.
  • It is expensive compared to other lines.

Before you dive in to buy ‘what the pros use,’ think about whether you know enough to be able to deal with all of the above.

Spool Size

You are going to need enough line to adequately fill your spool.

How much is that?

Well, it depends on how big your reel is. For a 3000 sized reel, I’d say choose a spool in the 250-300 yard range as a minimum.

For big baitcasters or marine applications, I’d jump right in and pick the biggest I could. You will end up getting breakages, and you will need a spare spool.

fishing from boat in lake with spinning reel

FAQ

Got questions? Don’t we all! Luckily, I’m here to help. Here are the main things I get asked all the time when discussing good fluorocarbon fishing lines.

What is fluorocarbon fishing line best for?

Here’s what I’d do. Ask yourself where you are going to be fishing.

Fluorocarbon could be a great choice if:

  • You intend to fish around sunken features, rocks, or other ‘structure’.
  • You fish in clear water.
  • You want great feedback and bite detection.

What is the best brand of fluorocarbon fishing line?

For me, the best brand has to be either Berkley or Seaguar. Both offer similar in terms of quality and value for money. They also stock a great range of copolymer lines that are as good as pure fluorocarbon.

What line is better, mono or fluorocarbon?

Ah, man. I knew somebody would ask me that. The true answer is that it depends on how and where you intend to use either one or the other.

Both fluorocarbon and mono have their merits. It’s about matching the right line to the situation. You can find my detailed article on fluoro vs. mono right here.

Can you use fluorocarbon line on a spinning reel?

The short answer? Yes, of course, you can. Fluoro is a great choice for a spinning reel.

Why? Well…

  • Fluorocarbon lets you maintain better contact and control with your lure.
  • It reduces breakages when in contact with the bottom.
  • It is less visible, giving your lure a more natural appearance.
  • It sinks quickly.

Is fluorocarbon good for Baitcasters?

Fluorocarbon is good for baitcasters. But there is a caveat. Fluorocarbon can tend to spring and tangle easily. It is super prone to overruns. Because bait casters have a closed spool, it can be challenging to use unless you really know what you are doing.

The bottom line?

If you are brand new and fishing with bait casters, go for mono. Suppose you have a decent amount of experience and are less likely to get tangled. In that case, fluorocarbon could be a really great choice.

Do I need to soak fluorocarbon line?

Truthfully?

Yes, you absolutely do. Soaking your spool before use will mean that the line is much more supple. There’s no worse feeling than opening a brand new spool of line, only to end up with a ‘birds nest’ on the floor because the entire thing has fired out like a drunken slinky.

Soaking your line has the following advantages:

  • It prevents tangles.
  • It reduces memory.
  • Soaking ensures your line goes onto your spool smoothly and evenly.
  • It saves you time in the long run and reduces the potential for tangles in the future.

Is fluorocarbon line hard to use?

Look, I’m going to be honest. Fluorocarbon isn’t hard to use.

But…

It does take some getting used to. If you’ve only ever fished with mono, then you will immediately see the difference. Provided you are aware of these differences and how to deal with them, you shouldn’t find it any harder than your usual line.

How often should you change fluorocarbon fishing line?

If we talk about natural shelf life, I normally swop out my lines about once per season, regardless of condition. The last thing I want to do is lose the fish of a lifetime with a flaw or degradation on my line.

By the time the line has got dirty, acquired a few scuffs, been stretched and weakened (hopefully by a big fish), and been through its lifetime of ‘wear and tear’, once a year is the minimum I would recommend.

The way around this is to buy a big spool of a line you like, that way, you won’t have to relearn how to use it when it comes around to fitting a brand new one.

Summary

Like with most things in fishing, the tools are only as good as the angler using them. The best fluorocarbon fishing lines will help you catch more fish.

But you’ve got to choose a good one and know what you are doing. Hopefully, my guide has given you a great idea as to what to go for.

Why not let me know how you got on in the comments? I love hearing your fishing stories!

Bob Hoffmann

The author of this post is Bob Hoffmann. Bob has spend most of his childhood fishing with his father and now share all his knowledge with other anglers. Feel free to leave a comment below.

Recent Content