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Whether for music, GPS directions, or both, it’s increasingly common for people to pair their phones with their vehicles. The best car phone mounts can keep your smartphone stable and visible so you can use it hands-free while driving.

In this review, we recommend the five best car phone holders across a variety of styles and price points. Keep in mind that the mount that’s right for you may depend on the climate in your area, your preferences, and the type of phone you have (Apple iPhone vs. Android, large vs. small, etc.). In this buyers guide, we’ll explore the pros and cons of each phone mount, explain why we like it, and offer guidance on choosing the best option for your needs.

 

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5 Best Car Phone Mounts

car phone mounts
  1. Loncaster Car Phone Holder
  2. Quad Lock Car Mount
  3. Beam Electronics Universal Smartphone Car Air Vent Mount
  4. Ram X-Grip Mount
  5. Topgo Cup Holder Phone Mount

All of the car phone mounts recommended above performed well in our tests. Each one is relatively easy to install and compatible with most phones. We are hesitant to name one car phone mount the best overall because that depends largely on your preferences, the type of phone you have, and your area’s climate.


Our Review Standards

To determine which phone mounts we would test, our review team pored over customer reviews and recommendations on Amazon. We selected products with high average ratings while considering a variety of styles and price points.

We evaluated the phone mounts chosen for testing based on stability, ease of installation, and ease of attachment (how easy you can attach and remove a phone from the mount once installed). In our review criteria, we also considered value.

Stability

To offer acceptable stability, a phone mount must securely attach to your car and your phone. To score highest in this category, a phone mount shouldn't wobble or shake, even while holding a phone.

Ease of Installation

A phone mount that is difficult to install cannot easily switch between cars when necessary. Phone mounts that have intuitive design and a fast installation score best in this category.

Ease of Attachment

Perhaps even more important than ease of installation, ease of attachment refers to how effortless it is to attach and remove a phone from the mount. Difficult to handle mounts can be frustrating, especially for those in a hurry.


Best Dashboard Mount: Loncaster Car Phone Holder

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The Loncaster car phone holder was our favorite among the best car phone mounts. It is simple to install, inexpensive, and – because it holds your phone horizontally – extremely stable. This car dash mount is an easy recommendation.

Key Features

  • Mount style: Adhesive pad
  • Mount location: Dashboard
  • Cost: $14

Our Experience

Overall 5 out of 5
Stability 5 out of 5
Ease of Installation 5 out of 5
Ease of Attachment 5 out of 5
Value 5 out of 5
 
phonemounts loncaster

The Loncaster did not include any directions and required no assembly. The box included the phone mount only, which is a single rubber piece. To install the Loncaster, you simply remove the plastic backing and slap it on your dashboard. The sticky surface keeps the mount in place, and it remains stable because of the wide surface area.

This was the most stable of the car phone mounts we tested. There is nothing to adjust other than the placement of the pad on your dashboard.

Once this mount is installed, it’s very easy to attach and remove your cell phone. There are no clips or magnets, as the phone slides between the grips on the pad and leans against the mount’s backstop. If you have an especially thick phone or phone case, it may not fit in the crevice, but the two phones we tested fit snugly and securely.

One downside to the Loncaster holder is that it is not particularly adjustable. While you can change the orientation of the mount, there is no way to adjust the viewing angle of your phone in the mount.

What Customers Are Saying

The Loncaster Car Phone Holder has an average Amazon review score of 4.3 out of 5.0 based on over 26,000 reviews. Eighty percent of reviewers score the mount at 4 stars or higher.

Positive reviews praise the Loncaster for its stability and especially its ability to hold heavier phones in place.

“This has stayed in place all summer (in the heat), using it multiple times a day to squish my iPhone 6s or iPhone X into.”

– Beau Chevassus

“I have a large, bulky, and heavy phone – Galaxy Note9 with an OtterBox case – and a job that requires a ton of local driving. . . . This is the first phone holder that has kept my phone in place.”

– Colleen

Some customers say their thick phones will not fit this mount.

“The OtterBox case that is on my Pixel 2 XL means that it will NOT fit in this car mount. Not even close.”

– Karen D.

What Is It Good For?

The Loncaster is a solid all-around car phone mount. It scores perfectly by all of our review metrics, and it is one of the cheapest options on our list of the best car phone mounts. If you are looking for a low-cost car phone mount that is easy to install and use, the Loncaster is a no-brainer.

What Isn’t It Good For?

While we highly recommend this mount, it does have some drawbacks. For one, it mounts on the dashboard. This is a positive if you want your phone mounted on the dash, but it’s a negative if you prefer to have your phone lower in your vehicle.

Placing your phone on the dashboard means it will get hit by a lot more sun, which can heat your phone up dramatically. On hot days, your phone may overheat on this mount. We tested the Loncaster in North Carolina in the summer. Temperatures while testing approached 90 degrees. While our test phone became quite hot on the dashboard, it did not get hot enough to shut off. However, the increased heat was certainly not good for the phone’s battery health.

Another potential disadvantage is the orientation of the phone. Most car phone holders keep your phone vertically oriented, but the Loncaster holds your phone horizontally. We preferred the horizontal orientation for navigation, but you may prefer vertical.

Finally, especially thick phones may not fit in the Loncaster. While some reviewers with large phones report no issues, others complain that the Loncaster isn’t compatible with their phones and OtterBox cases.


Best Mounting System: Quad Lock Car Mount

phonemounts quadlock

Adapter:

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Car Mount:

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The Quad Lock phone mount system is not designed exclusively for the car. The universal adaptor attaches to the back of your phone, allowing you to connect it to your car, bike, motorcycle, or home stand. While a little more expensive than alternatives, the Quad Lock is a stable and easy-to-use system.

Key Features

  • Mount style: Suction or adhesive
  • Mount location: Window or dashboard
  • Cost: $15 for the adapter, $50 for the car mount

Our Experience

Overall 4.5 out of 5
Stability 5 out of 5
Ease of Installation 4.5 out of 5
Ease of Attachment 4 out of 5
Value 4 out of 5
 
phonemounts quadlock

While not quite as easy to install as the Loncaster, the Quad Lock also has a simple setup process. The adapter attaches to the back of your phone via adhesive, and the mount attaches to the dashboard or windshield with a suction cup. Also included in the box is an adhesive pad for the car mount if you want a more stable and permanent installation (For our tests, the suction alone worked just fine.). A ball and socket design allows you to orient your phone in any angle or direction.

For vertically oriented car phone mounts, the Quad Lock was the most stable. Attaching and removing our phones was slightly more difficult than with other mounts but still an easy process.

What Customers Are Saying

The Quad Lock car phone mount has an average Amazon review score of 4.7 out of 5.0 based on over 400 ratings. Ninety-two percent of reviewers give the product 4 stars or higher. Most users say the mount is extremely stable, especially if you use the adhesive pad.

“Very sturdy. Very good suction. Do not recommend installing on your dash unless you never want to move/readjust it again.”

– Chris

“Best phone holder ever! Case is sleek with a matte finish. Suction is incredible. Drove across Canada and never moved an inch. Installation is simple.”

– Shawn

“Extremely easy to install. Decent adjustability. Throw as many potholes and gravel roads you’d like at it, doesn’t budge.”

– Brett Hemphill

The only negative reviews of the Quad Lock are written in Spanish. One appears to complain that the mount does not stay well-attached to the windshield. While the product photos show this mount attaching to the window, we found that it also attached well to the dashboard.

What Is It Good For?

We recommend the Quad Lock if you want to mount your phone in multiple vehicles or locations – particularly on a bicycle. The Quad Lock system is the most stable of the phone holders we tested (on par with the Loncaster).

What Isn’t It Good For?

The Quad Lock mount isn’t one of the best car phone mounts for you if you’re on a limited budget. It’s a little more expensive than other systems, and you will need to purchase both the adapter and the car mount.

This also isn’t a good choice if you don’t want to attach anything to your phone. While the Quad Lock adapter is quite thin, it will still add a couple millimeters of thickness to your phone.

As with the Loncaster, this isn’t the car phone mount for you if you would rather not keep your phone on the dashboard where it could get excessively hot from the sun in warmer areas and seasons.


Best Vent Mount: Beam Electronics Universal Smartphone Car Air Vent Mount

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Attaching your phone in front of your car’s air vent can help keep it cool, preventing overheating and preserving battery life. We believe this Beam Electronics mount is one of the best car phone mounts in this style.

Key Features

  • Mount style: Clip
  • Mount location: Air vent
  • Cost: $19

Our Experience

Overall 4.5 out of 5
Stability 4 out of 5
Ease of Installation 4.5 out of 5
Ease of Attachment 4.5 out of 5
Value 4.5 out of 5
 
phonemounts beam

The Beam Electronics air vent phone mount is simple and intuitive. A switch in the back opens and closes the vent clip at two tensions for various vent sizes. This mount is very easy to install out of the box and requires no assembly.

A button in the back opens the side clamps, which are then tightened around your phone. This style of mount is common but not quite as stable as other designs. It worked well for our phone but may not be suitable for the largest phones. When we tested this mount, we noticed some shaking compared to other car phone mounts, but our GPS was still visible and readable.

This mount rotates on an adjustable ball socket, so it is easy to orient your phone exactly how you want it (including horizontally if you prefer).

What Customers Are Saying

The Beam Electronics car vent mount has an average Amazon review score of 4.2 out of 5.0 based on over 900 ratings. Seventy-nine percent of reviewers rate the phone mount 4 stars or higher.

Amazon reviewers were surprised by the grip strength of the mount and say the mechanism for attaching it to their air vents is better than the one with other mounts of this type.

“This mount surprised me with its quality. . . . The best aspect of this is that it has a lever that tightens/loosens it. Unlike a lot of other mounts with the paperclip-type jaw clamps, the lever actually gives you a lot of control over the clamp itself.”

– N. Ruiz

Some negative reviews say the air vent clips are too short, and at least one person who used this mount says it doesn't work well in the cold.

“It’s convenient, but it’s not strong enough to hold an iPhone XS Max with an OtterBox. It comes loose, and my phone flies across my car every two or three uses.”

– Dana L Rooks

“I have a PopSocket on my iPhone 11, and it makes it too thick for the mount to hold it.”

– Jsantillan

“Installed this in my car today, temp approximately 42 degrees, worked fine. Went out later this evening, temp was 33 degrees. [I] pushed [the] button to open [the] mechanism, [and it] wouldn't move.”

– Stan

If you have an especially thick phone or live in a very cold area, this may not be the best option for you.

What Is It Good For?

The Beam Electronics mount is a good low-cost option if you have a light phone. It’s particularly suitable for you if you don’t want to mount your phone on the dashboard. The air vent location will help keep your phone cool thanks to the airflow, so we recommend this mount if you live in a hot environment.

What Isn’t It Good For?

The phone we used to test this mount was hefty, but if you have an especially large phone, a PopSocket, or a thick phone case such as an OtterBox, this mount may not work for you.

According to customer reviews, the grip mechanism sometimes malfunctions in freezing temperatures, so if you live in a colder climate, you might want to consider a different car phone mount.


Best Grip: Ram® X-Grip® Mount

phonemounts ram

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Like the Quad Lock, Ram mounts work not only in your vehicle but also with bikes and motorcycles. Unlike the Quad Lock, no mounting device needs to be attached to your phone.

Key Features

  • Mount style: Adhesive suction
  • Mount location: Windshield or cup holder
  • Cost: $60

Our Experience

Overall 4 out of 5
Stability 4.5 out of 5
Ease of Installation 4 out of 5
Ease of Attachment 4 out of 5
Value 4 out of 5
 
phonemounts ram

The Ram X-Grip mount we purchased was attached to the car’s windshield. However, this isn’t your only option. Ram also sells mounts that can be drilled into your car’s dashboard. This is a permanent attachment that you may not desire.

In terms of adjustability, this was the best car phone mount we tested. Featuring ball joints and 360-degree rotation in several locations, the Ram mount may take a little longer to set up since there are extra knobs to adjust, but the result is a much more customizable experience.

The Ram grips the phone excellently, and even the heaviest of phones will stay securely attached to this phone mount. However, you must pay attention to how you insert your phone because the grips are strong enough to depress the side buttons. It’s easy to inadvertently turn your phone off while trying to put it in this mount. In fact, this happened during our test.

While your phone is easy to view if mounted on the windshield, the Ram X-Grip does block some of your visibility. Depending on where you live, it may not be legal to attach items to your interior windshield.

What Customers Are Saying

The average Amazon review score for the Ram X-Grip mount is 4.7 out of 5.0 based on over 1,000 ratings. Ninety-two percent of reviewers give the mount 4 stars or more.

The Ram is one of the best car phone mounts because of its stability and grip strength. Reviewers also like that the mount can be used in other places besides the car. The Ram X-Grip appears to last for a long time without losing strength or wearing out.

“I've had many, many poorly made mounts that lose suction, fail to grip, or just suck overall. The Ram mounts are sturdy as hell, suction like the Kraken itself, and will hold any size phone with any case on it, even phones with PopSockets. Easy to use, and you can even open and close it with one hand.”

– Matt Golon

Those dissatisfied with the Ram X-Grip say the mount vibrates too much. 

“The arm amplifies every bump I hit, causing it to vibrate back and forth. On the highway, it vibrated side to side so much that my phone turned the screen vertical rather than horizontal. Also, it's almost impossible to mount in the X-Grip without pressing buttons on my Galaxy S9.”

– Tom

The rigid design did cause the mount to shake some during our testing on bumpy roads, but we found the mount mostly stable. Shaking may be more of an issue with larger phones.

What Is It Good For?

The Ram X-Grip is generally good for larger phones. If you want a secure grip but don’t want to attach a magnet or mount to the back of your phone, the X-Grip is a solid choice.

This mount is also an option if you’re in search of a windshield mount. Just be aware that in some areas, it may not be legal to attach a phone mount to your windshield. Be sure to check your local laws.

What Isn’t It Good For?

The Ram X-Grip isn’t perfect for every phone. In some cases, the grips may push your phone’s buttons. While we were able to position our test phones so this did not happen, some reviewers say it was hard to avoid with certain phones.


Best Cupholder Mount: Topgo Cup Holder Phone Mount

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The Topgo cup holder phone mount is one of the best car phone mounts because it’s easy to install in your car’s cup holder and keeps your phone off the hot dashboard and air vents.

Key Features

  • Mount style: Tension
  • Mount location: Cup holder
  • Cost: $25

Our Experience

Overall 4 out of 5
Stability 3.5 out of 5
Ease of Installation 4 out of 5
Ease of Attachment 4 out of 5
Value 4 out of 5
 
phonemounts topgo

The Topgo mount is easy to install but a little harder to adjust than some of the others. The gooseneck is stiff, which is good for stability but can make the mount hard to angle. Depending on the style of your cup holder, it may also take some finagling to get this mount to work. The adjustable base expands outward, but if your cup holder is especially large, this mount will not fit securely.

Once on the road, the Topgo mount was the least stable of those we tested. While the vibration didn’t present a big issue, it was more noticeable than with other options. We also found the positioning of the mount to be fairly low, making it difficult to consult the phone without taking our eyes off the road. This may be a personal preference, however, and not an issue for shorter drivers. The gooseneck swivel puts your phone between 4.0 and 7.0 inches above your cup holder.

Once the mount is installed, attaching and removing the phone is simple. A button in the back opens the side clamps, which are easily pushed around the phone. This should work for most phone sizes. The clamps are deep, so it can work even if your phone has a PopSocket.

What Customers Are Saying

The Topgo cup holder phone mount has an average Amazon review score of 4.4 out of 5.0 based on over 34,000 ratings. Eighty-four percent of users scored the phone mount 4 stars or higher.

Reviewers note that the mount works well even with larger phones.

“I have an iPhone 7 with [an] OtterBox and [it] fits [the Topgo] like a glove. It’s adjustable and completely sturdy in the cup holder. I absolutely love it!”

– Tammy Jean Oberley

“Easy to assemble and install. I love how this sits in my cup holder and how it has a nice height so I can see anything on the phone.”

– Charles Blauvelt

Some reviewers say the Topgo was too small for their cup holders. The tension bars only extend so far, so if you have a really large cup holder, this product may not be compatible with your vehicle.

“The cup holder phone mount did not work for me. It was too small for my holder, and the phone holder did not securely grip my phone.”

– Sharon Endejan

“Too small [and] doesn't fit in [my] cup holder. Holds [the] phone great but [did] not [come] close to fitting in the cup holder.””

– Kindle Customer

When fully extended, the Topgo tension bars measure about 3.0 inches in diameter. If your cup holder is wider than 2.8 inches, this mount may not fit snugly in your vehicle.

What Is It Good For?

The Topgo is well-suited for you if you want your phone mount to be lower in your vehicle. This will position your phone below the dashboard, lower than a vent or CD slot mount. Keeping your phone off the dashboard is best if you live in an area known for high temperatures. The Topgo mount is also relatively inexpensive.

What Isn’t It Good For?

The Topgo is not compatible with all cup holders. Do not buy this mount if your cup holders are more than 3.0 inches in diameter. This is also not the right choice for you if you want your phone positioned higher in your vehicle. Our tester (who is 5’ 10”) thought this mount was too low, at least if you use your phone for GPS navigation.


Best Car Phone Mounts Testing Process

We spent time using each car phone mount to see how it performed. Our test driver used the mounts to follow GPS instructions. We drove over potholes and speed bumps and made some sharp turns. We used each mount over a period of a week for daily activities.

When installing each mount, we noted the ease of installation and practiced inserting and removing our phones several times. Our recommendations for best car phone mounts are all simple to install and securely held the test phone.


Best Car Phone Mounts Buyers Guide

All the car phone mounts we recommended are good picks for some drivers, but none are suitable for every driver. If you’re shopping for a new car phone mount, there are several factors to consider before making a purchase.

Cost

Even some of the best car phone mounts are available for under $20. While more expensive mounts may offer added benefits, you don’t need to spend a lot to get an effective phone mount.

Mount Location

Many drivers use car phone mounts so they can consult GPS directions. Some mounts attach to your windshield, while others may have you looking below your dashboard. Several common mount locations include:

  • Windshield: good for phone visibility, may obstruct view
  • Dashboard: good for phone visibility, can get hot
  • Air vent: is cooled by the A/C but not always the most stable
  • Cupholder: will not obstruct view, may be too low
  • CD slot: will not obstruct view, but many cars don't have CD slots.

Be aware that law enforcement in many cities can pull you over for obstructing your view of the windshield, and this includes doing so with a car phone mount. Check local laws before purchasing or installing this type of car phone mount.

Local weather conditions may also impact where you want to mount your phone. While the dashboard is a good place for phone visibility, mounting your phone here can make it very hot in the summer months. An overheated phone may shut down, and extreme temperatures can reduce its battery life.

How The Mount Grips Your Phone

There are several common methods for a phone mount to grip a phone:

  • Clamp: Clamp phone mounts grip your phone around the edges with a spring-loaded clamp. These mounts do not require you attach anything to your phone, but can depress side buttons.
  • Magnet: A magnetic car phone mount uses a magnetic surface to support your phone from the back. These mounts are very stable, but require you to attach a metal plate to your phone. If you aren't careful when detaching a magnet mount, you can accidentally detach the entire mount when removing your phone.
  • Adapter: An adapter mount works similar to a magnet mount, but uses a specialized adapter. These specialized adapters can be more secure than magnet mounts but will add thickness to your phone.

If your phone is on the heavy side, you may benefit from an adapter or magnet mount, but clamp mounts such as the Ram X-Grip can securely hold even the heaviest of phones.

Extras

Do you plan to mount your phone in not just your car but also on a bike, motorcycle, or boat, or in a kitchen? Some manufacturers offer full phone mount systems that allow you to easily attach your device to multiple locations.

Some car phone mounts have wireless charging features, but none of the phone mounts we recommend have this capability. Based on customer reviews, most wireless chargers are finicky, so the technology may not be all that useful.


FAQ: Best Car Phone Mounts

Are car phone mounts legal?

Car phone mounts are legal, but windshield mounts may not be in your area. In many places, you cannot obscure your view of the road. Check your local laws. Mounts below your vehicle’s dashboard are always legal.

Are magnetic mounts bad for your phone?

An especially powerful magnet can damage your phone’s internal systems. However, most magnetic phone mounts feature relatively weak magnets that shouldn’t hurt your phone or affect functionality.

Are vent phone mounts safe?

Vent phone mounts are safe, and it is unlikely your phone will break your vent. If you have a particularly heavy phone, you may consider mounting it elsewhere.

How do I get my phone holder to stick to my dashboard?

Some phone mounts can attach to your dashboard via either an adhesive or strong suction. Adhesive mounts are often sold covered, so you will need to peel back a thin layer of plastic for them to stick. If you are using a suction mount, try to wet the surface, which should help with suction strength.

Low-quality phone mounts may not suction to your car’s dashboard very well, especially when it gets hot.

Where should I put my phone mount?

You should put your phone mount in a place where you can easily consult your phone for directions without obscuring your view of the road. You'll also likely want it in a place that your car charger cable can reach