Full house in poker
One of the reasons why online poker games are so exciting is that there are rules that give room for all forms of strategies. Generally, the results of a round depend on the hand rankings. Poker hands such as full house are among the best rankings that can award a payout.
The question is, how strong does it fare on the power table, and what other card combinations can beat it? Get answers to these essential poker questions in this guide.
What is a full house in poker?
A full house is a five-card poker hand that includes a three of a kind (three cards of the same rank) and one pair (two cards of the same rank). It’s the only combination with two different poker hand rankings in one.
Poker full house rules
A standard 52-card deck can produce numerous versions of a poker full house. Fortunately, there are specific rules for poker full house rankings.
Firstly, when ranking a full house, the three of a kind is considered first before the pair. So naturally, the full house with a higher three of a kind is more valuable.
For instance, a five-card hand with three kings and two 10s trumps the one with three 10s and two kings. Where both hands have the same three of a kind, the one with a higher pair wins.
Which full house is strongest?
As per the rules established in earlier sections, the strongest full house will require the highest-ranked three of a kind and the most valuable pair. Therefore, the strongest full house poker hand is aces full of kings. That is three aces and two kings. Note that the suits don’t matter in full house rankings.
Ultimately, the full house type will not matter if the opponent has a weaker hand. Below are the poker hands that do not stand a chance against a full house:
- Three of a kind
- Two pairs
- One pair
- High card
What beats a full house?
The full house is the fourth most powerful poker hand. It comes after the royal flush, straight flush, and four of a kind.
- Four of a kind: In a five-card hand, this represents having four cards of the same rank but different suits. The card can be any random card not of the same rank as the other four.
- Straight flush: This is the second-best poker hand, but it is very rare. The straight flush involves having five consecutive cards of the same suit – e.g., 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 (all spades). It could be any suit and could start from any card rank. In any case, it always trumps the full house.
- Royal flush: The royal flush is the strongest of them all. It’s a straight flush that comprises the 10 value and royal cards and ends with the ace. That is 10, J, Q, K, and A. It must be of the same suit.
Aside from these three, no other hand beats a full house. Naturally, these stronger hands are much harder to come by. The good thing is that you do not always need the best hand to win, especially when going by Texas Hold’em rules.
What if two players have a full house?
Two poker players having the same hand is rare but not impossible. Should two players have a five-card full house hand, the winner is whoever has the higher three of a kind. For instance, kings full of deuces will beat queens full of deuces.
If both players have the same three of a kind, the pair decides who wins.
It gets tricky when two players have the exact same full house hands – identical three of a kinds and identical pairs. Here, both players will share the pot equally.
How to play full house in poker
Generally, the full house is a strong hand that should give you an advantage. When betting or making your next move on the poker table, it’s a good idea to factor in this potential upper hand.
However, the strength of the full house or the advantage it provides is different for different poker variants. For instance, this hand is stronger in Texas Hold’em than in Omaha poker because it’s more difficult to get in the former than in the latter.
There are 3,744 ways of making a full house in Texas Hold’em. The chance of achieving this hand increases as you progress through different stages of the game – the pre-flop, the flop, the turn, and the river. In the river round, you have all the community cards on the table, so the probability of achieving this hand is the highest. It goes up to about 2.60% from 0.14% in the pre-flop.
While Texas Hold’em starts with only two cards per player, each player gets four cards face-down in Omaha Poker. As such, there are much better odds of getting a full house here, but there is a lower payout potential.
As there’s a better payout, it’s worth playing aggressively in Texas Hold’em. However, it’s not a bad idea to limp toward the pot, remaining conservative with betting until you reach the river. With any full house strategy, you should fully understand the basics of poker in order to maximize your winnings.
Getting a full house offers excellent chances of getting a payout. It is one of the stronger hands in poker and is dynamic as several combinations can make a full house. At the same time, this could be unfavorable as you could also lose to better full house hands apart from the stronger hand rankings.
In addition, a full house may offer better payouts in one poker variation than in another. So, make sure that you check the strength of the hand for the online poker variant you’re playing. You can play our free Mississippi Stud Poker game and see how generously it pays for the full house.