In design for durability, it is generally believed that a compressive mean stress is beneficial and a tensile mean stress is detrimental. Quantitatively the effect of mean stress on fatigue life however is still inconclusive and may very well depend on both the material used and the loading conditions. Over the years, many models have been proposed to help predict mean stress effects. For example, in the long life region, Goodman's formula is widely used, while the Smith-Watson-Topper damage parameter seems the most popular for use in computerized local strain based fatigue tools. In this paper, several frequently cited mean stress correction methods together with the most recent crack closure based method are compared in various ways. Particular emphasis is given to the effect of yield level mean stresses, which has been traditionally neglected but is of practical importance to the ground vehicle industry.