As a truck owner, you know that a truck winch can make a difference in terms of hauling or pulling. Even if many have seen a truck winch before, they may not know how does a winch works.
Page Table of Contents
- What’s the brief description of a truck winch?
- What’s the best way to install a winch on your truck?
- Which safety tips should you follow when using the truck winch?
- One last suggestion before you go buying
- TOP 5 Truck Winches
- FAQs on truck winches
What’s the brief description of a truck winch?
Unlike other truck accessories (bed liners, running boards, roof racks, and so on), a truck winch is a fundamental tool for your truck. A powerful truck winch is going to get you out of any situation (per se), helping you explore the most unforgiving terrains.
When you get stuck, the truck winch truly becomes the lifesaver. Unless it’s not good quality as it should be. It’s why you should always be careful at what you’re buying.
What’s the best way to install a winch on your truck?
Once you found out the best truck winch, you should also install it. Mounting the winch correctly, using the appropriate mounting plate is just as important as buying the right winch. Not only that you can ruin your truck, but you can also damage for good the winch in case of improper installation.
Here are the steps to take when installing the winch on your truck:
- Identify the place on the front bumper where you plan to mount the winch
- Mount the unit onto the bumper, checking the winch mounts
- Connect the wire to the battery
- Continue with installing the power switch
- You should pretension the wire inside the winch
- Check to see if the cable is tightly spooled on the drum.
Which safety tips should you follow when using the truck winch?
The risk for injuries while winching is never null, which is why you should always be careful when installing and using the winch.
There’s no such thing as being too careful while winching, so here are some tips to remember:
- Always give the cable, the winch, and the clamps a good look before using
- Never step on/over the tensioned cabled
- Always makes sure that the winch remote isn’t placed near the drum
- There should never be anyone standing close to the winch nor the towed object. There’s always a chance for something to break
One last suggestion before you go buying
The variety of truck winches shouldn’t intimidate you. However, you must do due diligence about it and find you what you need for your truck. Once you have the best winch for your vehicle, you should always follow the safety instruction so that nobody gets hurt throughout the winching.
TOP 5 Truck Winches
1. VIPER Winch 12000lb
Even if the attractive price of VIPER Winch 12000lb, Steel cable is going to seal the deal for many, the winch is a lot more than just an affordable option.
The unit is made with military-grade materials and takes the use for a fair amount of time. It comes with both wireless and wired remote switches, for safer operation from a distance.
There’s a built-in contractor for the winch, whereas the cable is made of steel and it’s 85′ long. The roller fairlead runs smoothly and spools the cable nice and comfortable every time. The planetary metal gear train is entirely sealed, which protects it from the elements and water.
It’s a great option to use for your truck, with the IP67 waterproof grade allowing safe use even in moist environments. The metal body is sturdy and has a durability feel to it. The clevis hook also looks rugged, whereas the automatic in-the-drum brake gives you control over the power. The unit also contains a sliding ring gear for the clutch.
Mounting the winch is easy, and the unit comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty.
Let’s check the best things once more:
- It’s made with military-grade materials
- The planetary metal gear train is entirely sealed
- It has an IP67 waterproof grade
- The winch is robust and gives reliable power
Don’t make a tragedy out of the downsides:
- The instruction is poor
- The range for the remote could be higher
Beggars cannot be choosers, and the winch is a reliable, dependable, and healthy option that doesn’t empty your pockets. What else do you need when shopping on a fixed budget?
2. X-BULL 12V Waterproof Synthetic Rope Winch-13000 lb.
Many are going to find the X-BULL 12V Waterproof Synthetic Rope Winch-13000 lb. Load Capacity IP67 the perfect choice for their needs and budget, and you should scroll down for the details.
The unit has a waterproof IP67 rating and comes with overload protector and winch cover, eliminating the protection worries. Anyway, the winch cover has waterproof, UV, and mildew resistance. It features sewn-in elastic around the edges, for a secure and tight fit. The elastic hem cord also provides quick and snug fit, with the double-stitched seams ensuring long time use.
There’s a heavy-duty sealed contactor for the winch and an 85ft long Dyneema synthetic cable. You’re going to be impressed by the proprietary Synthetic braided line with 23,809lbs breaking strength, whereas the rope is lightweight, has minimal stretch and no rotation whatsoever. It can even work in cold temperatures, while it’s easy to handle and has no sharp frays.
The unit also presents overload protectors which are going to cut the power supply, protecting the electrical appliances from expansion.
The clutch lever ensures straightforward to use; it’s easy to turn and fits in your hand high.
The winch comes ready to go, and the instruction is easy to follow.
Here’s a second look of the pros:
- It comes with overload protector and winch cover
- The cover is water, UV, and mildew resistant
- The unit is durable and has a robust build
- It’s orange and effortless to install
The downsides shouldn’t make you change your mind:
- The isolator isn’t protected
- There is no instruction related to the isolator
Stay focused on the positive aspects, as they are so many, rending the unit to be a valid choice for many truck owners out there.
3. WARN-8000-lb winch
If you’re aiming for the low-profile and versatile winch, the WARN 26502 M8000 8000-lb winch is one of your best shots. The unit doesn’t stand out, and the separate control box lets you try various mounting.
It includes a three-stage planetary gearbox and an automatic direct drive cone brake system. Not only that the unit ensures excellent power, but you also get control over the power. Speaking of which, we should also mention the ongoing 4.8HP series wound motor that gives 8,000lbs pull rating. The list of great features continues with the sliding ring gear free spooling clutch.
The electrical control box and the handheld remote (with 12ft. lead) is useful and allows safe operation from afar. The remote control is reliable to use on all weather conditions.
The 100ft wire rope is strong and durable, with a dependable roller fairlead to use. We like the unit since it’s very well made and presents chip-resistant powder-coated finish. The stainless steel hardware and lever are also good quality, and the unit is of great value for the money.
We like the following features:
- The winch is very well made and seems durable
- You can try various mounting on trucks, Jeeps, and SUVs
- It comes with a strong motor and tight rope
- It’s powerful and dependable
No winch is perfect, and neither is this one:
- The powder coating isn’t perfect
- You shouldn’t submerge it in water
Regardless of the minor problems, the winch isn’t going to disappoint in terms of build, consistent performance, and versatility.
4. Mile Marker 15,0000 Pound Truck/SUV
The Mile Marker 76-53260W 15,0000 Pound Truck/SUV stands out as being one of the lightest options, considering the load capacity. It’s a 15,000 lb. load capacity winch that comes with a three-stage planetary gear train and big HD 6.8 hip/12V series wound motor.
The unit is sealed for protection against the elements and has an IP68 waterproof grade. It can take mud, snow, and water anytime. Besides, it features a submersible 500-amp solenoid which ensures protection and maximum duty cycle.
The winch has a compact design and weighs 25% less than other winches within its category. It’s entirely sealed and presents fully sealed winches. It’s easy to mount on a truck, and it’s submersible as well.
The marine-grade remote control connectors give incredible recovery speeds and impressive duty cycle. The winch uses a 79ft long synthetic rope, stainless steel hardware, tie rods, hook, Dacromet coated roller fairlead and a rugged body. Not only that the sturdy black body is corrosive-resistant, but it also looks nice too.
On top of everything else, the unit comes with a handheld remote control with 12′ long cord. The black zinc clutch handles and the anodized aluminum tie bar complete the description of the fantastic winch.
We’ve shortened the pros to the following:
- It’s entirely sealed to mud, snow, and water
- The 500-amp solenoid is submersible
- It presents corrosion-free build and stainless steel hardware
- It’s robust, sturdy, and long-lasting
Bells and whistles aside, here are the flaws:
- The packaging could be better
- The control box is center-mounted, which some may not like
The winch impresses with the build, high-quality materials, and reliable performance. That should be enough for most truck owners out there.
5. WARN 16.5ti Thermometric Winch
When you want only the very best for your truck and money isn’t an issue, you should take the leap of faith with WARN 68801 16.5ti Thermometric Winch.
Not only that the winch provides a pulling capacity up to 16,500 pounds, but it’s also a perfect option for the heavyweight trucks and SUVs. The unit comes with remote control with 12-ft lead, S2 elements, and thermometric indicator. It has a built-in flashlight, easing out the operation at night.
The winch is powered by a 4.6HP Gen II Series Wound motor and impresses with fantastic sealing and durability. The unit can Warn thermometric technology, with the thermometric indicator LED offering operator feedback about motor’s temperature.
The motor works great with the three-stage planetary gear train, with a new design for quicker line speed and lower amp draw. The unit is very well made and impresses with the aluminum solenoid housing cover.
There are no compromises when it comes to the ropes either, and the unit comes with aircraft-grade and 7/16″ thick wire rope. It’s 90ft long, which is more than enough in most everyday situations.
The automatic direct driver cone gives you control over the power, and the fairlead roller eases out the use. There’s also a rotating ring gear clutch to use for free spooling.
The winch is very well made and has a chromate finish with high-gloss dark gray powder coat. The color-coded cables and the connectors help the user winch more natural.
Here’s what we like the most about the winch:
- It comes with 12V 4.6HP series wound motor and three-stage planetary gears
- It presents Warn thermometric technology
- The cable is long, thick, and rugged
- The winch is very well made, and it’s a beast
The inherent flaws don’t undermine the overall value of the winch:
- The cable is heavy and may be challenging to roll
- The risk for snarling of the cable isn’t null
You should put your money where your mouth is and get the winch, especially if you’re looking for a beast for your truck.
FAQs on truck winches
Q: Should you get an electric winch for your truck?
A: Many truck owners go with electric winches for their trucks, simply because the installation is effortless. When you don’t have to transfer the winch from one vehicle to another, you only reinstall the winch. The electric winch is fast and dependable, providing the power you need for getting out of a rut. You only use it with the battery of your truck, so no worries about having to install a hydraulic pump.
Q: Is the hydraulic winch an option for a truck?
A: Truth be told, hydraulic winches aren’t that popular amongst the truck owners. They provide impressive durability and strength, but the installation requires many elements to power the winch. A tow truck may work best with a hydraulic winch, but you’ll need to install a hydraulic pump system. Even if it’s a lot of work, the hydraulic winches can work regularly and don’t present a risk for failing or overheating.
Q: Should you go with wire cable or synthetic rope on the truck winch?
A: Many like the synthetic winch rope for its flexibility, but it comes with a twist. When you’re trying to spool it back, the cord may tangle around itself. Steel cable, on the other hand, doesn’t tangle, but it’s heavier to handle. Remember that the steel cable may rust, while synthetic rope can age prematurely in the sun, so neither of two options is weather-resistant per se. Always have in mind the typical weather conditions when deciding between the two.