Best Winch Today [20 Options to Choose From]

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Top 3 Picks

pressed for time? Check out our top picks

best overall rating
★★★★★

Master Lock Winch

Master Lock Electric Winch, Portable 12-Volt DC Electric Winch, 2953AT
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Compact in size
  • Easy on the budget
best overall rating
★★★★★

Superwinch 1130220

Superwinch 1130220 LT3000 12V DC WInch 3,000lb/1361kg Single Line Pull with Roller Fairlead, 3/16in x 50ft Steel Wire Rope, Corded Handheld Remote
  • Ergonomic clutch
  • Affordable and functional
  • Durable jeep winch
best overall rating
★★★★★

Superwinch 1145220

Superwinch 1145220 Terra 45 ATV & Utility Winch (4500lbs/2046kg Rating)
  • Brushed finish
  • Reputed brand
  • Reliable and sturdy

How We Decided: 42 products considered. 2,400+ reviews analyzed, 26 research hours spent, 35+ info. sources referred

Buying a winch is a tedious process that involves looking at a lot of parameters and making a decision about the purchase.

The following sections of this article break down this purchase decision process and simplify it by digging deep into the factors one should consider.

We also explore the different kind of winches that are available for purchase and which would best suit the needs of the buyer.

This section is followed by a review of the top 20 winches in different categories like the best winch for a jeep, ATV, UTV truck, car trailer, boat trailer, heavyweight, come along, etc.

The FAQ section will cover some of the most commonly asked queries about winches.

Top Winch Compared

ProductSpecificationsPrice

Master Lock Electric Winch

Best Portable

Motor: 12 V/-
Rated Line Pull: 2000 lbs
Line Length: 30 ft

Superwinch 1130220 LT3000ATV

Best for Jeep

Motor: -/1.2 hp
Rated Line Pull: 3000 lbs
Line Length: 50 ft

Superwinch 1145220

Best for ATV

Motor: -/1.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 4500 lbs
Line Length: 55 ft

Superwinch 1125220

Best for UTV

Motor: 12 V/1.3 hp
Rated Line Pull: 2500 lbs
Line Length: 50 ft

Smittybilt (98512) X2O

Best for Truck

Motor: -/6.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 12000 lbs
Line Length: 98.5 ft

Smittybilt 97412 XRC Winch

Best 12,000 Lbs

Motor: -/6.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 12000 lbs
Line Length: 79 ft

Smittybilt 97495

Best for Car Trailer

Motor: -/6.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 9500 lbs
Line Length: 94 ft

TEKTON 5547 Puller

Best Come Along

Motor: NA
Rated Line Pull: 8000 lbs
Line Length: 12 ft

WARN 96820

Best Off Road

Motor: 12 V/-
Rated Line Pull: 12000 lbs
Line Length:80'

Reese Towpower 74329

Best for Boat Trailer

Motor: NA
Rated Line Pull: 1500 lbs
Line Length: 20 ft

Smittybilt 97495 XRC Winch

Motor: -/6.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 9500 lbs
Line Length: 94 ft

Smittybilt 98412 XRC Winch

Motor: -/6.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 12000 lbs
Line Length: 94 ft

WARN 86245 VR8000

Motor: 12 V/-
Rated Line Pull: 8000 lbs
Line Length: 94 ft

Superwinch 1135220 Terra 35

Best for ATV

Motor: -/1.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 3500 lbs
Line Length: 50 ft

WARN 89031 3000-S

Motor: 12 V/1.1 hp
Rated Line Pull: 3000 lbs
Line Length: 50 ft

WARN 885005 Winch

Best for UTV

Motor: 24 V/-
Rated Line Pull: 1000 lbs
Line Length:15 ft

Champion 3000-lb. Winch Kit

Motor: 12 V/1.3 hp
Rated Line Pull: 3000 lbs
Line Length: 46 ft

Champion 4500-lb. Winch Kit

Best Price

Motor: 12 V/1.6 hp
Rated Line Pull: 4500 lbs
Line Length: 38 ft

Warn 95950 Zeon 12-S Winch

Motor: 12 V/-
Rated Line Pull: 12000 lbs
Line Length: 80 ft

WARN 26502 M8000

Motor: -/4.8 hp
Rated Line Pull: 8000 lbs
Line Length: 100 ft

Reviews of the Best Winch

1.best overall rating

Master Lock Electric Winch

Master Lock Electric Winch, Portable 12-Volt DC Electric Winch, 2953AT

Master Lock was founded by Mr. Harry Soref in 1921 making it one of the oldest companies around in the business.

Their initial lineup of products was more focused on security products like padlocks, electronic locks, etc. Over the years, the company has developed a diversified portfolio.

This portable variant of winches can be easily used for multiple applications like for cars, trailers, trucks, or boats. It is an electric winch and runs at 12 V DC. It comes equipped with a convenient built-in carrying cable.

The design of this winch is extremely durable and can easily offer 2,000 lbs of pulling capacity. The hooks and cable of this winch are made of galvanized steel for additional safety.

The capacity of this winch is 6,000 lbs with a rolling and marine capacity of 5,000 lbs and 2,000 lbs respectively.

The maximum boat size that it can pull is 18 ft. The kit includes a steel mounting plate, a 30 ft steel cable, a remote controller, a hand crank and a 20 ft power cable.

This product is one of the best-selling winches in the ‘Portable Winches’ category.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Options for temporary or permanent mounting
  • Parallel shaft gear for efficient power
  • Automatic shutdown on overloading
  • Toggle remote control allows control from a distance

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable unit
  • Compact in size
  • Easy on the budget
  • Customers found it easy to use
  • Temporary and permanent winching options

Cons

  • Customers expected higher line speeds
2.best overall rating

Superwinch 1130220 LT3000ATV

Superwinch 1130220 LT3000 12V DC WInch 3,000lb/1361kg Single Line Pull with Roller Fairlead, 3/16in x 50ft Steel Wire Rope, Corded Handheld Remote

Headquartered at Oregon in the United States, Superwinch is one of the most reputed winch brands. They have their products selling all over the world.

Their product range includes not only winches but also, accessories, parts, power drives, etc. They sell both electric and hydraulic winches. With 45 years of experience, Superwinch is one of the market’s finest players.

One of the most popular winches for a Jeep, this Superwinch product offers a rated line pull of 3,000 lbs. It comes equipped with a heavy-duty four-way roller fairlead and a mounting plate.

The winch runs with the help of low amperage 1.2 HP low amp permanent magnet motor. It includes both a handlebar-mounted rocker switch and a handheld remote with a 12 ft lead.

The mechanical dynamic braking system is one of the safety features of this winch. The smooth and noiseless operations of the winch are supported by a three-stage planetary gear train system.

The 50 ft of durable wire rope of 3/16th of an inch in thickness is responsible for helping the winch in pulling the heavy loads. An ergonomic free spooling clutch is also an essential part of this winch.

This product is one of the best selling ones in the ‘Jeep winches’ category. The winch weighs around 20 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 13.2 x 4.2 x 4.2 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Circuit breaker protection
  • A gearing reduction ratio of 136:1
  • Heavy-duty clevis pin latched hook
  • The manufacturer offers a two-year limited lifetime warranty
  • 100% automatic load holding

Pros

  • Reasonable price
  • Great instruction quality
  • Ease of installation is high
  • Remote control feature is good
  • Good price point
  • Compact design

Cons

  • The kit doesn’t include mounting hardware for the solenoid
3.best overall rating

Superwinch 1145220

Superwinch 1145220 Terra 45 ATV & Utility Winch (4500lbs/2046kg Rating)

As the name indicates, this Superwinch product is a part of the Terra series and offers a rated line pull of 4,500 lbs.

The operations of this winch are supported by high efficiency, low amp draw, sealed 1.6 HP permanent magnet motor. Some of the notable features of this winch are the mechanical load holding and the dynamic brake action.

The winch is equipped with 55 ft of steel wire rope with a diameter of 1/4th of an inch. The winch is equipped with an ergonomic free spooling clutch.

All steel planetary gears are twice as wide as the gears used by the competitor’s winches. The machined in, oil pocket bronze bearings last longer.

The winch is circuit breaker protected and the weather-sealed solenoid contact ensures that the winch works smoothly in all sorts of weather conditions.

The four-way roller fairlead helps in guiding the rope safely onto and off the drums. There is also a heavy-duty latched hook with a thimble. The manufacturer offers a limited lifetime warranty.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘ATV winches’ category. The winch weighs around 22 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 15.1 x 4.5 x 4.8 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Universal fitment for a wide variety of vehicles
  • Kit includes a variety of installation gear
  • Mechanical load holding and dynamic braking system
  • Rubberized remote switch with a 10 ft extension cable

Pros

  • Compact size
  • Smooth functioning, quiet operations
  • Sheathed wire with extra protection
  • Brushed finish
  • Reputed brand
  • Reliable and sturdy build

Cons

  • Electrical connections are very delicate
4.best overall rating

Superwinch 1125220

Superwinch 1125220 Terra 25 2500lb Winch with Roller Fairlead and More

This winch is a part of the high-performance Terra series and has a rated line pull of 2,500 lbs. This high efficiency, low amp draw is possible due to a sealed 1.3 HP permanent magnet motor.

The safety features of this winch include mechanical load holding and a dynamic braking system. The winch is equipped with a 50 ft steel wire rope which has a thickness of 3/16th of an inch.

This unit can also boast of an ergonomic cam action free spooling clutch. The winch includes an all-steel three-stage planetary gear system and these gears are twice as wide as those used by the competition.

The bronze bearings are machined in and have oil pockets for better lubrication. The entire winch is circuit breaker protected and it has weather-sealed solenoid contact.

The standard four-way roller fairlead helps in making the reeling in and out operations fairly smooth. There is a heavy-duty latched hook with the thimble. The manufacturer also offers a limited lifetime warranty.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘UTV winches’ category. The winch weighs around 18 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 13.2 x 4.5 x 4.8 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Multiple operation switching options
  • Mechanical load holding and dynamic braking system
  • Uncompromised movement for years, regardless of weather conditions
  • Comes with a rubberized remote switch with a 10 ft extension cable
  • Good weather protection allowing safe and reliable electromagnetic power

Pros

  • Good quality winch
  • Ease of installation is high
  • Universal fitting
  • Instructions are easy to follow
  • Reputed brand name

Cons

  • A synthetic rope would be better instead of steel rope
5.best overall rating

Smittybilt (98512) X2O

Smittybilt X2O 12K GEN2 Comp Series Wireless Winch 98512

This is one of the winches of Smittybilt (part of the X2O Comp series) that offers a high rated line pull to the tune of 12,000 lbs making it ideal for heavyweight applications.

The winch is equipped with a heavy-duty 6.6 HP series wound amphibious motor that can be attributed for this staggering capacity. The winch also has a three-stage planetary gear system.

The manufacturer offers a lifetime mechanical warranty and a five-year electrical warranty. The unit is completely waterproof and has a state of the art 500 AMP solenoid.

The winch comes with a synthetic wire rope that is 98.5 ft in length and 3/8th of an inch in thickness. There is a roller fairlead in place for smooth reeling in and out operations.

The corded remote controller has a 12 ft lead. The winch also has a sliding ring gear clutch and an automatic out of drum braking system.

The textured black finish makes this winch a suitable add-on for a variety of vehicles as far as aesthetics are concerned.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Truck winches’ category. The winch weighs 63 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 22.3 x 5.4 x 9.4 inches. Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • A gear ratio of 265:1
  • State of the art synthetic rope
  • The dynamic braking system reduces drum temperature by almost 66%
  • Lifetime mechanical and 5-year electrical warranty by the manufacturer
  • Integrated wireless remote
  • UV resistant matte black textured finish
  • IP68 waterproofing rating
  • Larger clutch for easy control during gloved operations
  • Oversized tie rod studs for maximum strength

Pros

  • Great brand repute
  • Remote control feature rated high by the users
  • Ease of installation is high
  • The instruction quality is good
  • Good line speed

Cons

  • Users expected a better mounting design
6.best overall rating

Smittybilt 97412 XRC

Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch | 12,000 Pound Load Capacity

This winch is a part of the XRC series by Smittybilt and it offers a high rated line pull of 12,000 lbs. the winch comes with a wireless remote controller.

The winch has a 6.6 HP series wound amphibious motor and a three-stage planetary gear system. The manufacturer offers a lifetime mechanical warranty and a 5-year electrical warranty.

The winch is completely waterproof and the unit is equipped with a state of the art 500 AMP solenoid. The drum diameter is 2.5 inches and the single line cable rope is 79 ft in length and 0.375 inches in diameter.

The product comes with a corded remote controller with a 12 ft lead.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘High Capacity winches’ category. The winch weighs 83 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 26.1 x 13.2 x 10.1 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Waterproofing rating of IP67
  • A gearing ratio of 193.2:1
  • Textured black finish
  • Electrical warranty of 5 years and lifetime mechanical warranty
  • Equipped with a sliding ring gear clutch system
  • Automatic in-drum braking system

Pros

  • Great customer service
  • Good value for money
  • Easy installation
  • Aesthetic appeal is high
  • Instructions are easy to understand

Cons

  • Some users complained about the waterproofing
7.best overall rating

Smittybilt 97495 XRC Winch- 9500 lbs.

Smittybilt XRC GEN2 9.5K Waterproof Winch with Steel Cable - 97495

This winch bearing the Smittybilt logo is one of the winches having a higher load pulling capacity of 9,500 lbs. It is equipped with a 6.6 HP series wound amphibious motor and a 3 stage planetary gear system.

It is completely waterproof and consists of a state of the art 500 AMP solenoid.

The waterproofing rating of this winch is IP67 and it also offers a corded remote controller. The kit comes with complete with all the wiring required for installation.

There is a limited lifetime warranty for the replacement to the original purchaser on stainless steel products.

The manufacturer warranty offered on these products is commendable. The dual-stage, powder coated products carry a 5 year or a 100,000 miles warranty, whichever comes first.

After 3 years, the warranty is prorated up to 50 percent towards the replacement cost of the purchaser’s original price. This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Winches for car trailers’ category.

The winch weighs 78 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 5.4 x 9.4 x 22.3 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Automatic in-drum braking system
  • Waterproofing rating of IP67
  • A gearing ratio of 161.28:1
  • Sliding ring gear clutch
  • Lifetime mechanical warranty and a 3-year electrical warranty
  • Cable length of 94 ft and cable diameter 5/16th of an inch

Pros

  • High line speeds
  • Kit includes roller fairlead
  • Powerful but compact
  • Great value for money
  • Aesthetic appeal is high
  • Durable and rugged construction
  • Good quality component and long product life

Cons

  • Slightly complex electrical connections
  • Some users reported stiffness while using the winch handle
8.best overall rating

TEKTON 5547 Puller

TEKTON 4 Ton Dual Gear Power Puller | 5547

This Tekton winch has a commendable capacity of almost 4 tons or 8,000 lbs. It is a dual gear model and this ratcheting gear pulley system allows for one-handed efforts to pull heavy loads.

The dual gears and locking pawls are responsible for distributing the pulling force evenly.

The construction of this winch is all hardened steel and there is corrosion-resistant galvanized finish on top of it for superior protection and longer product life.

This manual variant winch is equipped with a 1/4th of an inch thick aircraft-grade braided steel cable. One of the notable safety features of this winching unit is the self-closing safety latches on hooks that provide sure connections.

The high leverage ratchet handle made of steel is 21 inches in length and comes cushioned with a non-slip grip.

The secondary pawls make pumping the handle a safe and controlled operation. Although rated at 4 tons, the safe working load of this winch is 4,000 lbs.

This product is one of the best-selling winches in the ‘Come Along winches’ category. Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Maximum pulling length of 7 feet 3 inches
  • Hook size of 5/16th of an inch
  • Ideal for landscaping, construction and farming projects
  • The notch-at-a-time letdown of large loads

Pros

  • Can handle heavy loads
  • Good handle construction for a safe and comfortable grip
  • Worked as advertised

Cons

  • Component quality could be better
9.best overall rating

WARN 96820 VR12 Winch

WARN 96820 VR12 12V Electric Winch with Steel Cable Rope: 3/8' Diameter x 80' Length, 6 Ton (12,000 lb) Capacity

This winch is equipped with a waterproof Albright contractor for ultimate control and reliability. It is equipped with a 12 V DC powerful, efficient series-wound motor.

The winch can also boast of the best in class, load-holding cone brake for superior control. The low profile design will fit most trucks, jeeps, and SUVs which makes it ones of the best winches for off-roading.

The one-piece tie plate replaces the tie rods for added strength and rigidity. The winch comes with a new tactical control pack that allows multiple mounting configurations.

This winch is a part of the VR family and it offers the fastest no-load line speed in the VR family. The manufacturer offers a 7-year electrical warranty and a limited lifetime warranty on the mechanical components.

This winch is great for a three-quarter-ton and one-ton pickups and bigger, heavier rigs. Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • 3 stage planetary gear system
  • Automatic direct drive cone braking system
  • 80 ft long steel rope with a thickness of 3/8th of an inch
  • Equipped with a cast iron hawse fairlead
  • Powder coat over primer undercoating finish

Pros

  • Rated highest for a good price point
  • Ease of installation is high
  • Great capacity
  • Good brand reputation
  • Quality construction

Cons

  • Control pack design could be better
10.best overall rating

Reese Towpower 74329 Trailer Winch

Reese Towpower 74329 Trailer Winch,Silver

The Reese brand consists of four major product lines which are Reese Secure, Reese Towpower, Reese Explore, and Reese Powersports. Reese Towpower is associated with the products like ball mounts and hitch balls, electrical and lighting equipment, receiver hitches, towing accessories, towing security gear and trailer accessories.

This winch is a manual variant which is operable through a comfort grip handle that makes it easier to hold while cranking. The capacity of the winch is 1,500 lbs and it comes with a 20 ft strap and hook.

The exterior of the winch is zinc coated for a superior finish and excellent weather/corrosion protection.

The full-length drum bushing and shaft bushing pre-lubricated with oil minimize the maintenance required for this winch. The gears are built to certain standards and specifications that resist wear and tear and last longer.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Winches for boat trailer’ category.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Carbon steel, high-quality construction
  • A gear ratio of 4:1
  • Very lightweight
  • Gears meet the SAE 1050 specifications

Pros

  • Ease of installation is high
  • Easy on the budget
  • Customers found it easy to use
  • Comfortable grip owing to a smooth handle
  • Sturdy design

Cons

  • Opening of the hook is too small
11.best overall rating

Smittybilt 97495 XRC Winch

Smittybilt XRC GEN2 9.5K Waterproof Winch with Steel Cable - 97495

Smittybilt was founded by a Mr. Basil Smith in 1956 and was called Rock-ett Products. Over the years, Smittybilt has expanded considerably and had over 2000 products in its portfolio.

The company ensures a constant involvement in the off-road markets to better understand their customers and constantly innovate.

Their products are available worldwide owing to a large active network of dealers and distributors.

With a 6.6 HP, amphibious series wound motor and a three-stage planetary gear system, this Smittybilt winch is a proud member of the XRC winches family that offer capacities ranging from 9,500 lbs to 17,500 lbs.

It offers an impressive pulling capacity of 9,500 lbs and is equipped with a state of the art 500 AMP solenoid. The winch is completely waterproof and has an IP67 rating for the same.

The kit comes complete with all the required wiring for installation and also offers a corded remote controller with a 12 ft lead.

Smittybilt also offers a limited lifetime warranty for the replacement to the original purchaser on all the stainless steel components.

These components have a long life as they are the dual-stage, powder coated products that carry a warranty of 5 years or 100,000 miles whichever happens sooner.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Jeep winches’ category. The winch weighs 78 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 5.4 x 9.4 x 22.3 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Textured black finish with weather and corrosion protection
  • A gear reduction ratio of 161.28:1
  • Equipped with a sliding ring gear type of clutch
  • Cable length of 94 ft with a thickness of 5/16th of an inch
  • The manufacturer offers a lifetime mechanical and a 3-year electrical warranty

Pros

  • Rated well for good instruction quality
  • Easy to install
  • Remote control feature is good
  • Reputed brand name
  • Highly recommended by users
  • Great value for money
  • Line speed is good

Cons

  • Some users complained that the winch is not completely waterproof
12.best overall rating

Smittybilt 98412 XRC

Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch | 12,000 Pound Load Capacity | Syntethic rope

Much like the other winches in the XRC Generation 2 series, this Smittybilt product is equipped with a 6.6 HP series wound amphibious motor.

The three-stage planetary gear system helps to run the winch smoothly. There is a lifetime mechanical and a 5-year electrical warranty on this winch.

Owing to its high capacity of 12,000 lbs, this winch is well suited for rescuing other vehicles and other off-roading applications.

The IP67 waterproofing rating ensures that the sensitive winch components are well protected from the weather conditions. The winch is equipped with a sliding ring gear clutch.

One of the safety features of this winch is the dynamic braking system which ensures that heavy loads do not slip suddenly.

The winch weighs 89 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 22.3 x 6.4 x 9.4 inches. This Gen2 product by Smittybilt is a complete recovery system with the muscle and reliability to bail one out of any situation.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Jeep winches’ category. The winch weighs around 66 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 22.3 x 6.4 x 9.4 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • A gear ratio of 193.2:1
  • Cable length of 94 ft with a diameter of 3/8th of an inch
  • Multiple mounting options available
  • Equipped with a magnetized handle

Pros

  • Good price point
  • Ease of installation is high
  • Line speeds are high
  • Good load-bearing capacity at this price point

Cons

  • Some customers complained that the winch is not completely waterproof
13.best overall rating

WARN 86245 VR8000

WARN 86245 VR8000 8,000 lb Winch

Arthur Warn was the founder of Warn Industries in 1948. They have a considerable amount of experience in creating winches and related products.

The company can boast of over 600 products and 110 quality and environment certifications and patents. Their products are known for quality and durability.

They are also pioneers of many well-known technology solutions which are employed in the creation of high-performance winches today.

Warn is a well-known name in the winch industry and this winch product by them offers a load-bearing capacity of 8,000 lbs.

The good performance of this winch can be attributed to the durable, smooth and reliable three-stage planetary gear train system. The low profile design is such that it can fit most trucks and SUVs.

Durable construction and quick line speeds are the two best features of any Warn winch including this one.

This winch is a part of the Vehicle Recovery line aimed at first time buyers who are looking to save some cash but still lay their hands on a genuine Warn product.

There is a separate control pack which allows one to have multiple mounting options.

This Warn product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Jeep winches’ category. The winch weighs 80 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 25.2 x 13.5 x 8 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • 12 V DC series wound motor
  • A gear reduction ratio of 216:1
  • An automatic direct drive cone braking system
  • Cable length of 94 ft with a thickness of 5/16th of an inch
  • Equipped with a roller fairlead for smooth reeling operations
  • Powder-coated finish for extreme weather protection

Pros

  • Good starter winch for novices
  • Ease of installation is high
  • Detailing on the winch is good
  • Well suited for multiple vehicles

Cons

  • Customers found instructions to be a little tricky
14.best overall rating

Superwinch 1135220

Superwinch 1135220 Terra 35 3500lbs/1591kg single line pull with roller fairlead, handlebar mnt toggle, handheld remote

Another winch of the Terra series, this product is capable of pulling loads up to 3,500 lbs.

The high efficiency of this winch can be attributed to the 12 V DC 1.6 HP permanent magnet motor which also features a dynamic braking system and mechanical load holding.

The winch rope is 50 ft in length and has a thickness of 13/64th of an inch. The ergonomic cam action free spooling clutch helps in increasing the ease of use.

The gears used by this winch are made of all steel and are twice as wide as those used by the competitors. The circuit breaker protection and weatherproofing allow for smooth operations in all kinds of weather.

The heavy-duty latched hook with thimble helps in anchoring various kinds of loads easily. The winch weighs a meager 20 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 13.4 x 4.5 x 4.8 inches.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘ATV winches’ category. The winch weighs 20 around 20 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 13.4 x 4.5 x 4.8 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Machined-in, oil pocket bronze bearings
  • A gear ratio of 140:1
  • Comes with a rubberized remote switch with a 10-foot extension cable
  • Portable and permanent installation supported
  • Clever Design allows motor terminals to be rotated for the best fit

Pros

  • Good line speeds
  • Multiple mount options
  • Great brand reputation
  • Great instruction quality

Cons

  • Customer service could be better
15.best overall rating

WARN 89031 3000-S

WARN 89031 Vantage 3000-S Winch - 3000 lb. Capacity

This Warn winch offers a pulling capacity of 3,000 lbs. The fully sealed motor and drive train keep the weather elements out. The smooth operations are supported by a three-stage planetary gear system.

There is a mechanical brake for control while winching. The kit includes a handlebar-mounted mini rocker switch and a corded remote controller.

There is a five year mechanical and a one-year electrical warranty on this winch.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘ATV winches’ category. The winch weighs a meager 8 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 15.5 x 13 x 6.5 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Corrosion-resistant finish
  • Stainless steel fasteners and clutch lever
  • Dash-mounted control switch
  • Powered by a 12 V DC, 1.1 HP, permanent magnet sealed motor
  • A gear reduction ratio of 180:1
  • Roller fairlead and a spring braking system
  • Intermittent duty cycle
  • Gray powder-coated finish

Pros

  • Easy to understand instructions
  • Great quality synthetic rope
  • Reliable performance

Cons

  • Some components could be made of better material
16.best overall rating

WARN 885005 Winch

WARN 885005 PullzAll Cordless 24V DC Portable Electric Winch with Steel Cable and 2 Rechargeable Battery Packs: 1/2 Ton (1,000 lb) Pulling Capacity, red

This is a cordless winch offered by Warn Industries. It runs on electricity and features a 24 V motor. The winch can pull loads up to 1,000 lbs.

The cordless feature of this winch makes it great for use in the field. The kit includes two battery packs with the charger and 15 ft of durable wire rope. There is a LED load indicator.

The winch can also be powered by a 120 V AC power source. There is also a variable speed trigger for the power in and power out operations.

The unit is equipped with a small versatile swivel anchor hook that helps in pulling loads easily. It is less manual labor as compared to a come-along winch or a chain fall.

The kit includes a sling, a rigging kit, a rigging cable, and a car charger. The winch relies on a rechargeable 24 V NiMH battery pack with rapid charge.

It has a forward and reverse switch and also a variable speed trigger. The length of the wire rope is 15 feet and the diameter of the same is 7/32th of an inch.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘UTV winches’ category. The winch weighs around 19 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 19 x 10 x 11 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • Can be used for home improvement, construction, pipe fitting, plant maintenance, etc
  • Provides required mechanical muscle in remote locations
  • Galvanized steel wire rope for corrosion protection
  • Equipped with a hawse fairlead for smooth reeling in and out operations
  • Powerful rigging straps and two D shackles

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Remote controller function rated well by users
  • Great price point
  • Variable line speed options
  • User recommended product

Cons

  • Component quality could be better
17.best overall rating

Champion 3000-lb. Winch

Champion 3000-lb. ATV/UTV Winch Kit, BLACK,RED

Champion Power Equipment caters to the needs of all sorts of winching by providing a product line that has capacities ranging from 2,000 lbs to 12,000 lbs.

Apart from winches, their product lines include log splitters, portable generators, chipper shredders, tillers & cultivators, water pumps, snowblowers, engines, and other outdoor equipment.

Their products are engineered in the United States and available for purchase all over the world.

This Champion winch has a rated line pull of 3,000 lbs and this is supported by a 12 V DC, 1.3 HP, permanent magnet motor.

The kit also includes accessories like roller fairlead, a mounting channel, and a handlebar-mounted remote control.

The winch also includes a 49 ft super duty, galvanized aircraft cable with a rugged, latched clevis hook. The thickness of the wire is 3/16th of an inch.

The winch runs with the help of an efficient planetary gear train system and the safety features include a dynamic braking system. The manufacturer offers a 2-year limited warranty on this winch and a lifetime of free technical support.

This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘UTV winches’ category. The winch weighs 22 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 12 x 4 x 4.2 inches.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • A gear reduction ratio of 171:1
  • Line speed of 4.3 fpm and 8.9 fpm with full and no load
  • Free spooling type of clutch
  • 4-way type roller fairlead
  • Intermittent duty cycle

Pros

  • Compact and lightweight
  • The manufacturer offers a lifetime technical support
  • Good price point
  • Great for snow plowing
  • Good quality construction

Cons

  • Does not have a solenoid
18.best overall rating

Champion 4500-lb. Winch

Champion Power Equipment-14560 4500-lb. ATV/UTV Wireless Winch Kit

This Champion winch offers a rated line pull of 4,500 lbs. It comes with a wireless remote controller and antenna which allow one to operate the winch from anywhere within a 50 ft radius.

It automatically powers off when the winch is not in use. The pulling power of the winch is backed by a 1.6 HP 12 V DC motor that offers a line speed of 4.6 fpm and 12.8 fpm with full and no loads respectively.

The kit includes a wireless remote and antenna, a mounting channel, a roller fairlead, and a wiring kit with a contractor and mini-rocker handlebar switch.

The roller fairlead is useful for creating a hassle-free and safe pull with the dependable 38 ft galvanized super-duty aircraft cable which can also withstand abrasive terrain without fraying.

The winch weighs around 31 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 17 x 14.5 x 9.5 inches. Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below.

Key USPs

  • 2 year limited lifetime warranty
  • Free lifetime technical support
  • A gear reduction ratio of 180:1
  • Dynamic braking safety system
  • Three-stage planetary system
  • Free spooling clutch

Pros

  • Great value for money
  • Easy to install
  • Remote control function works great
  • Good quality winch
  • Recommended by users

Cons

  • Some users complained of a narrow spool
19.best overall rating

Warn 95950 Zeon 12-S

WARN 95950 Zeon 12-S Winch

One of the winches on the higher capacity end, this Warn winch offers a rated line pull of 12,000 lbs. The winch is equipped with the propriety and strongest in class Spydura Pro synthetic rope.

The rope features a urethane-coated and heat-treated 12 strand braid and a 20 inch Nomex heat protection sleeve for the same. The kit also includes a ballistic nylon sliding sleeve.

The robust and efficient planetary gear train system delivers a quiet, reliable and fast pulling power.

The extreme waterproofing and sealing standards meet the IP68 waterproofing specifications, which is the highest in the truck, jeep, and SUV lineup.

One of the most notable features is the convertible control pack that can be attached to the winch or installed remotely. This allows for multiple mounting options and looks.

The corrosion resistance of this unit is excellent owing to the matte black powder-coated finish.

The components like clutch lever and fasteners are made of stainless steel. This product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘High Capacity winches’ category.

Some of the key USPs of this product is listed below. The winch weighs around 39 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 26.4 x 19.7 x 8.1 inches.

Key USPs

  • Comes with the patented Warn Zeon pack relocation kit
  • Equipped with an aluminum hawse fairlead with a powder-coated finish
  • Runs with a 12 V DC series wound motor
  • 80 ft synthetic rope with a thickness of 3/8th of an inch
  • Automatic mechanical cone braking system
  • A gear ratio of 162:1

Pros

  • Lightweight for its capacity
  • Good aesthetic appeal
  • Component quality is good
  • Manufactured in the USA
  • Recommended by the customers

Cons

  • Time-consuming and expensive replacement process
  • Customers expected better customer service
20.best overall rating

WARN 26502 M8000

WARN 26502 M8000 Series Electric 12V Winch with Steel Cable Wire Rope: 5/16' Diameter x 100' Length, 4 Ton (8,000 lb) Pulling Capacity

This winch by Warn is one of their higher capacity products with a rated line pull of 8,000 lbs. The low profile design and separate control box allow for a multitude of mounting options.

The winch powers the load in or out with the help of a single line 100 ft rope wire that is 5/16th of an inch in thickness.

It can boast of a highly efficient 3 stage planetary gear system that aids in the smooth and less noisy operations of this winch.

One of the notable safety features of this winch is the automatic direct drive cone braking system. The winch is equipped with a powerful 4.8 HP series wound motor and a sliding ring gear free spooling clutch.

The other equipment along with this winch is the electric control box and the handheld, all-weather corded remote with a 12 ft lead. This Warn product is one of the best selling winches in the ‘Truck winches’ category.

The winch weighs 83 lbs and the dimensions of the same are 26 x 18 x 8 inches.

Key USPs

  • A gear ratio of 216:1
  • Aeroshell #17 lubrication
  • Roller fairlead for smooth reeling in and out operations
  • Argent gray powder coat finish
  • Color-coded leads attached to the winch
  • Stainless steel hardware and lever
  • Limited lifetime warranty offered by the manufacturer

Pros

  • An efficient and robust package
  • Highly rated for durability
  • Good value for money
  • Ease of installation was fairly high

Cons

  • Non-serviceable controller (has to be replaced, cannot be repaired)

Buying Guide for Winch

Smittybilt 9500 lb 97495 XRC GEN2 Winch-9500 Pound Load Capacity

The following is a brief buying guide which sheds light on the parameters to be considered before purchasing a winch.

Required rated line pull

This is one of the most important factors as it a clear indicator of the capacity of the winch. The rated line pull indicated the maximum amount of load that can be pulled by the winch.

Typically, one should not load the winch near its maximum capacity and leave a slight gap between its maximum capacity and the load that it carries.

One should ideally measure the amount of weight they need to lift or pull and then buy a winch with a capacity that is 1.5 times this weight.

Type of application

Winches can be used for several applications apart from pulling heavy objects like snow plowing, bridge building, retrieving a big game, hoisting, making a zipline, tree felling, raising the bed of a vehicle, pulling out a dent, retrieving a flooded boat, raising a flag pole, etc.

The uses are endless and limited only by the imagination of an individual.

Some of these may be commercial applications and the others might be personal. The winch used in either case will depend on the kind of work that needs to be done and how much load should the winch be able to support.

Frequency of application

The winches that one may buy could be for recreational use or professional use. There is a significant difference in the number of times a winch may come in handy in these two scenarios.

A winch which is used occasionally, like in the case of a beginner or if it is used for gardening or fencing, will not be under heavy usage. The buyers of this type of winch will typically be novices or beginners.

As compared to this, a winch that is attached to a commercial UTV or a rescue vehicle will be used as often as once or twice daily. This type of winch needs to be more rugged and required proper care and maintenance.

Professionals who in their line of work require these type of winches will be the buyers and will have a lot of product knowledge.

Winch mounting

There are three ways in which a winch can be mounted onto a vehicle which are heavy-duty winch bumper, bumper-mounted winch, and multi mounted winch.

The heavy-duty winch bumper includes the winch as a part of itself and is the bulkiest option of all. But this sort of mounting is the strongest as the winch is a part of the bumper itself.

The bumper-mounted winch involves attaching the winch to the bumper with the use of some intermediate components.

In the multi mounted winch, there is a carrier that comes into the picture. The winch is attached to the carrier with the help of intermediaries and then the carrier is attached to the bumper.

Winch structure

The structure of the winch can be integrated or non-integrated. The integrated winches have all the components sealed inside a weatherproof box and this makes the winch slightly bulkier and difficult to mount on vehicles.

The non-integrated winches, on the other hand, have the components segregated into smaller parts and this makes it suitable to mount on all kinds of vehicles. However, this compatibility comes at the cost of weather protection.

Brand

Usually, one tends to go for a trusted and well-known brand when making a costly purchase and it is a common instinct to do so.

There are two to three major players like Superwinch, Warn and Smittybilt that rule the roost when it comes to the winch market. There is a wide base of loyal customers who can vouch for the product quality and performance.

One can rely on real customer experiences with the products for making a winch purchase and pick one which is best suited to their needs.

As these brands are very old, there is also a reliable customer support service available for any help.

Price

One of the last but not the least factors affecting one’s winch buying decision is their budget.

If someone is a novice when it comes to off-roading and wants a winch to be used recreationally, it makes sense that they would want to minimize their costs and go for a winch that’s low cost and well suited for their beginner level needs.

The more seasoned adventure enthusiasts will need a winch that has more features and cost may not be the primary consideration in such cases.

These are some of the factors that should be kept in mind when purchasing a winch.

The priority of these factors may change depending on each individual; however, it provides a wholesome picture of the metrics involved in making a smart purchase.

Types of Winches

Champion 3000-lb. ATV/UTV Winch Kit

The classification of winches can be done according to the following parameters.

Type of Rope they use

Two types of ropes are commonly employed in winches, namely, a steel rope or a synthetic rope.

Steel rope

The steel rope used to be a popular option in the older models of winches. The benefits of using a steel rope are that it is abrasion-resistant, cheaper, less likely to fray and heat resistant.

The limitations of using a steel rope are that it is heavy, and it rusts easily.

Synthetic rope

These are more preferred in winches for their lightweight and crush resistance. They are safer to use and can be cleaned easily.

Type of Application

A winch can be purchased for commercial or personal application. The commercial winches are usually used for towing, erecting poles, rescuing vehicles, etc.

The personal applications may include erecting fences, snow plowing, tree felling, etc.

Type of Gearing System used

There are two types of gearing systems, the worm gear, and planetary gear. A worm gear is old technology and no longer found in winches. The planetary gear system is the most used gear train system as it offers great efficiency.

Type of Power Source used

There are two types of winches, manual and automatic. The manual winches come with an ergonomic handle and rely on the user to pull the weight by rotating the handle.

Automatic winches are powered by an external electric source or through the vehicle’s engine. It does not require any manual intervention.

Type of Motor used

Winches commonly use a permanent magnet (PM) or a series wound motor (SW). SW motors are more suited for heavy wear and tear conditions and are more durable. PM motors are lighter in weight and comparatively cheaper.

Winch capacity

Winch capacities range from as low as 500 lbs to as high as 17,500 lbs. there is a wide range of options to choose from with varying capacities.

Ideally, one should choose a winch with a capacity that is 1.5 times the weight it is intended to carry.

Line length

The line lengths of various winches vary from 12 ft to 100 ft. One can choose a length suited for their purpose according to the load to be lifted. Many companies also offer line extensions in case someone wants to extend their line rope.

Winch structure

A winch can be integrated or non-integrated. An integrated winch has all the components packed into a single weatherproof box and maybe slightly bulky.

A non-integrated winch offers all the components separately which makes it easier to mount.

Benefits and Limitations of Jeep Winches

WARN 26502 M8000 8000-lb Winch

The benefit of a Jeep winch is that it instantly transforms a normal vehicle into a rescue machine. It helps one significantly if they find themselves stuck in a ditch and need to pull themselves out.

The winch can also help in rescuing other vehicles while off-roading.

The limitation of a Jeep winch is that it cannot be of very high capacity. The capacity of the winch is limited by the vehicle that it is attached to and cannot exceed the weight of the vehicle.

Benefits and Limitations of ATV Winches

The benefit of an ATV winch is that it helps to pull the vehicle in any direction and does not require much manual effort.

The limitation of an ATV winch is that it adds weight to the vehicle as most ATV winches are slightly heavy. This can impact the performance of the ATV negatively and reduce its speed.

Benefits and Limitations of UTV Winches

The benefit of a UTV winch is that it can be used for a variety of purposes like erecting poles, removing fences, snow plowing, mowing grass and a variety of other residential applications.

It also finds utility in a commercial setup like rescuing vehicles, removing trees, pulling boats, etc.

The limitations of a UTV winch are that it can only be utilized in situations where there is pulling action involved. It cannot pull efficiently if there is a roadblock on the way. It cannot be used for hoisting vehicles or objects either.

Benefits and Limitations of 12,000 lbs and higher Winches

WARN 26502 M8000 8000-lb Winch

The benefit of using a high capacity winch of 12,000 lbs or higher is the fact that it can support very heavy loads.

This capability makes it eligible to rescue almost any type of vehicle easily and also find use in commercial and industrial setups where the load-bearing capacity required is higher.

The limitation of a high capacity winch is that with an increase in capacity, there is an increase in the winch weight as well. This increased weight can impact the performance of the vehicle.

Benefits and Limitations of Truck Winches

The benefit of a truck winch is that it is capable of lifting very heavy loads and if it is equipped with a synthetic rope (as are most models these days), the winch is extremely safe to use.

The limitation of a truck winch is that it cannot be used with a car, jeep or any smaller vehicles. This greatly restricts the use of high capacity with smaller vehicles.

Benefits and Limitations of Winches for Car Trailers

The benefit of a car trailer winch is that it can easily hook to different kinds of trailers given its universal hook design. It does not need to have customized hook for every make and model as it connects to the trailer directly.

The limitations of a car trailer winch are that they are designed very carefully for handling specific loads and if overloaded can break easily.

Therefore care must be taken to load the winch carefully according to its capacity.

Benefits and Limitations of Portable Winches

The main benefit of a portable winch is its portability. This fact alone makes the winch the first choice for RVs and for smaller outdoor applications where a compact and lightweight unit can do the trick.

The limitation of a portable winch is that with a decrease in its weight, there is also a consequent decrease in its load-bearing capacity.

Also, these winches rely on electricity and may prove to be useless when there is a power outage.

Benefits and Limitations of Come Along Winches

Smittybilt 9500 lb 97495 XRC GEN2 Winch-9500 Pound Load Capacity

The benefit of a come-along winch is that it can also lift products vertically along with pulling them. This is a feature that is not commonly found in other winches. It can be made use of in lifting equipment at construction sites.

The limitation to come along winches is that there is manual intervention involved.

The winch requires a person to physically turn the lever and pull the load. The effort required may be low but it is still more than that required in automatic winches.

Benefits and Limitations of Winches for Boat Trailers

The benefit of a boat trailer winch is that since it is designed specifically for marine loads, one can opt for a model best suited for their boat.

The limitation is that marine loads require significantly fewer efforts for pulling as compared to pulling a load on the ground. Therefore, a winch rated for marine loads will not be able to pull the same amount of load on land.

FAQs

What type of winch do I need?

The type of winch needed depends on the application for which it is intended to be used. A winch can be used for personal use as well as commercial applications.

How do I re-spool the wire rope?

A slight load should always be added when re-spooling the winch and one should always wear gloves while doing so. The wire should be held in one hand and the remote controller should be used to reel the wire in.

What sort of maintenance is required for a winch?

Maintenance is essential for prolonging the life of any winch. It helps in early detection of any problem and taking preventive and corrective measures to ensure that the required repairs and replacements are taken care of. The lubrication and electric connections of the winch should be checked regularly. The wire should also be checked carefully for fraying or any other damage.

How to double your winch capacity?

A snatch block can be used to double the winch capacity, however, this will reduce the winch speed in half.

Summary

Concluding the article, we have explored the different kinds of winches that are available for purchase. One can pick any model depending upon their specific needs and there are always many customer reviews available to fall back on for getting any input regarding the real-time experiences of people with the product.

Since the winch comes very handy in tough situations and is an expensive purchase, one should carefully consider the one which suits their needs the best.

About Steven

Steven is an engineering graduate with amazing zeal and enthusiasm. He is fascinated by solar power and has set up a small solar plant at his rooftop.