When stuck in a deep groove or wet sticky ground, how can you pull your vehicle out of it? There's one tool that can give you the pulling power needed in this kind of situation, and this is the winch. This comes handy whenever you tackle terrains or rough roads, which may be filled with mud bogs, boulders, and unpaved trails. So you wouldn't find yourself helpless and eagerly waiting for some rescue and roadside assistance, you'd better equip your car with this nifty tool. When shopping for one, here are some things you have to consider in order to find what best fits the kind of truck or vehicle you drive as well as your own special needs.
The pull rating of winches can be anywhere from 6,000 to 15,000 lbs. This rating is used to measure how much force is needed to stall things out. For instance, when trying to pull a heavy vehicle stuck in deep mud, you'll probably need a winch with a much higher pull rating if all the tires are flat. How the part will be used and in what types of situation this will be applied will help you pick one with the right pull rating, depending on the weight of the vehicle and the pulling power needed in a certain application.
The cable used for winches are typically manufactured from braided steel. Other cable options are also available as braided synthetic rope. Compared to a rigid steel cable, the rope is able to stretch, much like a rubber band. This makes it quite easier to move some objects or another vehicle out of a sticky situation or a tight spot. Aside from the type of cable that will be used, also consider the hook that will be connected on one end and the attachment that will be used on the drum for the other end.
Winches are mounted on the vehicle differently. Some can be mounted or attached to the frame by placing them on the front end of the auto. Aside from front mount receiver options, some winches may also come with mounts that are used on rear receiver hitches. Also take note of the connector that will be used for plugging in the winch to the wiring. The unit should be fairly easy to unplug after use and for storage.
Some of the accessories you may use with winches include the remote control, gloves, D-rings, moving pads or blankets, and a pulley that's specially designed for a winch.
Tips for using winches
- Secure the hook to the object that will be pulled. Make sure that this is fastened properly.
- Check the cable or rope. If torn, broken, or damaged, don't use it. Replace it right away.
- Rewind the cable or rope properly. This should be tight and even.
- Pick a highly secure anchor point.
- Read the manual for correct winch use. Carefully follow the instructions for safety.
- Avoid stepping over a tensioned cable or rope.