How to choose Warn Winch for Your Vehicle?

warn winchIf you have decided to get a Warn winch, you should have a serious approach to the choice of the right one. The American Company Warn offers a large variety of different models for SUV, Trucks, ATV, Side x Side – from powerful winches for prepared off-road cars such as the premium ZEON series to simple winches such as the Tabor Series. Being a pioneer in the sphere of technical innovations for winches, it is by right considered one of the most recognizable brands among all products for off-road lovers.

What is the formula for your ideal winch?

An electric winch is a useful assistant for any car owner, who at least sometimes has to ride off-road. Compared to manual and mechanical models, the electrical device is much more convenient and efficient in operation. By default, Warn winches are equipped with a wired remote control and some of them have an additional wireless remote control. Choosing your perfect winch you will have to recollect some math knowledge and calculate the formula of your winch for a car by multiplying the weight of the vehicle by 1.5.

Jeep,  SUV and Truck

For example, you see that the gross weight rating (GVWR) of a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon is 2,268 kg, after multiplying by 1.5, you get the minimum capacity of 3,402 kg or 7,500 lbs as the winch index is indicated in English pounds where one pound is equal to 0.45 kg. As for the mentioned vehicle, it is possible to consider options having 8000 lb capacity like Zeon 8/Zeon-S, M8000/M8000-S, VR8000/VR8000-S. If you want to get more powerful winch model, then it is better to choose models having 9,000-9,500 lb capacity that will suit midsize pickups like a Toyota Tacoma or Nissan Frontier. Owners of full-size trucks like Ford F-150, Chevy 1500 or the Ram 2500 Power Wagon should invest in off-road adventures by choosing a reliable legendary winch Warn 86260 VR 12,000lb.

As for SUV, there is a classification according to their weight. SUVs can be divided into the following classes:

Light light SUV This category includes Daihatsu, Isuzu, KIA Sportage, Suzuki Grand Vitara and other. They do not need super-power traction devices. It will be enough to have equipment with an index of about 6000-8000 lbs. For example, one can get Warn 86245 VR 8000. Most of light SUV require to change bumper.
Average average SUV This category includes Pajero, Trooper, Wrangler, Discovery and similar models. Depending on the operating conditions for such machines, it is better to purchase an installation with an index of 8000-9500 lb. Warn Self-Recovery 9.5 XP Winch with Steel Rope and Roller Fairlead – 9,500 lbs. will be a good choice for those models.
Heavy heavy SUV This category includes Land Cruiser, Patrol, Defender 110 and other similar SUVs. The minimum pulling force of the winch for such vehicles is 9000-9500lbs. If the transport is used in extreme off-road conditions, the index should exceed 12,000 lbs. Winch models that can be a reasonable choice are the following here: PowerPlant 9.5 Ultimate Performance Winch, Zeon 12 Platinum, Zeon 12-S Premium Series Winch.

ATV and Side x Side

If you are going to buy a winch for a Side x Side, then the reasonable choice is either the Vantage 4000/4000-s or ProVantage 4500/4500-s as their capacities are 4,000 lb and 4,500 lb. When you choose a winch for ATV the rule for Jeep won’t work as ATV can stuck deeper and require winch with a pulling capacity twice or three times more than their own weight.
• 2000 lbs – for light ATV up to 400 cubes. (For example, owner of Honda TRX-250 can choose Warn Vantage 2000 or 2000-S)
• 2500 lbs – for most ATVs up to 500 cubes these winches will be enough, but if possible, it is better to choose 3000-3500 lbs. (STELS ATV-400 can use Warn Vantage 3000/3000-S)
• 3000, 3500 lbs – the most optimal choice for all ATVs with a cubic capacity up to 700 because the reserve of pulling power won’t be superfluous and will have a good effect on the reliability of the winch and the speed of its operation. (Warn ProVantage 3500/3500S can be chosen for Honda TRX 500)

Synthetic & Steel Rope: Which to give preference to?

Winches, as a rule, are completed with one of two kinds of cables:  steel or synthetic. The metal cable is much less expensive and does not require special care. However, over time, the cable begins to burst, which can lead to serious cuts, besides, the metal cable has the property of stretching and in case of a breakage it can seriously injure.

steel rope synthetic rope
Steel Rope Synthetic Rope

The modern synthetic cable, otherwise known as Kevlar, is as durable as steel, but its weight is several times smaller. Synthetic rope practically does not get wet and does not stretch, it does not sink in water and does not spring. But such a cable for the winch requires special care – synthetics are afraid of prolonged exposure to direct sunlight and with time it is rubbed by sand caught in the cable if it is not washed.

Thus, the choice of cable is an individual question. For participants in cross-country sports, or for owners of ATVs, and also for all to whom the weight of the cable seems to be a critical value, it will be more expedient to purchase a synthetic cable. A metal winch cable is an option for those who do not want to spend significant amounts of money on ropes and do not plan to devote a lot of their time to care for it.

It is important not to forget to wear specially designed winching gloves working with any winch model. Warn 88915 Light-Duty Winch Accessory Kit is a good option to consider as it includes not only gloves but also all necessary tools to operate with your winch: 1/2 inch shackle, an 8000 pounds maximum capacity snatch block, 1-inch x 8 feet tree trunk protector and a heavyweight 600 Denier carry bag.
Winch Safety: damaged steel rope

The Main Questions to Consider Choosing the Right Winch

Before you give preference to this or that winch, it will be wise to consider several significant questions, which may influence your choice. Check out the list of major considerations.

Which pulling capacity is enough for you?

It has already been mentioned at the beginning of the article how to calculate the minimum capacity your winch must have, however, there may be certain factors requiring not minimum but maximum pulling capacity. That’s why it is recommended to think about how you plan to use your vehicle. As you remember you should multiply the gross weight of the vehicle by 1.5 to get the winch capacity that will suit you. But you should understand that some circumstances may require much more than that. For example, if you have stuck in mud, which has a great suction force, the capacity chosen by the method of multiplying by 1.5 may not work here. This means that the most reasonable decision is to consider all possible uses of your vehicle to make sure you will get enough winch for your off-road adventures.

How often is your winch going to be used?

It is necessary to think how often and how hard you are going to use your winch due to the fact that your answer may influence the choice of winch motor: permanent magnet motors, series wound, and Hydraulic Winches. Plan only light winching? Then permanent magnet motor is exactly what you need. In case of frequent winching, a Series Wound is a good option to consider. A Hydraulic winch is for you if you are going to winch the whole day.

How much are you going to spend?

Unfortunately, sometimes the question of budget is the crucial one as you need to choose the best winch among those models you can afford at the moment. In this case, it is recommended to decide how much you can spend to cover the winch and all necessary accessories. If you don’t have experience in installing winches, then this option is one more to consider when making all necessary calculations.

Do you have any dimensional and weight preferences?

Warn winches have different weight specifications. If the weight plays any role for you then you should pay attention to both weight and dimensions. There are a lot of bumpers which make it possible to have the winch mounted internally. In such cases size is not the last criterion to consider while giving preference to the winch, especially if you are thinking about Solenoid mounting. Winches may have an Integrated or Remote Solenoid pack. A remote one is mounted off the winch externally while an integrated solenoid is a part of the winch. Both options have their pros: a remote solenoid is good if there are space restrictions. As for the integrated solenoid, it is a great option to consider if you are looking for protection in a compact package. If you consider all options mentioned above you may be 100% sure that you will be able to make the winch choice tailored to your personal needs. Have a responsible attitude towards the winch purchase as it may help you to winch out of a difficult situation.

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