Best Warn Winches of 2020 – Complete Round-up

Are you looking for the best Warn winch? If so, you are not alone. Finding the best winch from a name like Warn might be something you’re interested in for a few good reasons. If you are looking for something with reliability and strength, there’s a good chance there is a Warn winch with your name on it.

While there are a lot of winches made from Warn, we were able to track down five of the best available on the market. We’ve found these based on the characteristics and features that stood out. Before getting to the list, we’ll talk about the Warn brand itself and a bit of its history.

We’ll also talk about how it stacks up against competing brands and how you can spot the right one for your own personal use. 

Comparison Chart of the Best Warn Winches

  • 8,000-pound pull rating
  • Best overall Warn winch
  • Wireless remote included
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  • 8,000-pound pulling capacity
  • Includes 100 feet of synthetic rope
  • Runner-up for best overall Warn winch
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  • 8,000-pound capacity
  • Best Warn brand winch for the money
  • Drum made from high-quality aluminum
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  • No Line Load Speed of 13.8 fpm
  • Made from high-quality materials
  • Can lift or pull loads of up to 1,000 pounds
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  • 80-foot synthetic rope
  • 12,000-pound pull rating
  • Designed to be dust-proof and waterproof
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Who is Warn?

Warn Industries started out as a supply company that was utilized by soldiers during World War II. Originally, Warn was producing locking hubs for military Jeeps and other vehicles. The company was founded in Seattle, Washington and developed its first-ever winch in 1959. The first winch they sold was a recreational winch used for camping equipment. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Warn developed more winches that were focused more on vehicles. By the end of the 1970s, Warn had begun a long-term relationship with the Ford Motor Company and still provides winches and hitching equipment to most Ford vehicles to this day. 

The company continued to develop winches for RVs and ATVs throughout the 1980s and 1990s, and today continues to be one of the leaders in manufacturing and selling winches, locking hubs, and other equipment designed for the heavy-duty applications. 

How Does Warn Compare to the Competition?

If you are looking for a name that will provide you with one of the best winches on the market, the Warn name is the premier choice. How does it stack up against the competition? Let’s take a look at a few things it’s known for:

Ahead of the Curve For 70+ Years

Warn is one of the oldest companies for manufacturing winches. Not to mention, they were the first-ever company to create cutting-edge winches and other accessories that have been proven time and time again to handle all the towing, hauling, lifting, and everything else in-between. They have covered the bases long before their competitors.

WARN 26502

Superior Reliability

If you ever need a winch at a time when the timing is a factor or to come through in the clutch in dire situations, the Warn winches will be your choice. They are made with high-quality materials and are equipped with a steel rope that is proven to be tougher than nails and can easily pull things out of ditches or tow them from one place to the next. They are anything but weak or disappointing in terms of strength and reliability. 

Excellent Durability

When it comes to toughness, durability is important for any winch, no matter the name. But when you compare winches from competitors, Warn proves itself to be quite stronger in terms of handling heavier loads. Their ropes won’t break easily and are able to support the heavy loads you need to transport from one place to the next.

How to Spot a Quality Warn Winch

Finding a good quality Warn Winch might take some skill and detective work. But it important to know how to distinguish a great winch from one that is considered not so great in quality or reliability. If you want a Warn winch for your own use, here’s what you need to look for:


If you are looking for a Warn winch but are on a budget, rest assured, you will find one. All you need to do is find one that features the best quality and performance you can afford. It’s a lot better than having to spend money on a cheap winch that won’t be reliable after a few uses (or is useless right out of the box). 

WARN 885000

Find One That Can Handle a Certain Max Weight

Typically, winch ropes will be made from steel and other high-quality metals. You’ll also need to make sure that you find a winch to handle all kinds of heavy loads (like 8,000 pounds, 10,000 pounds, or more). This will come down to how often you’ll be using it and if you are using it for personal or commercial use. If it’s for commercial use (i.e.--tow trucks or wreckers), you’ll need a rope that can handle considerably heavier weights.

Reliable Anytime, Anywhere

Are you doing a simple towing task? Are you using it to pull out vehicles that are stuck in the mud or ditches? If the answer is yes to either question, then you can find a winch that is ready for just about any situation. You'll have a winch that is easy to hitch, works hard, and can last you through so many uses for years or decades. These promise reliable service, whether on land or sea (marine). 

Review of the Best Warn Winches

The following is a list of the five best Warn winches currently available on the market. As you look through each one, it’s important to note the features and characteristics so you can determine which one sticks out better in your opinion. Find a winch that fits you best and you’ll have something that will work hard for the long-term.

Let’s take a look at the first Warn winch on the list:

Best Overall:
WARN 26502

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


  • Super-durable and strong
  • Useful right out of the box
  • Reliable in any given situation
  • Great for hauling, pulling, and towing
  • Will do a great job pulling stuck vehicles out of the mud


  • Solenoid bracket may be a bit too small
  • Users instructions appear vaguely written
  • Some say the installation is a bit challenging 

What Recent Buyers Report

Most new users were pretty happy with the winch, in general. They were happy with the toughness and power it had to pull out vehicles from ditches and even some super muddy roadways. They managed to hitch the winch to loads as heavy as 10,000 pounds and pulled without any issues. One user said he uses this for the purpose of his commercial towing business. So far, it has yet to disappoint him. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This Warn winch is one of the best of their brand and for a few good reasons. One, it can handle much heavier loads compared to winches that don’t carry the Warn name. On top of that, they are absolutely sturdy and perfect for all kinds of heavy-duty uses. So if you want something that won’t fail on you after one use, this bad boy might just be exactly what you’ll need for any kind of towing or hauling purposes. 

Who Will Use This Most

This will probably be used mostly by users who are tow truck drivers relying on winches like this to get the job done each and every time. Even if it’s for personal use, you’ll have a winch that will be powerful enough to do the same tasks that many tow truck drivers do on a regular basis. If you want a winch that is tough and is willing to take on the tasks that matter most, this is the winch to go with.

Bottom Line

The Warn 26502 8,000-lb Winch has proven itself to be one of the best winches out of the whole Warn bunch. It’s tough, reliable, and won’t refuse the opportunity to work hard. You’d be hard-pressed to find a winch quite like this anywhere else on the market (or outside of the Warn name). Don’t be surprised if this is the winch that ends up sticking with you for a long time.

Warn 87835 VR8000-S

Warn 87835 VR8000-s Winch with Synthetic Rope


  • Super-durable rope
  • The rope is surprisingly light in weight
  • Hooks nicely to other vehicles and campers
  • Has the potential to last you years or even decades
  • Works great when installed to heavy-duty trucks that can pull heavy loads


  • Some say the finish quality is not the best
  • Lever gear may get stuck in a position sometimes
  • A few have complained about it being made in China and not the United States

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the new buyers were pretty happy with the winch as a whole. They said it mounts to bumpers pretty easily is often used for the purpose of hitching and transporting trailers, campers, and small vehicles. One user said he uses this while he transports his camper on the road. He added it didn’t break or fail on him once during his most recent cross-country road trip where he stayed in his camper rather than a hotel room. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This Warn winch is once again one of a handful that can handle all kinds of heavy weights. So if you are hauling something considered heavy in weight (like a car, truck, or a camper). You might be going on a cross country road trip or going up to the woods for a few days. But this winch will go wherever you go (assuming you’ve attached it to your vehicle of choice). On top of all this, you can use the winch with a wireless remote control to make operating this a lot easier than some other winches. If you want something that will be simple to use at the touch of a button, you know for sure that this winch will deliver the goods. 

Who Will Use This Most

This winch is small enough to fit on truck bumpers. So if you need a winch that will be perfect for all your hauling needs then this will be a possible go-to choice. It will be easy to handle all the tasks that require you to take a heavy load from point A to point B. But you can bet that you’ll have something that will be reliable for the literal long-haul. You can go 1,000 miles with this puppy and not have a single problem. For the movers and travelers, this winch will be great. 

Bottom Line

The Warn VR8000 is probably going to end up being the winch that will be your best road trip buddy. It can also be great for making sure your camper or small vehicle is easily hooked up and ready to hit the road once all is set and ready to go. This winch is easy to use, can handle most small vehicles and heavy loads like nothing else. All and all, it’s a solid winch that just might surprise those who doubt its abilities to be a superior winch.

Best for the Money:
 Warn 89305 ZEON 8-S

Warn 89305 ZEON 8-S Winch with Synthetic Rope - 8000 lb. Capacity


  • Super-sturdy quality
  • Fits nice on most trucks
  • Affordable for most budgets
  • The rope is super-strong and extends out quite nicely
  • Easy to install and hitch to vehicles, campers, and trailers


  • Some assembly may be required
  • May be a little difficult to install sometimes on some vehicles
  • Some have complained about issues regarding the mounting plate

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the new users were able to hitch this winch to campers and small vehicles mostly. And they were able to use this for the purpose of emergency towing and rescue applications. The users ranged from everyday people to those who worked as tow truck drivers or auto mechanics. One user said he has already put this to good use on days when the weather caused traffic to go off the road. He says it has worked pretty hard to pull people out of snowbanks during storms. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This winch is affordable in price, but the quality is pretty solid and feels like it should cost more. So in plain English, you’re getting a lot more than what you pay for. So if you want something that will be solid in construction and work hard (while not sucking the life out of your bank account), you can certainly make this winch one of the best investments you’ve ever made. 

Who Will Use This Most

This Warn Zeon 8s Winch will probably be a great starter model for most users. And they can keep it around for years or decades if they are still happy with it. This will be great for personal towing and hauling or used for the purpose of towing vehicles for your body shop. Either way, it’s a winch that is reliable and won’t steer you wrong for all your towing and hauling needs.

Bottom Line

Affordable, tough, and reliable are the three things you will get out of this Warn winch. The synthetic rope is certainly one of the toughest on the block and can handle all kinds of tasks so many times over. It might be one of the most affordable winches on the market, but cheap and flimsy it is not. 

4. WARN 885000

WARN 885000 PullzAll Corded 120V AC Portable Electric Winch with Steel Cable: 1/2 Ton (1,000 Lb) Pulling Capacity , Red


  • Fits nicely in most trucks
  • Solid, durable construction
  • Affordable for most budgets
  • Easy to hitch onto most things
  • Perfect for construction workers and for lifting heavy materials like concrete, heavy metals, etc.


  • No free spool is included
  • No brake when you release the trigger
  • Some report the battery life being limited

What Recent Buyers Report

A good number of buyers were quite satisfied with the winch itself. A lot of the new users were those who work in construction and were using this to lift heavy machinery and even heavy materials that might take a while for human bodies to try and lift up manually. One user said this definitely saved his back so many times since he was dealing with back issues that were a result of consistently lifting heavy things.

Why it Stands Out to Us

While this isn’t the winch you can use to hitch vehicles and trailers, it’s still useful while you are on the road or at the job site. You can bet this solidly constructed winch can still give you a lot of lifting power for all the objects that would be difficult for even a few people to carry at the same time. If you want something that will make moving stuff around easy, this winch will probably be the best possible option for you.

Who Will Use This Most

This will certainly be used by construction workers, contractors, and perhaps a whole lot of individuals that work with heavy items or for those who have heavy things to load onto a truck like a cast iron wood stove. If a three-person job for carrying something just won’t cut it, this Warn winch will definitely be the best option for all your lifting and carrying. 

Bottom Line

The Warn 885000 is not like regular winches with the ability to carry around vehicles and trailers. But you can certainly use it for all your heavy-duty lifting when you are building a house, a new commercial storefront, or whatever contractor job requires all kinds of heavy lifting. You’d be insane to go through the workday without a winch like this on hand. 

5. WARN 95960 ZEON 12-S

WARN 95960 Zeon Platinum 12-S


  • Super-durable rope
  • Easy to adjust speeds
  • Pulls all kinds of weight with ease
  • Wireless remote works from a really good distance
  • Fits in small vehicles like Jeeps, trailers, and campers


  • Battery life can be a bit better
  • May be a little pricey for some users
  • Installation may be a challenge at times

What Recent Buyers Report

A lot of users were satisfied with the winch for so many reasons. For one, they were able to hitch this puppy to their load of choice (vehicles, trailers, etc.) without any struggles with the rope. Even one user said that after he hitched it, he used the remote to shorten the rope so the camper that was hitched stayed at a close distance. He added that the remote was easy to use from a distance and the winch itself was a solid unit that he’s confident will be useful for quite a long time. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This winch has the heaviest pull rating on the list (12,000 pounds). So it can do a bit heavier pulling and towing compared to some of the other winches on the market. If you are looking to use something for the purpose of simply hitching and towing or if you want to use it for rescue purposes and get someone out of a ditch, this is the kind of winch that will get the job done. Heck, it can probably pull out a heavy-duty truck if given half the chance.

Who Will Use This Most

This winch will absolutely work the best if you are into the whole heavy lifting thing. So it will ideally be used for the purpose of towing vehicles or pulling around really heavy objects like boats or large campers. This winch is certainly the real deal when it comes to pulling and towing heavy loads. And since it’s made from high-quality materials, it will definitely last you a long time and go through multiple applications without warping or malfunctioning.

Bottom Line

This Warn electric winch might just be one of the best of its kind when it comes to heavy loads. Typically, you have those winches that tend to handle heavier weights (like hydraulic winches). But this electric winch by Warn might be one of the outliers. If you want something with a good deal of power and a willingness to pull the extra weight, this might be the kind of winch you’ll want for yourself. 

Popular Types of Winches

There are a few types of winches popular on the market even today. Some of them are powered by various sources like electricity or even fluids. Here are some of the winches you can consider for your own personal use:

Electric Winches

Electric winches will typically be used with the help of a high-powered battery. It will, in all likelihood, handle heavy loads that typically weigh in below 8,000 pounds. So it would be ideal for trailers, small campers, or small vehicles like Jeeps to benefit from these winches when it comes to towing or hauling.

Hydraulic Winches

These hydraulic winches are not battery-operated, unlike their electric counterparts. But they do need the vehicle’s engine most of the time to run. Hydraulic winches are often powered by water like fluids to ensure a much smoother operation. These are also popular for those users who want a winch that can handle the heavier loads (i.e.--weights from 8,000 pounds or up). 

Hybrid Winches

Hybrid winches are made with a mix of hydraulic and electronic powers. Typically, they are based on spare parts that might be enough for a winch to be built from the ground up. The weight limit will depend on the quality of the synthetic rope included. 

What Do I Need to Know Before Buying a Winch?

Aside from knowing the characteristics and features, there are a few things that you’ll need to consider before purchasing a winch. These should be factored into your final purchasing decision. Here are some things you need to know:

Pay Attention to the Weight Limit

There are some winches that will handle heavyweights like 8,000 pounds or more. There will also be some that won’t. It’s important that you know which winch will better support the heavy loads you want to work with.

Hydraulic Winches Need More Power Than Electric

Believe it or not, it’s true. Hydraulic winches will obviously need more power in order to run properly. Its main source is a vehicle’s engine. If the engine quits, the winch will not work. And since it won’t be operational with a battery, it won’t do you any favors if there is no power to it. 

Not All Rope Lengths are the Same

Keep in mind that with each winch, not every rope is going to have the same length. Some will be shorter than others. So it’s important to make the determination of how long the rope should be for your own personal use. The longer the rope, the better the chance it will give you a better reach when you are in situations where you need to pull a vehicle out of a ditch (or any other similar situation). 


The best Warn winch is out there. Find one that is the best for you and you’ll have something that will stand out as your go-to winch for any situation where heavy objects need to be lifted or towed. You’d be surprised by how reliable and strong these bad boys are. Remember once again to note the features and characteristics so you can find one that sticks out as one of your favorites to go with.