How to Use a Winch

March 22, 2022 | 0 Comments


How to Use a Winch

How do you use a winch?


  1. Stretch the winch line
  2. Protect yourself
  3. Choose an anchor point
  4. Set up the winch
  5. Recover the vehicle
  6. Pack up the winch


There are times when you’ll find yourself stuck on the trails when going on an overland trip. That’s why having a winch is the best thing you can do for your 4WD. When your tires fail you, you can rely on your winch to recover your vehicle. But winches are not something you can operate without any know-how. You need to learn about them properly, so you can recover your vehicle safely when needed. Below, you will learn how to use a winch. Keep on reading!


Stretch The Winch Line


If it’s your first time using your winch, you must stretch the winch line first. This is necessary to prevent it from sinking between the rope layers and destroying the line. This is a must whether you have a steel or synthetic rope. 


If you don’t have a winch yet, you can check out the Adventure Kings Domin8r Xtreme 12,000 lb Winch! It comes with a re-engineered brake and high-strength silver synthetic rope. The 7.2 HP motor and 218:1 gearbox reduction can offer strong and reliable pulling power. 


Protect Yourself 



Before you use a winch, make sure that you first assess the situation you’re in. Think of all your recovery options. It’s important to spot the risks prior to winching to prevent accidents. While a winch is useful in recoveries, it is also powerful enough to harm bystanders that are in the way. 


Make sure that there’s only a handful of people that will perform the winching — preferably the ones with experience in doing it. Bystanders should always be a rope’s length away from the vehicle doing the winching. 


Wear thick gloves before handling a winch cable. Never perform a winching without it as the rope can cut your hands. If you don’t have gloves yet, you can take a look at the Adventure Kings Recovery Gloves. It has a universal fit, thanks to the adjustable velcro straps. It will make handling winch ropes safer due to the reinforced palm. 


Choose An Anchor Point


Find something located in front of the car where you can anchor your winch to. You need to choose something that is heavy and sturdy enough to recover your vehicle. You can winch to a large tree trunk or a large rock, but make sure that they’re strong enough to support the weight of your vehicle. 


If there’s nothing to winch to, it’s also possible to winch to another vehicle. Just make sure that their rig is similar in size or larger to yours. Other than that, make sure that this vehicle has strong recovery points. 


Set Up The Winch



Once you found something to winch to, it’s time to set up the winch. Release the winch cable by using the disengage lever. This way, you can pull out the rope from the winch. Pull it out all the way to the anchor point. Use a tree trunk protector and wrap it at the bottom of the anchor. Then hook a D-shackle through the 2 loops of the protector. Attach the winch hook to the D-shackle, making sure that the tip is facing up. 


After that, put the disengage lever back to engage. Pull the rope taut using the winch remote. You’re now ready to pull your vehicle out. 


Recover The Vehicle


If you’re recovering your vehicle alone, you will need to operate the winch and drive the vehicle out yourself. This has its advantages because you can match the speed of the tires to the speed of the winch. If there’s someone with you, they can help spot problems from a distance and alert you of any obstacles.


Winch the vehicle slowly but surely using the remote control. It’s best to work at a steady pace to prevent the rope from going too fast. You should release the button every few seconds before resuming again. This will also help you reevaluate the situation from time to time. 


Gently press on the gas pedal to help your 4WD move forward while winching. If you’re having trouble achieving a straight pull, it’s beneficial to use a snatch block to change the direction of the pull. Take your time and remember to never take any unnecessary risks.


Pack Up The Winch



Once your vehicle is recovered, you can now unrig the winch. Unhook the winch cable and rewind it carefully using the remote control. Remove the D-shackle and the tree trunk protector. Then pack away everything you used before leaving.


Key Takeaway


By knowing how to use a winch,  you can perform a recovery whenever your vehicle gets stuck on the trail! It’s one of the basic safety gear that you need to have when going overland. Aside from a winch, make sure that you also have a complete recovery kit, which contains everything you need for off-road recoveries — including a snatch block and a tree trunk protector.

If you’re interested in buying a winch for your 4WD, you can send us a message here at Overland Kings Philippines!


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