If you’re in the market for a winch for your vehicle, here are some great ones for your consideration. Whether you need a small electric winch for your ATV, or a heavy duty winch for logging, off-roading, or other applications, there is something here for you. When buying an electric winch, you need to consider application (for the rating), budget, and the conditions under which it will be used. If you buy a winch that’s not rated high enough, you run the risk of breakdown or snapping with cable, and if you buy a winch that isn’t properly weatherproofed and live in an area that’s prone to torrential rain, or you drive through a lot of water or mud, then the winch will rust and degrade, and be unusable when you need it.
Smittybilt 97412 XRC Winch – 12,000lb
This winch is easy to install, is rated for up to 6 tons, and works like a dream. Whether you’ve slid off the road because of ice, or gotten yourself stuck in a mud pit off-roading, this winch will get you out. The only thing that would have made it better would have been a wireless remote.
The waterproofing is great for storms and mud, but it is recommended you don’t submerge it. It’s also not that expensive when compared to other winches with similar, or sometimes even lower, power ratings. A great buy that won’t let you down in a pinch.
Warn 90260 ZEON 8 Multi-Mount Winch
Made in the U.S.A., good to 6 tons, and waterproofed. Keep in mind, most winches that say waterproof, don’t mean they can handle long submersion. Still, this winch is a beast.
Carrying the Warn name, it has a high price tag, but it will last for years.
Cons: you need to be fairly mechanically savvy to install your kit or modify your vehicle to fit it. Still, this winch is intended for larger rigs and heavy duty applications. If you’re looking at roadside assistance, this is a great option.
WARN 26502 M8000 8000-lb Winch
At roughly half the cost of Warn’s 6 ton electric winch, the 4 ton is able to do almost everything you’ll need. Whether it’s pulling a car out of a ditch or a tree out of the road (or lake), this is a heavy duty work, play, or emergency winch.
It is also available with either synthetic or steel cable so you can choose whether you’d like the weight savings of synthetic or that extra durability of steel. Basically, this is the home-use, self-rescue version of their heavier duty winches.
WARN 86260 VR12000 12,000 lb Winch
This is Warn’s economy 6 ton electric winch, and they don’t build it in house; they import it and put their logo on it. Still, they have made an effort to source for quality, and it does what it says it will. If you’re big on Made in the U.S.A., this is not the winch for you. The biggest downside is a lack of proper weatherproofing, especially if you live in an area with salt on the roads in winter. Overall, it is a powerful winch with a low price tag.
Warn 90450 ProVantage 4500 Winch
Great option for ATVs and other small vehicles, this will get you out of the mud even if you’re in deep. It’s also good for basic utility work: pulling stumps, trees, or lightweight vehicles. For safety it comes with a remote control, so you can still steer while pulling yourself out of the mud. It comes with the Warn name and guarantee, and it’s made in the U.S.A.
Smittybilt (98510) X2O Waterproof Synthetic Rope Winch
Rated for 5 tons, this Smittybilt comes with a wireless remote, allowing for a lot of flexibility in the use. It’s also a lot cheaper than the Warn winches with the same ratings, and has the same quality. Waterproofed against weather, and Smittybilt has great customer service if anything does go wrong.
Installation is a bit tricky if you’re not mechanically inclined, but a great winch for the price.
Warn 89040 Vantage 4000 Winch
A 2 ton winch perfect for small vehicles, ATVs, and other lightweight applications. Whether you’re pulling stumps out of the ground or friends out of the mud, this lightweight winch can handle heavy duty work. The winch itself winds quickly, even with weight on it, so you spend less time winching and more time on the things you want to be doing.
Superwinch 1145220 Terra 45
Rated for 4,500lbs, this is a great utility winch. It’s quiet compared to other winches, and works great for ATVs and other small vehicles, but can also be used with a snatch block to do heavier duty work. It’s also very cost effective compared to other winches with similar ratings and capabilities. This winch with a snatch block will replace a cheap foreign import rated at 5 tons with no problems.
Smittybilt 97495 XRC Winch
With an amphibious motor, this 9,500lb rated electric winch is your best bet for those wet applications. Whether you’re logging or just hauling a friend out of the mud, this winch will stand up to the weather and the task. It’s also very affordable (under $300 at the time of this review), and won’t back down from working or playing as hard you do. Most other electric winches are not fully rated for submersion, so if you know you’ll be seeing a lot of water, this is your best bet.
Superwinch 1130220 LT3000ATV 12 VDC winch
If you’re looking for a lightweight winch for a bargain price without bargain quality, this is the winch for you. Rated at 3,000lbs with a bargain price, it is perfect for an ATV or other small applications. It is also extremely quiet, and has great power. The company also has great customer service, coming through for customers even if the break is their fault (burnt out a motor).
Overall, a great option for off-roading and utility work around the house or in the woods.
Whatever you need an electric winch for, one of these should do the trick. Whether you just need a lightweight winch to go hunting or mudding, or if you need a heavy duty winch to offer roadside assistance, there is something here that is perfect for you. There are a lot of great winches on the market now, and this list shows you a wide selection to choose from.