Importance of a Winch

There has been very few times that I have gone four wheeling and not run into a situation where a winch is required. Sometimes it may be our group, and sometimes it is someone who is not as prepared to get stuck as they should be. It can be an important tool is safely plucking a vehicle from an impossible situation, or righting a truck after a rollover. A winch can also be used to clear properties of logs or rocks. A winch is an important tool, and if you travel the back-roads of British Columbia, you should never be without one.

There are a few things to know before you operate your winch for the first time. What appears to be a simple operation can quickly turn dangerous if basic safe winching practices are not used. Most winches are equipped with a varying length of wire rope, and the length of the rope is determined by the winches load capacity. The wire rope should regularly be inspected to ensure that it has not become crushed, pinched, frayed, or kinked at any point. Should the rope be damaged, it should be replaced before use to avoid injury. All winch owners should have a winch accessory kit to properly and safely recover a vehicle. The average kit includes a 3-meter choker chain, a clevis, snatch block, 5-centimeter tree trunk protector, gloves, and a carrying case. Price is $250 to $375 depending on the manufacturer.

Most winches are offered with a winch hook strap to ensure that operators do not put hands and fingers in harm’s way. Always wear gloves when operating a winch or handling wire rope.  A single line pull is one of the most basic winching operations. It involves rigging the wire rope to a stable anchoring point and spooling it in to pull the vehicle toward the anchor point. This type of pull can also be used to extract a truck without a winch; the winch equipped truck becomes the anchor point and the stuck vehicle is pulled toward it. It is a good idea to throw a jacket or blanket over the wire rope midway between the winch and the anchor point. This will prevent the cable from whipping back to the truck in the event of breakage. A tree can serve as an excellent anchor point, but never attempt to wrap a wire rope or chain around it. In addition to being extremely dangerous, this improper winching practice can damage or kill the tree. Use a tree saver strap, along with a clevis.

When a truck is stuck, more winching power can be achieved through a double line pull. To do so, un-spool a length of a line from the drum and thread it through a snatch block. The cable’s hook can then be fastened to an anchor point on the trucks frame or tow hook, and the snatch block will secure to an anchor point toward the direction of the pull. This method decreases the number of layers of wire rope on the drum and greatly increases pulling power. A snatch block can also be used to change the direction of the pull, without the wire rope collecting on one side of the drum. If you have followed the basic principle of four-wheeling and brought a buddy or a second vehicle, then chances are you will have some assistance in the recovery. Sometimes all a stuck vehicle needs is a little motivation. In those instances, a quality recovery strap ($53) will work fine. Knowing how to operate a winch correctly is as important as knowing how to drive the 4×4 it is mounted to. Misuse can result in injury or even death, so it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with your winch before reaching a situation where you need to use it.

2018 Mazda CX-5 Exterior Driving Towards

2018 Mazda CX-5 – Automotive Review

The Mazda CX-5 is a perfect example of the precision and quality expected from fine traditional Japanese manufacturing. The bold sporty design combined with luxury features and materials provides consumers an award-winning small 5-seater SUV at a very reasonable price.

Read More »
2018 Lincoln Navigator

2018 Lincoln Navigator – Review

The 2018 Lincoln Navigator is a sophisticated people moving machine. Not often can you change a vehicle that meets everybody’s expectations, but Lincoln has done it. Totally redefined and ready to excite.

Read More »
2018 Honda Civic Type R - Exterior

2018 Honda Civic Type R – Review

In the automotive industry, they rarely make fun cars anymore. The markets are understandably catered to family vehicles, fuel efficiency, or luxury. The Honda Civic Type R isn’t going to necessarily fit any of those needs. The Civic Type R is just one of those fun cars.

Read More »

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

2018 Lincoln MKZ - Exterior Blue Diamond Side

2018 Lincoln MKZ – Review

Reintroduced in 2016, the Lincoln MKZ is Ford’s attempt at chipping away market share from the German and Japanese leaders in the luxury sedan market. With what is essentially a prettied-up Ford Fusion the MKZ show its worth by the quality of materials and workmanship found all over the vehicle.

Read More »
2018 Range Rover Velar - Exterior

2018 Range Rover Velar – Review

One of the most elegant, luxurious, and polished vehicles on the market today the Velar is a work of art. In an ever growing highly-competitive class which features the Jaguar F-pace, the Maserati Levante, and the BMW X6 to name a few, sitting in the Range Rover Velar is something unique. The Velar just oozes that Range Rover feel.

Read More »
2018 Hyundai IONIQ Exterior

2018 Hyundai Ioniq – Review

While the Automotive Industry boasts loudest about its unique outliers, there is something to be said about a vehicle like the Hyundai IONIQ that most accurately satisfies the true requirements of transportation, which is to safely and cost-effectively go from point A to B.

Read More »
2018 Mazda3 - Exterior

2018 Mazda3 – Review

So much for so little. The Mazda3 is and continues to be a very well rounded car, where it’s clear driving matters. So much so that the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) voted the MAZDA3 Best Small Car in Canada for 2018.

Read More »
2018 Vancouver Auto Show

2018 Vancouver Auto Show

An insight into the 2018 Vancouver Auto Show, where we take you behind the scenes and give you an exclusive look at media day. We provide first look photos highlighting the shows top vehicles, releases, and features.

Read More »