The main purpose of the best truck winch is to pull your truck off a tight spot or pull someone else who doesn't have a winch attached to their track to avoid waiting for a tow truck winch. When shopping for the best truck winches, avoid any winches below 8000 lbs weight capacity for medium-duty tasks and start from 10000 lbs for the heavy-duty tasks. The best truck winches come in all shapes and sizes, and there are very many brands in the market, making picking a challenging task because not all winches are reasonable and reliable.
We took the liberty of curating a list of the best truck winches in the market with their pros and cons, and the article has also included a detailed buying guide to help you make an informed decision.
1. Champion 10,000-lb. Truck/SUV Winch Kit with Remote Control
- Powerful – 10,000-lb. rated line pull powered by a...
- Efficient – Line speed of 3.9 feet per minute with a full load,...
- Convenient – The hand-held quick-connect remote control and...
- Hassle-Free – The roller fairlead creates a safe and smooth...
- Reliable – Champion Support includes 2-year limited warranty...
The Champion winch kit is always among the top choices for the best truck winch because it features a huge 10000 lbs pulling capacity and is powered by a 3.6 HP wound motor. Apart from the motor, the winch features a speed line of 3.9 feet per minute load and a 15.7 feet per minute with no load, which is quite fast.
The Champion pickup truck winch also includes a speed mount adapter, and a 2 inches hitch with a quick-connect handheld remote connecting to the device quickly. It also features an 85 feet long pulling cable constructed using galvanized super-duty aircraft material for a smooth and safe performance.
2. X-BULL 12V Synthetic Rope Truck Winch
- Waterproof IP67 rating and state-of-the-art 500AMP solenoid...
- Standard working winch, one synthetic wire, 13000 LBS...
- Please confirm the fit of mounting plate before purchase: outline...
- Heavy duty sealed contactor with positive load control for power...
- X-BULL, all winches come with lifetime technical support and a...
The X-Bull winch is an orange heavy-duty winch suitable for commercial use and a maximum pulling capacity of 13000 lbs. The off-road vehicle winch with synthetic rope comes in handy for heavy trucks or a stuck vehicle, and the synthetic rope does not tangle easily.
X-BULL 12V Synthetic Rope Winch features a weather-sealed solenoid box that you can place at any spot and an overload protector that protects your winch in case you experience an overload or a short circuit. It also comes with an 85 ft synthetic rope strong enough to serve the purpose while being lightweight and long-lasting.
3. Warn Zeon Winch 95960 Platinum 12-S Truck Winch
- Advanced Wireless Remote operates winch, reads motor temperature,...
- Designed to keep dust and water out with an IP68 Waterproof...
- 2X as durable as previous models
- Delivers 12,000 lb. pull rating or less
- Comes with a 80ft of Spydura Pro Synthetic Rope
Warn Zeon 12-S Platinum Winch is the best winch in the market for muddy and dangerous routes if the price is not an issue that is available in a steel cable version too. It is among the most powerful and heavy-duty warn winches that are twice more durable than any previous models to pull your pickup trucks easily.
The Zeon 12-S Platinum warn winch features a wireless remote control that features a USB charging cable and a car charger adapter. The unit can also read the motor temperature. The winch is lightweight, weighs only 80 pounds, and features a protected engine with a corrosion-resistant body of the drum and an integrated rope anchor point, making the rope easy to replace.
4. Smittybilt 97417 XRC GEN2 Winch
- Your purchase includes One Smittybilt GEN2 XRC Winch, 97417 model...
- Winch dimensions: 24.4” L x 8.4” W x 10.7” H | Product...
- Completely Waterproof, state-of-the-art 500AMP Solenoid
- Kit comes complete with all wiring required for installation....
- Smittybilt offers a limited lifetime for replacement to the...
Smittybilt 97417 XRC is a hydraulic winch with a winching capability of 17500 lb. You might want to limit the truck weight up to 11666 lbs to get maximum performance and durability at the weight capacity. The quality product also features an amphibious motor of 6.6 hp and a three-stage planetary gear system and an automatic load-holding brake for a secure winching experience. Smittybilt winch comes with a 500 AMP solenoid fully enclosed in a waterproof cover, and the winch rope comes with a 98.5 feet cable length that passes through a 4-way roller fairlead without tangling.
The off-road winch is compatible with a 10 x 4.5-inch mounting bolt pattern. It packs some bonus features like an auto-in-drum braking system, a sliding free gear system, and wireless and wired remote control, with the wired one having a 12 feet extension winch cable. However, this model features a steel wire rope, but you can choose another model from the brand if you prefer the synthetic cable. Also, you can opt for a lower load capacity winch if you like this winch but want a lower capacity.
5. ORCISH IP67 Waterproof 12V Steel Cable Electric Jeep Truck Winch
- ▶Your purchase includes a ORCISH 13,000 pound winch. Special...
- ▶Waterproof and sandproof, State-of-the-art 500AMP...
- ▶Total dimensions :(length x width x height)20.8” x 6.5” x...
- ▶Fast line speed, high sensitivity of 2 wireless remote...
- ▶All winches have lifetime technical support and one-year...
ORCISH 13000lb truck winches are among the best in the industry that tow trucks of up to 8666 lb effortlessly. It is also an IP67 rated waterproof unit that features a weather-sealed control box with a circuit breaker that increases safety. The electric winch comes with two remote controls and a unique mechanical brake system that is excellent at controlling your unit.
ORCISH electrical winch comes with a 3-stage planetary gear system, an automatic brake, and an easy-to-use free spooling. This steel rope winch also features a heavy-duty 85 ft stainless steel cable that passes through the four-way roller fairlead to ensure it moves in and out smoothly. The electric winch packs a one-year limited warranty and has a detailed user manual to guide you through how to use it.
What to Consider Before Purchasing The Best Truck Winch
1. Mounting Option
Before making your final purchase decision, you should ensure you have checked the available convertible control pack or mounting options because they make it easy for you to install and allow easy mounting with less to no hassle. There are three main options in the market including:
a). Bumper Mount
This is the simplest method of mounting your winch, and the winch package comes with all the instructions.
b). Multi-Mount Bumper
This mounting option is a little complicated than the bumper mount and is considered less durable because of the point of mount.
c). Winch Bumper
This mounting type has gained popularity over the years because it allows winches to perform very well in all terrain types.
2. Winch Capacity
When shopping for the best truck winch in the market, it is important to understand the vehicle's weight as you cannot use a winch able meant for a small passenger car to pull a heavy-duty track, and accidents occur this way. If you are purchasing a winch for trucks, it's advisable to not go below 8000 pounds weight pull capacity, and you should start from 10000 pounds. Ensure you choose a truck winch that can pull at least 1.5 times more than the weight of your truck.
For the best safety, you should pick a winch with the highest pulling capacity because the 1.5x rule is usually a minimum rating. If still unsure on which one to choose, purchase one that is double your truck's weight, and this will ensure you increase the lifetime of a winch by putting less strain. However, keep in mind that the pulling weight capacity is not the only determinant factor of your winch, and the powerful electric or the hydraulic motor will play a big role.
3. Synthetic Rope or Wire Cable
This is another important consideration when purchasing when making your purchase because there are two available options in the market, and they include:
a). Wire Cable/ Steel Cable
The wire rope is the most popular rope constructed from carbon steel strands, and it's common for its inexpensive pricing, requires less maintenance, and is heat and abrasion-resistant. Additionally, the wire cable lasts longer than the synthetic rope, but you must also use a glove while handling a wire cable.
One common problem with the wire cable is that it stores energy, making it dangerous if the cable should snap and develop burrs and rust. Also, the wire cable is heavier than the winch with synthetic rope, and you have to purchase a winch dampener to increase safety while using it.
b). Synthetic Rope
A synthetic rope winch has been a popular off-road truck winch over the years because of the safety benefits it comes with. It is the absolute opposite of the wire cable as it does not store energy like the wire cable; it is flexible, lighter, and safer and does not need a user to wear a glove when handling, unlike when using the wire cable. The synthetic rope does not cause any serious damage when it snaps, and also it can be repaired instantly if it breaks, making it suitable for emergencies.
Even though it is a reliable winch for the above reasons, it has some disadvantages: it is susceptible to chemicals, UV exposure, abrasion, and heat and needs regular maintenance. The synthetic rope can also hold water unless you choose a waterproof synthetic rope winch with water and weather-resistant.
4. Electric Winch vs. Hydraulic Winch
Before you decide which type is the best for your truck, you should know the difference between electric truck winches and hydraulic truck winches. They include:
a). Electric Winch
This is a popular type and mostly the first choice for most truck owners because it is very versatile, among other reasons. Even though it's less powerful than hydraulic winches, it's very efficient and easy to install and reinstall when you need to transfer your truck winch to another vehicle.
You don't need to install a hydraulic pump with electric winches because the run using the vehicle's battery, and also, the electric winch does not need the truck to be running to function. Lastly, it's cheaper than the hydraulic winches, even when it's of the same pulling capacity.
b). Hydraulic Winch
These are the less common types in the truck world, and it runs on a power steering pump that has to be running for the hydraulic winches to pull your truck. This is a suitable option for people looking for a winch with high pulling power but keep in mind that it's not easy to install and is quite expensive.
5. Nonintegrated or Integrated Winch
This is a consideration that will depend on your needs. A Nonintegrated winch is a more versatile type since the solenoid is placed separately either in front of your vehicle or above the bumper. The solenoid box is mountable in the engine compartment to save space, and it is a suitable option for individuals looking for an aftermarket type.
On the other hand, an integrated winch comes with the solenoid control box connected to the winch, making it large. The integrated type makes an ideal solution because it has waterproof rating properties thanks to the weather-sealed solenoid control box with a circuit breaker.
6. Waterproof Rating
Waterproofing capabilities are important considerations because you may need to use your truck winch in rainy seasons. A waterproof winch will come in handy and increase the durability and lifespan of your truck winch.
7. Sealed winch Motor
Opting for a truck winch with a sealed motor to protect yourself and your truck is an important fact because while traveling on harsh terrains, you can get some dust, mud, or dirt. You don't want a motor exposed to these natural forces as it may cause malfunctioning when you need it the most.
Motor dysfunction is one of the many causes of failures making a sealed motor a very important consideration because the sealed motor protects your mechanics from dust, mud, snow, moisture, or rain. These are popular elements that may lead to corrosion, making it crucial to invest in the best truck winch, which features a sealed motor offering you protection.
Most of the high-quality truck winches available in the market usually pack a lifetime warranty, and you should ensure the truck winch you are eyeing packs a warranty. This is especially important because finding spare parts for your winches can be difficult, and investing in a truck winch with a warranty is crucial.