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If you happen to have a pickup truck or full-sized SUV, then it would be wise to keep a winch handy. In case of an emergency, towing winches can be used to pull yourself or other vehicles that might be stuck in a ditch, mud or steep water. They can often effectively pull cars, trucks, ATVs and boats. Here are the best winches for trucks that are currently available on Amazon – prices will vary depending on the make, model and year of your truck.
$69.99 at Amazon
153:1 gear ratio
1 horsepower/12v DC motor
Clevis slip hook with safety latch
The RUGCEL 2,000-lb ATV/UTV Electric Winch is powered by a 12v DC motor that operates at 1 horsepower. This winch has a UV-resistant finish, automatic load-holding and can withstand various terrains without fraying.
$259.83 at Amazon
40 ft synthetic rope
750 lb pulling capacity
Available in steel wire or synthetic rope
Compatible with any portable drill
This WARN Handheld Portable Drill Winch has a 40-foot-long synthetic steel rope and a maximum pulling capacity of 750 pounds. It has a vehicle-specific fit and is powered by a standard portable drill which is sold separately. This winch is best for pulling supplies and not full-sized vehicles.
$176.90 at Amazon
Maximum capacity of 4,500
50-foot synthetic rope
3-stage planetary gear system
136:1 gear ratio
IP66 Waterproof rating
This X-BULL 4,500 Winch features a 3-stage planetary gear system, a 50 foot synthetic rope and a 12v motor. It is also IP66 Waterproof and corrosion-resistant.
$339.45 at Amazon
12v DC motor
266:1 gear ration
50-foot remote range
This SuperATV Black Ops Winch can pull up to 6,000 lbs with a 50-foot synthetic rope and 12v DC motor. This winch fits on most winch mounts and bumpers with a 3” x 6.6” mounting bolt pattern.
$309.99 at Amazon
Maximum capacity of 9,500 pounds
5.5 horsepower motor
High-quality mounting plate
This OFF ROAD BOAR Winch can pull almost any car on the road with it’s 9,500-pound capacity. This winch is powered by a 12v DC motor that delivers 5.5 horsepower. The winch is IP67 waterproof, has a free-spooling clutch and comes with a high-quality mounting plate.
How to choose the right winch
Before picking which type of winch to use, you have to think about the occasions you will be using it for. If it’s going to be used primarily for minor pulling then a capacity of around 1,000 to 2,000 pounds will likely suffice. If you need a winch for more heavy-duty work such as pulling another vehicle out of dirt, mud or water then a higher weight capacity and stronger motor will be needed.
How to attach and use a winch
Before attaching a winch make sure it’s compatible with your truck or SUV and go through the instructions on proper installation. Here is a YouTube tutorial from SnailTrail4x4 on how to properly install a winch.
Synthetic vs steel rope
Both types of rope can pull a large amount of weight consistently, but there are a few key differences to note. Synthetic cable is great for recovery scenarios and is lightweight and easier to handle. A drawback of synthetic, though, is that it’s more prone to fraying and abrasions over time, unlike steel ropes. Steel ropes are more durable but they are heavier and can rust after many years of use.