what size winch do i need

How to Choose the Right Winch?

Your riding preparation is not complete without a great size winch because a winch is an essential kit in any field like a long drive, trip, or off-road driving; you need to be kept with your vehicles for safety at all times.

Even you can see winches of different sizes in the market, but difficult things will occur when you find the right size winch for your truck, Jeep, Trailer, ATV, UTV. Most of the owners are confused about what size winch do I need? And how to choose the right winch? With more different questions like this.

Anyway, we have made today’s complete guide with more essential questions like this, where we have shared many more things, including winch size calculation, winch selection guide, so let’s start with a sip.

What Size Winch Do I Need?

Many people have suggested different sizes of the winch in the field of different vehicles, due to which many people are unclear, what size winch do I need for a car trailer, jeep, UTV, and many more things. However, we share a small tip, try to apply in the same way to choose winch for almost all vehicles.

No matter you choose a winch for which vehicle, you will always try to find the winches’ weight capacity 1.5 times higher than the vehicles. In most cases, 7500 to 15000 pounds weight capacity winches are perfect in the maximum field.

Winch Size Calculator

The winch size calculator is an easy way to find the right size winch for any vehicle. This method is known as Gross Vehicle Weight Rating or GVWR method. It is a proper way to find out winch measurements, weight capacity, including or excluding, and many more different measurements of vehicles.

If you want to do winch size calculation in the most accurate industrial standard, first find the gross weight of your vehicles. You can see the gross weight in the vehicle’s manual book, the vehicle dashboard, or any part of the vehicle. Then multiply that weight by 1.5, then you will get the size of the winch.

But you can add extra 1500 lbs with the total result to get more accurate. After that, you will get an accurate amount of what size winch will be needed for the vehicle.

However, many people estimate the winch size calculation; for example, in the case of medium pickups, choose a winch of 9000 pounds weight capacity. In the case of large-size vehicles, choose a winch of 12,000 pounds weight capacity winch.

What Size Winch Do I Need For My ATV


In the field of winch choosing for ATV, make sure that its size will be a perfect fit for your vehicle. However, we are sharing a table to help you purchase the ideal size winch for ATV.

Vehicle Weight Range (lbs) Winch (lbs)
350cc or less 400-500 2500
350cc to 500cc 500-700 3000
500cc or more 700-900 3500
Side by Side 700-1000 4500

READ MORE: 6 Best Winches for Side by Side

What Size Winch Do I Need For My UTV?

For different types of UTV, the size of the winch is also different. However, before buying winches, we would suggest you try to follow the procedure below for choosing.

  • For Two Seat UTV, you can choose a winch with a pull capacity of 3500 lbs to 4500 lbs.
  • For Four Seat UTV, you can choose a winch with a pull capacity of 4500 lbs to 5500 lbs.

What Size Winch Do I Need for My Jeep Wrangler, Truck, Car Trailers?

It will be great if you find a winch with a load capacity of 1 or 1/2 times the gross vehicle weight of your jeep wrangler, truck, car trailers. For example, if the gross vehicle weight of your Jeep or truck is 5,000 pounds, then try to choose a winch capacity between 7,000 pounds to 9,000 pounds, which will provide accurate performance.

How to Choose the Right Winch?

To choose the perfect size winch for your vehicles, it is essential to find a winch that fits perfectly. Here are some things to consider when buying a winch. We discussed this below.

Types of Winches

You can see the two most common winch systems in the market, hydraulic and electric. These two winch systems are the most used and powerful winch systems. However, both are different in the sector of use.

Hydraulic Winch System

This type of winch system is not used most commonly; it is used primarily in pulling large vehicles. It is a costly option, and you will not find it available in the market. If you want a winch system for your small and medium vehicles, it is most useful to ignore it.

Electric Winch System

An electric winch is the most popular and widely used winch system. It can be easily operated with the help of the battery power of vehicles, and it is very budget-friendly, convenient to be easily taken anywhere. It is also the perfect option for any small and medium vehicle.

READ MORE: 5 Best Battery for Electric Winches

Types of Ropes

Similarly, you can find many types of rope options, but the most common and durable ropes are synthetic rope and steel rope. There are so many differences between synthetic and steel rope. Let’s see.

Synthetic Rope

In terms of usability, synthetic winch rope is the most popular at present, as well as it is a more flexible, lightweight, convenient option than a steel rope. The synthetic winch cable is a very durable and safer option, but you need to be maintained it properly after use so it lasts longer.

Steel Rope

Though, steel rope is far ahead in terms of durability, longevity. It is used in the field of heavy vehicles, and its price range is within everyone’s budget. But besides being a lot of heavy loads, it is also a bit risky. So you have to be careful all the time.

Types of Motors

If you choose electric winches, you can see that they are of two types of DC motors, the first is Permanent Magnet shorter form is “PM”, the second is Series Wound shorter form is “SW”.

If you are an occasional wincher, then Permanent Magnet or PM winch motor is an excellent option for you. It is also a durable and budget-friendly option.

On the other hand, if you are looking for the best motor for heavy-duty vehicles and regular use in adverse conditions like cold, then Series Wound or SW is a terrific option for you.

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