3 Best Winches for Jeep Gladiator in 2022

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Last Updated on August 26, 2022

When it’s about choosing the best winch for Jeep Gladiator, mainly when it’s about pulling the vehicle from a real tough situation, going for the right weight capacity winch is crucial.

You should consider anything having around 10000 lbs or above, like 12000 lbs or 13500 lbs.

Remember, to get the best results from the unit, you must use a winch with 1.5 times more weight capacity than the vehicle’s gross weight during the recovery process.

Besides the load capacity, you have to care about the following parameters –

  • Ease of installation and operation.
  • If it’s the perfect fit for Jeep Gladiator.
  • Build quality.
  • Line speed and ability to perform heavy-duty pulling with ease.
  • The remote control’s quality and usability.
  • It’s IP rating.
  • Price, etc.

I’ve reviewed the three best Jeep Gladiator winches in this write-up, mentioning their benefits and drawbacks. During the item shortlisting process, I considered the parameters mentioned above.

Now, let’s get to the business.

Top Pick
WARN VR EVO 12-S
WARN VR EVO 12-S
Best Value
Smittybilt X2O
Smittybilt X2O
Budget Pick
X-BULL 12V
X-BULL 12V

Best Winch for Jeep Gladiator

1. WARN VR EVO 103255 Winch

Pros

  • Outstanding line speed under full load.
  • A reliable, high-performing contactor comes inside a relocatable control pack to give you comfort while installing if you happen to have tight winch placement.
  • Straightforward to install and operate.
  • It puts minimal load on the electrical system to ensure less waste heat.
  • This unit is relatively compact, having a low profile; hence it’s easy to get the radiator clearance.
  • The two-in-one remote works both as a wired (11.5′) and wireless controller providing a flawless performance in both cases.
  • IP68 rated winch. Meaning it’s pretty safe from outside materials like water, mud, dust, etc.
  • The synthetic rope with hawse fairlead and steel cable with roller fairlead versions are readily available.
  • Reasonably priced compared to other WARN winch series considering the overall performance.

Cons

  • More expensive than other similar weight capacity winches from different other brands.
  • The instruction manual is not up to the standard.
  • Although it’s an IP68 rated winch, it’s not ideal for submerged use.

This particular WARN EVO VR 12-S winch is the synthetic rope version winch with a weight capacity of 12000 lbs. That means it gives the best output if you keep the vehicle’s gross weight up to 8000 lbs.

Considering the price and performance, this unit is the best winch for Jeep Gladiator, in my opinion.

It boasts a three-stage planetary gear train and a powerful motor. Both these help to get a powerful and fast pulling under load at low amp draw.

You can other versions of this series varying in weight capacity and rope types like –

Although this particular winch and all the other VR EVO series winches are pretty capable of getting the job done efficiently, WARN considers all the VR EVO winches as standard duty winches.

You should consider buying their ZEON series winches of the same weight capacities to get more robust construction and performance. The ZEON series winches are also IP68 rated winch, suitable for submerged use.

2. Smittybilt X20 Gen2 Winch

Pros

  • It’s an IP68 rated winch. Meaning it’s safe from outside materials like water, mud, and dust. More importantly, it’s suitable for submerged use.
  • Easy to install, wire up, and operate.
  • The remote works without any glitch as both wired and wireless options and has a substantially long wire (12′).
  • An inductive braking system is in place to restrain overheating.
  • The remote plug is somewhat protected from the outside materials because of the plug cover.
  • It’s quite capable of handling tough jobs and suitable for regular use.
  • The control pack is relocatable and lets you mount it at any convenient spot.
  • Readily available in different versions varying in load capacity and line types.
  • The price is quite acceptable.

Cons

  • No major drawback.

Smittybilt is a well-known brand in making quality, heavy-duty winches at an affordable price. This X20 GEN2 electric winch has 12000 lbs weight capacity, which is undoubtedly a perfect fit for the Jeep Gladiator. Like the previous Warn VR Evo 12000 lbs winch, you should limit the vehicle’s gross weight to 8000 lbs to get the best results.

Besides this 12000 lbs load capacity steel cable version, you can also buy the following versions of the series depending on the load capacity you require –

  • 12000 lbs synthetic rope.
  • 10000 lbs synthetic rope.
  • 10000 lbs steel cable.
  • 15500 lbs steel cable

The remote control is quite beefy, hence easy to handle. The buttons are easy to operate, even wearing a pair of winch gloves. Not to mention, the wireless remote ranges well to let the user operate it from a considerably safe distance.

Overall, this one is one of the most cost-effective Jeep Gladiator winches out there, offering every meat and potato you expect from a quality unit. Like the 3-stage gear system, free spooling clutch, an automatic out-of-drum, a powerful motor, etc.

3. X-BULL 13500 lbs Winch

Pros

  • Installing this winch in a relatively quick time is a breeze.
  • A well-protected contactor comes with the purchase inside a relocatable control pack.
  • It boasts a bright-colored 80′ synthetic rope, which is substantially longer for comfortable pulling.
  • The purchase includes a well-functioned wireless remote control that comes with a wire to use as a cored remote too.
  • The clevis slip hook excels in quality.
  • Well constructed UV-resistant matte black body looks solid in terms of sturdiness.
  • The price is a bargain.

Cons

  • The electric diagram of the instruction manual needs improvement.
  • Not an IP68 rated unit like the other ones on my list.
  • Based on other real users, this unit is not durable enough for regular use.

As this one is a 13500 lbs capacity winch, you will want to keep the gross limit of the vehicle to around 9000 lbs to get the optimal results.

Like every other market-leading winches, this one also offers the standard features like a three-stage planetary gear system, easy operating the free spooling clutch, automatic load-holding brake, an efficient series wound motor, etc. These ensure a robust, efficient, smooth, and safe pulling experience.

If you are looking for a budget winch for Jeep Gladiator for occasional uses, you won’t be disappointed by purchasing this X-Bull 13500 lbs winch.

Factors to Consider While Buying a Winch for Jeep Gladiator

Winch for Jeep Gladiator

Type of Use

First, you need to determine what you will be using your winch for. If you plan on pulling your jeep out of a ditch once in a while, then you won’t need the same type of winch as someone who goes off-roading frequently.

Brake System:

All winches have some sort of brake system that helps to control the load as it’s being pulled in by the winch. The two most common brake systems are automatic load-holding brakes and manual line locks.

Automatic brakes engage when you stop pulling on the rope, while manual brakes must be engaged manually by the user before beginning to pull on the rope. Either type of brake can be helpful in preventing accidental release of the load.

Size and Weight

As jeeps get bigger and heavier, so do their winches. The size and weight of your jeep will play a role in what size winch you purchase.

Cost

Of course, the cost is always a factor to consider when making a purchase. But with winches, you generally get what you pay for. So if you plan on using your winch often, it’s worth investing in higher quality, more expensive model.

Wire Rope or Synthetic Rope

Winches come with either wire rope or synthetic rope installed on them from the factory. Wire rope is stronger than synthetic rope and does not stretch as much under load, making it ideal for heavy loads or for applications where precise control is needed (like getting your Jeep unstuck from deep mud).

However, wire rope is heavier than synthetic rope and can be more difficult to work with if you’re not used to it. Synthetic ropes are made from materials like Kevlar or polyester and offer many advantages over wire ropes, including being lighter weight and easier to handle.

Waterproofing

If you live in an area where it rains often, you will want a waterproof winch so it does not rust over time.

What size winch for jeep gladiator?

In order to get the best outcome, you should bring a winch that has a 1.5 times higher capacity than your vehicle. For instance, if your jeep gladiator weight is 6000 lbs, then you should bring a winch that holds 9000 lbs pulling capacity.

Final Verdict

All the above winches are some of the best winches for Jeep Gladiator. However, they don’t perform equally, and the prices are not the same for all those units.

If you are looking for the best option regarding performance, build quality, ability to do the heavy-duty pulling, and budget is not an issue for you, then go for the WARN VR EVO 12-S winch.

You won’t be disappointed by buying the Smittybilt X2O winch either for regular uses. More importantly, it costs way less than the WARN winch but provides almost the same performance.

If you are on a budget or don’t want to use the winch on a regular basis, the X-Bull 13,500 lbs winch is the ideal one for you.

Best winch for jeep gladiator

Jeep Gladiator Winch FAQs

What is the average weight of a jeep gladiator?

The GVWR or Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of a jeep gladiator is 5800 lbs. 

Can I put a winch on my jeep gladiators stock bumper?

If your jeep gladiator comes with a plastic bumper, then it will not be able to support your winch. That’s why you will need to build or purchase a winch mount that attaches the frame. 

Steel cable or synthetic rope. Which one will be better for pulling my jeep gladiator?

Both synthetic rope & steel cable have individual pros and cons. You should consider your preference. However, nowadays most people prefer using synthetic cable.

What IP rating will be the best for my jeep gladiator winch?

In general, there are three ratings you will find for a winch. They are:- No rating, IP67 and IP68. Among them, IP68 will be the best and a bit costly too. You can go for IP67 though if you want.

Do I need to put a winch on my jeep hood?

It is not mandatory but recommended. By doing so, you will find your jeep winch handy in tough situations.

About the Author: Brian Silvestro

Brian Silvestro is the founder and chief editor of OffroadersArena. He spends his free time tending to his BMW iX SUV and explaining its merits to anyone who'll listen.

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