Greasing a Boat Winch – A How to Basic

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Last Updated on June 22, 2022

You are supposed to know that your boat winch needs to go through different environments. Does not matter whether there is sun, sand, mud or water, your winch will get your job by any means. As a result, your boat winch life-cycle starts decreasing. In this case, you need to do something to make sure your winch is going well efficiently.

Well, what you can do is grease your boat winch. The process of greasing is pretty simple and cheap. You will just need elbow grease a bit and a grease gun for your ease of greasing. That’s it.

Today, I am here to talk about all the basic things that you need to know about boat winch greasing. To increase the life-cycle of your boat winch, spend here a few minutes and do the job accordingly.

Greasing a Boat Winch

Benefits of Regular Boat Winch Maintenance

Undoubtedly there are many advantages for the regular maintenance of your winch. Among them, the most impressive one is that you will be able to have a durable winch.

You may find friction problems in your winch mechanism. It is mainly caused due to poor maintenance. As a result, there will be an effect on your winch performance and you are likely to find your winch sluggish, slower, inefficient and hard to use. 

Apart from that, greasing your boat winch regularly will protect it from rust and corrosion. You may have a corrosion-resistant winch but still, there is a chance to get your winch corroded. Because small objects like grinds, dirt and sand grind the surface and damage your coating slowly. So, it’s better to take steps ahead.

Basics of Greasing A Boat Winch

1. Preparing for the job

Your first task is to prepare yourself for greasing your boat winch. As a part of your preparation, you need to bring all the necessary tools you will be needing. As every winch is different from others, it is not possible to provide an accurate tool list. You will be needing the basic tools though. The two basic and essential tools are:

  • Adjustable wrench
  • A set of Allen wrenches
  • A set of screwdrivers

Besides, it is recommended to have your boat winch manual with you while greasing. You will find all the requirements of a  specific model there. In case you don’t have any manual, you can contact your winch manufacturer as they can provide you the online version of it. So, pay heed to these issues.

2. The Replacement Parts

Well, it is likely to happen that you need some replacement parts while servicing your boat winch. There are some little parts such as springs or pawls that can break down easily. So, keep it in mind and make sure that you have the replacements. Besides, you may face the problem of losing parts as they are very tiny. In this case, it’s a good idea to use a box for your tools.

3. The Disassembly

I have already been told that different boat winch requires different steps for greasing. That’s why for disassembling your winch, follow your winch manual. Besides, for avoiding any kind of hassle, keep your working place organized. Without it, it’s a better idea to arrange the parts accordingly to their disassembly order. This trick will help to make things easy for you.

Well, the very basic part of this step is removing your boat winch drum. Usually, the drum is remains secured using a screwdriver. When you will be pulling your winch drum, pay attention as there should not be any bearings remaining inside. It can be the cause of your frustration.

Your next task is to clean your winch drum along with the washer and bearings. After that, you need to take off the spindle retaining collets for lifting out your winch main spindle. Besides, your winch may hold gears in the spindle if you own a multiple-speed winch. Here also you need to take off individual part of your winch and clean it. 

After cleaning the parts, keep the parts in the right spot of your toolbox or organizing counter. Thus, you will be able to do it quickly in a good manner.

After that, bring a solvent-based cleaner container for cleaning the parts with any type of commercial degreaser or diesel. You should never use gasoline. It will damage the plastic parts.

Your next task is cleaning the little parts springs and pawls. While cleaning these parts, give them a quick check and see if there is any damage. If you find any damaging signs, then go for a replacement. You need to do the same things for cleaning other parts. I hope you can understand this. It’s a simple thing.

It’s time to examine the bigger parts of your boat winch now. You should examine the winch pads, base and inside of the drum. Have a look at them carefully to find any damaging signs. If you find any problem, then don’t hesitate to go for a replacement.

After cleaning all the parts of your boat winch, dry these parts completely using a piece of lint-free cloth. If you left any solvent in your parts and grease them, the lubricant integrity will be compromised.

4. Applying the Lubricant

Once you find your parts are dry, you can start lubricating. For your pawls, you should use light machine oil as using grease can make it sticky. Then, use a brush and apply a little bit of winch grease on the gears, bearings and spindles. Always make sure that you are not applying too much grease as it can result in depositing water and salt.

5. Reassembly

You are done with greasing your boat winch. Now what you need to do is reassemble the parts you disassembled a while ago. So, reassemble them in a manner you removed them. That’s all. Don’t forget to provide regular maintenance to your boat winch.

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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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