How to Use Warn Winch

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Last Updated on June 27, 2022

You might have all the important pieces of equipment for a winch. It can come in handy in times of need. An experienced winch operator could have saved your life or that of someone else. You can learn how to conduct winching the right way only if you have the right knowledge.

Yes, there are a set of safety matters that you need to understand beforehand. As well as some dos and don’ts regarding the whole thing. 

So, before you grab that WARN winch for let’s say, a stuck vehicle situation in the middle of nowhere, find out exactly how to use warn winch. We’re here to help you with this short guide, hope you like it!

How to Use Warn Winch Without Making Mistakes

So, How to Use Warn Winch – Start Well with Safety Preparation

If you have sound knowledge of how a winch works, you’ll emphasize enough the matter of safety while using it. These are pretty dangerous tools that can cause a hazard if not dealt with proper caution. 

So, in the middle of nowhere, needing to use the warn winch will require you to take a deep breath and figure out a few things to assess the situation. And these are:

  1. Understanding the thing you’ll winch to.
  2. Items for recovery that you’re going to need.
  3. And deciding who you can take help from. Because trails often have people or strangers who are willing to help you. But that does not mean you should assume they can deal with winching and you should be taking help from them. Anyone with less knowledge close to the rope spooling out path is basically at risk of harm. And you don’t want that trouble in the middle of already facing trouble. 

Friction and enough cable on the drum are important. So have at least five cables wrapping around the drum. A red mark or paint on the very end of the cable will allow you to later know when too much spooling has happened. 

Also, those who know how a hand winch works, should also very well acknowledge that a hand close to fairlead is a big no. 

Supplementary Items Needed to Use a Warn Winch

The winch machine is indeed the most significant piece of recovery gear. But along with that, you’ll also need:

  1. Grab shackles or also known as d-rings.
  2. Tow strap.
  3. Tree saver.
  4. A snatch block. 
  5. Winch damper

For Your Information – If you are recovering the rollover in a canyon pretty narrow, all of these will be required.

You Are Winching to What?

You might winch truck, similar heavy vehicle, or anything with the same or bigger rig size. And if that’s so, you’re doing it right because such stuff can be used as an anchor with proper sturdy recovery points. 

Or a huge tree and rock can be valid options. Something that can withstand the vehicle’s weight. Hooking the cable lower will help to work with minimal anchor leverage. In case it’s in a muddy or sandy area, a land anchor will be required. 

The Recovery of Self or Another Vehicle

Learning how to use a Warn winch to recover a vehicle will be necessary no matter if you’re doing the job alone or with another person. Also, there are several types of winches you can get from WARN. 

Make sure you get something that would be able to take the strain off the vehicle and not fall apart during the process. To minimize that strain, you can drive the vehicle and make sure the speed rate of the winch matches the tire movements. 

Keep in mind that most winches won’t come with a very long cable. And so, having someone outside the vehicle, to observe and act from a distance is really helpful.

If you are using your vehicle for another rig’s recovery, then having a third person for engaging the brake while you operate the winch from outside, is recommended. 

Also, allow them to increase the idle to 2000 RPM. Short winching shall avoid too much current drawing, as well as overheating. 

There are several winch uses and one is pulling a vehicle straight. You should use a snatch block in case you are finding it slightly hard. To change the direction, you can see the D-ring as well as the tree saver strap. 

Also, while using WARN winch, try keeping the hook disconnected from the cable. Otherwise, the load can make it kink a lot. Be very careful of placing the strap, because most warm ones come with short recovery straps. These hardly stretch much under load. 

Never Do These:

A successful warn winch usage also needs you to be aware of what should not to do. And that’s what this segment is for.

  • Using the winch hook as a recovery point is not a good idea. Go for tow hooks to get that purpose done. Drum and motor damages are prone to happen from shock load to your winch.
  • Suspension or steering parts also should never be hooked. 
  • Always stay away from wrapping cable around anything for connecting hook with cable. 

Wrapping Up

And that was our thoughts on how to use WARN winch with proper safety maintenance, ways as well as supplementary tools.

We also published some other winch guides such as

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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