SUVs are called cars with a high level of terrain and operation in difficult conditions. Often, the operation of an SUV is not limited to driving on dirt and country roads, the owners use it in the mode of complex obstruction. In such conditions, the risk of getting bogged down in a swampy or sandy area is great, even if the car is equipped “according to the first class”. To help the owner of an SUV to get out of a natural trap alone will be able only to have a special device called a winch. In this article we will look at what kind of winches for off-road vehicles, the principle of their functioning, the peculiarities of choosing a device for your car, let's name the best winches, according to consumer feedback and recommendations of specialists.
How to choose a winch for an SUV.
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Appointment and device of automobile winches
Automobile winches for SUVs are designed to extract the car by independent forces when driving off-road. The question of the need to purchase such a device often arises from those people who exploit their car in the conditions of severe off-road, impassable roads in swampy and wooded areas. In a situation where the car is stuck in mud or bog, such a device will help the owner to extract the transport from the natural trap. If a car was bought exclusively for use in urban areas, with isolated visits to country roads with small pools, then there is no need for a winch for such owners. More often than not, such “off-road” conditions can pass unhindered and provide the opportunity for a high-quality set of rubber and the maintenance of all working units of a vehicle in perfect order.
What is the meaning of the auto winch action? To extract your own car from the trap to the owner of the car, you only need to find a solid stationary "anchor", which can perform a pole or tree in nature, fix the end of the winch rope and pull the car out of the trap, setting the mechanism of the device into action. By design, the auto-winder consists of a cable and a winding drum, which can be operated in various ways - both by the driver’s power and by engaging the drive of the machine itself. The modern market provides the consumer with several variants of winches that differ in properties, traction force and other factors, depending on which the choice of equipment for the owner of an SUV varies.
Types of automobile winches
Making the right choice for an SUV winch is not really that easy. The huge range of products in this category often confuses even experienced car owners. Consider the main types of winches offered to the buyer by the modern market, with their preferential criteria and disadvantages. A thorough study of the product range will greatly facilitate the selection procedure for the buyer.
The oldest and easiest are manual winches for off-road vehicles. The principle of operation of this type of devices is very simple - they are driven into action exclusively by the muscular strength of a person. Of the advantages of these winches can be called only their affordable pricing. Among the shortcomings, users note the following: it is almost impossible to pull out a multi-tonnial car out of the mud by human force, it’s really possible to do it only if the car doesn’t exceed one ton in weight, and not always, for this purpose you need to make considerable efforts. Of course, using a hand-made device is much easier to do than trying to push a car out of the quagmire with your bare hands; however, it is difficult to call this winch option an easy solution. Hand-made automobile winches are the preferred option only for those car owners who very seldom go off-road, buy the device “just in case”, and the weight of their vehicle is small.
The highest rating for the implementation, reliability and uninterrupted operation is an electric winch. From a structural position, the electric winch is a drum modified with a cable and gearbox, which is driven by starting an electric motor connected to a stationary SUV battery. At the present time, the winch for SUVs of this class is launched from a special console that comes with the device. Electric winches differ in tractive force and length of the cable, as well as in design features, which is reflected in the price policy of the pick-up device.
On sale there are stationary winches of electrical class and portable models. Stationary devices are characterized by the complexity of installation, necessitating the need for intervention in the design of the vehicle and the installation of a power bumper on an SUV, if it is not provided from the factory. Such installation work does not fall into the category of simple procedures, and therefore requires the help of specialists. Stationary category devices are a priority for car owners who regularly ride on the harsh off-road or take part in rally on impassable tracks.
For ordinary owners of off-road vehicles, occasionally going on a hunt or fishing, buying stationary stations is unprofitable, an alternative would be to buy a removable model of an automatic winch. Its advantages are the lack of need to refine the car, the ability to install in an unexpected situation, both in front and behind the vehicle. Also, users note the prolonged period of operation of the electric winch of a removable category due to the sparing conditions of their savings - most often the device is stored in the trunk of the car and pulled out only when necessary.
Mechanical winches for SUVs - this is the most reliable tool for self-pulling the machine. The functional activity of this type of winch is not provided by the special motor of the device itself, but is driven by the engine of an SUV. Installing a mechanical view on a car, if the design features of an SUV allow it, makes it practically indestructible in any off-road modes. The mechanism of a mechanical class is distinguished by high efficiency and efficiency, however, it also has several disadvantages. The design of this type of winches provides for their connection to the transfer case with reference to an additional cardan shaft, intended for the installation of a self-pulling device, which can only be equipped with an "solid" category SUV.
It is almost impossible to install a mechanical class winch on standard SUVs due to its cumbersome volumes and solid weight. And one more drawback emerges from the advantages of these models of devices: in the process of self-pulling, the vehicle wheels also work at the same time, and the torque of the wheels does not coincide with the speed of rotation of the winding element, which entails towing the car with its parallel sinking into the quagmire. This fact necessitates the purchase of a mechanical class winch with high power levels relative to the weight of the vehicle.
Hydraulic winches are characterized by actuation of the mechanism due to its connection to the power steering. Accordingly, if the SUV is not equipped with such a mechanism, the first problem will be the installation and connection of the self-pulling device. For the installation of the winch will have to buy additional fittings, hoses and adapters, and installation work will most often be able to perform only qualified professionals. In addition, hydraulic devices have a fairly high pricing policy compared with other modifications of the winches. From the advantages, users distinguish smoothness and noiselessness in their functioning, however, in terms of reliability, stability and dependability in operation, they are inferior to previous types of automatic winches.
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The most simple, not requiring serious installation, is considered a portable winch. Portable models are of different types according to the principle of operation: from the motor of the machine, the battery or its own, installed engine to the device. Often, such structures have a specific console, which is mounted on the car, and the main traction design can mess around, for example, in the trunk of a car. When the need arises for self-pulling of an SUV, the portable device is connected to the actuating mechanism. The disadvantages of such devices are their overall volume, the need for reserves of fuel resources, if the winch is started by means of its own engine.
Most Popular Car Winches for SUVs
Selection of an automobile winch for an SUV should be carried out depending on many criteria. Consider the main characteristics of the winches for SUVs and their features, which should be guided in the selection of the self-pulling device:
- The traction force of the device, the optimal parameters of which should depend proportionally on the vehicle mass, it is important to consider that the power indicated in the instructions for the device is calculated taking into account the ideal operating conditions. In order for the automatic winder not to fail the wearer in a difficult moment, the optimum is a power parameter equal to the weight of the machine multiplied by a factor of 2.5.
- The design features of the winch, causing the complexity of mounting devices on the vehicle and the size of the device.
- The reliability of the automatic winch, which is mainly due to its appearance and the way of bringing the mechanism into action.
- Predominant conditions for the use of an SUV: if the car is used professionally, a regular winch requirement is foreseen, it is better to give preference to more expensive high-end devices. For the “lovers” of off-road driving, you can find an option among the winches of domestic production, which have proven themselves well in the process of operation, are characterized by a democratic pricing policy.
Among the budget options for car winches with decent properties, positive characteristics and consumer reviews are the following device models:
- Электрическая модель лебёдки Sorokin 1.1 заслужила звание «Лучшая цена» среди аналогичных автомобильных товаров. Её грузоподъёмность в идеальных условиях не превышает 1,1 тонны, потому применяется для установки на квадроциклы. Характеризуется доступной ценой, отличными функциональными свойствами, небольшими габаритами, оптимальным весом и высоким критерием надёжности.
- The title “The best high-speed winch with an extended cable” in 2018 was awarded to the Master Winch MW X8288 model. The budget price of the device against the background of its reliability in operation, practicality in operation - the launch using the wireless control panel, high-speed winding of the cable and its length within thirty-two meters brought the winch to the leading positions. Among the advantages of the device, users also call it reliability in operation at a wide range of temperature conditions, the ability to connect to the onboard network at 12 V. The limiting pulling force is 3750 kilograms.
- Отечественная модель Sprut-9000 заслужила звание самой выносливой лебёдки. Среди преимуществ пользователи выделяют следующие характеристики: невысокая цена, качественные материалы изготовления, продуманная конструкция, тяговое усилие свыше четырёх тонн, герметичность установки, обеспечивающая её долговечность даже в условиях регулярной эксплуатации машины во влажной среде, ремонтопригодность. Управление лебёдкой осуществляется с помощью пульта, радиус сетевого шнура которого составляет четыре с половиной метра.
Among the professional devices, the best in 2018, consumers named the following automobile winches for SUVs:
- The electric winch under the Master Winch brand, model MW X18000, was called the most powerful and reliable device with a pulling force of more than eight tons, which allows it to be used on any, even heavy machines. It operates from a 24 Volt network, while it is equipped with a specific cable damper and wireless remote control. The disadvantage users call a rapid discharge of the battery. It should be noted: without exception, all models of winches under the Master Winch brand enter the market only after serious tests and improvements, in case of discrepancy of the declared characteristics by the regulated manufacturer, which indicates the high quality of this manufacturer's products.
- Come Up Seal Gen 2 9.5S - Taiwanese development, with a capacity exceeding four tons. A sealed motor in an aluminum housing allows the winch to be used even under water, and the synthetic cable with which the device is equipped ensures high reliability of the design. Resource strength and durability, versatility in application, water resistance put it in the leading position in consumption among car owners who very often face severe off-road.
- The undisputed leader in extreme power is the Bison 20 winch. Its lifting capacity of more than nine tons allows it to cope with the self-extraction from the trap not only of a standard SUV, but also of heavy vehicles. High performance and ability to function in extreme situations make it an indispensable device for professional SUVs.
Let's sum up
When choosing a winch for your vehicle, remember that in the case of this car accessory, the main aspects are quality and reliability. It is better to buy a decent winch once with a corresponding power and characteristics, and be 100% sure in it, than to save and, if necessary, not be able to get yourself out of the “clutches”, look for a tractor or other force in the immediate vicinity.