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Winch Fundamentals: The hydraulic winch and the electric winch

When you are trapped in an off road situation your winch may be the best friend you have on a lonely stretch. Before purchasing any type of winch whether it is the hydraulic winch or its electric-powered counterpart there are distinguishing factors that you must take into account. It must however be said that the lead guide factor in this quest is to identify the power rating of the winch. This rating can easily be arrived at by weighing up your fully loaded ATV or truck and then multiplying this weight by a factor of 1.5 or even 2 for those who play safe. This figure that is in your possession is known as the rated pull and should be taken to be the minimum force you will need.

Back to the hydraulic winch and the electric winch

For these two winch types it is of essence to consider which one is most efficient in terms of power output. Hydraulic winches can be pretty efficient and they have been used by many a driver. In terms of variety hydraulic winches do not match up to electric-powered winches. You can get much more alternatives in between the ratings and this also implies that you can save some good bucks. Then again it is worth considering the ease of installation that electric-powered winches offer.

How do hydraulic winches and electric-powered?

Hydraulic winches are designed to operate using the hydraulic power source that your truck is fitted with. The beauty of using hydraulic winches is that they can be operated even when the vehicle’s engine is switched off. The power is essentially high and sustained but the issue of variety comes into play again.

Electric-powered winches use the vehicle’s battery to operate. They do pose quite a challenge to the battery and the vehicle engine must be kept running to forestall complete drain. It is common practice to have a spare battery or heavy duty options when using such winches. Hydraulic winches and electric-powered winches are both known to heat up when in use. It is wise to use them while intermittently allowing them to cool.

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