For some reason, the winch on a UTV is an oft overlooked piece of the vehicle. Depending on how you use the UTV, the winch can be one of your best friends. Here are a few tips on what to look for when choosing a UTV winch.
1. Look for a weight rating that is at least 4000 pounds. Side by sides are much heavier than quads are, and some winch manufacturers do not do the best of differentiating between the two. The weight rating is the best indicator of the winch’s pull power.
2. Decide on what you will be using the winch for. If you are going to be mudding in the Spring months, than an even higher weight rating will be needed. This is because the mud creates a suction effect that must be combated with more pull power. More simple tasks such as snow plowing would only require a more standard winch.
3. Choose between synthetic rope or steel wire rope. There are pros and cons to each. While each type of rope can be a good choice, it is up to you to decide which will work best for your situation. Synthetic rope is lightweight, can be tied in a knot in the case of an emergency, and is stronger than steel wire that is of an equal diameter. Steel wire is heat-resistant, does not succumb to breakage from abrasion, and is much cheaper in cost than synthetic rope.
4. Not every winch is a universal fit. Some manufacturers make winches and corresponding mounting plates that are brand or even model specific. Again, it is up to you to decide which would be best for your situation and towing expectations.
A company such as Side By Side Stuff that specializes in UTV parts and accessories can help you if you have any questions or concerns about choosing a winch. Most specialty companies have experts on their staff who not only sell the products, but actually use them too. Remember, let the company know exactly what you will be using the winch for and your UTV driving habits so they will be able to assist you to their fullest ability.