If you’ve never used a winch before, it seems simple: hook the rope to something, push a button, and you’ll move whatever the winch is attached to. However, anything that uses high tension rope to support thousands of pounds is bound to be dangerous. Knowing how to use a winch properly won’t just protect your equipment, it could save you from a serious injury.
Keeping the Motor from Burning Out
Winch motors will overheat if used continually. Touch the case after using the winch. If it’s hot, let it cool down for a few minutes. While you wait, keep your Argo’s engine running to recharge the battery.
It takes more force to get an object to start moving than it does to keep it moving. You can save a lot of wear and tear on your winch by doing continuous pulls, instead of starting and stopping.
Protecting Your Rope
If the rope is frayed, replace it. Damaged ropes can snap, and the release of tension will whip the rope back at high speed, destroying or injuring anything in its path. It’s normal for threads to break on synthetic rope, making the surface look fuzzy. However, if a full strand breaks, the rope must be replaced.
Never connect the rope to itself. This will pinch the cable, damaging the rope. Use a nylon strap as an anchor, then connect the rope to this anchor.
The rope should be tightly wound when not in use. Otherwise, it can get wedged in the spool housing. The easiest way to get a tight wind is to connect the rope to an anchor and use it to pull your vehicle.
Before you reel in the rope, wipe it down to remove any dirt or moisture. Grit can make the drum stick the next time you use it, while water promotes corrosion. Check the fairlead for burrs or sharp edges that could damage the rope. If you have a synthetic rope, you can clean it by running it through a bucket of soapy water. Squeeze out the rope to remove any trapped moisture.
Always keep at least 5 loops of rope around the drum when using the winch. This keeps the rope from disconnecting from the drum under load.
Always wear gloves when handling metal ropes. Broken strands have no problem penetrating skin.
Don’t drive your vehicle while using the winch. This will overload the rope and the motor. Instead, let the winch do all the work.
Do not use the winch to anchor the vehicle during transport, and do not use it to pull at extreme angles. It’s OK if the rope rubs against the rollers, but it shouldn’t be wrapped around them. Argo’s snow plow kit is designed to keep the rope at a safe angle, using it to lower and lift the plow.
Is Your Argo Ready for Adventure?
Shank’s Argo is your complete source for everything Argo. We don’t just sell Argos. We also have a massive parts warehouse and a service department that can fix anything on your vehicle. Visit our shop at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. Want to do the work yourself? You can order OEM parts and accessories for your ATV, UTV or XTV from our website, www.shanksargo.com. We ship across the United States and Canada.