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How to Maintain and Repair a Broken ATV Winch Cable

Sometimes your winch cable breaks, and you need to replace it. Of course, you may be tempted to do a quick repair, but do keep in mind that this is only practical in certain situations. Simply repairing your broken winch cable won’t allow you to use it for heavy winching on a repetitive basis. In this guide, we’ll tell you how to do basic and complete ATV winch cable repair to keep your towing equipment fresh and always ready.

broken atv winch cable
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Using an ATV Winch Cable Repair Kit

If your ATV winch cable or rope broke, one of the best things you can do is purchase a winch line cable replacement kit. Some of these kits are easy fixes and come with additional parts or tools that you may need in order to fix your broken ATV winch cable.

What Tools Do I Need to Maintain or Repair My Winch Cable?

The tools needed for repairing a broken ATV winch cable or rope are often found at home in your everyday toolbox. You’ll need a good, sturdy pair of pliers or vice grips, a ratchet and sockets if you have to remove your entire winch, electrical tape (some people use duct tape or T-Rex tape) to keep the rope on the drum while you work and rewind, and a good pair of gloves to keep your hands safe (you definitely need them if you’re working with a steel winch cable).

How to Perform a Winch Cable Quick Fix

If you’re in the middle of an off-roading session and your winch breaks, you may not be able to remove your winch and perform a total repair of your cable. In these cases, it’s important to know how to perform emergency winch rope repair so you can keep helping your friends (or yourself if you are prone to getting stuck).

In order to do this, you’ll need to use a good steel clamp to your winch cable. This doesn’t work necessarily for winch rope (of course, there are “indestructible” knots that some people use for winch rope repair) but it is one of the most common things you can do to repair your steel winch cable. These can be problematic though since they get caught on things, snag on the line, or even come loose.

The best method of emergency winch cable repair is to splice it into itself. Simply separate the strands so you get an even amount from two ends, loop them around and re-braid them into the loop you just made from the two ends. If you want to put a single clamp on the bottom to keep the excess wire down, then go for it. All you need though is good tape to tape down the extra cable sticking out from self-splicing it.

What’s the Best Type of Fixing an ATV Winch Cable?

Field repair is generally the best way to repair your cable in a pinch if you need a budget-friendly way to fix your cable. This doesn’t work for breaks too close to your winch though. For those, you’ll want to most definitely replace your entire cable for your safety as well as everyone else’s – it’s also the best option for your winch.


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