How To Size A Winch For UTV

If you’ve ridden long enough, you may have realized that a winch is one of the most important accessories to get for a UTV. Now that you’ve decided to add a winch to your wheelhouse of accessories, you need to know how to size a winch for your UTV. This can seem like a complicated ordeal, but in reality you only need to look for a few things.

There are plenty of different kinds of winches from mechanical to hydraulic drum winches. The more complex, the larger the winch often gets with all of its turning gears and motor necessities. If you get a winch that’s too large for your rig, you’ll have a lot of issues getting it to work as well as you want. Sizing a winch for your UTV will allow you to get the most out of the rig that you can.

Take all of these factors into consideration when deciding on a UTV winch size. You don’t want a winch too small for your rig and end up in a disastrous situation out on the trail, but you also don’t want one too large for your small ATV because it can be overkill. Here are some things to take into consideration when learning what size winch you need for your UTV.

man with winch for polaris rzr

The Size of Your UTV

This is the most important thing to take into consideration for sizing a winch to your UTV.

The size of your UTV means both its physical size and weight. Each winch will have a rated load capacity anywhere from 2500 pounds to 6000 pounds.

An average UTV weighs around 550 pounds. The larger ones get up closer to 1,000 pounds. This might seem like a 2,500-pound winch would be overkill, but you want to follow a rule of 1.5x what your base weight is. For example, a 1,000-pound UTV should be pulled by something rated at at least 1,500 pounds.

Still, this doesn’t add up, does it?

Well, the weight of your UTV isn’t the only force that the winch will be working against. There are many other factors that come into play, so you need to consider how you’re going to use the winch and how aggressively you ride.

Ride Style and How You’ll Use It

If you ride around the farm without any risk of getting trapped in deep, deep mud, you may not need anything more than 2,500 pounds. If you ride more aggressively and end up deep in some mud, you may need some real help getting you out.

You also want to keep in mind the weight of anything you’re towing behind you. A trailer can easily add a few hundred pounds to the scenario and can overload the winch without you thinking about it.

Another factor can be the people that you ride with. We all have that friend who makes stupid decisions and needs rescued. If you want to help out, you may need a more powerful winch.

Generally speaking, if you’re an aggressive rider you may need a more aggressive winch to match that riding style. Other people who are playing it safe can use a lower-rated size winch and be totally fine. You are the only one who knows exactly how you’ll use it, so apply that knowledge to your purchase and buy the right size winch for your UTV.

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