If you believe a winch is the end of the road for off-road recovery, think again. There are many important – and totally kick-ass – winch accessories available on the market today. Some of them necessary for your winch, some not. In this list, you will find our 10 must-have winch accessories (for off-roading).
A winch is one of the easiest ways to perform an off-road recovery, however, it does require the right tools and preparation to get the job done. at Rhino USA, we are experts in off-roading and recoveries, and we know what it takes to get a vehicle unstuck using a winch, kinetic recovery rope, recovery tow strap, and more.
1. Remote Control
Starting off with a remote control for your winch. This accessory is awesome, and often included with a newer winch. There two types – wired and wireless. If your winch did not come equipped with a remote control, you can purchase one separately online. Be sure to check and confirm that the remote you are looking at purchasing will work with your winch before buying (consult the seller if you are unsure).
2. Toggle Switch
What if you do not want the hassle of getting out of your car, plugging in the remote, and utilizing your winch? Que the dashboard rocker switch. These switches mount to your vehicles dashboard and allow you to winch-in and winch-out, with the luxury of never leaving your vehicles driver’s seat. There are many different brands that sell these online, and plenty of guides on wiring them correctly.
3. Quick Connect
A quick connect system. This winch accessory is helpful for instantly connecting or disconnecting your winch from its power source. It saves time and boosts your overall reaction time. As a bonus, you will not need to purchase any extra equipment or tools to make a quick connect system work for your winch.
4. Snatch Block
Featured Product: Rhino USA Recovery Snatch Block
The recovery snatch block. This kick-ass piece of equipment will instantly double the pull power of your winch – not kidding. When you add a snatch block to your winch, you are adding an extra 13.5-ton break strength to your setup. On top of this, they work with any winch, and reduce the overall heat buildup and amperage draw – protecting your synthetic rope from any potential damage caused by overheating.
5. Winch Damper
For those that prefer a steel cable over a synthetic rope, this is a lifesaver (literally). A winch damper’s main purpose is to prevent your steel cable from recoiling in the off chance that the cable breaks. This can and does happen during vehicle recovery. We know what you are thinking, and the answer is yes, we have lost an unfortunate amount of fellow off-roaders to recoiling ropes. So be purchase a winch damper today and protect yourself, your friends, and family from this potentially deadly situation.
6. Winch Gloves
You should always pack a fine pair of gloves with you for any off-road journey. Not only do they keep your hands clean, but they also prevent scrapes, cuts, and minor injuries to your hands. When working with a recovery winch you never really know what could happen, and a high-quality pair of work gloves may prove quite useful down the road.
Sometimes, you may not have another vehicle nearby to help recover your vehicle from a tough spot. This is where a tree saver recovery strap comes in handy. Loop a tree saver around a sturdy tree to winch your way out slowly and carefully. This is a much better solution than simply wrapping your winch line around, as that can lead to an extremely dangerous situation to you and those nearby. You can even bundle the recovery tree saver strap with the recovery snatch block for the ultimate winching recovery combo!
Like the above-mentioned tree saver, but it serves an alternate purpose. A recovery strap is typically used to recover one vehicle using another. However, combine this with a heavy-duty winch and you have yourself a pulling machine. Recovery straps are much longer than their tree saver counterpart, with tree savers typically measuring 6ft and recovery straps 20-30ft in length. Recovery tow straps are also different from traditional tow strap, and they can actually serve a dual purpose.
9. Winch Cover
You invested quite a bit of money into your prized winch, do not let dust, mud, or unexpected scratches ruin it. Spend a tad bit more and invest in a high-quality winch cover. This will also prevent sun exposure and rainwater from drastically impacting the longevity of your synthetic rope.
10. D-Ring Shackles
This winch accessory is vital for combining a winch hook with a tree saver or recovery strap. These heavy-duty winch accessories typically have break strengths ranging from X to Y. Typically, you will connect both loop-ends of your tree saver strap to a shackle and connect it all to your winch hook. Rhino USA d-ring shackles come in six different color ways and have a break strength up to 41,850!
In conclusion, make sure you always have the right equipment to perform an effective and safe recovery, even when using a winch. For the toughest winch accessories and off-road recovery gear, be sure to check out our shop, offering the highest quality and a guaranteed lifetime warranty!
Winch and Winch Accessory Maintenance and Care
While investing in the right winch accessories is crucial, it's equally important to properly maintain and care for them as well as your winch to ensure their longevity and reliability during off-roading adventures. Here are some essential maintenance tips:
Regular Inspection: Before every off-road trip, inspect your winch accessories for signs of wear, damage, or corrosion. Look for frayed cables, bent shackles, or any visible defects. If you notice any issues, replace or repair the accessory before use.
Cleaning: After off-roading in muddy or dusty conditions, make sure to clean your winch accessories thoroughly. Remove dirt, debris, and any contaminants that could compromise their functionality. A clean accessory is not only more reliable but also easier to work with.
Lubrication: Properly lubricate moving parts, such as snatch blocks and shackles, to prevent rust and ensure smooth operation. Use a suitable lubricant for the specific accessory and follow the manufacturer's recommendations.
Storage: When not in use, store your winch accessories in a dry and cool environment. Avoid leaving them exposed to the elements, as this can lead to deterioration over time. Proper storage ensures that your accessories are ready for action when you need them.
By incorporating these maintenance practices into your off-roading routine, you'll not only extend the life of your winch accessories but also enhance the safety and effectiveness of your off-road adventures. Remember that well-maintained accessories are a crucial part of your off-roading toolkit, providing peace of mind as you tackle challenging terrains and obstacles.
What size winch do I need?
The most common rule of thumb for choosing the correct winch size is double the weight of your vehicle. For example, someone with a midsize pickup or Jeep Rubicon, would need a winch with a capacity between 9,000-10,000 pounds. For lighter vehicles such as UTVs, a 4,500-6,000 pound winch is appropriate.
What are the essential safety accessories to consider when using a winch off-roading?
Safety is paramount when using a winch during off-roading adventures. Some essential safety accessories to consider include a winch line damper or blanket to prevent recoil in case of cable failure, heavy-duty gloves to protect your hands, and a recovery kit with shackles, tree straps, and a snatch block for secure attachment and controlled pulls. Additionally, it's crucial to have a clear understanding of winch operation and safety guidelines before heading off-road.