Land Rover owners all want a winch – they may not need a winch but they all want one! Winches can be a very useful accessory, enabling you to recover your own vehicle or even better somebody else’s! Whether you are stuck in the mud off-roading, stranded in a river or have somehow ended up in a ditch on the side of the road – a winch can be invaluable. However, it can also be very dangerous if not used correctly and safely.
Here at JGS4X4, we sell a lot of winches, one of our biggest sellers is the Terrafirma A12000 winch. We do like to stress that it is important to follow some basic safety guidelines not only for your own safety but for the safety of others and your vehicle!
Why not consider booking onto a winching course?
These courses are fun and will ensure you get the best use out of your winch in the safest possible way.
Safety Advice for winch users
When handling or rewinding the rope, always use hand protection to eliminate the possibility of cuts caused by burrs and slivers from broken strands. This is particularly important when handling wire rope but even synthetic ropes can pick up thorns or debris that can be a hazard.
Be sure to secure your vehicle in a safe position before using the winch and after moving an item with the winch secure the item. Do not rely on the winch to hold it for an extended period of time, as the winch does not have a locking mechanism. Apply blocks (such as a wheel chock) to the vehicle when parked on an incline.
Do not apply load to the winch when the wire rope is fully extended. Always make sure that there are at least 5 complete turns of rope left on the drum before starting to winch. Take care to ensure the wire rope is re-spooled correctly.
Keep Hands & Fingers Clear Of Wire Rope & Hook When Operating the Winch
Never put your finger through the hook when reeling in the last few feet. If your finger gets trapped in the hook or rope you could lose it! Never guide the wire rope under tension onto the drum with your hand. Always keep hands and body away from the fairlead (cable intake slot) when operating the winch.
Never Hook The Wire Rope Back Onto Itself
Hooking the rope back onto itself creates an unacceptable strain, breaking individual strands, which in turn weakens the entire wire rope.
Keep Pulling Durations As Short As Possible
The winch is designed for intermittent use and cannot be used in constant duty applications. Do not pull for more than one minute or near the rated load. If the motor becomes too hot to touch, stop and let it cool off for a few minutes. If the motor stalls then cut off the power immediately.
Do Not Overload
Always use the winch at its rated capacity for your safety and better performance of the winch. Do not use inappropriate attachments in an attempt to exceed its rated capacity.
Avoid Continuous Pulls From Extreme Angles
This will cause the rope to pile up at one end of the drum. When feasible, get the rope as straight as possible to the direction of the object.
Never Operate The Winch Without The Rope Fairlead Fitted
Operator injury or winch damage can result if a fairlead is not installed.
Watch what you are doing at all times. Use your common sense. Do not use the winch when you are tired, stressed or when under the influence of drugs, alcohol or medication.
Switch off and unplug the switch when not in use.
Never Move The Vehicle With Wire Rope Extended
Do not move the vehicle with the wire rope extended and attached to the load to pull it as the wire rope could snap.
Check Winch Is Secure
Be certain that winch is properly bolted to a structure or vehicle that can hold the winch load.
Use The Right Couplings
Always use the proper couplings when connecting the winch cable to the load.
Never lift items vertically as the winch was designed for horizontal use only. Never lift people or hoist loads over people.
Do not use any inappropriate attachments to extend the length of the winch cable.
Moving A Boat Onto A Trailer
When loading a boat into a trailer without a reel or side hull rollers, make sure the trailer is submerged in the water when the boat is loaded by the winch. Attempting to drag the boat onto the trailer while on land can cause winch failure and possible injury.
These warnings, cautions and instructions cannot cover all the possible conditions and situations that may occur. It must be understood, by the operator, that common sense and cautions are factors that cannot be built into this product but must be exercised by the operator.
When operating any winch, safety precautions should always be followed to reduce the risk of personal injury and damage to the winch.