Best 4X4 Winch – Upgrade Your Vehicle with More Muscle

In the world of cars, perhaps nothing is more awesome, nothing is more rugged, and nothing shows more of a raw muscle than 4X4 vehicles. They are cool, they are powerful and they are incredibly stylish. But this does not mean that they are perfect, no. they can certainly be improved to be more muscular and more useful. By upgrading your vehicle with the best 4X4 winch, you can certainly take your vehicle’s coolness level up a notch.

Winches are cool tools by which your 4X4 can do more things like pulling heavy objects or making getting out of sticky situations so much easier. Just imagine if on your next off road adventure, your tires get stuck in slick mud, what then? That is when a powerful winch comes in handy with its pulling power.

But do you know how to pick out the best 4X4 winch in the market that is full of mediocre to good winches? That is what we want to help you with a selection of the best products, a buying guide and a FAQ section.

If you are in a hurry to read my full review, below is the most popular & best winch for your 4x4 truck.

Best 4X4 Winch Comparison Table

Product Image

Product Name

Product Capacity

Product Rating

Product Price

Smittybilt 9500 lb 97495 XRC GEN2 Winch

9500 lbs Capacity
Steel Cable / Synthetic Rope
Wired Remote
Waterproof (IP67)

Superwinch 1145220 Terra 45 Winch

4,500 lbs
Steel Cable / Synthetic Rope
Completely Waterproof

Champion Power Equipment 13004 Winch

3000 lbs
Steel Cable / Synthetic Rope

WARN 101035 VRX 35 Powersports Winch

2,500-4,500 lbs Capacity
IP68 Waterproof

ORCISH IP67 Electric Jeep Truck Winch

13,000 lbs
Steel Cable / Synthetic Rope
Wireless Remote
IP67 Waterproof

Top 5 Best 4X4 Winches Review

Smittybilt 9500 lb 97495 XRC GEN2 Winch

Our Rating​

Features & Key Technical Data

9,500-17,500 lb. Load Capacity
Completely Waterproof

Corded Remote
Wire Rope

Going on an off-road adventure is thrilling because of all the risks and challenges you will tackle and conquer. One of those possible risks and challenges is getting yourself stuck in a pool of mud while rain is pouring. Thankfully, the Smittybilt 97495 XRC Gen2 winch can easily get you out of that scenario.

This winch features an amphibious motor that has a 6.6 HP pulling power and a three stage planetary gear system that is sure to efficiently pull you out of many difficult terrains. It features a waterproof 500 AMP solenoid so you know that there are no risks regarding energy savings.

With a waterproof rating of IP67, you are rest assured that rain or shine, this winch is your tool to use. It has a corded remote with 12 feet of lead and it has a load capacity of 9,500 lbs. to 17,500 lbs. It has a sliding ring gear clutch and an automatic, in-drum brake. Its cable is 94 feet long and 5/16 inch in diameter.

As far as winches go, the Smittybilt 97495 XRC Gen2 is as reliable as it gets with its efficiency and durability. You can red more review about this winch here.

  • IP67 waterproof rating
  • Three stage planetary gear
  • 500 AMP solenoid for safer and more reliable energy

  • Remote switch is corded

Let’s watch the installing video of this Smittybilt XRC Gen2 winch:

Superwinch 1145220 Terra 45 Winch

Our Rating​

Features & Key Technical Data

4,500 lbs. Load Capacity
Completely Waterproof, IP68 rating

Advanced Wireless Remote
55 ft cable

Highly regarded by customers, the Superwinch Terra 45 features high efficiency, convenience and durability.

This winch has a low amp draw for energy saving, a 6.5 HP magnet motor equipped with mechanical load holding and dynamic brake. It has a fifty five feet long quarter inch steel wire rope that comes with an ergonomic cam action free spooling clutch.

It uses an all steel three stage planetary gear that uses machined in, oil pocket bronze bearings for an uncompromisingly smoother pulling action. Its circuit breaker is protected from the elements and weather sealed and it uses solenoid technology for safer and more reliable use in all weather conditions. This winch has a rated line pull of 4,500 lbs.

Other extra features include a remote switch with a ten foot extension cable, a heavy duty latch hook with thimble, a handlebar mounted switch, a power load in and out capacity, and a four way roller fairlead.

For any ATV or UTV drivers out there, the Superwich 1145220 Terra 45 is a great choice as it fits most mounting kits in the market.

Check out the Superwinch 1145220 Terra 45 for yourself here!

  • 4,500 lbs. pulling capacity
  • Three stage planetary gear
  • Protected circuit breaker and solenoid
  • Cable is not as long as other winches

You’ll need some accessories while winching. Check my suggested winch accessories list, these will surely make winching much safer, faster & easier.

Champion Power Equipment 13004 Winch

Our Rating​

Features & Key Technical Data

3000 lb. Load Capacity
Waterproof, IP67 rating

Excellent Corded Remote
46 ft Synthetic/Steel cable

  • 3,000 lbs. load capacity
  • Remotely controlled
  • Cable is less prone to fraying
  • Cable length may be lacking in some situations
WARN 101035 VRX 35 Powersports Winch

Our Rating​

Features & Key Technical Data

2500-4500 lb. Load Capacity
Corded Remote Control
Waterproof IP68
50 ft Synthetic/Steel cable

In the world of winching, WARN is already a household name. And one of their best products when it comes to durability and reliability in all the crazy scenarios you can get yourself into is the VRX 35 101035 model.

This winch has a waterproof rating of IP68 and is made with an all metal construction that is finished with a black powder coat for corrosion resistance. Load options for this model range from 2,500 lbs. to 4,500 lbs. The synthetic or steel rope is 50 feet long and 7/32 inch in diameter that ends in a zinc plated hook.

The winch has a smooth and reliable three stage planetary gear train that is purely made of metal and it has a mechanical brake that can hold load for better control. Other features are included, features like a roller fairlead and a handlebar mounted rocker switch. 

Winches are used in the toughest of situations, but you can be sure that the WARN VRX 35 101035 winch can endure the test of time.

Check out more review of the WARN VRX 35 101035 winch here!

  • 2,500 lbs. to 4,500 lbs. load capacity range
  • IP68 waterproof rating
  • All metal construction
  • Installation may be tricky
ORCISH IP67 Electric Jeep Truck Winch

Our Rating​

Features & Key Technical Data

13,000 lb. Load Capacity
Waterproof IP67 rating

2 Wireless Remote Control
85 ft Galvanized Steel cable

The ORCISH winch is the most powerful winch in this list. But power is not the only asset it has because this can also go toe to toe in terms of durability and efficiency.

This winch has a load capacity of 13,000 lbs. and a waterproof rating of IP67. It has about 85 feet of steel cable, power in and power out motor feature for positive load control, a winch cove, a heavy duty sealed contactor and an overload protector.

There are two wireless remote controllers that come in the box, a hand remote controller, a set of wire cables, a control box, a clevis hook and a 500 AMP solenoid. Its gear is a three stage planetary gear train. It also has an automatic load holding brakes for maximum safety, a free spooling clutch for a fast rope payout and an alloy hawse fairlead.

Another plus is that a free pair of gloves is included. For safety, power and efficiency, the ORCISH winch is one of the best in the market.

In the realm of 13,000 lb. winches, this ORCISH unit is certainly one of the most reliable to last.

Check out the ORCISH 13,000 lb. winch here!

  • Powerful 13,000 lbs. load capacity
  • IP67 waterproof rating
  • Control may be wired or wireless
  • Cable wire is prone to fraying

Factors to Consider When Buying a 4X4 Winch – A Buying Guide

A winch is one of the coolest upgrades you can add to your truck’s or jeep’s already impressive stats. But beyond the awesomeness it adds, a good winch should be added for practicality’s sake. This is a powerful tool that can make your truck more useful. If you are going to install a winch on your vehicle, it had better be the winch that is useful, durable and will make all your bucks worth it.

With that in mind, there should be characteristics set in your mind when canvassing for winches for your 4X4 vehicle. You should know what to look for in a winch that guarantees you can rely on it when it truly matters.

Some of these characteristics are: durability, cost efficiency and function.


Durability is definitely not an optional part of deciding which winch to choose. Durability is the assurance that the winch you choose will last and will ensure that you have your money’s worth.

A lot of factors determine the durability of a winch. And one of the biggest one is the winch’s waterproofness. A waterproof winch is great because that means that you can use your winch if ever you are in a wet and tricky scenario.

There are many different levels of waterproofness. The most common waterproof rating winches are IP67, but there are better ones that have a rating of IP68.

Besides the waterproof rating, you should also check out the unit’s build and finish; whether they are resistant to corrosion. Look for winches that at least have a powder coated finish.

Cost Efficiency

For this standard, you are looking at the features of the winch that makes it helpful in saving you bucks. Part of this, of course, is the reliability of the functions and the durability of the winch, but those are more of passive aspects. What you want to look for are the aggressive features that actively saves you money.

One of these features is having an AMP Solenoid system as that considerably lessens the energy the winch uses when used. This helps you save some fortune on charging. Another feature that can be useful is having a cable that has no kinks or frays so they will not wear easily and need a replacement.

An important part of the cost efficiency standard is the warranty on the winch. You should be careful that, if ever your winch needs a repair or a replacement due to a manufacturing failure, you have a reliable warranty that can cushion your financial spending. Part of this warranty aspect is customer service. You want to first make sure that you will have customer support that will not leave you hanging when things don’t go well with the winch you end up choosing.


This aspect of a winch focuses on how well the winch performs, and it can get very technical on this. Basically, you have to look for the good machineries operating within the winch.

For example, you would like to have the motor to have enough HP in them so you know that it can actually carry the load that you will require from it.

Another feature you should examine is the gear system. The gear system determines how well the pulling is done. If you want a quieter and more efficient pulling, look for planetary gear systems.

The size of the winch is a functional feature that is often overlooked. The general rule is that the longer the winch is, the better.

The material of the winch cables should also be taken into account. There are two types of winch cable materials: steel and synthetic. The main thing about a steel cable is that it has a very reliable tensile strength. But the best thing about a synthetic cable is that they are safer and more efficient because they store significantly less kinetic energy.

All About Winches for 4X4 Vehicles – Answers to Your Questions

How to install an off road electric winch correctly?

It is important to install a winch correctly to ensure your safety and that it will work up to its full potential.

But first, remember that a winch is used for pulling or towing, installing this means that you should have a high powered car battery, otherwise, your work may not be as effective as you want it to be.

So here are the steps to installing an electric winch. First, locate the hitch on the front bumper then mount the winch on the hitch securely. Next, connect a wire into a power source and install a power switch. Lastly, pre-tension the wire ensuring that it is tightly spooled on the drum.

Which winch wire is better, the synthetic rope or steel cable?

This depends on your personal preference. Really, both wires can do their primary jobs but they have differences when it comes to certain things. Now, to help you decide which to buy, here are some of their best features and drawbacks.

The steel cable type is the inexpensive one. It is durable, long lasting and it reduces the heat on the internal brake drum, thus less damage on the drum and consistent brake performance. However, the wire tends to be weighty and more arduous to handle.

It also holds more kinetic energy, meaning it is more dangerous if ever it snaps while at work. It is susceptible to develop rusts, barbs and kinks and it can be tedious to fix in the field.

On the other hand, the synthetic rope is made from polypropylene therefore, stronger than cable. Despite having the same size with the steel cable it is lighter in weight, doesn't rust and comes in various colors. It also floats in water and is easier to fix.

Its drawbacks, though are, it is vulnerable to abrasion and it can freeze as it retains water. It cannot do the job of dissipating heat from the brake drum which can affect the brake of the wire. It also is degradable by UV rays, so to protect it from debris and sunlight, you would need a sheath. As it continues to get exposed on the outdoors, it can be cut internally by sand and dirt, so it would need constant maintenance.

What are a few safety tips while using a winch?

There are winches today that come with safety features but that doesn't necessarily mean that you should be complacent when operating. One of the serious dangers of using a winch is the cable snapping which can cause you injuries but that's not the only thing. So here are some tips to ensure that everyone around is safe from any harm.

One, is to never climb or step over the wire when it's under tension. This careless action can most likely cause the cable to snap.

Two, always inspect the winch, cable and clamp before you operate them. Make sure that everything is installed correctly and are in best quality. You wouldn't want to compromise on your safety if ever one of them breaks.

Next, is to have someone operate your winch and another to watch over. This way one person doesn't have to consistently watch out for any potential breakage while doing the work at the same time. Also, ensure that the winch remote is not near the drum.

Lastly, ensure that no one stands near the towed object in case of unexpected and sudden movements.

Conclusion: The Best 4X4 Winch – The Perfect Choice

The best 4X4 winch is different for each person. The best winch for you entirely depends on your standards as well your needs and wants. To guarantee the perfect choice, you should deeply consider what it is you expect from a 4X4 winch and see which of the choices offered to you will best satisfy your expectations.

What do you think of our list? Are there products that you think should have made our list? Are there more questions you want answers to? Let us know in the comments below!