Hydraulic Winches – How do they Work?

A hydraulic winch is a very powerful winch. They are also very pricey. They are far more expensive than electric winches. Why is that? What makes a hydraulic winch far more powerful and far more expensive than any electric winch? What is unique about them? How do they work?

Advantages of a Hydraulic Winch over and Electric Winch

Hydraulic winches can provide more pulling power than electric winches. The common applications of a hydraulic winch goes far beyond vehicle recovery.

Not only are they more powerful, but they can provide the sae, consistent amount of raw power for an indefinite amount of time. Hydraulic winches does not have a motor powered by electricity. It is never prone to overheating.

Unlike electric winches a hydraulic winch does not need to stop and rest for a cool down period in the middle of an operation. A hydraulic winch can go on and on, providing the same amount of force, without needs for break.

Another great thing about hydraulic winches is that they can run even id completely submerged. It has no electrical components, so it won’t damage its function if operated under water. This is why the marine industry uses hydraulic winches.

That is why hydraulic winches are a lit more expensive than electric winches. Hydraulic winches can accomplish more. They have superior mechanism. This now bags the question, how can they stay more powerful for longer? How do hydraulic winches work?

How a Hydraulic Winch Works?

A hydraulic winch uses hydraulic fluid, the vehicle’s power steering unit. This means that the vehicle hs to be running in order for it to run. This is perhaps its biggest downside because an electric winch can run even if the vehicle is not running.

The winch uses a pump to create a differential in pressure in a confined space. There is a lot of thermodynamics and basic engineering principles involved in the process here. I will try to make it as easy to understand for readers as I can.

Basically, a hydraulic winch creates differences in pressure and then transforms that pressure into a pulling force. It utilizes a similar technology as a hydraulic pumping jack that is used to lift cars.

This is what allows it to run longer and produce more power. As long as the hydraulic fluid flows within the system, it can produce energy. It is a more efficient method than what an electric winch uses.

Hydraulic winches can also be used with either a synthetic rope or a steel wire cable.

Choosing a Hydraulic Winch

Although a hydraulic winch does not need electrical components in its function, it does need electric systems to control the functions. You should make sure that the electrical parts work when choosing a hydraulic winch. The controls and remote stations have to be working well to grant you  complete control of the machine.

I would also look for some sort of protection on these electrical components. Waterproofing is needed since electricity can easily become unpredictable and volatile in the presence of water.

You should also consider the replaceable parts of the winch. The fluid and pumping mechanism can wear down over time. You have to make sure that the model you buy can be fitted with parts that are easily accessible. The same goes for O-rings and seals. These parts need regular replacements. So you have to make sure that readily accessible parts are compatible with the model.

Another factor you have to consider is the installation process the winch will require. Piping, fitting, hydraulic parts – among others – are what you need for installation.

There are very few hydraulic winches in the commercial market. But if you need one, I can help you start your choosing process. I have reviewed the best hydraulic winches from WARN. WARN is a very trusted winch brand. They have made their name through decades of undeniable quality. Their hydraulic winches are definitely worth checking into.

What are your thoughts on this matter? Do you think that hydraulic winches are worth their price? Share your opinion in the comments sections below.