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Thread: Winch wiring.

  1. #1

    Winch wiring.

    Is it best to wire a winch directly to the battery terminals, or to wire the positive to the battery and the negative to the chassis ground?

    I have my battery located in the rear of the Willys, and was going to hook the positive to the bus bar on the fire wall and the negative to the chassis ground( 4 feet leads), but have been reading that itís best to run both leads to the battery, in my case that would mean longer leads (12 feet leads)and Iím thinking about Amp loss and trying to keeps the leads as short as possible. That and I donít want to drill more holes in the sheet mettle to get those leads to the back.

  2. #2
    N.A.S.A. Jeep Launch Commander Toy Jeep's Avatar
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    To the battery is best. But you would need to up the wire size too overcome the current drop. As long as your bus bar is can support the current draw you should be ok using the bus bar. You will be able too tell if you are ok by feeling the cables when you put the winch under load if the cables start to get warm then you will need to rewire the battery cables. You will also want to make sure that the cables are protected from shorting out if something bad happens.
    Not all who wander are lost
    VE6DKS

  3. #3
    I have 2/0 gauge running 8 feet from the battery pos+ to the fire wall bus bar, then 4 gauge from the bus bar to the starter, fuse box etc! The battery is grounded to the chassis with 4 gauge, and the engine is grounded to the chassis with 4 gauge.

    I was planning on running 2/0 gauge from the winch to the terminal on the bus bar where the battery comes in, but do I run 4 gauge or thicker back to the battery neg- or just to the chassis.

  4. #4
    N.A.S.A. Jeep Launch Commander Toy Jeep's Avatar
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    Larger is better. I would run 2/0 back to the battery. A few years ago on a run a couple of winches were burned out because of poor wiring.
    Not all who wander are lost
    VE6DKS

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Toy Jeep View Post
    Larger is better. I would run 2/0 back to the battery. A few years ago on a run a couple of winches were burned out because of poor wiring.
    With the help of my electrical engineer at work, we figured out the following.

    My 2/0 gauge cable from the battery to the firewall can handle 800 amps, the winch’s max draw is 300 amps. I should be good to run 4 gauge from the winch to the firewall, the 4 gauge at that length can handle 350 amps. The firewall bus bar can handle 400 amps. The only way I’d run into trouble would be if the winch was at full draw, the on board air is at full draw and I try to engage the starter. But I should run a separate ground wire back to the battery with a cut off switch and to be safe throw a 300 amp circuit breaker or fuse on the winch wire going to the fire wall. Oddly the winch came with a circuit breaker but it’s rated at only 150 amps. Which’s made us question why would superwinch rate the draw of their winch at 300 amps but only include a circuit breaker rated for half that?

    On another topic, once the winch is installed all I have to do is the rear brakes and the Willy’s is done, 100% complete, le fin. So what do I do then? Lol!
    Last edited by Iron Mike; 01-03-2018 at 06:51 PM.

  6. #6
    N.A.S.A. Jeep Launch Commander Toy Jeep's Avatar
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    Well you have moved through your project in very good time. Now you will have time to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
    Not all who wander are lost
    VE6DKS

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