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Winch Out a Vehicle Safely and Properly

There are several reasons why vehicles get stranded in the ditch, mud, sand, or waters. For instance, an error in judgment from the driver or slick and soft terrain can cause the vehicle to get into areas where the forward momentum stops. These are times when a need for winch out service is necessary.

Winching is a common roadside assistance service that involves utilizing a strong cable and a motorized axle to get a vehicle out of from the ditch, mud, water, sand, or any precarious positions.

When a vehicle is stuck in certain terrains such as mud, sand, or snow, the driving will cause the tires to dig down. This will create a vertical shelf that restricts the tires from moving forward. For the vehicle to regain any forward and backward momentum, the tires need to be pulled up over the shelf. By winching, the vehicle can be pulled and lifted, and have the vehicle extracted.

The Optimal Pulling Power for the Winch

When pulling with a winch, the rule is to choose the one that has a minimum of 1.2 times the pulling power over the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the truck. A better option is to have a winch that has 1.5 times more power than the truck. For example, if you equip a truck with a GVWR of 10,000 lbs, then the minimum winch capacity is about 12,000 lbs. A better option is to have a winch rated at 15,000 lbs.

There are two types of motors in the winches; a hydraulic or an electric or hydraulic motor. Electric winches are dependent on the electrical system of the vehicle for power. If the battery power of the vehicle is low, so will be the winching power. They are also designed for short period uses, the motor will need time to cool down and rest. Hydraulic winches on the other hand do not need any cool-down time. They can function continuously so long as the pump feeding the hydraulics is running.

Tow Truck Winching Techniques – How to Rig the Winch Properly

Where the cable line gets hooked will depend on factors such as the accessibility to the undercarriage of the vehicle and the condition of the vehicle. Generally, there are 3 ways to rig the winch. The first is using the single line method. Pull the line to the anchor point, then secure it with a strap, shackle, or both of them. The line can be attached to another vehicle or a tree. Connect the remote, lock the clutch, and put the lie under tension. Start the winch with short pulls.

The second way is using the double line method. The pulling power can be increased over short distances using a snatch block. Connect the snatch block at the anchor point, then draw the line and attach it to the vehicle. Wrap a coat, blanket, or other objects to the line when it is tight.

The third way is the use of the triple line method. The technique is similar to the doubline method. However, 2 anchor points and 2 snatch blocks are required. Maintain a ninety-degree angle between the first anchor and the winch. Once in place, start winching with controlled but short pulls.

What to Do When Calling for Winch Out Service

One should prepare a clear description of the situation for the towing company to know so that the towing company will be better prepared with the towing equipment and tow trucks to dispatch. Take note of the location of the vehicle and the distance it is away from a hard surface road.

If the vehicle is stuck in sand or mud, inform the towing company, and inform them of the distance of the trapped vehicle to the road. By doing so, tow truck operators can better gauge the situation and speed up the towing process. Towing professionals have the knowledge and experience to remove the vehicle safely from challenging terrains or circumstances. For safety precautions, they will set up warning lights and beacons to alert other motorists on the road. Cones will be set up to redirect the traffic safely around the scene. The tow trucks come with winches that can be used to retrieve the vehicles. They will have the heavy duty cable to attach to the disabled vehicle and winch it out to the nearest road surface or a safe and stable location.

Contact Green Towing Los Angeles

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