What You Need To Know About Winching A Vehicle

In Canada, the one thing you can never be sure of is the ever-changing weather. A bright, sunny morning sky can quickly turn into a night of strong winds and heavy snowfall. You may frequently come across snow or frost-covered highways while traveling during the bitter weather conditions of winter. Driving on such roads can lead to dangerous situations that can often result in accidents and injuries and sometimes fatalities.

Slippery roads reduce the friction between the vehicles’ tires and the road’s surface, causing cars and trucks to go off-road. This situation often results in the vehicle getting stuck in the snow or a ditch. Even the most experienced drivers can be caught off guard by snow and ice, so an unsuspecting new driver is bound to get frightened under such extreme driving conditions. Especially on roads with multiple twists and turns that are not well-lit, the results of a single mistake can get you stuck in a ditch, at best, or injured in a crash, at worst.

One effective way to remove your vehicle from a ditch when you’re stuck is by using a winch. We recommend calling your local Edmonton towing service if you find yourself in a similar situation. To understand what a winch is and how it works, continue reading this blog.

Assess The Situation

Although a winch is a useful and effective tool, the power it generates when hauling in any vehicle – a small car or a big truck – can be hazardous. Therefore, ensuring the safety of everyone involved and present on location is all-important when winching a vehicle. This is because something powerful enough to pull your stuck vehicle out from a ditch won’t care whether anything or anyone is in the way when spooling in. Therefore, you must remain calm and assess the situation if you find yourself stuck in the snow or a ditch.

You can start by considering what options you have; you can either try to reverse your vehicle out of the snow or ditch or ask for help. Often passersby are willing to help in whatever way they can, which may lead to more problems and safety hazards. Therefore, we recommend calling a towing service for assistance.

Before You Begin

If you are a towing company employee or someone who’s using a winch to move your stuck vehicle yourself, there are certain safety considerations you must take into consideration to ensure a safe and smooth winching process.

  • Protect your hands from potential cuts and burns by wearing the right heavy-duty gloves, especially when using a synthetic rope or a wire winch
  • Use a hook to pull the line away from the fairlead – you can cut your finger if you put it through the hook. Clevis or D-shackles are the safest way to connect a winch to a vehicle or strap, so don’t forget to carry them in your car toolbox
  • A recovery strap stores a lot of energy upon stretching, much like a rubber band, which can be harmful if it breaks. So avoid using it for a winching operation
  • You need to be certain that the battery of the recovery vehicle used in the winching operation can handle the additional load
  • Make sure there are no loose bolts by thoroughly checking the winch installation
  • Remain calm and take your time to assess the situation before starting
  • Act accordingly, and you’ll pull out your car successfully

Ways To Rig A Winch

There are three ways you can rig a winch:

  • Single line
  • Double line
  • Triple line

Precautions To Take

Before you start with the winching process, you must survey your surroundings to ascertain that there are no obstacles between your vehicle and the anchor that might interfere with the winch cable. Once you have ensured that no bystanders are present between the winch cable and your vehicle, proceed to operate the winch. If your vehicle is stuck in the mud, snow, or a ditch and you don’t know how to use a winch to recover your vehicle, we recommend contacting a professional tow truck operator.

At Action Towing, we provide expert vehicle towing services and emergency roadside assistance throughout Edmonton and surrounding areas. For more information regarding our personalized services, contact us today.