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Old 09-03-2005, 09:13 PM
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Default how to wire power to power winch?

just got a power winch from someone, he was getting power from a portable battery. the wiring harness has a fuse and the + and - wires with round terminals.

the rear of my truck has a round power outlet (cigarette lighter outlet type -- the one you can put cell phone chargers in, power inverters, etc) -- is there a device or way to tap into that outlet with the wiring harness i have now and power the winch?
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Old 09-03-2005, 09:24 PM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

I doubt that the wire size would be sufficient at the power outlet. What are the power requirements of the winch? You'll probably end up with the hot wire going to your truck battery; be sure to have the proper size circuit breaker within 12" of the battery. The other wire can be grounded to the frame of the truck.
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Old 09-04-2005, 12:41 AM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

I checked a few web sites and saw trailer winches drawing anywhere from 30 to 80 amps. So find out how many amps the winch draws. I also doubt the 12V outlet in the back of your truck can handle that kind of amperage. Figure out how long a run from the battery to the winch and use this table from the Boat US web site to determine what size wire you need.

http://www.boatus.com/boattech/cable.htm

I don't know how much % voltage loss is acceptable for 12V electric motors. The winch may have a voltage range printed on it also. This should get you started. I don't have experience with electric trailer winches so I'll let the experts chime in on the various ways to hook up to your vehicles electrical system.
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Old 09-04-2005, 05:43 AM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

I bought a trolling motor power connector. Mounted one end to the back of the truck and ran the line to the battery (pos) and frame (neg). The other end attaches to the power line on the winch. It's easy to connect.remove and does the trick nicely.
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Old 09-04-2005, 07:59 AM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

If you look at the installation/setup information that comes with a new winch (PowerWinch, particularly) there should be all the info needed, including the appropriate breaker that should be mounted at the battery end of your wiring... For years I've simply coiled my winch cable and stored in under hood next to battery. I now have a new tow vehicle, so I'll be running that cable through channel to the rear of the truck with a heavy plug in socket to attach the short cable from under bumper to winch. If you run that heavy wiring under vehicle or through a wiring channel pay particular attention to chafing protection at any points where rubbing might wear through insulation. Circuit breakers don't trip as fast as fuses and bad things can happen if you have a short...
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Old 09-04-2005, 09:48 AM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

I'll have to check the specs. on this winch....

Most of you draw power directly from the battery under the hood then?

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Old 09-04-2005, 12:48 PM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

Actually I have a D31M Optima AGM battery in the back of the SUV. Works great.
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Old 09-04-2005, 07:14 PM
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Default Re: how to wire power to power winch?

Quote:
snapper4 - 9/4/2005 10:48 AM

I'll have to check the specs. on this winch....

Most of you draw power directly from the battery under the hood then?
Yes. If I remember correctly, my winch came with #8 wire and a 50 amp breaker that connects directly to the battery terminal. I installed the cable "permanently" and installed a socket next to the trailer connector. I didn't like the exposed "hot" metal on the circuit breaker so I insulated it with a piece of rubber gasket material.

If you skimp on the wire size or try to connect it to an existing socket you will end up with less power from the winch and risk heating and melting of the wire. Make your ground connection to the vehicle frame, not a body part. Ask me how I know !
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