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How to Install a Winch on an ATV

Installing a winch on an ATV is just as easy as installing it on any other rig. There are certain modifications that you will have to do to custom fit that winch on your ATV and this article will touch upon those certain points, to make your Installation a breeze.

The first thing to remember about winch installation in an ATV is that they do not come designed to incorporate the winch in their build, be it the frame or the bumper. You will find yourself removing quite a bit of the ATV outer chassis to simply mount the Winch.

You will have to shop around for a bit, for the perfect mounting plate for your winch as well as a durable bumper that will be compatible with the winch.

A couple of tools you will require to work around with are – A Voltage meter, a drill, nuts and bolts, screwdrivers, ratchet, wrench and flat washers.

Tidying up the Front

Before you start installing the Mounting plate, read through the instruction manual that came with the plate and the winch, just to ensure you do not miss out on anything crucial.

Remove the protector plate from the front bumper by unscrewing the bolts and do the same with the plastic cover that fits just behind the plate.

Mounting the Bracket and Winch

Depending on the type of winch you are installing in your ATV, the mounting of the bracket will have to either be done before you install the winch or alongside, by fitting them together.

Attaching the Fairlead and Winch cable with the Hook

Attach the fairlead securely with the given hardware and connect the hook to the Winch cable that has already been wound-up on the winch drum.

Installing the Handle-bar Switch and the Remote Control Switch

Installing the Handle-bar switch is a simple task but wiring it is another story. You are going to have to manually find out, with the help of a Voltmeter, the hot-lead in the ignition port. After making sure it is the right wire you are looking for, splice it up and connect the Handle-bar wire to the ignition switch for the winch.

Wiring and Installation of the Solenoid Box

Make sure you place the Solenoid box in a spot that remains dry and out of the general reach of moving parts of the ATV. Hook up the other set of wires from the Handle-bar switch to the Solenoid box so you can use the winch even if your ATV is switched off.

If you want to connect the wired Remote control, now is the time to draw up the cables together with all the other wires and cables being installed.

Wire the Solenoid to the winch by following the color-coded cables as given in the instruction manual. The Black cable connects to the Black terminal on the Solenoid box and the Red cable connects to the Red terminal on the Solenoid box; similarly for the winch.

Installing the Circuit Breaker

The Circuit breaker is connected in the Red cable and then attached to the Red cable coming from the Solenoid box.

After this step, start the engine and test the winch for operation. Turn the power off and try hitting the Handle-bar ignition again. If the winch starts again, you will have to check the connections from the switch to the ignition box and set them upright.

Tucking up the Wires

Ensure the Solenoid box is fit snugly and safe, close to the battery. Bundle up all the cables and wires and tuck them in, making sure they do not come in contact with any sharp edges or moving parts since that can lead to faster wearing of the cables.

A little improvisation goes a long way, even when installing a winch in an ATV. But be sure to stick to the manual if you are having any doubts about the steps suggested here. Remember that all ATV’s are different and so are the winches that can be mounted on them. Some of the steps may differ from model to model, but the basic gist of Installing a winch to an ATV remains the same.

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