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Winch Wiring Help

Discussion in 'Recovery' started by Glaese, Apr 30, 2021.

  1. Apr 30, 2021 at 3:05 PM
    #1
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    I’m preparing to wire my winch with a in dash switch but it’s throwing me off a little bit. Can anyone confirm that I am on the right track with this diagram?
    image.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2021
  2. Apr 30, 2021 at 5:54 PM
    #2
    Wyoming09

    Wyoming09 Well-Known Member

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    Well to start off your Kill switch needs to be able to carry the whole winch load at how ever many Amps you draw.

    I am guessing the power control box is just a distribution block as you show no mechanical parts .

    The winch switch is the remote for the winch. From your drawing all it does is toggle between forward and reverse does it also energize the winch.

    The Winch is only energized with the kill switch closed??

    Without knowing just what your working with and being up close.
     
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  3. Apr 30, 2021 at 6:09 PM
    #3
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    The kill switch is rated at 200 amps so I’m pretty sure that’s enough for a winch and light bar.

    The power control box is just a distribution block thanks for clarifying that.

    Not exactly sure on the lingo but yes the winch switch just toggles between in and out. I would assume yes it energizes the winch because it activates in/out and hopefully when neither is activated it draws no energy. I have a smittybuilt xrc 9500 and am trying to wire the in cab switch to the remote control wires (I just cut off the controller and exposed the three wires).

    The accessories are only energized if the kill switch is closed, correct.

    Here are some more pics of what I’m working with.
     
  4. Apr 30, 2021 at 6:12 PM
    #4
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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  5. May 4, 2021 at 9:03 AM
    #5
    jbrandt

    jbrandt Made you look

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    You should look up the amp draw of your winch...

    Here, I'll do it for you. You're looking at 280 amps (320 if that's a gen2) just pulling 6000 pounds.
    https://winch.smittybilt.com/

    This is why the manufacturers tell you to connects straight to the battery.


    If you want a kill switch inside, use a solenoid. like with one that Warn sells: https://www.4wheelparts.com/p/warn-accessory-power-interrupt-kit-62132/_/R-BCSQ-62132?gclid=Cj0KCQjw4cOEBhDMARIsAA3XDRj-SobPaepyKqpEiMFrb85AqunYjGu8qynAaDA1wrs0vNxxPaJuTGgaAlOxEALw_wcB&ppcfon=1&gp=1&ef_id=YJFvYAAABAxe6G7H:20210504155928:s

    Then wire your in/out from your control box.
     
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  6. May 4, 2021 at 9:32 AM
    #6
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    Thank you for the advice!I felt like something was missing. Yeah I’m pretty sure it is a gen 2.

    Without the kill switch will the winch always stay on?
     
  7. May 4, 2021 at 9:46 AM
    #7
    jbrandt

    jbrandt Made you look

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    on? No.

    With a "conventional" hand controller installation, it stays energized but the "on switch" comes from connecting your hand controller and hitting the switch.

    If you're doing the in-cab in/out switch, you'll want to do a kill switch so you don't accidentally hit the button and spool out cable while driving down the road. IMO the best way to do that is a solenoid. I was considering doing the in cab switches too, but honestly, didn't seem worth it to me. I've actually never even used my winch for a self recovery. If I get to the point I'm doing a lot of that, I might reconsider, but for now, the hand controller is fine.

    Other options are to simply disconnect the pos(+) wire from the battery when not in use, or use a high voltage battery interrupt switch. Some people are concerned about a possible short causing a fire or something, but there is really little to no chance of that. The winch doesn't use the 400 amps unless it's under a load. Any risk of fire from a short is no more or less than any other short, so as long as you use proper gauge wire (bigger is better) and protect your wiring, it's fine. Also do the big 3 upgrade (search for it).


    When my truck sits for a while, I will disconnect the winch's battery cable.
     
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  8. May 4, 2021 at 4:30 PM
    #8
    BlindingWhiteTac.

    BlindingWhiteTac. Well-Known Member

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    On my install, I ran the ground to the battery negative terminal, not a chassis ground. Way too much amperage for that. My positive is from the winch, to a 300amp fuse holder with a 250 amp fuse, to a 400amp Blue Sea battery disconnect, to the battery.

    I would suggest any other accessory wiring be completely separate from the winch wiring. Your terminal/auxiliary fuse block/accessory relay panel should have its own wiring direct to battery.

    The fuse is a time delay type and will hold the rated amperage for ~5 minutes. Amperage above that will be held for a shorter and shorter time until it hits its short circuit rating at which point it fails instantly.
     
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  9. May 4, 2021 at 5:01 PM
    #9
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    C3224C72-AE75-4BC3-BE9B-5405FB531C74.jpg I really appreciate all the great advice. Here’s my new diagram based on what I’ve heard
     
  10. May 4, 2021 at 8:32 PM
    #10
    jbrandt

    jbrandt Made you look

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    I don't think you don't need that many fuses.

    Honestly, you probably don't need any fuses. I don't know about your winch, but Warn instructs you to install the pos(+) and neg(-) leads direct to the battery. No fuses. I understand there is all sorts of debate over that, but I think Warn knows what they're doing when it comes to winch wiring - they've done 1 or 2.

    Fuses limit the usability of the winch. Under a high load, you'll blow a fuse, not because of a short (which is what fuses protect against), or anything, but because the winch needs that much amperage to pull. Reset the fuse, and you still have a situation where your winch needs those high loads to pull you out. You'll just blow the fuse again. Now do a double line pull and save it, but what if you're already doing a double line pull when you blew the fuse in the first place?

    IIRC, my 10k will pull over 400 amps at max load. IMO, you need big wires, not fuses.

    Winches have their own protections from heat and overload.
     
  11. May 5, 2021 at 6:21 AM
    #11
    BlindingWhiteTac.

    BlindingWhiteTac. Well-Known Member

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    The fuse needs to give short circuit protection while providing the amperage for the duration needed. My 12.5k may pull 500 amps at max load, but there’s no realistic scenario where it’s going to be 500 amps for the entire duration of the pull that doesn’t open the winch’s internal overload. Pulling all 80ft of line at 12.5k just doesn’t happen.

    A properly sized fuse of the correct time delay type isn’t going to be a problem. An undersized one will nuisance open and an oversized one doesn’t provide the protection.

    I would at least have a manual disconnect close to the battery.
     
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  12. May 5, 2021 at 8:38 AM
    #12
    jbrandt

    jbrandt Made you look

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    I guess I'm just not sure what you are protecting against with a fuse. With only a single item on the entire circuit, there isn't really anything to short circuit, especially when the winch has its own internal overload protections and you're using adequately sized wire.

    It's just like your starter motor, which also doesn't have a fuse. If you aren't actively pulling anything, it's not drawing any amps, and your only risk is a sliced wire (which, again, the starter doesn't need fuse protection from).

    A marine cutoff switch rated for ~400 amps, or in this case the solenoid, is certainly not a bad idea (not both though).
     
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  13. May 5, 2021 at 9:24 AM
    #13
    BlindingWhiteTac.

    BlindingWhiteTac. Well-Known Member

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    Disconnect will prevent tampering and unintentional use. A fuse will protect against the positive wire shorting to the negative or chassis ground.
     
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  14. May 6, 2021 at 7:12 PM
    #14
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    Thanks for the tips and yeah the less hardware the better so I'll probably go with that recommendation.
     
  15. May 6, 2021 at 7:14 PM
    #15
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    If I have the solenoid wired up do you think a manual disconnect is necessary to me it sounds like the same concept but different hardware.
     
  16. May 6, 2021 at 7:17 PM
    #16
    Glaese

    Glaese [OP] Unknown Member

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    If I have the solenoid wired up will that prevent tampering or can it still be hotwired? Again in this situation will the solenoid protect a short?

    Pardon if these are newby questions, I like to be cautious with my electrical work.
     
  17. May 7, 2021 at 8:03 AM
    #17
    BlindingWhiteTac.

    BlindingWhiteTac. Well-Known Member

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    Manual disconnect and a solenoid (remote disconnect) do the same thing. With the manual disconnect I have to open the hood to energize it. Solenoid could be done from the cab.
     
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