How To Install A Winch On An ATV/UTV like a Pro (Updated: 2024)

In this article let’s see How to install a winch on an ATV/UTV like a pro.

If you frequently travel off-road or reside in a snowy location, you are well aware of the agony of having your car trapped in the mud or snow. 

It usually occurs at the most inconvenient moment and at the most inconvenient location. 

Of course, leaving your car isn’t an option, so you’ll either have to figure out a method to get it out or contact for assistance and wait. 

We sympathize with you if this has ever occurred to you. So here we will provide you with the best solution for these circumstances. 

On your ATV/UTV, you’ll need to install a winch. Winches are being used to pull heavy items. 

Thus they’re ideal for getting ATVs out of sticky situations. Now, let’s learn how to install a winch on an ATV/UTV.

Get a Mounting Plate

You must first attach the best ATV/UTV mounting plate before adding any good ATVUTV winch. Because most ATVs don’t come with a place to mount a winch, you’ll need to make some modifications. 

There are many winch mounting plates on the marketplace, and you must select one that is appropriate for your vehicle. Take into account the manufacturer and model of the ATV you own. 

The plate must be able to withstand the force that will be applied by the winch. You must also check that your license plate is suitable with the winch and your vehicle’s bumper.

Most winches won’t function with factory bumpers since they weren’t designed to withstand that much strain. The majority of factory bumpers don’t even have a place to mount a winch. 

Look through the parts directory where you purchased your winch to find a bumper that will work with it. 

Some manufacturers provide mounting solutions that comprise a customized mounting plate as well as a bumper.

Tools Required

  • Wrench
  • Ratchet
  • Voltage meter
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver
  • Bolts
  • Flat washer

How to install a winch on an ATV/uTV [Step by Step] Guide

  • When you’ve gathered all of your items, begin by attaching the mounting plate. 

The installation directions and cautions that come with the winch and mounting plate should be carefully read before you begin.

  • To begin, loosen the bolts on the plate at the front of your bumper using the screwdriver. 

There are six bolts in front and eight bolts on each side. (Be sure to keep them safe since you’ll be using them again.)

  • Disconnect the front plastic fascia and the fasteners that hold it in place.
  • Bolts, nuts, and lock washers are used to secure the roller fairlead in place.
  • Install the plate and lock it in place, making cautious not to damage your ATV by moving any cables or hoses in the process. 

The bolts are kept in place by using an adhesive when fastening the plate.

  • Place your winch on the plate and secure it with bolts. Before attaching it to the bumper, make sure it fits properly.
  • Connect your cable loop to the worm gear hook.
  • If the winch line is to function, it must have an unobstructed route, so remove the gear train and draw the line a few meters to be sure. Remember to use it when the exam is completed.

Wiring the Winch

A contractor is required for winch systems, and you must find a suitable location for it. You can download the contractor underneath the driver’s seat, which is what most people do. 

The contractor is a circuit box that acts as the winch’s primary wiring point. To have the wires to the proper location, you’ll have to drill a few holes.

The winch control switches must then be installed. For quick access, the steering mechanism might be an excellent location to put them. 

A switch that links to the contractor and the ignition coil is used in some winches. While it’s linked to the ignition, you can only use your winch when your ATV is turned on. 

Use the voltage meter to locate the ignition’s lead pipe and connect it to the winch switch. The contractor is connected to the other switch wires.

ATV Winch Wiring Tips

​The Winch Solenoid

The winch solenoid is critical since it is the safety component that ensures that electricity from your battery reaches your winch. This is the only time your power supply and your winch will be disconnected. 

The solenoid should be mounted close to the battery yet in a dry location at all times. Also, keep it away from any metal components that might grind against the electrical connections.

Wire Routing

When connecting cables from the winch solenoid to your winches, you must be cautious when connecting wires from the charger to the winch. 

Maintain a safe distance between the wires and sharp edges or corroded metal. When you factor in dirt and muck, it’s simple to wear down the wire insulating it on flat metal.

Winch Connections

It’s just as essential to make the right relationships. The majority of winches include color-coded lugs to assist in preventing errors. 

Lock washers fasten standard winches, so they don’t need to be tightened quickly. It’s never a good idea to overtighten them since it will result in a damaged circuit and a worthless winch. 

To protect the nuts from backing off, apply a tiny quantity of glue to the lug, such as silicone.

Pre tensioning the Winch Wire

Finally, make sure that your wire is firmly spooled on the winch drum. The cable is wrapped across the drum on some winches but not on others. 

Unspool a portion of your winch wire if it is now on the drum when you buy it. Start the winch, then connect your cable to a bulky item, and the wire will begin to spool up appropriately. 

If the winch came without the coiled wire around the drum, connect it and follow the procedures below. Carry on with this procedure until you’re satisfied that the cable is sufficiently stretched.


Hopefully, this article helped you to learn how to install a winch on ATV. 

Even when it comes to installing a winch on an ATV, a little ingenuity may go a long way. 

Refer to the manual if you have any more questions regarding the techniques described here. 

Please remember that every ATV, as well as any winches put on them, is unique. 

While specific processes may differ based on the type of ATV, the basic principle of putting a winch on an ATV remains the same.

Note: As an Amazon Associate, I earn commission from qualifying purchases at no cost to you.

Photo of author




As an avid off-road enthusiast, I know firsthand the importance of having a reliable winch. That's why I created WinchAdvice – to help fellow off-roaders like myself make informed decisions when selecting their next winch. So whether you're an experienced pro or a beginner just starting out, my website offers valuable advice and guidance on all things winching.

Leave a Comment