Unless you are blessed with superhuman strength, lifting up heavy loads remains nearly an impossibility. In other words, if you deal with heavy loads, you will need to have the right tool to help you in pulling them up without draining your energy.
And yes, a hand winch is a tool just designed for that! A hand winch features a pulley, rope and handle. The rope has a hook at one end for attaching to the load.
To lift the hefty load without taking much force, the user is expected to spin the handle.
Obviously, just like any other tool, you need to go for a model you are sure that will meet your anticipations.
Here are some of the top 11 suggestions we have for you.
11 Best Hand Winch Reviews
#1 Reese Towpower 74329
Whether you want a hand winch for load lifting or pulling, this is one of the options you can count on. The hand winch comes with rugged construction which means that it is built with durability and reliability in mind. Furthermore, the pre-drilled holes at the base make installation less complex. However, you will have to buy the mounting bolts separately.
1500 Lbs Load Capacity
The robust construction of the hand winch pairs with the heavy-duty 20-ft strap to give the unit load capacity of up to 1500 lbs. The high load capacity gives the user confidence and guarantees safety when using it for small to mid-size vessels.
To ensure that the sturdy construction maintains its strength for years to come, this hand winch comes with a zinc-plated finish. The premium finish offers superior protection to corrosion and scratches. In other words, it maintains the factory-fresh look of the piece even with years of use.
This property is yet another feature that contributes greatly to making this equipment one of our picks. The design of the handle delivers a comfortable grip to minimize hand fatigue allowing you to lift heftier loads more easily.
- The belt is super strong and durable.
- The locking latch is solid.
- The quality of the hand winch is great.
- The hook is slightly small for some projects.
#2 OFFROAD BOAR -1200lb
This model also comes with a heavy-duty body and standard mounting holes at the base for easy mounting. The powder coating and zinc plating help OFFROAD BOAR hand winch to resist rust damage even when exposed to water or corrosive environment. The shaft and gears are of heat-treated carbon steel material for a service life that can be relied upon.
If you are always in the move, you need a tool that is easy to transport to your job site. And yes, the entire package weighing just 6.59 lbs, this is among the lightweight options the market boasts. The lighter weight pairs with the compact design to enable portability. Also, the compact size means that the unit doesn’t take much storage space when not in use.
If you intend a model that will lift load to greater heights, you will need to consider buying a hand winch with a long rope so that you won’t have to buy it separately. This unit comes with an eight-meter synthetic strap, a longer length than for most competitors’. The strap offers industrial strength hence will not snap when used for heavy loads.
Although most people pay much attention to the winch body, they often forget to consider the quality of the hook. Actually, you may have a solidly-constructed winch body but unless the hook is strong enough, you may not get the best out of the tool. The hook of OFFROAD BOAR hand is sturdy with weatherproof properties to suit all-weather applications. The hook features a pawl that keeps the object you are lifting in place to ensure your safety.
- The tool is built very well.
- The lower gear drive is handy when you need more pulling strength.
- It’s pretty easy to install.
- The ratcheting mechanism is not the best.
#3 Reese Towpower 74337 600
This hand winch by Reese Towpower shares most of the features with the Reese Towpower 74329 Trailer Winch. However, unlike Towpower 74329 that has a load capacity of 1500 lbs, this model can comfortably support an object weighing less than 600 lbs. Therefore, this model is perfect for home and light industrial use.
Gears remain among the most critical part of a hand winch. With this in mind, this model comes with gears of high-carbon steel. The ability of the durable gears to resist wearing means that you can count on them to do the work right years down the line.
This model also has a comfortable black handle that provides a non-slip grip. The ergonomic design also makes cranking easy allowing the user to pick up heavy objects with minimum effort.
Although this winch comes with a slightly lower load capacity than most hand winches, this is compensated in the pricing since it comes with a lower price tag than almost any winch that matches its quality. Therefore, this tool would be a good deal for anyone in the lookout for a high quality yet low-priced model that can suit home applications.
- The brakes and ratcheting mechanism are solid.
- The tool is solidly built.
- It does not rust when exposed to the elements.
- It is not a reversible model.
#4 TR Industrial 600 lb
This model also comes with a pulling capacity of 600 lbs hence can be used to load boats on trailers and on a few industrial applications. The tool features premium steel construction with zinc and black plating for all-weather applications. The durably constructed gears resist wearing to maximize the service life of the tool.
Versatile Drum Design
Whether you want to use a rope, strap, or steel cables, this model comes with a versatile drum design accommodates either. The drum is large enough to provide enough room for a 15 ft x 2 in. strap and 36 ft x 1/4 in. steel wire. Therefore, this model offers convenience since you can use it with your preference.
Perfect Gear Ratio
The gear ratios may define the time you take to load as well as the effort you need to apply. This tool has a gear ratio of 3.2:1, just the perfect sizing to let you load faster.
This winch also comes with pre-drilled mounting holes that are compatible with standard-size bolts. I mean, you can mount this tool straight from the box in a few steps. After mounting, attach the handle and the strap (or rope/cable) and that’s it! You are ready to go!
- It offers great pulling power.
- The winch works smoothly.
- The handle offers a perfect grip.
- It does not come with a bolt for the cable.
This tool comes with a heavy-gauge steel body for superior strength and extended durability. The premium powder coating and zinc plating offer powerful corrosion resistance making it a perfect suit for use in corrosive environments such as high-humid areas.
Camco Heavy Duty Steel Marine Towing Winch comes with a 20-foot strap that is treated to offer resistance to the damaging UV rays. Also, the 20-ft length is long enough to suit most applications. The extra-long strap eliminates the need for buying a longer cable.
One of the things you will first realize about this model is that it comes with a uniquely-designed handle. The handle is designed to conform to the shape of the palm. The grooves on the handle ensure that you get a firm grip so that you have an easy time when cranking.
High Load Capacity
The top-class steel construction of this model offers up to 1200 pulling capacity. The 1200 lbs capacity means that this model is guaranteed to suit different applications superbly whether pulling, loading, or towing.
- The model is extremely strong.
- The hook is sturdy.
- It ratcheting mechanism is smooth.
- The reverse mechanism is not the best.
#6 Fulton 142411
This hand winch comes from one of the trusted manufacturers when it comes to offering premium durable products. This piece combines materials of the highest quality and rugged manufacturing with innovation and skill to guarantee meeting your needs to the letter. The 2800-lb load capacity means that it can comfortably handle wide application whether in the farm, marina or industrial use.
Unlike some types that have a single speed, this model features dual speed for increased user convenience. The fast speed allows for quick pick up to save operation time while the second speed is lower to give you a mechanical advantage.
Shift Lock Design
In case you are asking yourself how to switch from one torque setting to the other, it is pretty straightforward in this model! The shift lock design lets you make the switch by simply lifting the shift lock and sliding the shaft to the gear of your choice. This feature eliminates the need for removing the crank handle when you need to make changes.
The neutral, free-wheel position creates an open position that allows for easy line release. In fact, unlike in the other pieces, you will not require to spin the handle. Other amazing features about this model are that it comes with reliable built-in handbrakes to ensure user’s safety. The design also allows the user to buy optional handbrakes just in case they want to incorporate an extra margin of safety in their operations.
- It is a very sturdy winch.
- The capacity of 2600 lbs is pretty good.
- The design offers great convenience.
- The instructions can be quite misleading.
#7 Kinbelle 3500lbs
This piece is purely of steel to offer exceptional strength that you can always count on and durability that is hard to surpass even with heavy everyday use. Premium zinc plating covers the solid construction to offer superior resistance to corrosion and other elements so that the model suits all-weather use.
3500 Lbs Capacity
If you are not new in hand winches, you know that most models deliver a maximum capacity of below 2000 lbs. Therefore, the high lifting capacity of 3500 lbs already makes this tool one of the outstanding options in the market. Therefore, just in case you are looking for a hand winch that you can use for a trailer, pickup truck, or in any other mobile application, adding this to your shopping cart would be a wise idea.
Although the entire unit features steel construction, the steel material of the gears is hardened to prevent them from wearing out. This feature maximizes the serviceability so that you get smooth operations throughout the product’s service life.
The 33-ft sturdy cable comes with a commercial-grade hook that will not break when in use. This feature gives the user peace of mind even when using it for picking up heavier loads. Also, the hook comes with a reliable pawl that keeps the object held in place for increased user safety.
- The gears are dependable.
- The handle provides user comfort.
- The high capacity maximizes versatility.
- Its price is slightly higher than those of most hand winches.
#8 Goldenrod Dutton-Lainson DL2500A
As the name suggests, this model provides an impressive pulling capacity of 2500 lbs. The powerful design makes it a multi-purpose winch that will give you peace of mind when you use it for hauling and pulling operations. However, just in case you need a model that can also suit lifting, Goldenrod Dutton-Lainson DL2500A winch could not be the perfect suit for you since it does not have the self-locking mechanism.
This USA-made equipment has robust construction that can stand up to heavy daily use in a busy job site. The resilient TUFFPLATE zinc finish on the premium construction allows the tool to withstand tough elements that the Mother Nature may throw at it.
The pre-drilled holes at the base mean that you can mount the unit in no time straight from the box. Also, the handle has an ergonomic molded grip that interacts smoothly with the palm to eliminate hand fatigue that comes along with long use. Also, the handle measures 9.5 inches to provide enough room for hand comfort.
Another special feature about this model is that it offers two-speed torque settings. The two settings increase the convenience of the tool since the user can choose the speed that suits the job at hand. The perfect gear ratio on the other side guarantees nearly effortless operations.
- The handle can be removed easily.
- It is simple to mount.
- The gears are durable.
- The handle lacks the locking mechanism to keep it in place after attaching.
#9 Fulton FW32000101
When you talk of elegance, you never get it wrong in Fulton FW32000101 winch. The model comes with a special sleek design and that gives it a high-tech look that will go with any trailer and boat. The maximum pulling power of 3200 lbs makes it a reliable option for towing and pulling. The model is also available in the other two versions, one with a capacity of 1600 pounds and the other 2000 pounds.
The sturdy construction of this winch comes with an enclosure. The enclosed make prevents water from accessing the internal components of the winch ensuring optimal performance of the winch for years. This design is coupled with the corrosion-resistant coating and precision fitting to make it virtually maintenance-free; no more need to lubricate parts or tighten!
Easy-Install System (E.I.S)
Fulton FW32000101 winch has patented-pending ESI feature that makes installation more straightforward than it has ever been. This means that you spend less time mounting the unit so that you get more time to use. This property makes it an ideal option for beginners and anyone that doesn’t want the hassle of complex mounting.
Fulton FW32000101 hand winch also comes with two gear settings for optimal performance in any application. The self-engaging one-handed mechanism means that switching between the two torque settings is a snap!
- The handle is adjustable.
- The aluminum material does not rust.
- The maintenance-free design eliminates maintenance cost.
- It is quite large hence will take more room for mounting.
If we consider the construction of this hand winch, we would be on point to conclude that this model is designed with durability in mind. Both the winch and the cable are of high-quality steel to offer exceptional strength.
Since steel material naturally corrodes easily when exposed to the elements, the steel construction in this model comes with zinc plating. The reliable finish offers superior protection to the winch from corrosion and other properties when still stepping up the aesthetics of the tool.
The hook at the end of the steel cable also features rugged construction for your safety and that of your cargo. The hook also comes with a resilient finish for enhanced durability and a safety pawl that elevates the level of safety in your operations.
Although this model comes with rugged construction, it costs less than most of the competitors in the same class. In fact, if you are in the lookout for a low-budget yet reliable option, investing your cash here should reap the maximum value in return.
- The finish of the tool is great.
- The size is perfect, not small or large.
- The simple design makes mounting quickly.
- The capacity of 600 lbs will not suit heavy use.
#11 CURT 29423
Unlike the preceding Oanon selection with a pulling capacity of 900 lbs, CURT 29423 delivers maximum pulling power of 900 lbs. Although this capacity is not the best in the market, the higher rating means that this option can take on more applications than the just reviewed competitor.
CURT 29423 hand winch has cold forged steel construction. The high-strength construction offers optimal performance in wider applications whether in pulling or lifting. Also, the treated steel construction resists tough outdoor elements to keep the functionality of the equipment at par throughout the service life.
The removable handle is eight inches long to provide ample space your hand. Furthermore, the handle features a 3.5-inch rubber grip at the end. The rubberized grip provides maximum comfort to the hand while the non-slip design provides excellent grip making it more user-friendly to spin.
Since hand winches are made for heavy lifting and towing, safety remains a key consideration when making a purchase. And yes, this equipment is equipped with a locking lever to provide increased safety to the user.
- The gears are durable.
- The price is pocket-friendly.
- The drum is compatible with different straps.
- The size may not suit every application.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
What is the difference between a hoist and a winch?
The major difference between the two tools comes on versatility. A hoist is only used for lifting loads while a winch is more versatile since it can be used for lifting, towing, and pulling a load on a horizontal surface.
How strong should my winch be?
The ideal winch for you will depend on the nature of your projects. For example, if you need it for use in the vehicle, the rule of the thumb is that you should choose the model with a minimum pulling capacity of 1.5X the gross weight of your vehicle. Therefore, if your vehicle weighs 2 tons, you should go for a winch with the minimum capacity of 3000lbs.
How much does a winch cost?
The cost of a winch varies depending on the construction, manufacturer and the design. For example, electric hand winches will cost you more than the older manual winches.
Hand winches can play a lot of roles whether in the industrial setting, farm, marinas, and nearly any other place where there is a need for lifting or pulling heavy loads. Generally, all the models come with robust construction with a non-corrosive coating. However, the pulling power will differ from one winch to the other. Therefore, it is important to understand the nature of the target project first so that you know the right capacity for you. Ergonomics is equally important especially if you intend to use it frequently. Our hand-picked picks come with a good price and you can rely on them for durability.