Winch hookup question - no fuse/breaker?

ETCMSSRetJoe

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Hi. New guy here. I bought a winch as my first significant addition to the new JLR. It isn't my first winch, and I seem to recall past winches coming with some kind of fuse or fusible link assembly to go on the battery terminal, then the winch power cable got connected to it, vice directly to the positive terminal. My new winch came with no protection for a fault between the battery connection and the winch itself. Also, the illustrated instructions never mention any such safety device and the picture clearly shows a direct connection to the battery positive terminal. That's six feet of potential fire or battery disaster if the conduit cover and wire insulation wear through, and the conductor becomes grounded. Is this normal on today's winches?





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BigJimSlade

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Hi. New guy here. I bought a winch as my first significant addition to the new JLR. It isn't my first winch, and I seem to recall past winches coming with some kind of fuse or fusible link assembly to go on the battery terminal, then the winch power cable got connected to it, vice directly to the positive terminal. My new winch came with no protection for a fault between the battery connection and the winch itself. Also, the illustrated instructions never mention any such safety device and the picture clearly shows a direct connection to the battery positive terminal. That's six feet of potential fire or battery disaster if the conduit cover and wire insulation wear through, and the conductor becomes grounded. Is this normal on today's winches?
I just got my Smittybilt X20 and it shows the same thing. I found it odd.
 

noloc45

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Hi. New guy here. I bought a winch as my first significant addition to the new JLR. It isn't my first winch, and I seem to recall past winches coming with some kind of fuse or fusible link assembly to go on the battery terminal, then the winch power cable got connected to it, vice directly to the positive terminal. My new winch came with no protection for a fault between the battery connection and the winch itself. Also, the illustrated instructions never mention any such safety device and the picture clearly shows a direct connection to the battery positive terminal. That's six feet of potential fire or battery disaster if the conduit cover and wire insulation wear through, and the conductor becomes grounded. Is this normal on today's winches?
Not an expert on winches or anything but could you/we just add a fuse sort of like we do with amplifier wiring kits?
 

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Seems to be normal now. Direct wiring to the battery was what I found on the options I looked at- including the one I bought.
 

bruno747

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look up your winch specs under full load. gonna be one serious fuse some larger winches hover in the 550amp area.

My 9500UT Ramsey is 450amp and my Superwinch EXP 12i is 530amp

I suppose this would work as some level of protection if you figure a way to mount and wire it. https://www.amazon.com/Rockford-Fosgate-500-Amp-Fuse/dp/B00A61XBJK

That said I dont recall ever seeing a fused winch that was over 2000lb rating everything was always direct to battery. If the cabling is properly routed and secured its no more of a risk than the heavy lines running to your starter.
 

roaniecowpony

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The winch has thermal protection. Just not the cable.
 
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ETCMSSRetJoe

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Thanks for the replies. This winch came with some fairly nice flexible conduit for the main power lead but maybe I’ll use one of the Aux switches for a heavy duty relay and mount it on or near the battery.
 
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stil2low

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Last few winches have never been fused or relayed, just straight power from the battery. Even my old 8274 is straight off the battery
A good friend added a 550 amp fuse to his winch after a little scare. He stopped too close to a fellow Jeep that rolled back into his old TJ causing the bumper to rock back some and pinch the power cable. The large short made his brake lines take the brunt of it and catch the undercoat on fire
 
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ETCMSSRetJoe

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Last few winches have never been fused or relayed, just straight power from the battery. Even my old 8274 is straight off the battery
A good friend added a 550 amp fuse to his winch after a little scare. He stopped too close to a fellow Jeep that rolled back into his old TJ causing the bumper to rock back some and pinch the power cable. The large short made his brake lines take the brunt of it and catch the undercoat on fire
That’s the kind of thing I’m concerned about. I haven’t found any fuse/fuse holders in that range that I want to install but I found quite a few manual disconnect switches that might do the trick. Not as fast as a breaker or fuse if something happens while using the winch, but will keep the power cable dead when not in use. On the other hand, if the winch contractor itself fails shut (which I have seen happen) a manual disconnect at least gives me a chance to turn it off before something awful happens. Maybe a fuse AND a manual disconnect. Hehe. This could get expensive!
 

JP18

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That’s the kind of thing I’m concerned about. I haven’t found any fuse/fuse holders in that range that I want to install but I found quite a few manual disconnect switches that might do the trick. Not as fast as a breaker or fuse if something happens while using the winch, but will keep the power cable dead when not in use. On the other hand, if the winch contractor itself fails shut (which I have seen happen) a manual disconnect at least gives me a chance to turn it off before something awful happens. Maybe a fuse AND a manual disconnect. Hehe. This could get expensive!
If you're that worried about it: https://www.amazon.com/0-GAUGE-CIRCUIT-INDUSTRIAL-GETWIREDUSA-FX313-500A/dp/B01CIZ9SD4

I'd rather use a breaker myself than a fuse.

JP18
 

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