Basic Preventative Winch Maintenance
The requirement for a winch in a 4x4 vehicle depends on the type of off-road terrain you intend to travel on. A Winch is not a must for a touring 4x4. Having said that, it is not a bad idea to have a winch installed in your 4wd in case you get bogged and winching is the about the only way out.
If you do have a winch installed or thinking about it, keep in mind some basic preventative maintenance is necessary at regular intervals. All well known brands of winches are solidly built to take a lot of punishment. But as with anything mechanical maintenance is important, even if you have not used the winch since it was installed.
In our Land Cruiser 80 series we have a 12,000lbs winch installed. Since installation six years ago we have used it only three times. We have very rare use for a winch because our type of off-road travel is touring which hardly involves extreme terrain. So, I guess you could say a winch is overkill in our case. As much as this may be correct, having it is one of those recovery tools which may be useful in the odd occasion.
I try to do basic maintenance on the winch at intervals of six months. This is just a simple spooling out and back in of the winch rope. As basic as this may sound it is important in keeping the mechanics of the winch in working order.
In the below video I domonstrate how I do this.