The winch is equipment designed to pull heavy loads for livelihood and emergencies.
Imagine something you rely on that gets unreliable during critical situations suddenly. How do you feel then? Unexpected and weird circumstances…
Have you noticed that your winch motor is pulling cable slower than before? Or worse, did it stop working at all in the middle of the task? As long as there is no burnt smell, or smoke coming out from the winch motor itself, then chances are, the issue will be on your switches, electrical wire connections, or winch solenoid unit.
In this article, we will be focusing on how to test a winch solenoid in the latter component. Before we go, let’s check out which equipment you’ll need to test your winch solenoid. And if you like the best winch for jeep JI, here it is.
Best Practice for Noobs
Assuming you successfully have (or asked someone) disassembled your winch control box to take out your winch solenoid and decided to DIY, here are important items to keep in mind:
The Testing Steps
Usually, if your winch solenoid unit has 4-studs (2 large studs & 2 small studs), it means that you have to test only 1 solenoid coil. Otherwise, you have to apply all the steps below repeatedly. It will mostly depend on the number of solenoid coils of the winch solenoid unit.
- Once you have successfully identified the correct wires and terminal labels on your unit, connect your positive cable (+, RED) FROM your solenoid to the winch motor. Do the same for the negative (-, BLACK) cable as well. Take note of the markings on the metal studs on your solenoid unit.
Note: On updated electricals, BLUE and YELLOW connections will determine the direction in which way your winch motor spins.
- Then, connect the negative cable (-, BLACK) from the battery to the solenoid.
- Now take the positive cable (+, RED) and connect it from the battery to the solenoid.
Pro Tips: Be careful when doing this step as it will completely close your electric connection. So do not be panicked when it sparks upon contact. Learn more about negative voltage and its performance here.
- If, upon contact, your winch motor starts to spin, CONGRATULATIONS! The winch solenoid will still be working, and your DIY testing ends here. If not, take a deep breath, and then continue reading below.
- Upon contact, if the winch motor does not spin or click, it is now time to determine whether you will purchase a replacement winch solenoid or start saving for a replacement winch motor.
- If, upon contact, you hear a clicking sound on your winch motor but does not spin, rejoice! It likely means that your winch solenoid is a faulty line.
- Now it’s time to use the multimeter you borrowed. Set the knob to take the Red & Black leads, touching them on the pair of studs on your solenoid coil.
Note: When you use a winch system, you know that small accessory kits like solenoid starters play a vital role. Likewise, winch fairleads are also essential parts of the winch system. If you have three minutes in hand, you can read the guide on fairleads to know which one is fit for you. When you’ll learn about the function of fairleads, you may change your mind to select the entire winch system. As a beginner, more chances are there to be fooled by the wrong selection!
Remember that you have to do this every time if it includes more than 1 solenoid coil on the unit. Some of the sections mentioned are also principles to be applied when testing other small electronic equipment/components. Hopefully, this piece of writing may come to your help in need of testing the winch solenoid. More of such writings may help you. You can find all the writings here.