How to Put Winch in Free Spool?- (Step by Step Guide)

Whenever a winch’s weight capacity matches the load capacity of your vehicle, you are assured of a safe recovery. The recovery procedure usually starts with you unravelling the winch cable, which is normally wound around the winch drum. Free spooling is the safest approach to roll out the winch rope in general. Adversities like being trapped, dumped, or stranded on an off-road journey necessitate the use of a winch for rescue. Spooling the cable is necessary for that.

Why do you need to put a winch in free spool?

For two reasons, you must install a winch in the free spool. In order to avoid getting stuck while on the go, one of the foremost things to be mindful of is the battery charge. The longer the winch is in free spool, the more battery charge it can hold, so by putting the winch in free spool, you can save it. In order to keep track of the cable length, it is must to manually spool the string of the winch. It’s critical to maintain the required tension while the recuperation process is underway. Moreover, free spooling of a winch cable is the fastest, easiest, and safest way to deploy it. Not to mention that a winch stuck in free spool indicates that the clutch is still connected to the drum. Disengage it first, then begin the free spooling operation.

How to Put a winch in free spool efficiently | Steps

Regardless of the manufacturer, spooling a winch is the same. So it’s the same when you manually spool a winch. While it may seem like just pulling the cable from the wrap and unwinding it is not so easy to do as it may seem to a novice off-roader. Some winches include a clutch mechanism that makes spooling a little more difficult, but not so difficult that a precise guide can’t assist you in completing it effectively and safely. The free spooling process is presented here in a simple and straightforward fashion.

Step 1: Clutch should be disengaged

A clutch mounts on the side of some winches to prevent the drum from rolling while the winch is in use. The clutch will therefore prevent the drum from rolling as long as it is engaged. 

It is necessary to disengage the clutch and allow the drum to freely spin before free spooling the string. To ensure that the drum rotates freely and quickly, do not attach the clutch to the drum prior to getting hands-on. Some winches will not engage the clutch if you do not return it to its original position, allowing you to unwind without interruption.

The fact that some winches have multiple clutch attachments makes detaching the drum difficult. To avoid any danger, consult your winch manual, which will instruct you on how to perform a given clutch movement correctly.

Step 2: Wear gloves made of leather

A cable or rope must be spooled by tightly grasping it and pulling it vigorously. Your palm and fingers will be severely injured if you pull with just your hands. Gloves made of thickly padded leather with heavy finger seals are essential. This can only provide the necessary protection against frayed and kinked metal cable.

Step 3: Set the Winch Hook Free

After releasing the winch hook, append it to the hook’s band. First you have to attach the hook band, then only you can begin tugging the string.

Step 4: Pull the Required

Next, you’ll need to pull the winch cable far enough so that it won’t reach the anchor point. Ascertain that the winch string maintains an ensure level of tension. Insufficient rope tension can result in rope twisting, tangling, and coiling, which may cause cables to be injured.

Step 5: Join the cable to the Anchor Point

To put it another way, the spooling task is completed by pulling a sufficient length of string from the drum wrap. As recovery with safety is the ultimate purpose of free spooling or engine spooling, it is imperative that you attach the winch cable to the anchor successfully. The winch cable must next be secured by putting the tree trunk protector around the tree. With the winch hook attached to the D-shackle, you can now pull the winch.

Once you’ve decided where or what you’ll anchor with, be sure the anchor is strong enough to withstand the pulling force of the vehicle or object you’re trying to recover. Unless it is a stable or immovable object, you could damage your car, winch, and even hurt yourself.

Safety precautions to take while putting a winch on free spool

These are all options if you’re looking for a way to free spool a winch. Nonetheless, you must take a few precautions to ensure that the job is completed successfully. You may read more about the precautions you must take when manually unspooling a winch in the section below.

  • You should be careful how you use the remote control and should never leave it in a position that allows it to activate when manual spooling is on.
  • You can’t risk doing the unspooling with your own hands, no matter what the string is composed of.
  • In case of loaded winch, do not engage or disengage clutch. When the string is stressed, tampering with the clutch might cause irreversible damage in a short period of time.
  • A hook strap must be used to complete free spooling to avoid mishaps or damage to the vehicle or winch.
  • When manually spooling, never use too much pressure. In comparison to you, it is a giant who has the potential to betray and rebel when forced. As a result, free spool the string with as little effort as possible.
  • As long as the reel is unspooling, totally remove your hands from the cable, hook loop, fairlead, and remote control.


Because it takes longer to unspool the winch wire with the winch engine, free spooling a winch string is a great benefit. The motor brushes and the car battery also go strained, which is not advisable if you often or occasionally take off-road trips. As a result, if you need to unspool your warn winch wire, you must do so manually, and that is all there is to it.

Leave a Comment