Winch Comparison: Superwinch VS Warn VS Smittybilt

A winch is an accessory and a tool that you give very little thought to until the time comes when you need it, and when that time comes you want to make sure that you have the best winch that you can have. You are relying on the winch you have to get you out of tough situations so you want to make sure that your winch is dependable, reliable, strong, and resilient.

This comparison was done so that our readers could educate themselves completely and make knowledgeable choices when they are shopping for a new winch.

Winch comparison

We asked our experts to take a close look at three of the most popular winches on the market and tell us how they compared to each other. Our experts were required to disregard any previous thoughts they had about the three winch brands and judge the tools on their performance during the test.

The winches were judged on strength, safety features, ease of use, reliability under pressure, and ease of access. The cost of the winches and the warranties offered by the manufacturers were not part of the final consideration of the tools. The results of these tests are listed below.

Superwinch vs Warn

Our first comparison is between the popular Superwinch and the long time trusted Warn winch.

Superwinch Features

• Heavy duty latch hooks
• Handheld remote
• Weather sealed solenoid
• Weather sealed circuit breaker
• Powder coated 4 way roller fairlead
• 85’ dteel wire rope
• Automatic load holding and mechanical braking

Superwinch Pros

• Powerful
• Reliable
• Quiet
• Easy to install
• Can mount rocker switch on the handlebars
• Very little maintenance required
• Can be used on many different types of vehicles

Superwinch Cons

• Tighter seals can cause the motor to overheat quicker
• Not all Superwinch winches come with a wireless remote control
• You may need to buy a specific mounting plate to help you mount this to your vehicle
• Does not come with winch cover

Warn features

• Welded steel drum
• 90’ Synthetic rope
• Waterproof motors and solenoids
• Remote control operations
• Kits come with everything you need to install the winch
• Braking system for load holding

Warn Pros

• Corrosion resistant
• Waterproof connectors
• Durable
• Quiet in operation
• Easy to install
• Can mount rocker switch on the handlebars
• Warn winch mounting plates are compatible with most brands of ATV/UTV vehicles
• Will hold the load in place even in the event of a power surge or power loss situation
• Very little maintenance required
• Can be used on many different types of vehicles

Warn Cons

• Not all Warn winches come with a wireless remote control
• Does not come with a winch cover

Features they share

• Strength
• Waterproof seals to protect the motors from moisture and dust
• Excellent load holding and braking systems
• Remote control operations
• Easy to install
• Both winches came with the proper mounting hardware

The final decision

When the experts were asked to decide whether the Warn winches or the Superwinch winches were better they were at a loss for words. All of the experts agreed that when they compared the two winch brands in side by side comparison test the winches were almost identical in features, ability, reliability, and both winches actually exceeded their expectations for speed in pulling and strength.

The experts did agree that the Warn winches did a better job at consistent pulling, and they were impressed with the fact that the Warn winches were less likely to overheat when they were pulling a heavy load.

They did prefer the installation instructions that came with the Superwinch and they agreed that when you had to change the pulling rope or wire it was easier to do this on the Superwinch brand winches.

Superwinch vs Smittybilt:

The next comparison pits the Superwinch against the Smittybilt in a feature by feature comparison.

Superwinch Features

• Heavy duty latch hooks
• Handheld remote
• Weather sealed solenoid
• Weather sealed circuit breaker
• Powder coated 4 way roller fairlead
• 85’ steel wire rope
• Automatic load holding and mechanical braking

Superwinch Pros

• Powerful
• Reliable
• Quiet
• Easy to install
• Can mount rocker switch on the handlebars
• Very little maintenance required
• Can be used on many different types of vehicles

Superwinch Cons

• Tighter seals can cause the motor to overheat quicker
• Does not come with a winch cover
• Not all Superwinch winches come with a wireless remote control
• You may need to buy a specific mounting plate to help you mount this to your vehicle

Smittybilt Features

• Your choice in a steel roller fairlead or an aluminum hawse fairlead
• Wired winch remote or wireless remote control (customer choice)
• Amphibious motor
• 95’ of winch cable or synthetic rope (your choice)
• 72” battery cables
• Comes with the mounting hardware that is stainless

Smittybilt Pros

• Sealed to keep out dirt and water
• Easy to respool cable or rope
• Fast line speeds
• Easy to install
• Can be used on many different types of vehicles

Smittybilt Cons

• Does not come with the mounting plate
• Does not come with a winch cover
• Tighter seals can cause the winch to overheat quicker
• Mounting hardware is not of the highest quality

Features they share

• Remote operation systems
• Sealed to protect against moisture and dust
• Ease of installation
• Easy to use
• Both winches were quick to re-spool
• Both winches had high pull capacities

The final decision

Both the Smittybilt and the Superwinch have excellent features that any winch owner would be proud to have on their tool. They are both reliable working tools and they are pretty equal in style, features, and affordability.

Our experts agree that the decision between these two winch brands comes down to customer preference and nothing more.

Both of these winch brands received high reviews and are considered to be good choices.

When pressed to choose one winch brand over the other they agreed that they were more inclined to suggest the Superwinch over the Smittybilt. The Superwinch construction seemed more impressive to them, and they preferred the mounting instructions that came with the Superwinch Terra products.

Smittybilt vs Warn:

Our experts looked at the Warn winches and the Smittybilt winches to determine which of these powerful tools had the most things to offer.

Smittybilt Features

• Your choice in a steel roller fairlead or an aluminum hawse fairlead
• Wired winch remote
• Amphibious motor
• 95’ of winch cable or synthetic rope (your choice)
• 72” battery cables
• Comes with the mounting hardware
• Mechanical braking and holding of loads

Smittybilt Pros

• It comes with either wire cable or synthetic rope so customer gets to choose what they prefer
• The wired remote keeps the operator safer
• Will hold a load even when the power is interrupted
• Quick pulling when it was pulling a maximum load

Smittybilt Cons

• Slower line speed when compared to the Warn winch
• Mounting hardware is not the highest quality
• Does not come with a mounting plate
• Does not come with a winch cover

Warn Features

• Welded steel drum
• 90’ Synthetic rope
• Waterproof motors and solenoids
• Remote control operations
• Kits come with everything you need to install the winch
• Braking system for load holding

Warn Pros

• Corrosion resistant
• Durable
• Quiet in operation
• Easy to install
• Can mount rocker switch on the handlebars
• Warn winch mounting plates are compatible with most brands of ATV/UTV vehicles
• Will hold the load in place even in the event of a power surge or power loss situation
• Very little maintenance required
• Can be used on many different types of vehicles

Warn Cons

• Not all Warn winches come with a wireless remote control
• Does not come with a winch cover

Features they share

• Both winches are waterproof but the Warn winch is more water-resistant than the Smittybilt
• Easy to install with instructions that are easy to understand. Both winches come with the proper mounting hardware

The final decision

The Warn winches were considered by the experts to be slightly better in their performance than the Smittybilt winches were.

The Warn winches did better when exposed to water especially when they were exposed to water when the ATV was driving through deep water. They were equally good at keeping dust out of the motors, but the Warn winches were not as quick to overheat, and they performed better when it came to the speed that they pulled a load and the speed that they re-spooled in.

Final Note

These three winch brands are the most popular with consumers and our experts agree that their popularity is because they all perform their duties properly and they all were easy to use. When you buy a winch you want to make sure that you are getting something that is reliable and easy to use and you also want to make sure that you are getting a tool that is easy to maintain.

The maintenance on all three of these brands was easy to do and the experts say they are actually maintenance free except for replacing things like the pulling wire or pulling ropes when they begin to wear from age.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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