DIY Network

Winch Versus Hoist

Host David Thiel and Jason Smith from Warn Industries demonstrate the difference between a winch and hoist and the power and ability of each.

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anchor hoist to solid point to support load
Photo 4 of 4When using a hoist, anchor it to a solid point that will be sufficient enough to support the load.

Hoist(4 of 4)


This hoist has the same motor as the winch and is operated by a handheld remote. Although the hoist appears to be very similar to the winch, when suspending a load rather than pulling or dragging it, there are different safety circumstances involved that one should be aware of.

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Some safety feature differences between a winch and a hoist include:

  • The load-rating are different because winches are rated for pulling capacity, while hoists are rated for safe working loads.
  • Hoists are not equipped with a free-wheeling clutch because free spooling while lifting vertically would be dangerous.
  • Hoists are equipped with a better brake design.
  • Hoists have a travel limiter so that the load is not lifted high enough to jam the spool.