Which Is The Best: Warn, Smittybilt or Superwinch Winch?

The debate for the best winch brand is one that constantly disturbs the mind. Is the Warn winch worth the price? Can Smittybilt last the test of time? Or is Superwinch actually the best overall?

These questions and more are what needs to be addressed and serve as the guide to choose the best winch for you.

If you are confused about which of them to get, then you have found the best place to learn about each of the brands. In this article, we would be making an in-depth comparison of the three listed winch producers above. You don’t want to miss this out!

Smittybilt vs Warn vs Superwinch

Getting To Know The Three Brands

Let’s do a quick overview of each of the brands!

1. Warn

History

This renowned company dates as far back as 1948 and has since honed its name in producing quality winches and other associated accessories. The company is named after its founder, Arthur Warn, an American who pioneered the making of locking hubs during the Second World War. 

Over the past 70 years, Warn has been awarded a lot of awards from across the globe for its proficiency. The most popular winches from this company include Warn VR EVO, Warn Zeon, Warn M8000, and many more!

Where Are Warn Winches Manufactured?

With several branches across the United States, the headquarters of the Warn industry is situated in Oregon, USA. As such, most of their winches, including their parts, are produced in the United States, except for the VR series, which are made in China.

2. Smittybilt

History

Though the company did not start off with the production of off-road machines, they have over time involved themselves in it and are doing really great. The company was launched as a mechanic shop in 1956 by Basil Smith. 

His focus was on Jeeps and SUVs before his son Tom Smith got involved in the innovation of winches. Smittybilt is now a large distributor of winches worldwide and has received several recognition awards. 

Some of their top-rated winches are GEN 2/ GEN 3 XRC, X20, etc.

Where Are Smittybilt Winches Manufactured?

Contrary to people’s opinions, Smittybilt is an American-based industry. However, its products are made in China.

3. Superwinch

History

Of the three companies being compared, Superwinch is the most recent. Originating from the market of some ford engineers, Westin (the company owner) bought some winch parts and later decided to venture fully into the business.

For more than 50 years now, Superwinch winches have proved durable and reliable winches at affordable costs. And as such are high on demands in the market today. 

Examples of the popular products from this industry are Superwinch Tiger Shark, Terra Series, and so on.

Where Are Superwinch Winches Manufactured?

From the raw materials to the final products, Superwinch winches are made in the USA.

Warn vs Smittybilt vs Superwinch: A Detailed Comparison

Warn

Price

If you ask an average person about Warn winches, one of the first few sentences would include the price! Compared to the other options, Warn winches are more expensive; nonetheless, they are worth the price.

You would get the service for your money and even beyond it!

Specifications

Below are some of the general specifications that you would get in Warn winches: 

  • 90-inch synthetic rope 
  • Speed
  • Ranging capacity from 750 lbs to 30,000 lbs
  • Complete installation kit and manual
  • Iron bracing
  • Remote control

One of the most important highlights of Warn winches is the speed. They are faster than their other counterparts.

Product Quality

Warn winch users are almost always satisfied with the products of the brand. You may wonder about the magic that the brand offers that gives them so much support. Well, simply put, it is the quality of their products!

The company uses the best quality and sturdy materials manufactured in the United States. This, in general, contributes to the durability and longevity of their products.

Warranty

As a sequel to the brand’s confidence in the quality of their products, they offer a seven-year warranty. Knowing that all things are equal, the winch can function perfectly beyond this period.

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Sturdy and durable
  • Waterproof and anti-corrosive material
  • Fast line speed
  • Great customer service

Cons

  • May be expensive
  • Wired remote

Smittybilt

Price

Well, if you want to consider a winch option based on price, a better choice is from the Smittybilt. Though the price variation between Warn and Smittybilt isn’t so far apart, the price for the latter may not be able to purchase a similar spec in Warn products.

Specifications

Smittybilt offers several jaw-opening features for its price. Let’s check them out!

  • Cable or synthetic rope (95 inches), you get to choose
  • Wireless remote control
  • Complete installation kit 
  • Dynamic braking system
  • Detailed clutches

Product Quality

From customer reviews, it is apparent that people who choose Smittybilt derive a form of satisfaction from it. Though a cheaper option, it is durable, sturdy, and up to the task. 

Warranty

One great advantage you get from shopping winches with Smittybilt is the lifetime warranty they place on them. In other words, you do not have to spend extra costs on its maintenance.

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Easy to install
  • Big load capacity
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Not high-end materials
  • Overheating

Superwinch

Price

Costs aren’t a thing to worry about with Superwinch. They are most times about thrice the price of Warn winches, yet they offer a fair quality for their price.

Specifications

  • 85-inch steel rope
  • Mechanical braking system
  • Remote control

Product Quality

Perhaps because most people either use Warn or Smittybilt, there isn’t much to say about Superwinch. However, it’s a fair shot though some customers complain about rusts, snapping of the rope, and poor customer relationships from the brand.

Warranty

The brand offers a two-year limited warranty on their winch. It is essential to know that while in transit, Superwinch would not be able to accept new orders, process warranty claims, or any inventory transactions.

Pros

  • Quiet operation
  • Requires little maintenance
  • Compatible with different vehicles
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • Prone to corrosion
  • Overheating

Which Is The Best Option?

After so much comparison and factors put into consideration, it must be noted that the best choice for an individual is subjective. Though, according to our rating, from the least to the best, we would say Superwinch, Smittybilt, and Warn.

The popular Warn produces very high quality and durable winches worth the price. Nonetheless, if you are on a budget, you can go with Smittybilt. The quality is also superb, plus you get a lifetime warranty on their winches. 

Choose The Best Winch For You Here!

At A Glance: 3 Best Winches Overall

Best Warn WinchBest Smittybilt WinchBest Superwinch Winch
WARN VR EVO 12-S
WARN VR EVO 12-S
Check Price
Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC
Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC
Check Price
Superwinch Terra 45SR
Superwinch Terra 45SR
Check Price
Customer Rating
4.8
4.7
4.6
PriceWARN VR EVO 12-S priceSmittybilt GEN 2 XRC priceSuperwinch Terra 45SR price
RopeSynthetic & SteelCableSynthetic
Easy to install
Line length85' - 90'94'55'
WarrantyLimited lifetime on mechanical & 7 years on electricalLimited lifetime on mechanical & 5 years on electricalLimited lifetime
Remote control
Waterproof--
Our Score9.599

Let’s now look into some of the best winches from each brand that might be a good option for you!

Best Warn Winches

1. WARN 103255 VR EVO 12-S: The Rugged Towing Winch

WARN VR EVO 12-S
WARN VR EVO 12-S
4.8
Warn never let me down. Easy installation with only 30 minutes. You’ll definitely get what you paid! The best choice for me, never think of any other winch.

Here’s one of the best winches you can get from Warn. It comes in different size capacities, but this is a 12,000 lbs winch. You get to choose if you want a cable rope or a synthetic rope, but you can be guaranteed that with either of them, you would be making a great choice.

The winch is designed with strong gear and a motor system which are responsible for its amazing line speed. In addition, it is lightweight and easy to install on your vehicle.

Working with the WARN 103255 VR EVO 12-S is made easier with the remote control that comes with it. You could use the remote as wired or wireless depending on the situation you find yourself in or your preferences.

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Easy to install
  • Sturdy and durable material
  • Lifetime limited warranty on mechanical and seven-year warranty on electrical

Cons

  • Installation screws may not be complete
  • Wireless remote may not work

Verdict

If you frequent off-road and get stuck almost all the time, you really need this winch! It is a perfect fit for any ¾ or 1-ton pickup trucks or any kind of large frame rig.

Warn VR EVO 12-S

2. WARN 26502 M8000 Series Electric Winch: The Powerful Winch

WARN M8000 Series Electric Winch
WARN M8000 Series Electric Winch
4.6
A well-made unit from America. Helpful instructions, super fast shipping and perfect quality! Besides, this winch is a great option for Jeep and trailers.

The WARN 26502 M8000 winch is a perfect choice if you use a jeep or an SUV. It is designed in such a way that it can fit into most vehicles while maintaining a low profile. Its capacity is 8000 lbs and in the past years has been known to always come to the rescue. 

This success rating is owed to its powerful 4.8hp and 12V motor. Due to the motor’s capacity, the winch offers a very fast line speed and easily gets you out of whatever situation you find yourself stuck in. In addition, the rope rolls back in without hassle and poses a minimal threat.

If you are alone when you get stuck, you do not have to panic or look for help elsewhere; the remote is all you need! Accompanying the winch is a 12 inch easy-to-use remote which fits perfectly in hand and makes using it more comfortable.

Pros

  • Fast line speed
  • Quiet operations
  • Easy to install
  • Seven-year warranty
  • Come with a complete mounting kit

Cons

  • Heavyweight
  • Non-wireless remote

Verdict

We would recommend this WARN 26502 M8000 Series Electric Winch for your day-to-day use. It is powerful and reliable. Furthermore, it would fit in perfectly for a Jeep Wrangler.

WARN M8000 Series Electric Winch 

3. WARN 101570 Handheld Portable Drill Winch: The Multipurpose Handheld Winch

WARN Handheld Portable Drill Winch
WARN Handheld Portable Drill Winch
4.7
So convenient and portable. Also, you can easily watch the wire’s spooling through the window on the top. The high gear ratio allows you to pause while lifting without making the cable pull out. And thanks to the free wheeling clutch, the cable can be pulled out rapidly when required.

This is quite different from the other winches that we have discussed. Just as the name indicates, it is a smaller size and handheld. The capacity of the winch is 750 lbs, and it can be used for different kinds of pulling works.

Despite being portable, its works are surprisingly marveling. It has a very high pulling strength and self-limiting load control. Once the load applied to it is greater than 750 lbs, the winch would start making sounds which indicates to you that the limit has been reached.

In addition, you can have control over the speed of the winch through the weight of the load applied, the drill speed, and the distance to be covered.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Fast line speed
  • Easy maintenance
  • Can serve multiple functions

Cons

  • Not durable shaft
  • Reduced power

Verdict

This is an excellent handheld winch for small loads. As long as you do not put loads that exceed its capacity on it, you’re good to go!

WARN Handheld Portable Drill Winch 

Best Smittybilt Winches

1. Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch | 9,500 Pound: The Perfect Winch For All Weather

Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch 9,500 lbs
Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch 9,500 lbs
4.7
Highly recommend for you. This winch is affordable and worth your investment. Fast shipping, good instructions so that you can install it without a pro. Operation is easy and an awesome remote control.

Behold one of the Smittybilts greatest productions! If you are working around a budget but still want something great, you should pick the Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch. Its capacity is 9500 lbs with 20.88″ (L) x 6.3″ (W) x 7.4″ (H) dimensions.

The beauty of this winch is in its motor. The power of the motor is 6.6hp and 12V. With such capacity, you can tell that its line speed would be great and it does a fantastic job. 

Furthermore, it comes with a long 94′ cable rope. Hence, it is perfect for the most challenging and most rugged situations. Another feature that makes it suitable for different weathers is its IP67 waterproof rating. In addition, it has a fine black coating finish that gives it an elegant appearance.

Pros

  • High power
  • Waterproof
  • Remote control
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • Heavyweight
  • Not sturdy

Verdict

The Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch should be your constant companion if you are off-road most of the time. Especially in mud or wood and, more importantly, if you use a Jeep truck SUV.

Smittybilt GEN 2 XRC Winch 9,500 lbs

2. Smittybilt X2O COMP 10,000 lb: High Capacity Smittybilt Winch

Smittybilt X2O COMP 10,000 lbs
Smittybilt X2O COMP 10,000 lbs
4.8
A nice winch, a nice price for such a high weight rating. A super convenient rempte is included, synthetic rope is perfect and lightweight. I’m so glad with this purchase due to a great customer service and warranties.

This is another Smittybilt champion that always comes through. The Smittybilt X2O COMP has some similarities with the previously discussed one; however, its weight capacity has increased by 500 lbs. It is designed with rugged and sturdy materials that would stand the test of time.

The carton contains the power cables, a wireless remote, the winch and all items needed for its full installation. You can rest assured that the winch would not break down so quickly because it is powered by a powerful motor and is finished with waterproof materials.

Another plus to this item is its wireless remote, which makes controlling it easier and faster.

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Lightweight
  • Anti-corrosive
  • 5-year warranty on electrical and lifetime on mechanical

Cons

  • Difficult to install
  • Disengaging clutch

Verdict

Whether you winch daily or you just need a winch for the stormy days, Smittybilt X20 COMP would be a great choice for you. The winch works well with a JKU or a 2014 RAM. 

Smittybilt X2O COMP 10,000 lbs

Best Superwinch Winches

1. Superwinch 1130220 LT3000 Winch 3,000lb: The Budget-friendly Superwinch

Superwinch LT3000 Winch
Superwinch LT3000 Winch
4.7
This is the first time I orderd a winch from this brand, and surprisingly it is even better than my expectation. An excellent option for ATV with a straightforward installation and flawless work. I’m so satisfied with this winch and highly recommend for anyone.

If what you need is a low-budget winch with an average weight rating, that’s what you would get with this Superwinch. It can bear up to 3000 lbs but not beyond that.

The Superwinch LT3000 is powered by a 1.2hp motor that is sealed and protected from water. Despite this seemingly small motor, the winch still offers a line speed of 8.3 meters per minute with no load applied and 1.2 meters per minute when the maximum load is applied. 

In addition, it can be controlled with the aid of the 12-inch wired remote and its ergonomic free spooling clutch. Asides from this, its braking system is also superb and guarantees a 100% load holding capacity.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Inexpensive
  • Easy on install
  • Comes with a complete installation kit

Cons

  • Low power
  • Not durable

Verdict

Perhaps you just need a winch for immediate use or to be used once in a while; you can save your money and settle for this winch.

The Superwinch 1130220 LT3000 winch would fit in most ATV/UTV.

Superwinch 1130220 LT3000 Winch 

2. Superwinch 1145230 Terra 45SR 4500lbs: Winch For Everyday Use

Superwinch Terra 45SR 4500lbs
Superwinch Terra 45SR 4500lbs
4.6
Powerful and great. Installing a switch is simple, the instructions to wire the winch is quite confusing but it’s also OK. Besides, it’s good that the cable is universal and the winch fits perfectly with my ATV.

Superwinch has got you covered if you’re looking for an average capacity winch that you can use for basic day-to-day hauling activities. The Terra 45SR’s capacity is 4500 lbs, powered by a 1.6hp magnetic motor.

An advantage that it shows over most other winches is that its gears are wider, and it also uses a dynamic braking system. Similarly, it comes with a 55′ by ¼’ synthetic rope that pulls in and out without hassle. You do not have to worry about its dislodging because it comes with a heavy-duty latch hook that keeps it firmly attached.

Furthermore, you get to control your winch easily with the handheld remote control that comes with it. 

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Quiet operations
  • Fine finishing
  • Protected circuit breaker

Cons

  • Low power outage
  • Low weight capacity

Verdict

If you move loads from place to place often, then this winch is your best bet. At the same time, if you just want to keep one in case your car is stuck somewhere, you can get this too. 

The Superwinch Terra 45SR works perfectly with a 21’BF750 EPS, 2018 Honda Rancher with KFI 102175 mount, and so on.

Superwinch 1145230 Terra 45SR 4500lbs

Winch Accessories

1. Snatch Block

Suppose you ever find yourself in a position where your winch does not seem capable of saving your vehicle. In that case, the next option to consider is a snatch block.

A snatch block is a pulley that can be used with a winch to potentiate its pulling effect. The snatch block doubles the capacity of your winch. For instance, if your winch’s towing capacity is 5000 lbs, with a snatch block, you can pull a 10,000 lbs vehicle.

This is a top-pick snatch block we would highly recommend for you:

WARN 92188 Epic Multi-Purpose Snatch Block – 6 Ton (12,000 lb): The Actual Winch Saver

WARN Multi-Purpose Snatch Block
WARN Multi-Purpose Snatch Block
4.8
Awesome! This hook is simple and heavy. Of course, it works greatly. I could purchase something else from a cheaper price but I didn’t. The quality is the king. If you can afford this hook, I believe that it won’t disappoint you.

Here is one very good snatch block that would help you reduce damage to your winch during the recovery process and, in the long run, make your winch last longer. 

Its capacity is 12,000 lbs. Furthermore, it is also important to note that this snatch block would double the pulling power of whatever winch it is attached to.

Pros

  • Durable steel
  • Anti-corrosive finish
  • Protect the winch from heating up
  • Double the winch’s pulling power

Cons

  • Weak snap rings
  • Non anti-rust

WARN Snatch Block – 6 Ton (12,000 lb)

2. Winch Cable/ Hook Bump Stop

Basically, what a winch bump stop does is to hold the rope of the winch in place and prevent it from dangling. You need to get one for your winch so that you won’t be needing a replacement for the rope within a short period.

Check out the example of a winch cable below.

WARN 99944 Rubber Winch Cable/ Hook Bump Stop: A Must-have For Winch Owners

WARN Rubber Hook Bump Stop
WARN Rubber Winch Cable/ Hook Bump Stop
4.7
An outstanding product, fast delivery and quick installation. I love its design so much. This hook stop is really pocket-friendly and comes with a stainless steel bolt. Use this and you will realize how easy it is to secure the hook and keep tension on the cable after using the winch.

This WARN 99944 Rubber Winch fits into most all-terrain vehicles. Its center hole is about ½ inches and is easy to install. With this bump stop, you can preserve the life of your winch and have it look neat and orderly!

Pros

  • Durable 
  • Easy to install
  • Protects the winch cable

Cons

  • May require trimming for some Warn ropes

WARN Rubber Winch Cable/ Hook Bump Stop

Conclusion

Whether to choose from Warn, Smittybilt or Superwinch, the choice is yours. However, when you have decided on the brand, be sure to do proper research on which of their products to choose. Or better still, pick the one that best suits your needs from our recommended winches. 

In addition, those winch accessories are not to be overlooked; they also have their relevant functions. Good luck as you make your choice!

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