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How to Wire an Electric Winch on a Car Hauler Trailer

Question:

I have a 2015 GMC Sierra 1500 and am wondering if the 4-pole terminal outlet in my bumper beneath the 7-pole can provide power to my winch. If so, can I run quick disconnects from the winch power cables to plug into the 4-pole? I’m trying to avoid external battery or running cable from the battery and putting in quick connects.

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Expert Reply:

Unfortunately the ~16 gauge wires used on a 4-pole trailer connector would deliver only a fraction of the power required to run a winch.

There are two basic alternatives, as you stated. You could run a cable from the battery back to the truck, terminating in a quick disconnect which would plug into a quick disconnect installed on the trailer mounted winch, using a wiring kit like # BDW20207.

The second option would be to have a secondary battery installed on the trailer to power the winch. When 110V power is available you can use a battery charger like the # 3329-GENIUS5 to keep the battery charged up. You can use the 12-volt feed from the 7-way to keep the battery topped off, but it will not be able to deliver enough amperage (due to voltage drop and small wire gauge) to charge the battery once it's fully discharged.

I've linked you to our help article that explains how to wire up your winch in more detail, you can see the article by clicking the provided link.

expert reply by:
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Mike L

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