off road pickup truck

Photo: FCA

How to use the Ram Power Wagon Winch

The RAM 2500 Power Wagon is the only truck that comes standard with a winch from the factory. The WARN winch is a recovery tool that is capable of winching up to 12,000lbs. Last summer, I was lucky enough to test out the truck on an off-road course in Colorado. The video and article for that is here. Read on to learn how to use the Power Wagon winch.

Safety First

Winches are very dangerous if not used correctly. Mopar recommends reading the complete winch owners manual before operating, due to the fact high forces are generated.

In the owner’s manual, Mopar suggests having a “no people” zone, which is basically the entire area surrounding the vehicle(s) and cable. Make sure everyone in the area knows what you are doing and are knows when you are about to start pulling. Make sure connections and cable are secure and clear of debris.

RAM 2500 Owners Manual Power Wagon Winch

Electrical power from the trucks charging system powers a motor that winds the wire rope into a drum (through planetary gear reduction). It is also recommended to wear gloves, protecting your hands from metal splinters (or rope burn).

Using the winch

  • Allow free spooling, by disengaging the clutch. The clutch is on the right and slightly behind the assembly (about where the rope starts to loop if you have it anchored on the tow hook). Pull down and to the left.
  • Free the attachment hook and pull out your cable.
  • Engage the clutch by moving back to the right o lock the cable in place.
  • Remove cover to the winch controller and plug in the connector to the control box behind the bumper (on the left-hand side of the assembly as you look at it).
  • If winching from inside the vehicle, pass the remote through the window (to avoid cable pinching).
  • Using the controller, slowly wind the wire rope until there is no slack. Push down on the joystick to pull cable in.

Low Voltage Interrupt

The Power Wagon winch comes with a device that will interrupt winch function if the vehicle charging system voltage drops to a low-level. The winch will not power-in or out for 30 seconds if this device trips.

If the interrupt trips, operate the vehicle at high idle for a few minutes to allow the vehicle charging system to recover before continuing to winch.

Tensioning the rope

As per the 2017 RAM 2500 owners manual: Un-spool the wire rope leaving five wraps of rope on the winch drum. Attach the hook to a suitable anchor point. Apply at least 500 lbs (227 kg) of tension to the rope while winding the rope.

Always use care to make sure the rope does not pile up on one side of the drum. Neatly wind the cable around the drum.

Watch the video

“Owner’s Manual – 0.” Official Mopar Site | Service, Parts, Accessories & More, RAM,


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