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Futura Recovery Winch not functioning

What to do if your Futura Recovery Winch does not function

Before investing your time and money in purchasing parts, it is advisable to first determine if the issue lies in the wiring. Often, wiring problems are inexpensive and easy to fix.

  1. Gather Necessary Equipment: Ensure you have a voltmeter or lamp tester on hand for measuring voltage levels.
  2. Check Solenoid Output: Start by checking the output voltage of the solenoid. Place the probes of the voltmeter on the output terminals of the solenoid. The output terminals are the yellow and blue terminals at the top of the 4 solenoid terminals. Verify that the voltage reading is around 12 volts when the IN and OUT buttons are pressed. Note the polarity will switch depending on the IN or OUT buttons being pressed. 
  3. Check Remote Signal: If there is no voltage output from the solenoid, the issue might be with the remote signal not reaching the solenoid for activation. Verify the LED light is on on the remote, if not check the remote's batteries; Flat batteries could be causing a lack of signal. Also, listen for a distinct clicking sound from the solenoid, indicating that the remote is working correctly.
  4. Verify Voltage at Recovery Winch Plug: If you measure 12 volts at the solenoid's output, move on to the recovery winch plug on the toolbox. Check the voltage at the plug terminals using the same voltmeter setup. Make sure you're getting a consistent 12-volt reading, or the test lamp on a test probe is glowing.
  5. Check Winch Terminal Voltage: If there's voltage at the recovery winch plug, plug the recovery winch into the socket and then measure the voltage at the winch terminals. Use the voltmeter as before, ensuring a proper connection.
  6. Inspect Plug Connection: Often, a non-functional recovery winch is due to a loose connection at the Anderson plug. Carefully examine the pins within the plug to ensure they haven't shifted or dropped down. If a pin is out of position, it may fail to establish a proper connection, preventing the current from reaching the winch.

By following these steps and using the voltmeter to trace voltage levels, you can effectively troubleshoot issues with your recovery winch. If you have further questions or encounter difficulties during this process, don't hesitate to reach out to our technical support for additional assistance.

The Jumper Cable test

This test will bypass all of the wiring and control systems and tell you whether the winch motor is working.

Test the winch motor using starter cables.

  • Disconnect all winch cables from the winch.
  • Connect the jumper cables to a battery. Polarity does not really matter for this test, but red to + and black to – is always a good starting point.
  • Connect the negative cable to one of the terminals on the winch.
  • Gently tap the other terminal using the positive cable. This is done to make sure the winch does not have a dead short. The drum should move slightly. If it does not, stop the test at this point. Some sparks when tapping like this are normal.
  • If the drum moved slightly when tapping, attach the positive terminal completely. The winch motor should operate as normal in one direction.
  • Then repeat the test by switching the cables on the winch. The motor should then move freely in the opposite direction.
Jumper Cables

Cause 1: Battery is defective or not fully charged, or battery terminals are corroded

Suggested Solution: Start by making sure the battery is fully charged and has a voltage reading of at least 12,4V. Remove the battery terminals and clean them to ensure a proper connection.

Also, make sure that the grounding cable on the winch motor housing is properly fitted.

This leaves either the winch motor or the relay.

When you are in a situation like this, you want to rule out one or the other. Again, the easiest way to go about doing this is by performing the jumper cable test as described above to see if the winch is working or not.

Cause 2: Loose or corroded wiring connections

Suggested Solution: Disassemble and clean all terminals, one by one, to make sure you have a good connection everywhere and that they are properly fitted. Any corrosion can be removed with some sandpaper so that the terminals become shiny again.

Cause 3: Relay is damaged or corroded

If the winch works as normal when you power it with jumper cables, the issue will very likely be in the relay.

The solenoids may be firing up, but they are not connecting. This may be due to corrosion or damage from overheating.

Suggested Solution: In this case, the relay needs replacing.

If you require additional support, please get in touch with the Futura team directly, and we will gladly assist you in resolving the matter.

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