Hoist & Winch: What’s the Difference? And How Does It Work?

Cranes are being used in the factories, building sites and various industries. They make the manual work easier thus, reducing the number of the human workforces needed at a particular site to carry out a particular task. The famous cranes are the hoist and winch which are being used widely. The two may seem similar as they are both used with a heavy object or something that requires great power, however, their mode of work and their usage is quite different.

Now the question arises, what if we want to lift a car from a no parking area or we want to pull out a car from a muddy track? Where will a hoist be required and where will a winch be used. In order to answer these questions, the difference between the two and how they work must be considered.


What is Hoist?

The hoist is a crane used for lifting and lowering a load vertically by the help of a drum or lift-wheel around which a rope or chain may wrap. It can be operated manually and as well as electrically. If you have ever been in an elevator, consider it using the Hoist Mechanism. A hoist can also lift heavy objects such as trucks, jeeps, engines and boats vertically. Once an object has been lifted, a Hoist can also lower down an object back to the ground.


What is Winch?

A winch is a crane which is designed to pull the heavy loads on a horizontal and levelled surface. Let’s say, for example, a winch can be used to pull trucks if they get stuck in the wet mud and are unable to move.


How Does Hoist & Winch Work?

As mentioned above, a hoist can lift dead weight vertically whereas, a winch can pull loads horizontally. This is made possible by the two different brake systems. A Hoist uses mechanical brakes that are specialized in locking and supporting the loads which are being lifted. A winch uses dynamic brakes which helping in rolling the loads and not lifting the dead weights. This brake system automatically locks when pulling a load.

Both of the material handling equipment can be powered or operated manually. An automatic Winch has hydraulic, air, and electric power options. On the other hand, a Hoist can be manually operated using ratcheting, levering and hand cranking techniques and automatically operated using pneumatic, electric and hydraulic motors.

Now that we have discussed the differences and as well as how a winch and hoist works, you can easily guess which one has to be used at a particular job. It is recommended to engage with hoist crane supplier Malaysia who can be present at all times to make these two work efficiently.

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