WARNING: Maintain a firm grip on the winch handle at all times. Never release the handle when the ratchet lever is in the unlocked position with a load on the winch because the handle will spin forcefully under these conditions. This may cause serious injury. If the winch is released and begins to spin forcefully, do NOT attempt to halt the spin.
Prior to each use of the winch, check for the proper ratchet operation. Do not use the winch if it is damaged. Seek immediate repairs. Never use the winch handle as a handle for pulling or maneuvering the entire trailer or other equipment.
Never pull on the winch handle against a locked ratchet. Never exceed the rated capacity of the winch. Excessive loads may cause premature failure. Never apply a load on the winch with the strap fully extended. Keep at least two full turns of the strap that is on the reel. Inspect the condition of the winch strap.
Using a damaged or worn winch strap may result in serious injury or damage. Check the winch straps frequently. The strength in these can deteriorate from exposure to weather, ozone and ultraviolet light (direct sunlight). If a strap becomes frayed or worn, replace it immediately with a new one.
A heavy grease should be applied to the winchs gears to provide a free-running drive and to minimize the effort you have to expend to crank the boat onto the trailer.
The winch is intended solely as an aid to loading the boat on the trailer. It is not recommended to use the winch as the sole method for loading the boat onto the trailer. However, it is a satisfactory assistant in the event of engine power loss. It is not intended or adequate to be the sole means of holding the boat in place while loading the boat onto the trailer. Proper tie-downs fore and aft must be used.