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So I just hooked up an M8000 and I'm wondering can I leave the negative cable disconnected and the positive connected to the battery and only connect the negative before I go offroad? Or is having the loose negative cable a bad idea?
 

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That's not a problem. I did that for over a year because I had a bad solenoid that would drain the battery if I kept it connected the whole time.
 

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When I installed mine, I also installed a Warn Power Interruptor Switch along with it. The problem is when I wanted to use it, it malfunctioned and I couldn't use my winch. It did as designed, just at the wrong time.....needless to say, I have taken it completely off and it's now setting on the floor of my garage to be put in the garbage.
 

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I don't see the harm in it.

On my rig I added quick disconnect plugs and sweated some welding cable to the lugs. The cables are on the battery full time and in some large loom. The cables to my winch have the quick disconnect.

I also made a set of jumper cables with this quick disconnect. If I need to winch or offer jumper assistance, I just open the hood and make the connection. That's not too much labor for me. It seems easier than having to add a lug back to a battery post when you need to winch.
 
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