TRAILERING & TOWING
Have you ever wondered what your truck can Tow or Haul? We have the answers. First, let's know the trailering terms and what they mean.
CURB WEIGHT aka VEHICLE WEIGHT: This is the weight of the vehicle full of fluids without passengers or cargo.
GVW (GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT) aka ACTUAL WEIGHT: This is the actual weight of the vehicle full of fluids with passengers and cargo. Think of it as the way you normally drive it when you’re about to tow your trailer.
GVWR (GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT RATING): This is assigned by the manufacturer of your vehicle and is the maximum weight the vehicle can weigh loaded, full of fluids, passengers and cargo. Think of it as the maximum load it can safely handle.
GTW (GROSS TRAILER WEIGHT): This is the weight of the trailer and its current cargo/load. Think of it as the way your trailer/camper is ready for you to haul it somewhere on vacation it has bedding inside, food, camping supplies etc.
GTWR (GROSS TRAILER WEIGHT RATING): This is assigned by the manufacturer of your trailer and is the maximum/highest load that it can carry. Think of it as the maximum load it can safely handle.
GCWR (GROSS COMBINED WEIGHT RATING): This is assigned by the manufacturer of your vehicle and is the maximum amount of both your loaded vehicle and loaded trailer combined. Think of this as the maximum it can handle safely.
PAYLOAD: Payload is the amount of weight your vehicle can carry safely. Payload is found in your owner’s manual or in the door jam sticker of your vehicle. It doesn’t include passengers, accessories you’ve added, or cargo. Keep in mind every pound of passengers or accessories you’ve added to your truck it equally reduces the amount of weight or cargo you can have inside the truck or truck box.
TONGUE WEIGHT: Tongue weight is the amount of weight that is added to your vehicle due to the downward force exerted on your vehicle by the trailer. IMPORTANT the tongue weight is greatly affected by where the cargo is positioned on your trailer. For example, placing a heavy load on a flat deck trailer at the very front or near the rear of the trailer will result in poor control of your truck and trailer. Always load your trailer with 60% of the load in the middle of the trailer right above the trailer axles.
Below we have trailering MATH and MATH is fun!
GCWR minus the Actual weight of the vehicle EQUALS your vehicle's Tow rating.
GVWR minus the Actual weight of the vehicle EQUALS your vehicle's Payload rating.
Ball aka Bumper Tongue Weight should be 10-15% of the loaded trailer's weight. For example, a 2,000lb trailer + 1000 lbs of cargo EQUALS 300-450 lbs Ball aka Bumper Tongue Weight.
5th Wheel Tongue Weight should be 15-30% of the loaded trailer weight. For example a 4,000lb trailer + 1000lbs of cargo EQUALS 750-1500 lbs 5th Wheel Tongue Weight.