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Weight Ratings and Limits

Ratings are the limits established by the vehicle manufacturer, which are not to be exceeded. Ratings are based on structural strength, braking power, stability, control issues and performance. Exceeding a rating invites unsafe conditions, potential damage, may void a warranty, complicate an insurance claim and in some cases violate the law. The following load abbreviations are explained as follows:

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating is the maximum allowable weight of the fully loaded vehicle, including liquids, passenger’s cargo, and the tongue weight of any towed vehicle.

Gross Axle Weight Rating is the maximum allowable weight each axle assembly is designed to carry, as measured at the tires, therefore including the weight of the axle assembly itself. GAWR is established by considering the rating of each of its components (tires, wheels, springs, axle, etc.) and rating the axle on its weakest link. The GAWR assumes the load is equal on both sides.

Gross Combination Weight Rating is the maximum allowable combined weight of the vehicle and the attached towed vehicle. GCWR assumes that both vehicles have functioning brakes, with the exceptions in some cases for a very light towed vehicle, normally less than 1,500 pounds. Check your manual, and towing guide.

Unloaded Vehicle Weight is the total weight of the vehicle, as built at the factory, with the fuel full, engine, transmission, generator, oil, fluids and coolants. It does not include cargo, fresh water, LP gas, occupants or dealer installed accessories.

Net Carrying Capacity is the maximum weight of all personal belongings, food, fresh water, LP gas, cargo, tools and dealer installed accessories, etc., that can be carried by the vehicle.

Sleeping Capacity Weight Rating is the manufacturers designated number of sleeping positions multiplied by 154 pounds.

Cargo Carrying Capacity is equal to the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating minus each of the following: The unloaded vehicle weight, full fresh potable water weight including the water heater capacity weight, LP gas weight and the sleeping capacity weight rating.

Neither NCC nor CCC tells how much can be carried without exceeding a rating. Know the distribution of the carrying capacity. For example, how much is available on each axle and on each tire.

Gross Trailer Weight Rating is the maximum towed vehicle weight. Each component (receiver, draw bar, ball) of a ball type hitch has its own rating. Some ball type hitches have separate ratings when used with a weight distributing system.

Tongue Weight Rating, Tongue Load Rating, or Vertical Load Rating are different terms for the maximum vertical load that can be carried by the hitch.

For more information you can visit http://rvsafety.com or call a qualified professional at(850) 866-6999 or visit http://www.rvtrax.com