Do you know how much your RV weighs? Whether you’re a full-time RVer or a weekend warrior, you need to know your RV’s weight, and recommended weight! Knowing this is crucial for safety out on the road. Understanding your weight can help you with fuel efficiency and remodeling projects, too. In this blog, we’ll discuss the importance of knowing your RV weight and other helpful tips!
What Do These Numbers Mean?
RVs can be huge and typically weigh well over 10,000 pounds! Knowing some general terminology as well as the specific recommendations for your make and model are key.
Alright, so what do all these numbers mean? Your Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW), or dry weight, is when your trailer or motorhome is empty and has none of your belongings or gear in it. This weight does not include cargo, fresh water, gas, propane, accessories, or passengers. This is the weight of an RV built by the manufacturer.
Next, we have Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). This is the maximum weight of the RV. You do not want to surpass this, EVER! This weight includes all passengers, cargo, fluids, and accessories. If you were to surpass your RVs GVWR, expect a breakdown to happen. This is unsafe and never recommended.
Now, let’s look at the Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC). This is the maximum amount of weight you can load onto your RV. This cargo includes your gear, fluids, waste, and passengers. Generally speaking, the bigger your motorhome is, the more cargo you can pack. On average, your additional cargo will weigh about 1,500 pounds. Weighing all of your items before you pack them in can be a tedious process, but can also be the best and safest way to make sure you are underweight. You do not want to drive your RV while it’s overweight, even it’s just to a local weigh station.
Finally, we have our Hitch Weight or tongue weight. This is the weight of the RV to the trailer hitch. This might be the most crucial part of knowing your weight. This will determine how much weight your vehicle can tow. This only applies to you if you have a travel trailer or camper. Remember, your hitch weight will increase as you load more into your rig. Again, it’s important to not exceed the weight that your vehicle can tow.
Which Weight Category Does your RV Fall Into?
There are different categories that your RV will fall into. When purchasing your motorhome, whether new or used, you should ask for an education on your RVs weight (UVW). Weight classifications will fall under larger length and chassis type headers. Let’s find out where your rig falls!
Class A: These motorhomes are the biggest rigs on the road. With a built-in engine, your
motorhome is designed to get you from point A to point B, all while carrying your everyday essentials. The chassis on Class A RVs are about 30-40 feet long, with a weight range of 13,000-30,000 UVW. If you want to feel like you didn’t really downsize, this motorhome is for you. Remember, this is your Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW), and your manufacturer will specify the amount of CCC for your make/model.
Class B: Your Class B will naturally be lighter in weight compared to a Class A. They are easier to maneuver and travel around in. Typically, they are 18 feet long and weigh 6,000-8,000 pounds UVW. Again, the average weight we’re discussing is in UVW. These rigs are considered camper vans and have few restrictions on where they are allowed. Camper vans are renovated a lot! When you renovate your camper, make sure to weigh as you go. Finding out you have an overweight camper once you finish a project can create problems later on. Click this link on everything you need to know before remodeling your RV. Then, feel free to adventure with confidence!
Class C: The Class C falls between a Class A & B. A perfect mix between the two! The chassis is meant to carry the heavy load/cargo of a larger RV, while the front, where the motor is, is easier and more normal to drive. Typically, a Class C will be 20-30 feet long and weigh anywhere between 10,000-12,000 pounds UVW. This weight will increase once you add your cargo and passengers. The perfect size RV for just about anyone!
Travel Trailers, Campers, and Fifth-Wheels
These trailers will vary on how much weight your vehicle can handle. A small pop-up camper can weigh anywhere between 1,500-7,000 pounds. While a big fifth-wheel can be 15,000 pounds UVW. Your tow vehicle manufacturer will specify the towing capacity. This is where your Hitch Weight will come into play. Before you purchase your travel trailer, seriously consider how your tow vehicle will perform. Towing capacity will get you nowhere if you don’t have the horsepower to do so. Want to figure out which RV is right for you? Click this link!
Time to Hit the Road!
Now that you’ve done your homework, it’s time to hit a weigh station before setting off on your journey. Finding a weigh station is easy! Resources are available for RVers to find a station near them. Penske and CAT Scale are great options. Staying underweight can help you with fuel efficiency too! Remember, your safety is one of our main priorities. We’re here to help you every step of the way!
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