What’s weighing you down?

It doesn’t matter if you are towing or not…weighing matters. It can be very easy to go overweight as everything we put in our car, van or trailer weighs something. Going over can affect vehicle dynamics.

Increasing weight on a car or caravan can affect the way they handle, add increased speed and slight inputs from the driver and this can be catastrophic…we have all seen videos of people trying to correct trailer sway only to end up being involved in an accident. 

Braking distance is another one that can get us into trouble. We should increase the following distance when towing, even more in the wet, but if overloaded, the car and trailer can behave very differently under heavy braking. Steering effectiveness can be diminished by overweight or poor weight distribution causing the car to wander and not go where it is pointed.

Vehicle suspension loses its ability to do its job…too heavy and sagging greatly reduces suspension travel making the ride uncomfortable and increases wear and tear on suspension components. I have also seen self-levelling airbag suspension hide weight problems on the rear axle of the car. Wheel alignment can also suffer from being overweight wearing tyres prematurely. 

Legal compliance…all cars, caravans and trailers have compliance plates stating maximum weights. Failure to comply with these maximum weights means the car, caravan or trailer is deemed unroadworthy. This can affect your insurance if you are involved in an accident or if pulled over by the NSW police can result in a $439 fine and 3 demerit points.

It’s much easier to exceed your maximum weights than you might think…the TOYOTA LANDCRUISER is a great and very popular tow vehicle but also very easy to overload…let’s look at a few numbers: Kerb weight (all fluids and fuel but no people or gear – source www.toyota.com.au) 2740kg – Landcruiser VX, let’s add 150kg for two people, add 80kg for a steel bulbar and lights, add another 80kg for gear and if towing a 3500kg caravan add 350kg tow ball weight = 3400kg. TOYOTA LANDCRUISER has a maximum weight (GVM) of 3350kg….50kg OVERWEIGHT. So even with a Landcruiser, it is very easy to go overweight. 

The size of the caravan doesn’t matter either, it’s just as easy to overload an 18ft van as it is to overload a 25ft van…they all have maximum weights (ATM). Some have big payloads but some have very small payloads. ATM – Tare = Payload. You might be towing a horse float with one or two horses, or a car trailer with a 4WD onboard or it might be a trade trailer full of gear.

You might not tow a trailer but may have a 4WD with canopy or toolboxes for work or play. It makes no difference as they all have maximum weights that must not be exceeded … if you do you are unroadworthy.

So how do you know if you are compliant? You set your vehicle or combination up like you would for travel, work or play and get it weighed by us.

We weigh using the latest wireless weigh pads and indicators…we also provide a 3-page report that compares actual weights to those on your compliance plates so you can see how much available payload you have remaining or if you have exceeded maximum weights. The report also explains all the different acronyms used with vehicle and trailer weights.

We weigh in Sydney, Lower Blue Mountains and Central Coast and require a flat, hard level surface to get the most accurate results. 

Safe travels,


Mobile Vehicle Weighing, Mobile Vehicle Weighing,Mobile Vehicle Weighing

Mobile Vehicle Weighing, Mobile Vehicle Weighing,Mobile Vehicle Weighing

Mobile Vehicle Weighing, Mobile Vehicle Weighing,Mobile Vehicle We

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