The most important pieces of information are the name, email, and cell phone. We need these to communicate with you in case there is an issue with the submitted form or a change in plans for the weighing appointment. Please double check this information and be clear when providingthe information.
Vehicle Weight Ratings
Weight ratings identify the maximum allowable weights to which the vehicle or parts of the vehicle can be loaded with cargo. Definitions of these terms can be found at the glossary. https://rvsafety.com/tools/glossary
GVWR and GAWR
The GVWR and the front, rear GAWR (tag axle if applicable) can be found on the vehicles Federal Certification sticker. For motorized vehicles like a car, pickup truck or motor home the location of the sticker is found by opening the driver side door. The sticker should be located on the door pillar where the door latch is found. This is called the B-Pillar. It can be on the pillar or on some vehicles it may be affixed to the inside facing edge of the door. Look high and low. There may be a few other stickers located here but one of them will have the GVWR and GAWR for each axle. If the motor home does not have a driver side door the certificate should be affixed somewhere near the drivers compartment area, usually on the wall. Sometimes it is behind the driver’s seat or next to the driver’s seat. It may also be found in a cabinet on the wall near the driver’s seat. One motor home manufacturer, Tiffin, chose to place this sticker on the door frame of the passenger’s door of some of its models.
The ratings will be given in both metric (Kilograms - KG) and American standard (pounds LBS) measurements. Take care to only transfer the pounds. GAWR is the rating for each axle so they will be identified by Front (FR) Rear (R or RR) and if there is a tag axle it may be identified as Tag. If there is a tandem axle configuration then the two rear axles may be identified as Intermediate and/or Rear.
For RV Trailers, the location of the Federal Certificate is the front half of the driver’s side (left side) of the trailer. Most often the sticker is located on the box near the front of the vehicle. For bumper pull trailers it may also be found on the left side tongue of the trailer, which is the frame that extends forward to provide the connection point with the tow vehicle. On fifth wheels the sticker may be located on the overhang and on occasion it may be found on the left side of the pin box.
The location of the GCWR is not standard since not all motorized vehicles have a GCWR. This is a towing related rating. For Pickup trucks the best place to start the search is the RVSEF towing guide page.Most often the GCWR is found in the vehicle owner’s manual. Often it will be in the towing or driving section of the manual. It may also be in the vehicle specifications section of the manual. The GCWR is not the same as Towing Capacity, Tow Rating or Maximum Trailer Weight. These numbers are calculated numbers using the GCWR and a theoretically configured tow vehicle. If the vehicle is a diesel, the GCWR may be found in the diesel supplement, which is a small book that is supplied with the owner’s manual. Another location for the GCWR is a manufacturer’s towing guide, which may be a printed brochure or an electronic document on their website. Lastly a few pickup manufacturers have recently added a trailering sticker, which has the GCWR. This sticker can be found near the Federal Certification sticker on the driver’s door pillar or door jamb. Often what is also needed to determine the correct GCWR is the axle ratio of the pickup truck. This may be a challenge if it is not known. Guessing at this specification should not be done. If it is not known then it should be discovered. Ford pickups place an axle code on the bottom of the Federal certification label. The code can then be checked online with one of the Ford towing guides. Some truck brands may have online VIN decoders that might provide the specifications of the individual vehicle. Lastly a call to the Dealers service department with the VIN number should provide the correct GCWR rating for the truck.
Hitch Weight Ratings
All hitches have weight ratings. There are usually two ratings.
- The tow weight rating or horizontal weight rating, which is often labeled the Gross Trailer Weight Rating (GTWR) and
- the tongue/pin weight rating (TWR or PWR), which is sometimes called the vertical load weight rating (VWR).
These ratings may be found in a few different locations. Most often there is a label on the hitch where one or both ratings are printed. We have also collected some of the ratings from the major fifth wheel hitch manufacturers which can be found on the towing guide page of this website. The manufacturers website is the next place to look for these ratings. It would normally be on the details or specifications section of the page for the specific hitch. The hitch owner’s manual is another place to look for these two ratings. Finally, the ratings cannot be found in any of these locations a call to the hitch manufactuere will almost always provide the answer.
Conventional or bumper pull hitches often have multiple components. The receiver hitch, the towbar, the ball, and even a weight distributing hitch. Each of these components has ratings and the component with the smallest rating becomes the rating of the hitching system. All components need to be checked.
Fifth wheel hitch ratings are on the hitch that attached to the bed of the pickup. We are not seeking any ratings that are on the pin box, which is the part of the trailer that connects to the fifth wheel hitch.
Tire Information should ALWAYS be taken directly from the sidewall of the tire. This information can be difficult to read so the use of a flashlight or phone camera can be useful tools to enhance the readability of the small black letters on the black background. Another source (like a tire website or manual) may not be same information that is embossed on the tire. This can result in the wrong tire data and will be useless for evaluating the condition of the vehicle and determining how to properly maintain the tires that are on the vehicle. Often mistakes or misunderstandings arise for not getting the information directly from the sidewall of the tire. Consider it part of the lab portion of the RV Weight and Tire education process. It is important to practice looking at your tires to see if any damage has occurred and it will be important information to know because the tires will need to be replaced. We all need to learn a little more about our tires so that we can care for them. They provide us an invaluable service by transporting us so that we may enjoy friends and the beauty of creation as we travel
Tire Brand and Model
The Brand is the manufacturing company of the tire - Michelin, Goodyear, Bridgestone, Westlake etc.
The Model of the tire can be almost anything – XRV, XZA3, FS600, G114, G670, Wrangler, etc.
The Tire size provides the basic dimensions of the tire and follows these common formats.
Tire Load Capacity/Sidewall Rating
This information needs to be taken from the sidewall of the tire. The tire size and the tire load capacity specification are the two most important pieces of information that are needed for RV tires. This data is often very small and the writing can be challenging to read. A flashlight or a phone camera can be used to help read the small print on the sidewall of the tire. The data will be provided in metric and American standard measurements. Weight will be given in Pounds (LBS) and Kilograms (KG) and Inflation pressure will be given in Pounds per Square Inch (PSI) and in Kilopascals (kPa).
The format looks like this…
MAX LOAD SINGLE 3000 kg (6610 LBS) at 830 kPa (120 PSI) COLD
MAX LOAD DUAL 2725 kg (6005 LBS) at 830 kPa (120 PSI) COLD
We need the pounds and PSI. Often the pounds and PSI will be in parenthesis (3450 LBS) and sometimes the first parenthesis looks like a 1, so take care to transfer 6610 not 16610.
BOTH SINGLE AND DUAL INFORMATION IS NEEDED. This specification information is needed to properly confirm and identify the appropriate inflation table for the specific tire. We have a library of manufacturers and standard inflation tables and we need all this information so that we can get the correct inflation table for the tire that is installed on the vehicle.
Load Range is a single letter designation that can be found somewhere on the sidewall of larger capacity tires. The Letter can found after the Term "Load Range" or "LR"(e.g. Load Range E or LRE).There are some less expensive tires that use an older descritor with a number after a "PR", which stands for Ply Rating (e.g PR10 or PR14). Load Range is a simple way to describe the relative load capacity of tires of the same external dimensions or tire size designation.