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Sep 20, 07:21
Question by eric237 (Eric)

Definition of weight for trucks, driveway limitations

Because of a weight limitation requirement, I need to know what is the description of the 16' truck as described in tons, that is, is it considered to be a 5 plus ton truck. What is the truck weight of a 1 1/2 ton truck? How do states consider truck weight? The maximum weight limitation to park a truck on my driveway is 1 1/2 tons and it can only be parked momentarily. I read there are various weight descriptions like gross weight, curb weight, etc. I really would appreciate your help. Thanks, Eric

Sep 20, 09:36
Answer by alexzehn (Alex Z.)


You probably refer to the GVW (Gross Vehicle Weight) that is the maximum loaded weight of a truck. According to this definition 1 1/2 tons is about 3000 lbs, which is more than twise as little as the GVW of the smallest cargo van.

That, however, is not what the manufacturers refer to as the truck tonnage. In addition to the GVW each truck also has a Payload Weight parameter, that is the maximum weight of a payload the truck can carry.

You can see the GVW and Payload Weight figures for the typical Budget Truck Rental trucks right here.

Trucks usually are classified into four categories:

  • light (GVW less than 10,000 lbs),

  • medium (GVW between 10,001 and 20,000 lbs),

  • heavy (GVW between 20,001 and 45,000 lbs), and

  • extra heavy. (GVW over 45,000 lbs)

You will probably be more interested in the medium category, since trucks in this category are defined by the manufacturers roughly as up to 2 ton trucks.

Here is how you can estimate which tonnage category your truck is in: 1 1/2 ton is 1,500 kg (keep in mind - metric system) or ~ 3,300 lbs, which means that cargo vans are 1 ton trucks (2200 lbs ~ 1 ton), 10' trucks are 1.4 ton trucks, and 16' are 1.5 ton trucks.

As far as I know there are no differences between states in considering truck weight parameters, although there might be in defining trucks categories (which should not really bother you).

As in your case I would guess that 16' truck is probably the heaviest one you could get on your driveway without having any problems with authorities. Trucks smaller that this one would certainly be fine.

For your reference check this interesting PP presentation explaining further the issue of trucks classification - click here

Good luck with your move,

Alex Z. @

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