Why is tongue weight important when towing?
Tongue weight is important for towing because improper tongue weight can cause driving hazards. If the tongue weight is too little -- less than 10% of the total trailer weight -- the trailer may tend to sway back and forth. If the tongue weight it too much -- greater than 15% -- your vehicle may become less responsive, especially when turning and braking.
Properly loading your trailer -- placing cargo in front of or behind the axle -- can have a major effect on tongue weight.
How do you measure tongue weight on a trailer?
To measure tongue weight on a trailer, you can use a tongue weight scale, a common bathroom scale or a vehicle scale. Place the tongue of the trailer on the scale, using the trailer jack or propping it up with a pipe.
What is tongue load?
Tongue load is the weight of a trailer at its tongue or coupling point. Typically, tongue load or tongue weight is 10 to 15 percent of the total weight of the trailer.
How do you weigh an RV tongue weight?
To weigh RV tongue weight, place the tongue of the trailer on a tongue weight scale. The TW can also be found by weighing your tow vehicle on a vehicle scale by itself and comparing it to the vehicle weight when the trailer is coupled.
RVs are typically heavy trailers, so the scale must be heavy-duty enough to handle the weight.
Can too much tongue weight cause trailer sway?
Too much tongue weight can cause trailer sway, but it primarily causes reduced control for the driver over the vehicle.
What should tongue weight be?
Tongue weight should be about 10% to 15% of the total weight of the trailer or gross trailer weight. Too much tongue weight can impair driver control over the vehicle, and too little can lead to sway in the trailer.
What happens if tongue weight is too heavy?
If tongue weight is too heavy, it can make your vehicle more difficult to control, especially when making turns and braking. If tongue weight is too light, it may cause the trailer to sway while driving.