With the abundance of breathtaking nature and awesome holiday parks in Australia, it’s almost impossible to stop hardcore caravanners from exploring.
In the middle of all the excitement, it’s easy to overlook proper caravan maintenance — like getting your caravan weighed.
Learn how to monitor & manage your caravans weight to keep you & your family safe on the road.
The importance of weighing your caravan
Caravans and camper trailers have limited capacity, also known as payload. Likewise, tow vehicles can only haul a maximum amount of weight. These restrictions can be easily overlooked once you start filling the caravan with your belongings.
Filling up your caravan without paying attention to the weight can lead to overloading, which is illegal in Australia. Regularly weighing your caravan or camper trailer will help you to monitor its weight and avoid overloading.
You should weigh your caravan before using it for the first time, so that you have a benchmark weight. This is called getting the caravan’s tare mass, which is the weight when it’s empty. The tare mass should be much lower than your tow vehicles maximum towing capacity.
It might seem like common sense, but you should also weigh your caravan after loading it. The resulting weight will then be compared to the caravan’s Aggregate Trailer Mass (ATM), its maximum allowable weight with a full load.
Ideally, further weighing should be considered every time any modifications are made with the caravan’s load. This will ensure that you are not overloading your vehicle with every trip.
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Consequences of not weighing your caravan
Unweighed caravans and camper trailers can have various consequences. For one, you will be facing legal consequences like monetary fines and loss of points from your license.
An overweight caravan can also result in damaging your car and void your insurance.Worst of all, not weighing you caravan can put your family’s lives at risk.
An overloaded caravan will make the tow vehicle unstable when you’re on the road, especially when braking. If the brakes can’t contain the combined weight of the vehicles, it can result in an accident. Unmanaged caravan weight can turn what was meant to be a relaxing holiday into a nightmare.
How to reduce your caravan’s weight
Now you know the danger of not weighing your caravan, it’s time to take it to a public weighbridge.
You can search for the nearest weighbridge on the Public Weighbridge website. Check that the weight is compliant. You can find all the information you need on the caravan’s ID plate. If it’s overweight, then reduce its load, no matter how important you think each item is for your journey.
Carry only the things that are necessary for your trip and there’s no need to bring your entire home. Minimise your load as much as you can and bear in mind that when buying for your caravan, lightweight items are ideal. Lastly, you’ll significantly reduce some trailer weight by reducing the content of the water tanks.
Get a new caravan with Aussie Leisure Loans
If you haven’t weighed your caravan recently, then it’s time for you do so. Not only will it protect both your trailer and tow vehicle, but it will also potentially save your family’s life.
On the other hand, if your old caravan or camper trailer is becoming too small for your growing family, it might be time to get a new one. We can help you find a great rate on caravan finance.