1st motorhome payload issue

ronnieb

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Hi
We have just taken possession of our new motorhome. We have been looking for months for a 6 berth motorhome with a rear lounge which had to weigh 3500 mtplm due to my age 70 in 2 years.

We eventually found an old 2002 model

Couldn't find payload or miro information anywhere so I took it to a local weighbridge.

The weight came in at 3060kgs (giving payload of 440kgs)
That included 90% fuel and leisure battery. Nothing else. Not even me!
Got home and started to load up weighing everything.

Me, wifey, teenage daughter, dog (224 KGS) , bare essentials (and I mean bare) have gone in leaving us 61 KGS for food, water, clothes, spare battery, 3 bikes.
Somehow I don't think we can do it.

After searching high and low on the net I have come across the same model with a mtplm of 3850kgs.

I'm guessing that as our payload 'seems' too small that our van has been down plated.
I've checked to see if there are any other plates anywhere but there are none just the one showing 3500kgs

It seems like our only option is going to have to have it plated up to 3850. We didn't want a van this heavy in the 1st place due to my age

My questions are

1) are there records kept anywhere that can tell us if the motorhome has been downplated.
2) should we have paperwork showing this has happened.
3) do we have any recourse against the company who sold us the motor home. Should they have known / told us

Is 440 KGS normal for an old van with 3 traveling seats.

We were thrilled with our new van but this has put a real dampener on it.

Any suggestions welcome
 

Wildman

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looks like uprating for the van and medicals for you in 2 years time if you want to retain a 6 berth van, might be easier to have a go at the dealer and downsize now.
 
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pappajohn

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yes, it has been downrated but at the factory.

As you are aware a standard B car licence is up to 3500kg and as many commercial drivers (builders etc) only have B catagory downrating opens up a whole new market.

You could uprate to 3850kg but then as roger said......medicals over 70years old.

An option would be to tow a trailer for camping stuff......BBQ, AWNING etc

You can easily get a 750kg trailer which would be more than enough payload.

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vwalan

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most were never down plated just the factory didnt use the higher weight.
really most 3,500kg gvw motor homes are unfit for purpose .
at 70 you do keep the b+e so fifth wheelers make a good option .
might be worth a rethink .
 
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peter marshall

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yes, it has been downrated but at the factory.

As you are aware a standard B car licence is up to 3500kg and as many commercial drivers (builders etc) only have B catagory downrating opens up a whole new market.

You could uprate to 3850kg but then as roger said......medicals over 70years old.

An option would be to tow a trailer for camping stuff...

You can easily get a 750kg trailer which would be more than enough payload.


Hi John
Wouldn,t a trailer take it over the 3.500 limit at age 70 ? Pete
 
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pappajohn

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Hi John
Wouldn,t a trailer take it over the 3.500 limit at age 70 ? Pete

not that i know of...3500kg is the towing vehicle mass only ..so even if the E part of the B+E entitlement was removed at 70 you still have entitlement to tow a 750kg trailer....but as far as i know B+E is retained, its the C1 catagory (private heavy goods, over 3500kg GVW and up to 7500kg GVW) which is revoked.

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vwalan

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the b+e part allows any weight trailer as long as the train weight of the towing vehicle isnt exceeded . . it changed on 19-1 2013 after then new licences allow only a trailer of 3,500kg
it is possible to have 11ton trainweights on a b+e licence .
thats why fifth wheelers are ideal.
 
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Minxy Girl

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Hi John
Wouldn,t a trailer take it over the 3.500 limit at age 70 ? Pete

I thought that the towing vehicle itself (ie motorhome) cannot be more than 3500kg at age 70, but the weight of what it tows is determined by the permitted train weight of the motorhome, not an age restriction.

Oh heck, you lot beat me to it!
 
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peter marshall

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not that i know of...3500kg is the towing vehicle mass only ..so even if the E part of the B+E entitlement was removed at 70 you still have entitlement to tow a 750kg trailer....but as far as i know B+E is retained, its the C1 catagory (private heavy goods, over 3500kg GVW and up to 7500kg GVW) which is revoked.

Hi John
I see what you mean , I have been looking on the DVLA web site and getting totally confused, on the caravan Club site it seem clearer but they don,t mention a trailer / motorhome combo just the usual towing vehicles, I am 70 next year so I am getting a bit close, my van is plated 4.250, I should be ok for the medical etc but it keeps coming to mind. Pete :Doh:
 
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vwalan

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fifth wheel is the way . no need to have an aframe then .
plus a m,bike in the back even better .
planning before hand you could have a very nice outfit .
 
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ronnieb

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thanks for the comments folks

We are thinking if we up-plate it now we can downplate in 2 years, I'm presuming this can be done.

We could possibly squeeze in at the 3500kg. We are fully loaded except food, clothes and beer so will go back on the weight bridge to see exactly what we have left over.
If I go on a diet, and my daughter stops growing we could just do it.

Interesting idea about the towing, we have just ditched the caravan after !!??! years because we got fed up with towing, but if we put a towbar on the back this would really eat into the small amount of payload we have now.

It's really frustrating, because we spent ages looking for the perfect motorhome, which this is as long as we travel naked and don't eat drink or shower !

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vwalan

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you arent the first and certainly wont be the last one to make that mistake . there is a purge going on at present stopping m,homes and portable weighing them so be warned .
 
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laneside

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Welcome to the world of little or no payload motorhomes been through most of the hoops and now just on with retaining my C1 entitlement :thumb::thumb:
 
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pappajohn

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thanks for the comments folks

We are thinking if we up-plate it now we can downplate in 2 years, [HI]I'm presuming this can be done[/HI].

We could possibly squeeze in at the 3500kg. We are fully loaded except food, clothes and beer so will go back on the weight bridge to see exactly what we have left over.
If I go on a diet, and my daughter stops growing we could just do it.

Interesting idea about the towing, we have just ditched the caravan after !!??! years because we got fed up with towing, but if we put a towbar on the back this would really eat into the small amount of payload we have now.

It's really frustrating, because we spent ages looking for the perfect motorhome, which this is as long as we travel naked and don't eat drink or shower !

yes it can.......

Up plating is a little complicated and you may need some documentation....and is done by post at DVLA Swansea, since they closed all the local offices.

A company called Svtech in Lancashire can do it for you with a good history of successful up plating.......they dont even need to see the van, you just send them the weights etc, its all on their website...but it will cost around £250.

Downplating is easy, just a paper exersize....just fill in the old V5 with the new weight and send to Swansea or at a post office and they send you a new V5 and tax disc

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ronnieb

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yes it can.......

Up plating is a little complicated and you may need some documentation....and is done by post at DVLA Swansea, since they closed all the local offices.

A company called Svtech in Lancashire can do it for you with a good history of successful up plating.......they dont even need to see the van, you just send them the weights etc, its all on their website...but it will cost around £250.

Downplating is easy, just a paper exersize....just fill in the old V5 with the new weight and send to Swansea or at a post office and they send you a new V5 and tax disc

Yes I've heard of them. Trying to look on the bright side if we do up plate then at least the tax will be less so it will be beneficial in a way.
Maybe I will sail through the medical at 70 ...... If not the wife can drive
 
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pappajohn

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i believe you can apply for your licence up to 90 days in advance.....i would suggest you do.

Things can take a while if they need further documentation from your doctor etc...

Some folks have waited months for a licence.
And of course, you cant drive the van once your current licence expires until you get the new licence as technically you can only drive up to 3500kg.
 
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Puddleduck

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And of course, you cant drive the van once your current licence expires until you get the new licence as technically you can only drive up to 3500kg.

But if your wife is under 70 and has a C1 she can drive it until your license comes through.

The payload issue is a b****r and a lot of people fall foul of it. A friend of ours has a 6 berth MH 3,500kg plate and when he had is weighed it wasn't far short of 5,000kg :whatthe::Eeek:

He's looking for a new MH!

We wanted a 3/4 berth van and knew the payload would be critical. This was a deciding factor in our choice of make/model and going for a Euro-van rather than a Brit-Van. Brit-Vans seem to come with many more domestic comforts (ovens for example) - especially in the more purse friendly ranges - but every extra cuts into the payload.

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laneside

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Good advice as usual from Pappajohn

In theory the DVLA will send you a D46P form about two months before your seventy birthday but filling this in will not retain your C1 entitlement you need to obtain a D4 form which is downloadable off line but requires a doctor to fill in and I believe a D2 form which is only available from the DVLA and they are very slow to respond.

Start the ball rolling at least 3 months before your birthday especially important if you have any medical issues
 
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ronnieb

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Thanks papajohn want aware of that fact. Very useful to know


The big question 440 kg payload before anyone even sits in it (3 travelling seats) if we were a 4 person family we would be having serious problems

This wasn't mentioned when we bought it, has anyone ever gone back to the dealer and got any where. As I said no figures anywhere just the 3500
 
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Minxy Girl

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Hi Ronnie, unfortunately there is no legal requirement for the dealer to tell you anything. In fact it could weigh 3500kg as it is, ie at the limit, and they still would not HAVE to tell you.

Most of them wouldn't be aware of the payload anyway as they don't bother to check them before selling - the only safe way would have been to have insisted on it being weighed before you bought it, but it is now too late for that.

You could try going back to the dealer but I really doubt they'd want to know.

Out of interest, what accessories do you have fitted on your mh? Does it for example have an awning, any other extras etc? If so would it be feasible to remove them, assuming you don't really need them? This could give you quite a bit of payload back.

One other suggestion - put in the minimal amount of stuff you would need to take with you, including the bikes on the rack (I assume it has one and not a garage model as you haven't said exactly what it is from what I can see ... unless I've missed that!). Then go to the weighbridge with your wife, daughter and dog on board and get it weighed again, including each axle individually. The reason for this is that although you know what your overall payload is, what you don't know is the exact axle weights once the weight has been distributed in 'travelling' mode, this will then at least tell you how close you are to the axle limits which may, or may not, be okay.

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How do you get an 11 tonne train weight on a B+E licence? I thought that the Category B allowed a maximum of 3,500 and accepting that a B+E allows the drawing of any size trailer, Under the Road Vehicles Construction & Use Regulations the trailer cannot exceed the gross weight of the towing vehicle. That would give a maximum permitted train weight of 7,000 kg surely.

Even on a C1+E licence, the maximum permitted train weight is only 12 tonnes.
 
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vwalan

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you can if its a pre last year licence .
you lower a 7.5 ton vehicle to 3,500kg . it keeps its original train weight so that can be 11ton . some are 12 ton .
iveco do it with their mini artics and you ended up with a train of 8.700kg . that was based on their 40c13 daily a few years ago . it can be 10 ton if you use their 7 tonner .
my mitzy is 9,800kg train and i can drop it to 3,500kg gvw for the truck when i get to 70.
http://www.vipex.co.uk/trailer-types/mini-artic/
this company does it as well.
its not hard .
for mine i would have to move the axles of the trailer forward as at the moment it could have a heavy pin weight . moving them forward would lighten the pin weight .
all bought and planned for .
only the c1+e had a weight restriction untill 19-1 2013 but its not retrospective so earlier b+e drivers still only have a trainweight limit .
 
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Hi, My Dad has the same issue with payload and he is over 70. he has opted to use a small trailer to get around the issue. He is applying for his c1 and looking to uprate if successful.

I used SV Tech to upgrate my van and it was very easy, got me an extra 500 kg so made the van usable. The previous weight of 3500kg gvw was not fit for purpose as I had a payload of 160kg. it had an awning fitted and gas bottle and bike rack with no bikes on and a solar panel. I can only assume the people using it before me were over weight most of the time. If I had put two passengers and a tank of fuel in my van before the upgrate I was over weight. This is before picnic chairs , bikes, food , clothes etc

I was looking at the Bailey Approach range which advertises a payload of around 450 on the 745 and the Pilote reference which had a similar payload. this is before an awning canopy , gas bottles , bike racks, solar panels etc, so for me these vans are useless at 3500 gvw. I think its something that the industry needs to address because I think a lot of people are driving mototrhomes illegally and don't realise. The consequences are invalid insurance etc.

When I raised the issue of payload with the dealer he assured me 400 kgs was plenty and wouldn't be an issue. I didn't believe him and spoke to SV Tech before the purchase so I knew I would be uprating.

Now you have your van I think your plan of upgrating with the option of a downgrate if necessary is your best option. I can recommend SV Tech they had mine sorted very quickly and explained everything to me clearly.

Don't be disappointed, I bet you will have a great time in the new van once you have this weight thing sorted.

cheers Steve

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you arent the first and certainly wont be the last one to make that mistake . there is a purge going on at present stopping m,homes and portable weighing them so be warned .

Purge ?? So where is this happening , i run a post office 5 mins from a VOSA weighbridge on the A1 and get about 10 overseas lorry drivers in a week exchanging euros to pay the fines . The VOSA staff tell me they have not fined any overloaded motorhome in the last 10 years at this location as its all too complicated . The obvious place for this to occur is shows or campsites entry/exits but i have not heard of it in the UK . Maybe abroad at toll points to get correct charging.

I did get stopped once coming back from the cash and carry by the police for being overloaded but he couldn,t find the weight plate just sent me on my way.
 
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vwalan

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having spoken to the old vosa about it they are having a purge . specially on m,homes and vehicles pulling trailers . its also due to the many youngsters towing horse boxes yet arent licensed for it .
at weekends they very often have checks at service stations and locally here in cornwall on the a30. i,m sure other places as well.
i,m not the only one that has been informed of this . its supposed to be a national issue .

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Strensham services on the M5 is another favourite (for the police generally) but most of the vehicles pulled are car.caravan outfits. Looking out mainly for condition, particularly tyres and driving licences but I am sure there is the odd motorhome in there too.:Angry:
 
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