Total weight of laden Motorhome (1 Viewer)

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BFM14

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We are just about to set up on first trip to Europe going for 2 months and would appreciate some advice on weight.

My motorhome has a permissable total weight of 3500 kg and at the moment we are about 4% overweight. Is there any leeway if I was stopped and weighed.

Thanks in advance for assistance.
 

Lenny HB

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Legally there is no leeway, 4% is 140kg I would say you are pushing your luck. Did you weigh it with full tanks & what about food easy to have 15kg or more in food plus wine & beer realistically in full running order you could be nearer 200 kg over.

We normally run 50 - 70 kg over so I have decided to upgrade to 3850kg, just ordered 5 new tyres so I can take full advantage of rear axle loading (van is less than a year old).
 

scotjimland

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of interest, they say up to 5% leeway..

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and Gov site .. also says 5% and over

https://www.gov.uk/roadside-vehicle-checks-for-commercial-drivers/fixed-penalties

How much can you be fined for an overloaded van?
If a police or VOSA officer finds you to be lugging around more than your legal maximum weight, they will impose a fixed penalty fine, the amount of which depends on how much you have gone over the legal limit. The current penalties are below:

Amount over limit Fine
5%-10% £100
10%-15% £200
15-30% £300
More than 30% Court summons


As you can see, the authorities allow a leeway of up to 5% before they hand out a fine, unless the excess weight is more than one tonne.
 

LaMB

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Being overweight is an absolute offence, if you get stopped and weighed, you will more than likely be fined and definitely not allowed to continue until you have lowered the weight to be legal again. If I remember correctly there is a bit of a sliding scale on how much overweight you are, and this would determine whether an 'on the spot fine' would be issued or a trip to the magistrates court. Your insurance would also be void.

I think there are a lot of motor-homes running overweight, but the chances of being stopped are less likely than with a commercial vehicle, but I wouldn't risk it, especially in Europe. You should also make sure that you do not exceed individual axle weights.

Martin

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DBK

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I guess insurance might not pay out either if they learned the vehicle was over-weight. 140Kg is a lot to lose - cutting back on bikes, BBQ, food, booze, might help to some weight. Throwing out a few pairs of socks isn't going to help though.
 

tonka

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The OP is going into Europe, doubt there will be any leeway there.!!!
Get stopped and get done, cash on the spot and you have to reduce weight there and then...

Your leaving for a trip Knowing illegal. ! Have a re-think and trim where you can. Then on return make some decisions on how best to solve the problem.
 

tonka

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Not sure how your insurance knows you are overweight

Van goes down road, van hits and kills someone.. Maybe not even drivers fault, someone stepping out...
Police cart off the van and I am sure they will weight it. !,
Thats maybe just one outcome...
 
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It is not just the total weight that matters it is the specified weight for each axle. Because of weight distribution, the chances are that the rear axle is taking the most weight and where any problems might arise. How much water do you carry? I have a fresh water tank taking 120 litres of water or 120kg in weight. Removing water could be one way of reducing weight.

Alan

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Lenny HB

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Also you can get fined for 3 separate offenses, Front axle over weight, Rear axle over weight & total gross weight.

The 5% suggested is only a guideline there is no legal leeway and that is only in the UK, bear in mind the French don't even have any leeway on speed limits.
 

scotjimland

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The 5% suggested is only a guideline there is no legal leeway and that is only in the UK,

yes, UK law only covers the UK .. but it is a legal leeway.. penalties start at over 5%

I refer you to the Enforcement Sanctions Policy from D&VSA https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/enforcement-sanctions-policy


WEIGHING EQUIPMENT
Whatever type of weighing equipment is used, Examiners must ensure that all relevant requirements of the Consolidated Code of Practice for the Enforcement Weighing of Vehicles are complied with in full. Also, an overloading guidance leaflet should be handed to all drivers.

GRADUATION OF FIXED PENALTY NOTICES
£100 FP -- 5% to 10% or over 1 tonne on axle, gross or train if less than 5%
£200 FP -- Over 10% and up to 15%
£300 FP -- Over 15% and up to 30%
Prosecute over 30% or over 5 tonnes on axle, gross or train if under 30%
*This may be a single axle or compensating axles where the individual axle weights are added together for the purposes of calculating an overload and which are therefore counted a single axle.
In situations where there are multiple overload offences only one overloading prohibition notice will be issued per vehicle or vehicle/trailer combination. Further detail may however be shown on a continuation page.
For multiple overload offences only one fixed penalty notice will be issued in respect of the most serious overload offence
 
May 21, 2008
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Can someone tell me whether individual axle weights are relevant to PVCs? When I had mine weighed I only got the overall weight given on the document.
Many thanks
 

Lenny HB

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Can someone tell me whether individual axle weights are relevant to PVCs? When I had mine weighed I only got the overall weight given on the document.
Many thanks
Yes they are relevant to all vehicles. The axle weight will be shown on the vehicle plate.

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Puddleduck

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If you weighed the vehicle in full running order with water tank full (and maybe something in the waste tank) plus all your food I would suggest you drain off most of the water first and then rethink how much food you are taking.

Our fresh water tank hold 100 lts so we know we can "dump" say 80 kg immediately if we need to.

Maybe go on a diet when you get home!
 

pappajohn

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If you are just a bit over you will probably be told to dump the excess before you can continue.
how you do it is up to you but obviously you cant just dump stuff in the weighing area.

Easiest way, if you are carrying water, is to dump that.
 

GeriatricWanderer

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Going to France for 2 months and overloaded before you even leave - not the way I'd like to start a trip.

What are you driving and how much user payload does it have? (What does it weigh empty?).

Jettison enough to bring you legal and with some spare to be able to take on stuff while you're on the road.

Not nice to spend 2 months worrying about being stopped and 2 months driving without insurance cover.
 
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BFM14

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Thanks for all the advice. We have a Knaus Sky TI 650 MF.

I think we have the problem with weight as due to long trip we have had the following recently fitted on to the motorhome.

Spare wheel and carrier
Additional leisure battery

We have been through the motorhome and taken out a lot of things and drained the water and now need to have another trip to weighbridge. Don't think we have lost enough weight so may have to consider leaving our 2 bikes or the spare wheel behind!
 
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Leave the spare wheel at home. HGV's don't carry a spare, neither do we, they are heavy lumps on a MH, just take yours off and break out the bathroom scales and surprise yourself.
 

Lenny HB

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Thanks for all the advice. We have a Knaus Sky TI 650 MF.

I think we have the problem with weight as due to long trip we have had the following recently fitted on to the motorhome.

Spare wheel and carrier
Additional leisure battery

We have been through the motorhome and taken out a lot of things and drained the water and now need to have another trip to weighbridge. Don't think we have lost enough weight so may have to consider leaving our 2 bikes or the spare wheel behind!


Have you considered upgrading to 3850kg?
No way I would travel anywhere without a spare wheel they weigh approx 25 kg. If you get a blow out on a Motorhome it normally wrecks the tyre & if a suitable replacement is not available you could be stuck for a few days.
 

jonandshell

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Nah, ditch the spare!

Unless you are holidaying on Mars, a new tyre will be easy to come by!

Do check the age and condition or your tyres first though. You do inspect your tyres periodically, don't you?(y)
 

DBK

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Can someone tell me whether individual axle weights are relevant to PVCs? When I had mine weighed I only got the overall weight given on the document.
Many thanks
Our PVC has this under the bonnet, but the total can still only add up to 3500, so if the front axle was on the maximum, 2100, the rear should be no more than 1400. Which it could only achieve with the aid of a large hot air balloon I suspect.
VIN.jpg

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jonandshell

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Our PVC has this under the bonnet, but the total can still only add up to 3500, so if the front axle was on the maximum, 2100, the rear should be no more than 1400. Which it could only achieve with the aid of a large hot air balloon I suspect.
View attachment 58480

Our RWD transit axle weights add up to 4400kg! 1800kg front, 2600kg back!

Max gross weight is 3850kg. Lots of margin for error in distributing the weight and an easy plate uprate for SV Tech!

Most panel vans should have combined axle weights that exceed the gross weight to allow for uneven loading.
 
Last edited:

Minxy

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IMV you should NOT set off knowing that you are well overweight, and that one of your axles could be overweight too. A vehicle that is overweight will handle differently and this could affect braking etc. Insurance has also been mentioned and also your vehicle recovery may also NOT be valid if you intentionally remove a spare wheel.

The only safe thing is to do what you have already but also take out some more stuff too, its surprising how much people take abroad but remember you can get most stuff in France that you can get in the UK so you don't need to take loads of food etc ... they even sell Cheddar cheese abroad in Lidl now! Everyone tries to take a lot more than they 'should' at first but realistically everyone brings most of it back without ever needing it! Although we don't have a problem with the weight we're carrying in our PVC I'm gonna be jettisoning a load of stuff when we get home that's had a nice 'restful holiday' due to it's not been needed/used, so no point in carying it around!
 

Minxy

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Forgot to say, I'm currently at an aire in France (not saying which one in case the person is a MHF member!) and has on teh back of their 6m Hymer A-class:
  • a bike rack with 2 full sized adult bikes
  • a full width rear 'nudge' type bar
  • a scooter carrier with what appears to be a semi-automatic scooter on it (like the old Honda 'grandad' bikes)
  • A top box
  • Plus 2 chairs 'bungied' to the rear of the roof rack too
It has a distinctly 'saggy' bottom and there is no way on earth it is within its rear axle weight limit, never mind overall weight of the van! Oh yes, did I mention it's British? I certainly would NOT like to be them when they get back to the UK if the officials are having a bad day ... it is so obvious it is overloaded you'd think it was an April Fools joke!

I've taken a photo but can't upload it at the mo due to being on a limited connection.
 

Puddleduck

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Totally agree Minx.

Before Buffy goes in for her MOT and hab check I will be taking most of the stuff out of her and it will only go back in if it has been used. No point in carting around junk.

Most places have shops so why carry around a lot of food?

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