How is Trailer Tongue Weight for Weight Distribution Determined

Question:

When calculating the trailer tongue weight, considering hitch parameters, is Tow vehicle cargo behind rear wheels considered as additional tongue weight? Or is that additional cargo weight to be added to total towing capacity trailer weight? If rv trailer gross max is 4500# tongue weight is 450# loaded Tow vehicle max tow is 7200# tow vehicle max cargo is 1050# cargo and passengers if Tow vehicle cargo behind rear wheels is 200# WOULD THAT NOW BE TONGUE WEIGHT OF 650# or do I consider the Tow vehicle cargo behind rear wheels of 200# additional trailer weight, 4700# to ensure weight distribution spring bars have appropriate capacity? thanks

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Expert Reply:

Since you are asking about tongue weight in the context of a weight distribution system, the answer is a flat yes, the weight of any cargo behind the rear axle of your tow vehicle does count towards your Total Tongue Weight (TTW).

Overall, trailer tongue weight is the downward force that is applied to the trailer hitch, so it would be the weight applied to the hitch. In order to truly determine your tongue weight you do need a scale, and you can do so very easily with the Sherline Trailer Tongue Weight Scale - 2,000-lb Capacity # 5780 or the HaulGauge Mobile Tongue Weight and Payload Scale for OBD II - Bluetooth # HG103.

I have also added a link to a help article I highly recommend checking out titled "Determining Trailer Tongue Weight" which gives you other ways to find your tongue weight at a commercial scale. One of the aforementioned options are truly the only surefire way to find your tongue weight. After that you add the weight behind your rear axle, which is what will give you Total Tongue Weight

I have also attached links to video reviews of the tongue weight scales for you to take a look at, as well as a link to our entire selection of weight distribution systems. If you let me know what your total tongue weight is I'd be happy to make a recommendation for you.

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Kyle S

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