Weight Capacity Difference Between 6-Lug and 8-Lug Wheels


I had a trailer that was supposed to have two 7,000lb axles but they put on 6 lug wheels. What is the weight limit for 6 lug wheels compared to 8 lug wheels?

Expert Reply:

A 6-lug wheel can be on a trailer that has an axle capacity of 3,500 lbs, 4,400 lbs, 5,200 lbs and 6,000 lbs. The 8-lug wheels on a trailer can fit a trailer with axle capacities of 5,200 lbs, 6,000 lbs, and 7000 lbs, and higher.

An individual 15-inch, 6-lug wheel will have a capacity of 2,830 lbs at 80 psi. An individual 16-inch, 6-lug wheel has a capacity of 3,050 lbs at 90 psi, and an individual 16.5-inch, 6-lug wheel has a capacity of 3,040 lbs at 80 psi.

A 8-lug wheel will be either a light duty 16-inch size with a capacity of 3,750 lbs at 110 psi or a heavy duty 16-inch size with a capacity of 3,960 lbs at 110 psi. There is also a 16.5-inch size with a capacity of 3,530 lbs at 90 psi.

The trailer will have a plate or sticker on it that will list the VIN number. The weight rating of the axle should be listed on that same plate or sticker. Also, the axle could have a tag or plate on it that will list the weight capacity.

You can also tell the weight capacity of the axle by measuring the diameter of the axle. A 3,500-lb. axle will have a axle diameter of 2-3/8 inches and a 6,000-lb. to 7,200-lb. axle will have an axle diameter of 3 inches. I am sending a link to A FAQ page on trailer suspensions and it will list the axle diameters for different axle weight capacities.

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