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Determining Weight Capacity of Used Boat Trailer

Question:

I am thinking of buying a used trailer that according to the factory VIN, is rated at 4K. I am planning to modify the trailer to carry my sailboat which is a bit over 3200 lbs. Online information for the lowest dual axle 4 bunk trailer for this manufacturer is rated at 5700 lbs. Which do I go by, and how much wiggle room do I have? I do not know the year of the trailer at present, but it is built by EZ Loader, and has surge brakes. Are trailers built to handle more than published ratings? My boat is pretty light, and I plan on offloading weightier items I have on board before loading on the trailer such as additional outboards etc. Any advice would be appreciated . Thanks!

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Expert Reply:

The most accurate capacity information on your trailer is going to come from what you found using its VIN. This should take into account what was installed at the factory for this particular trailer. It's possible that the used trailer you are looking at is slightly different or older than the more current models you are seeing online from the manufacturer. If the trailer itself calls for a maximum capacity of 4,000 pounds, this is what you should go by.

I do not recommend going over its listed capacity, although with your 3,200 pound boat, it does not appear that this will be an issue. Also keep in mind that any modifications you plan on making to the trailer will not necessary increase its overall capacity. A trailer will always be limited by its weakest component, so even if you were to upgrade its axles to a higher rating, the trailer frame itself might still limit the capacity to 4,000 pounds.

If you are looking for any particular items for the trailer, please let me know and I will be happy to make some recommendations.

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Chris R

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