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How to Determine Gross Trailer Weight and Tongue Weight Towing with a 2009 Scion xB

Question:

purchased the croft 3,500lb hitch, 300lb tongue weight and wiring. installed easy but have a question. it is rated 3,500lb and I want to tow a small camper. how do I apply the rating to my situation. weight of camper or tongue weight. I know there is a formula. this is my third purchase from etrailer. You guys are awesome!

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Expert Reply:

The first thing you are going to want to do is consult the owners manual for your 2009 Scion xB to determine its capacities. They are likely not the same as the hitch. Whichever is lower, the hitch or the vehicle, is the rating you need to go by.

To determine the gross trailer weight you will need to look at the sticker or plate on the trailer tongue. It should list a dry weight and a gross trailer weight. The gross trailer weight is the most that trailer can weigh including itself and anything loaded in/on it such as cargo, fuel, water, and batteries.

If you take the dry weight and then add to that the weight of everything you add to the trailer that will be its gross weight.

There should also be listed a tongue weight or hitch weight. This is most likely a dry tongue weight. The tongue weight is going to increase as you add more weight to the trailer. Typically tongue weight is 10 to 15 percent of the gross trailer weight. There are ways that you can measure tongue weight at home. I have included a link to our article that explains the different ways of determining tongue weight.

You will need to make sure that the trailer gross weight when loaded and ready to tow and its tongue weight are within the capacities of the hitch or vehicle, whichever is lower.

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