Trailer tongue weight?

Jul 18, 2017
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Is there a sticker on a car that states the maximum tongue weight of a trailer that it can handle? If stopped how would the DVSA or police determine if you are exceeding the tongue weight as I cannot find any specific legislation? We do not have an issue as our vehicle can handle up to 175kg nose weight of a trailer. I am asking on behalf of some one else and it seems that the main concern would be your insurance company if they bother to do an in-depth check.
 
Nov 6, 2005
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Can we get away from the term "tongue weight" which is used in North America and Australia - in Europe we use the term "nose weight"

The tow bar itself may have a sticker showing the maximum nose weight but I've never been aware of such a sticker/plate on the car itself.
 
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Jul 18, 2017
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Can we get away from the term "tongue weight" which is used in North America and Australia - in Europe we use the term "nose weight"

The tow bar itself may have a sticker showing the maximum nose weight but I've never been aware of such a sticker/plate on the car itself.
My owner's manual refers to it as tongue weight which is why I used the term. However if you do not have a tow bar fitted how would you know the maximum nose weight for the vehicle as many owner's handbooks do not state this simple fact? Thanks.

BTW on my own vehicle the CMC have my maximum nose weight as 100kg when it is 175kg. In addition, they have the MIRO of the Jeep as 2272kg when it is actually 2347kg. On doing the calculation the CMC website it stated that The caravan's laden weight is close to the car's kerb weight, increasing the risk of stability concerns. This outfit should not be driven by novice towers, and does not meet Club guidelines. Note that a small increase in ratio (toperhaps 90%) is acceptable if all other criteria are passed.
I am well within the 85% guideline so it seems that as the CMC are incorrect on this, how many other incorrect weights do they have on other vehicles.
 
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Jul 18, 2017
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For all the cars I've had, the maximum nose weight has been specified in the car owner's manual
Most of our cars have been several years old. The 2012 Jeep is the first one we have had where the trailer weight is mentioned in the owners manual. No mention in the 2005 Jeep owner's manual. Prior to that we had a Toyota Surf grey import.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Current EU regs require the maximum nose load value the tow ball can receive is on the towbars data plate defined as its "S" value. Note the the car maker will have defined the maximum the load the tow bracket fixings can withstand, but the tow bar manufacture may stipulate a lower S value depending on teh design of tow bar its self.

The EU normally expects a minimum S value <= 4% of the max permitted towed weight.

As always if a weight offence is suspected the only way to prove it is to measure it.

Determination of nose load can be done either by weighing the tow vehicle when coupled, and then again when uncoupled the difference is the nose load, or by using a nose load measuring gauge in the manner I have described previously on numerous occasions. The cannot use a spring loaded gauge as sold by many companies as the sole evidence of overload.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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My Pajero was a grey import 1995 model and my local Mitsubishi dealer found it out for me. One of the problems being that cars can have different weights specified for different markets. My Owners Manual and all tally plates, fuses etc were all in Japanese.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Current EU regs require the maximum nose load value the tow ball can receive is on the towbars data plate defined as its "S" value. Note the the car maker will have defined the maximum the load the tow bracket fixings can withstand, but the tow bar manufacture may stipulate a lower S value depending on teh design of tow bar its self.

The EU normally expects a minimum S value <= 4% of the max permitted towed weight.

As always if a weight offence is suspected the only way to prove it is to measure it.

Determination of nose load can be done either by weighing the tow vehicle when coupled, and then again when uncoupled the difference is the nose load, or by using a nose load measuring gauge in the manner I have described previously on numerous occasions. The cannot use a spring loaded gauge as sold by many companies as the sole evidence of overload.
Thanks a very concise answer. Does any one know if the towbar has a permanent sticker on it advising of the load limit on the towbar?
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Thanks a very concise answer. Does any one know if the towbar has a permanent sticker on it advising of the load limit on the towbar?
Current EU regs require the maximum nose load value the tow ball can receive is on the towbars data plate defined as its "S" value.
 
Jun 16, 2020
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My understanding is that there is a max vehicle limit stated the manufacturer. But the tow bar itself will have its own limitation. Some, but not all tow bar manufacturers do label the bar. There is also the ‘A’ frame limitation to consider, normally 100kg.
So. If the car says 75kg, and the bar says 150kg and the ‘A’ frame 100kg. Then the max that should be used is 75kg. ie. The lowest value of the 3.

John
 
Nov 6, 2005
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Does any one know if the towbar has a permanent sticker on it advising of the load limit on the towbar?
Yes - but the definition of "permanent" isn't very long on anything to do with caravans - my tow bars have had permanent stickers but the weather has peeled them off in a few years.
 
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Yes - but the definition of "permanent" isn't very long on anything to do with caravans - my tow bars have had permanent stickers but the weather has peeled them off in a few years.

So far as I know there is no legislation to say that the has to be a sticker. Mine has nothing, Volvo supplied and fitted.

John
 
Jun 20, 2005
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Current EU regs require the maximum nose load value the tow ball can receive is on the towbars data plate defined as its "S" value.
As indeed do the EU regs on MIRO. Forgive me Prof, it is not us on here but the Cinderella factor trying to make the shoe fit., We know at least two U.K. manufacturers quote different interpretations to the EU directive.🤬🤬
 
Mar 14, 2005
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As indeed do the EU regs on MIRO. Forgive me Prof, it is not us on here but the Cinderella factor trying to make the shoe fit., We know at least two U.K. manufacturers quote different interpretations to the EU directive.🤬🤬

EU regs don't require the MIRO to be plated. In fact, if it is, it must be distinctly separated from those details which must be displayed by law.
The towbar 'S' value, however, must be plated.
Exceeding the 'S' value doesn't have any direct legal implications, but it does affect the manufacturer's warranty. Usually, exceeding the 'S' value by a substantial amount will also mean that the rear axle load of the towcar is exceeded as well, and that would be an offence.
 
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Checked ours, Nissan Navara 2019 Oem bar and the sticker is there in full site EU homologation number and rated to140kg nice and clear.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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In a nutshell you cannot be prosecuted due the caravan exceeding its nose weight, but you can be prosecuted for exceeding the towbar specifications or the weight on the rear axle. Again how accurate would the weighing equipment need to be to detect that either are being exceeded by 20-30kgs?
 
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In a nutshell you cannot be prosecuted due the caravan exceeding its nose weight, but you can be prosecuted for exceeding the towbar specifications or the weight on the rear axle. Again how accurate would the weighing equipment need to be to detect that either are being exceeded by 20-30kgs?
What’s this obsession with weight, weighing accuracy and prosecutions? You’ve not been pulled have you? (TIC and LOL)
 
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What’s this obsession with weight, weighing accuracy and prosecutions? You’ve not been pulled have you? (TIC and LOL)
Just trying to get all the answers so that I can advise someone else who is towing a Buccaneer with a Volvo XC90. Apparently the Volvo is rated at 90kg nose weight. Later model is at 110kg. The Buccaneer has a nose weight of 150kg so they have to do a very delicate balancing act. There is no issue with train weight.
Strangely enough before they bought the Volvo they came onto the forum , not this one, asking for advice regrading buying the XC 90 etc and they were told about the low nose weight, but still went ahead and bought the Buccaneer. Obviously the vehicle has no issue towing the 2000kg Buccaneer.
 
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