Trailer weights explained: Tare, ATM and Payload
What do they mean and why do they matter?
If you are buying a new trailer there are a lot of technical details you need to consider. Trailer weights, particularly the tare, ATM and payload are the most important specifications to look at in a trailer. But what do these terms actually mean and why do they matter?
Tare weight is the weight of the trailer.
The lower the tare weight, the higher the payload capacity and fuel efficiency.
European trailers are made with high-quality, lightweight materials. Variant manufactures galvanised steel trailers for strength and durability, with lower tare weights than Australian made equivalents. Scanvogn’s mobile cabins are made with high quality UV-stabilised fibreglass panels. These panels are specifically designed to be lightweight, while also providing insulation.
ATM stands for aggregate trailer mass and refers to the combined weight of the trailer (tare weight) and the maximum trailer load.
The maximum trailer load ensures the load is safe, controllable and that it will not significantly shorten the life of the vehicle’s body and mechanical components.
Look at the ATM to see if the trailer is suitable for your car to tow. For instance, if your car has a maximum towing capacity of 2000kg, the ATM must be lower. Research the make and model of your car to ensure it can tow the trailer you want to purchase.
Payload is the trailer’s carrying capacity, the difference between the tare weight and ATM.
Payload is important because the trailer needs to be able to support the load you want to carry.
Out of all specifications, trailer weights, tare weight, ATM and payload capacity are arguably the most important to consider when purchasing a trailer. You need to ensure that the trailer is light to tow, but can support the load to need to transport.
Trailer weight requirements
The requirements for tare, ATM and payload will vary depending on your needs. For instance, if you are purchasing a trailer for gardening or camping, you will need a small trailer that is easy to manoeuvre yourself, while still supporting a load. Whereas, a construction worker or handyman will need a heavy-duty trailer to transport heavy materials and machinery.
Tare, ATM and payload are the most important specifications to look at in a trailer, but you also need to know your vehicle’s specifications to ensure it can actually tow the trailer you want to purchase.
Check out this blog post to find out more about tare and payload, as well as other features to look for when buying a box trailer.