Moving and using your vehicle? Read this.

Moving and using your vehicle? Read this.
25 Jan 2016

Are you planning on moving to a new apartment or getting your kid from college? Are you thinking about using your own vehicle for the activity?  Well, this article is for you. Standard vans, minivans and SUVs have maximum capacity and weight limits and its best to know more about them before you begin stuffing. Read on for more information!

Sort through your stuff

First sort through all things you plan on bringing–do you really need it all? Can you donate any of it, or give some of it away? The less stuff you put in the car, the less wear and tear you’ll cause for it, particularly for the tires. The tires are impacted by any large vehicle load, so take a good look at your tires once your car is loaded and make sure they look okay; no bulging sidewalls or other concerning problems. Ensure your tires are properly inflated too. You can typically find the recommended inflation pressure in your owner’s manual or on the doorjamb on the driver’s side.

Your Load Capacity Depends on the Type of Vehicle You Have

Load capacity, the maximum amount of passenger and cargo weight a car will handle, is different from one vehicle to another. It could range from about 900 lbs. for compact crossovers like the Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 and up to 1,600 lbs. for full-sized SUVs such as the Ford Expedition and the Chevrolet Suburban.

If you plan on hauling heavy stuff, it is a great thing to know about is how load capacity is calculated. You arrive at the load capacity number by taking away the vehicle’s empty weight (curb weight) from your car’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). Your car’s GVWR is in its owner’s manual.

As we’ve talked about, load capacity includes passengers and cargo, too. If you drive an SUV with a 1,000-lb load capacity, and you have four 200-lb. adults in the car, you could only carry 200 lbs. of peoples’ stuff. Complicating things is the fact that gasoline weight is also important. Gasoline weighs around 6 lbs. per gallon, so if an SUV has a 15-gallon tank, filling up would be an extra 90 lbs.

The process of loading belongings

Now that we know how many things you will transport, let’s look at where to put it in the car with this strategy: In every vehicle, and SUVs specifically, it is important to keep the heaviest things in and near the vehicle’s center. This cuts down on the possible adverse effect on handling that could be caused by cargo weight. It keeps the center of gravity near the vehicle’s center that makes for great braking and steering. Make sure you stack your belongings so you may see out the car’s rear window. Without this kind of visibility, you can’t tell what you could run into.

Make sure loose objects are secure

Next piece of advice, to prevent things from flying around during panic stops, keep small items in boxes and ensure they’re secure. Better yet, you can use old grocery bags to put these items into and easily squeeze them into small spaces. You don’t want to have anybody injured from objects flying around because of a quick stop.

Courtesy of: Len Stoler Dodge Chrysler Jeep

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Thomas Elliot Young

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