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What does trailer payload mean?

Updated: Dec 7, 2021

Payload is a term that crops up a lot when dealing with transporting goods, whether that be a boat, luggage or a tiny house. It refers to the MAXIMUM amount of weight which can be carried on a vehicle or towed on a trailer, and can be easily calculated if you have access to the Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) and the unladen weight of the trailer or vehicle (known as the kerb weight or 'curb' weight). Simply subtract the kerb weight from the Gross Vehicle Weight, or reverse the equation to find out the GVW.

Diagram showing how to calculate GVW (GVWR), Kerb or curb weight, and payload for a car or trailer
Calculate car GVW or trailer GVW, work out curb or kerb weight, and find out what car payload and trailer payload is.

So, if we take the HM-D TH600 trailer as an example - which has a GVW of 3,500kg and a kerb weight of 570kg – the sum would look like this:

3,500kg (GVW) – 570kg (kerb weight) = 2,930kg (maximum payload capacity).

Therefore if you build your road-legal tiny house on a HM-D TH600 trailer, the weight of the structure plus all of its contents (excluding the weight of the trailer itself) cannot exceed 2,930kg.

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