Whenever or wherever the road takes you, one of the most important things to remember is how to
securely transport your payload or tow a trailer to each destination, and weight distribution hitches aka WD are the solution. But one of the most frequently asked questions is does it increase payload? The answer is no, Weight Distribution Hitch doesn’t increase your payload rather than it creates a balance between the vehicle and the trailer.
Keep reading to understand it.
Benefits of Weight Distribution Hitch
For safety, a weight-distributing hitch is required. It enhances safety, plain and simple. Your load is
equally spread over the axles on the trailer when the weight-distributing hitch is properly set up, giving you better stability and control. It also provides a more level ride for your tow vehicle and trailer.
There are several benefits of WD such as:
- Even weight distribution (up-and-down motion)
- Reduces swaying (side-to-side motion) and increases trailer towing capability.
- You’ll have more control over your automobile.
- The ride is more stable.
- Less pressure on Vehicle.
- Your vehicle and trailer will last longer.
- Braking and steering are safer.
Read: Andersen Weight Distribution Hitch Review
How does a Weight Distribution Hitch work?
Proper weight distribution is one of the most important aspects of successful towing. A weight
distribution hitch transfers the hitch’s weight from the front of the trailer to the back of the car. The trailer will be less prone to sway if the weight is equally distributed, resulting in a much safer and smoother ride.
When towing a trailer, a weight-distribution hitch is a mechanism that creates a level, stable ride. A
weight distribution hitch, in essence, will maintain your towing setup level and ensure that the weight of your trailer does not put excessive pressure on your vehicle.
How to measure the weight when towing a trailer?
Before explaining the measurement, let’s understand the difference between Towing and Payload? Payload capacity refers to the total amount of weight your vehicle can carry and Towing capacity refers to the amount of weight your vehicle can pull behind it on a trailer. The gross vehicle weight refers to your vehicle’s entire weight. This covers the car’s weight as well as anything you load into it, such as people, cargo, bags, or whatever else you’re bringing with you on your trip.
Let’s say your vehicle’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating is 7,000 pounds. Then 5,000 pounds is the curb weight.
That means any weight you transport must be under 2,000 pounds.
Is towing better than payload?
Yes! It’s good to tow which puts less pressure and damage on your vehicle. Towing stability depends on proper weight distribution, which ensures that the trailer is not too heavy in the back, front, or sides. Swing can be caused by a modest tongue weight or hefty weights placed at the back end of the trailer.
Again, for example, your weight distribution hitch’s rating must match or exceed the Gross Trailer
Weight, thus if your trailer weighs 7000 pounds and has a tongue weight of 750 pounds, you’ll need a kit rated for 8000 pounds total trailer weight and 800 pounds tongue weight. So, the maximum towing capacity should be 40% of the load which your car can pull.
When towing a trailer and more than 40% of the load is in the trailer then the trailer may shake a lot when a tail-heavy trailer could wipe you off the road and it’s too dangerous.
At least 60% of the load should be in front of the trailer and the rest of 40% should remain in the back trailer.
Note: Weight distribution won’t put high pressure on the hitch’s capacity as it helps you to use it to its full potential.
How To calculate your towing capacity?
To calculate your towing capacity with and without weight distribution, look at the hitch’s ratings. Your towing system is only as powerful as its weakest component. Always adhere to your vehicle’s and towing equipment’s stated towing capacities. If you don’t, you risk damaging or breaking your equipment.
How is truck payload determined?
Trucks payload is not the same as truck towing capacity. The payload capacity, also known as the gross
load weight, is the total weight you can safely carry into your truck. It includes all of the weight in the
cabin and bed of a vehicle. The whole weight of your truck, including all fluids such as gas, radiator fluid,
and oil, but excluding anything or any passengers. The curb weight and even the GVWR of your truck
can usually be found in the truck handbook or on the manufacturer’s website where different brands and models have different payload capacities.
Like 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500 model have the capacity to tow up to 9700 pounds. Like these different vehicles have different capacities.
What is a maximum payload capacity?
Maximum payload capacity means the maximum amount of weight your vehicle can safely add, in
addition to its empty weight (or curb weight). Different vehicles like sedans, SUVs, Trucks have different built-in capacities to carry weight. The maximum amount of these capacities is known as maximum payload capacity.
Read: Best Hitchless Bike Rack for SUV
How much weight does a Weight Distribution hitch reduce tongue?
Basically, weight distribution will not change the tongue weight. If the vehicle and hitches are rated for weight distribution, it maximizes the vehicle and hitch capacity. The tongue weight of the trailer is regulated at a safe of 10 to 15% of the load with the help of a weight distribution hitch. This lowers the risk of losing control and prevents the trailer from swaying uncontrollably due to insufficient weight.
Weight Carrying vs Weight Distribution
Weight Carrying is putting extra weight on your vehicle than its capacity and weight distribution is
allocating weight within vehicles. Experts don’t recommend heavy loads, as the trailer tongue might sink. You will be able to pull bigger capacities if you use a weight-distribution system.
To increase towing performance, the weight distribution system transfers the weight from the hitch to the car and trailer axles.
When tongue weight is spread in a proper manner, trailers with higher it can be pulled, resulting in a more level ride that relieves stress on the tow vehicle’s rear end and improves steering and brake control. On the other hand, because a carrying load on your roof rack shifts the vehicle’s center of gravity away from the manufacturer’s design, it reduces the vehicle’s stability.
When the weight of a trailer surpasses half the weight of the vehicle, a weight distribution system is recommended. This is because, at roughly this weight capacity, your truck or tow vehicle will begin to sag.
A weight distribution system transfers weight from your truck’s back axle to the front axle, making your vehicle more perpendicular to the ground and improving handling. Because of this, you can pull
greater weight with a weight distribution system. As a result, when using a weight distribution system, the hitch you’re looking at has a larger gross tongue weight and tongue weight capacity.
Which one is good Payload or towing?
Now there are different opinions, especially automobile companies always try to remain notable in
the market but our experts think it’s good to put less pressure on the car as payload puts a lot of pressure on the car suspensions and it hits the gravity hardly whenever the car moves fast. So, it’s good to hitch your car with a trailer by maintaining the perfect weight balance.
How does weight distribution balance the weight?
A weight distribution hitch moves the weight forward towards the back of the car and back towards
the front of the trailer for even distribution, rather than sitting at the center of the hitch. This makes
transporting heavy goods easier for you, your tow vehicle, and your trailer.
Hitching trailer is most common nowadays for travelers but it often comes to mind does weight
distribution increase the payload or not. So, in the above discussion, it is clear that for a safe drive with a trailer proper adjustment is mostly needed for safety. While the weight distribution hitch redistributes weight and balances your load, it does not increase the payload and overall weight that your tow vehicle can handle.
Want to learn more about weight distribution? read our other articles:
- Blue ox sway pro vs Equal-I-zer Weight Distribution Hitch
- Weight Distribution Hitch vs Sway Bar: A complete Guide
- Reese Strait-line WDH Hitch
- Eaz Lift Weight Distribution Hitch
- Fastway e2 Hitch: Cheapest hitch on the market
- Camco Recurve r3 WDH review
- Camco Recurve r6 WDH review
- Blue ox sway pro WDH Reviews
We are a team of 8 Hitch specialists based in Poland. Every day we fix different hitches for our clients. So we thought why not create an informational blog for the hitch users from all over the world.
So besides running our Hitch store here in Poland, we also write the hitch accessories tips and guidelines on this website. Read more about our Hitch store and services here.