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Virginia Axle Weight Limits

Oversize.io Axle Weight Calculator

Maximum Legal Weight Allowed

  • Any one axle 20,000 pounds;
  • Tandem Axles (more than 40 inches but no more than 96 inches spacing between axle centers) 34,000 pounds;
  • Single Unit (2 Axle) 40,000 pounds;
  • Single Unit (3 Axle) 54,000 pounds;
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (3 Axle) 60,000 pounds;
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (4 Axle) 74,000 pounds;
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (5 Axle) 80,000 pounds;
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (6 Axle) 80,000 pounds;
  • Tractor-Twin Trailers (5 or more Axles) 80,000 pounds.
  • Other Combinations (5 or more Axles) 80,000 pounds.
  • Per inch of tire width in contact with road surface 650 pounds.

The weights listed above are the maximum weight limits allowed. No vehicle can travel on Virginia highways with a single axle weight in excess of 20,000 pounds, tandem axle weight in excess of 34,000 pounds, or a gross weight in excess of 80,000 pounds.

Axle and Gross Weight Limits – Virginia Code §46.2-1126

The maximum gross weight is determined by the number of axles on a vehicle and the distance between the first axle (steering) and extreme rear axle. The following examples give the maximum allowable gross weight of each vehicle.

  • 5 axle vehicle with 51 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 80,000 pounds.
  • 5 axle vehicle with 47 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 77,500 pounds.
  • 3 axle vehicle with 20 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 51,000 pounds.
  • 3 axle vehicle with 17 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 48,500 pounds.
  • A vehicle may not exceed a single axle weight of 20,000 pounds or a tandem axle weight of 34,000 pounds.

Therefore, some vehicles cannot be loaded to the maximum allowable gross weight because the tandem axle or single axle weights would exceed legal weight limits.

The maximum gross weight is determined by the total number of axles and by measuring the distance between the first axle (steering) and extreme rear axle. The maximum weight allowance for axle groups is determined by measuring the distance between the center of the first axle and the center of the last axle and the number of axles within a specific axle group. Look up the distance between axles and the appropriate number of axles or axle groups on the chart to obtain the maximum gross or axle group weight allowance. Any motor vehicle that utilizes an auxiliary power unit or other idle reduction technology in order to promote reduction of fuel use and emissions due to engine idling shall be allowed, in accordance to §46.2-1129.1, up to an additional 550 pounds total in gross, single axle, tandem axle, or bridge formula weight limits. Any motor vehicle that is fueled, wholly or partially, by natural gas shall be allowed, in accordance to §46.2- 1129.2 up to an additional 2,000 pounds total in gross, single axle, tandem axle or bridge formula weight limits. In addition, on an interstate highway, any motor vehicle that is fueled primarily by natural gas may exceed the weight limits provided in §46.2-1127 by 2,000 pounds. However, the gross weight of such vehicle shall not exceed 82,000 pounds.

Maximum Permit Weight Allowed

The Code of Virginia allows the following oversize/overweight permits to be issued specifically for the vehicles or load listed in this section

Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Coal and Liquids Produced from Gas or Oil Wells and Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Gravel, Sand, Asphalt and Crushed Stone

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Three

N/A

60,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

45,000 lbs

N/A

Four

N/A

70,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

N/A

50,000 lbs

Five

35 feet

90,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Six

N/A

110,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

44,000 lbs

54,500 lbs

Maximum Weights for Concrete Haulers

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Three

N/A

60,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Four

22 feet

70,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

N/A

50,000 lbs

No single axle in the tri-axle group can exceed 20,000 lbs

Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Excavated Materials

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Three

N/A

60,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Four

N/A

70,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Solid Waste

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Three

N/A

40,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

N/A

N/A

Four

N/A

60,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Virginia-grown Farm Products

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Two

N/A

40,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Three

N/A

60,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Four

35 feet

70,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

50,000 lbs

Five

N/A

90,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

50,000 lbs

Maximum Weights for Vehicle Hauling Farm Animal Feed

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Five

51 feet

84,000 lbs

20,000 lbs

37,400 lbs

N/A

Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Forest Products

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Two

N/A

40,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Three

N/A

60,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Four

N/A

70,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

50,000 lbs

Five

48 feet

90,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

50,000 lbs

Maximum Weights for Articulated Buses

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Three or more

N/A

60,000 lbs

25,000 lbs

N/A

N/A

Maximum Weights for Arlington County Trucks

Number of Axles

Minimum Axle Spacing

Maximum Gross

Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Single Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tandem Axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Maximum Tri-axle Weight Allowed (lbs)

Two

N/A

48,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

N/A

N/A

Three

N/A

60,000 lbs

24,000 lbs

40,000 lbs

N/A

Underground Pipe Cleaning, Hydroexcavating, and Water Blasting Equipment

Permit will be issued for the operation of underground pipe cleaning, hydroexcavating, and water blasting equipment. Any vehicle operating with this permit shall have a gross weight of no more than 64,000 pounds, a single axle weight of no more than 20,000 pounds, and a tandem axle weight of no more than 44,000 pounds. This permit does not authorize travel on the federal interstate system.

Cotton Module

The tandem axle weights shall not exceed 44,000 pounds, the single axle weights shall not exceed 20,000 pounds, and the gross weight shall not exceed 56,000 pounds.

Source of information: https://www.dmv.virginia.gov/webdoc/pdf/dmv109.pdf

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