Truck Camper’s Alphabet – GVWR, GCWR and GAWR



Your truck camper’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) is the total weight that it can handle safety.  This includes the truck itself, you the driver, passenger(s), the TC, all liquids (fuel, oil, water), propane, food in the pantry and refrigerator, clothing, and the rest of your camping stuff.

Example of a GVWR label
Example of a GVWR label

If you exceed the GVWR then you could be damaging the truck by putting a strain and stress on the truck’s frame and chassis resulting in expensive repairs.  More important, consider the safety factor to yourself and others – finding that your brakes take longer to safely stop, or possible even complete brake failure.

               Truck Plus Payload = GVWR
Truck Weight Plus Payload = GVWR


Truck campers that are planning on towing a trailer needs to know their Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR).  This is the maximum GCWR amount plus the weight of the load that is being pulled behind.


All truck campers should be aware of their GAWR. This last factor is the Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR). The maximum allowable weight that can be placed on an individual axle of your truck. Both the front and rear axle have their own individual GAWR. The GAWR numbers are followed by either the letters FR or RR, which indicate front or rear axles, respectively.

Example of a GAWR label
Example of a GAWR label

Where does the GVWR, GCWR and GAWR come from? Where do you find the numbers?  This is the maximum loaded weight rating that your truck can travel safely as determined by the manufacturer. The numbers can be found on a sticker stuck into the driver’s door frame, inside the glove box and your the owner’s manual. If you still cannot locate them, Google your truck’s model or search on the manufacturer’s website for your make and model.

TC towing
TC towing
TC towing
TC towing



A TC accident - Ouch
A TC accident – Ouch

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