How does the moving truck get weighed?

I understand that the cost of a move across state lines is based on weight, but I don't understand how the truck gets weighed. Would you please give me information on how the mover truck weighing works?

Perhaps the best way to answer this question is to quote from the U.S. Department of Transportation booklet "Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move" which contains nearly all of the rules and requlations which govern the interstate transportation of household goods in addition to many helpful tips. Here is the section about weighing the truck to determine the customers shipment weight...

Your mover must weigh your shipment upon a certified scale. The weight of your shipment must be obtained by using one of two methods—origin weighing or destination weighing.

 

Origin Weighing - Your mover may weigh your shipment in the city or area where it loads your shipment. If it elects this option, the driver must weigh the truck before coming to your residence. This is called the tare weight. At the time of this first weighing, the truck may already be partially loaded with another shipment(s). This will not affect the weight of your shipment. The truck should also contain the pads, dollies, hand trucks, ramps, and other equipment normally used in the transportation of household goods shipments. After loading, the driver will weigh the truck again to obtain the loaded weight, called the gross weight. The net weight of your shipment is then obtained by subtracting the tare weight before loading from the gross weight.

Gross Weight Less the Tare Weight Before Loading = Net Weight

Destination Weighing (Also called Back Weighing) - The mover is also permitted to determine the weight of your shipment at the destination after it delivers your load. Weighing your shipment at destination instead of at origin will not affect the accuracy of the shipment weight. The most important difference is that your mover will not determine the exact charges on your shipment before it is unloaded.

Destination weighing is done in reverse of origin weighing. After arriving in the city or area where you are moving, the driver will weigh the truck. Your shipment will still be on the truck. Your mover will determine the gross weight before coming to your new residence to unload. After unloading your shipment, the driver will again weigh the truck to obtain the tare weight. The net weight of your shipment will then be obtained by subtracting the tare weight after delivery from the gross weight.

Gross Weight Less the Tare Weight After Delivery = Net Weight

At the time of both weighings, your mover's truck must have installed or loaded all pads, dollies, hand trucks, ramps, and other equipment normally required in the transportation of your shipment. The driver and other persons must be off the vehicle at the time of both weighings. The fuel tanks on the vehicle must be full at the time of each weighing. In lieu of this requirement, your mover must not add fuel between the two weighings when the tare weighing is the first weighing performed.

Your mover may detach the trailer of a tractor-trailer vehicle combination from the tractor and have the trailer weighed separately at each weighing provided the length of the scale platform is adequate to accommodate and support the entire trailer.

Your mover may use an alternative method to weigh your shipment if it weighs 3,000 pounds (1,362 kilograms) or less. The only alternative method allowed is weighing the shipment upon a platform or warehouse certified scale before loading your shipment for transportation or after unloading.

Your mover must use the net weight of shipments transported in large containers such as ocean or railroad containers. Your mover will calculate the difference between the tare weight of the container (including all pads, blocking and bracing used in the transportation of your shipment) and the gross weight of the container with your shipment loaded in the container.

You have the right, and your mover must inform you of your right, to observe all weighings of your shipment. Your mover must tell you where and when each weighing will occur. Your mover must give you a reasonable opportunity to be present to observe the weighings.

You may waive your right to observe any weighing or re-weighing. This does not affect any of your other rights under Federal law.

Your mover may request you waive your right to have a shipment weighed upon a certified scale. Your mover may want to weigh the shipment upon a trailer's on-board, non-certified scale. You should demand your right to have a certified scale used. The use of a non-certified scale may cause you to pay a higher final bill for your move, if the non-certified scale does not accurately weigh your shipment. Remember that certified scales are inspected and approved for accuracy by a government inspection or licensing agency. Non-certified scales are not inspected and approved for accuracy by a government inspection or licensing agency.

Your mover must obtain a separate weight ticket for each weighing. The weigh master must sign each weight ticket. Each weight ticket must contain the following six items:

  1. The complete name and location of the scale.
  2. The date of each weighing.
  3. Identification of the weight entries as being the tare, gross, or net weights.
  4. The company or mover identification of the vehicle.
  5. Your last name as it appears on the bill of lading.
  6. Your mover's shipment registration or bill of lading number.

Your mover must retain the original weight ticket or tickets relating to the determination of the weight of your shipment as part of its file on your shipment. When both weighings are performed on the same scale, one weight ticket may be used to record both weighings.

Your mover must present all freight bills with true copies of all weight tickets. If your mover does not present its freight bill with all weight tickets, your mover is in violation of Federal law.

Before the driver actually begins unloading your shipment weighed at origin and after your mover informs you of the billing weight and total charges, you have the right to demand a re-weigh of your shipment. If you believe the weight is not accurate, you have the right to request your mover re-weigh your shipment before unloading.

You have the right, and your mover must inform you of your right, to observe all re-weighings of your shipment. Your mover must tell you where and when each re-weighing will occur. Your mover must give you a reasonable opportunity to be present to observe the re-weighings. You may waive your right to observe any re-weighing; however, you must waive that right in writing. You may send the written waiver via fax or e-mail, as well as by overnight courier or certified mail, return receipt requested. This does not affect any of your other rights under Federal law.

Your mover is prohibited from charging you for the re-weighing. If the weight of your shipment at the time of the re-weigh is different from the weight determined at origin, your mover must re-compute the charges based upon the re-weigh weight.

Before requesting a re-weigh, you may find it to your advantage to estimate the weight of your shipment using the following three-step method:

  1. Count the number of items in your shipment. Usually there will be either 30 or 40 items listed on each page of the inventory. For example, if there are 30 items per page and your inventory consists of four complete pages and a fifth page with 15 items listed, the total number of items will be 135. If an automobile is listed on the inventory, do not include this item in the count of the total items.
  2. Subtract the weight of any automobile included in your shipment from the total weight of the shipment. If the automobile was not weighed separately, its weight can be found on its title or license receipt.
  3. Divide the number of items in your shipment into the weight. If the average weight resulting from this exercise ranges between 35 and 45 pounds (16 and 20 kilograms) per article, it is unlikely a re-weigh will prove beneficial to you. In fact, it could result in your paying higher charges.

Experience has shown that the average shipment of household goods will weigh about 40 pounds (18 kilograms) per item. If a shipment contains a large number of heavy items, such as cartons of books, boxes of tools or heavier than average furniture, the average weight per item may be 45 pounds or more (20 kilograms or more).

I hope this answers your question. Please free free to ask any other questions and thanks for stopping by our website!

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