Do you need a CDL to drive an RV in Texas?

In today’s article, we will discuss: Do you need a CDL to drive an RV in Texas? We will see the requirements for each state when it comes to driving an RV and also explain what a CDL means. 

Do you need a CDL to drive an RV in Texas?

You do not need a CDL to drive an RV in Texas, but you will, however, need a Non-CDL special licence. This means that to drive an RV that weighs over 26,000 lbs you will need a Class B license, and to drive multiple vehicles (e.g. when towing) with a combined weight over 26,000 lb you will need a Class A licence. 

See the table below for more information on which states require which type of licence to drive an RV. 

CriteriaStates requirements
States that DO NOT require a CDL to drive an RVAlabama MontanaAlaska Nebraska Arizona New Hampshire Colorado New Jersey DelawareNorth DakotaFloridaGeorgia OklahomaIdahoOregon Illinois Rhode IslandIndiana South Dakota IowaTennesseeKentucky UtahLouisianaVermontMaineVirginiaMassachusetts Washington MinnesotaMissouri West Virginia Mississippi
States that require a Non-CDL to drive an RVCalifornia: Class B license required over 26,000 lb or over 40 feet; Class A license required for towing over 10,000 lbsMaryland: Class B license required over 26,000 lbMichigan: Recreational Double “R” Endorsement required to tow a fifth wheel plus a trailer (it’s unlikely that you’ll ever need this)North Carolina: Class B license required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class A license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbNevada: Class B license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class A license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lb; “J” Endorsement required to tow a vehicle over 10,000 lb (if the combined weight is less than 26,000 lb)New York: Recreational Vehicle or “R” endorsement required for vehicles over 26,000 lbPennsylvania: Class B license required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbSouth Carolina: Class E license required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class F license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbTexas: Class B license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class A license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbWyoming: Class B license required for the vehicle over 26,000 lb and towing under 10,000 lb; Class A license required for the vehicle over 26,000 lb and towing over 10,000 lb
States that require a CDL to drive an RVArkansas: CDL required for the vehicle over 26,000 lbConnecticut: CDL (Class B) required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbHawaii: CDL (Class B) required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbKansas: CDL (Class B) required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbNew Mexico: CDL (Class B) required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with a combined weight of over 26,000 lbWashington, D.C.: CDL (Class B) required for the single vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbWisconsin: CDL required over 45 feet

What is a CDL Licence?

The CDL license, called ‘commercial driver’s license‘, allows operating certain types of vehicles, such as cargo transport vans, various types of trucks and buses, among others.

Types of CDL Licenses:

There are several types of CDL licenses, classified according to the type of vehicle in class:

  • A
  • B
  • C

Each rating depends on the gross vehicle weight (GVWR), among other factors. The different classes of CDL licenses determine which vehicles can be driven, but also the endorsements that must be obtained.

In addition, each type of license requires a series of tests, such as:

  • Knowledge tests
  • Brake test
  • Skills assessment
  • Road test
  • Vehicle inspection
  • Exams according to the endorsements to be obtained, Etc.

CDL A license

The Class A commercial driver’s license is good for operating vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 pounds or more, including a towed vehicle weighing more than 10,000 lbs.

Examples of Vehicles:

  • Tractor-trailers (tractor-trailers)
  • Truck and trailer combinations
  • Double and triple trailers
  • Trailer buses (tractor-trailer buses)
  • Tanker vehicles
  • Livestock carriers
  • Flatbeds

CDL Class B

This type of business license allows you to drive vehicles with a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or heavier and/or vehicle towing another weighing up to 10,000 lbs.

Examples of Vehicles:

  • Straight trucks
  • Large buses: Urban buses (City buses), tourist buses (Tourist buses) and school buses (School buses)
  • Segmented buses
  • Box trucks: Delivery drivers, Couriers and Furniture delivery
  • Dump trucks with small trailers

CDL Class C

The CDL Class C license is required in the following cases:

When the vehicle you want to drive does not meet the criteria for Class A and Class B CDL licenses.

  • For the transport of at least 16 passengers (including the driver).
  • For Hazardous Material Transportation (HAZMAT) as established by federal guidelines.

Examples of Vehicles:

  • Small HAZMAT vehicles (Small HAZMAT vehicles)
  • Passenger vans
  • Combined vehicles not described in class A or B, such as a small truck with a trailer.

Can vehicles of one license class be driven with another type of CDL license?

It is possible to drive some vehicles with a CDL license of another class if you have the corresponding endorsements.

With a Class A license, it is possible to drive some Class B and Class C vehicles, as long as you have the correct endorsements. Similarly, with a Class B license, you can operate some Class C vehicles if they have the corresponding endorsements.

What are CDL license endorsements?

Endorsements are special authorizations, which enable the driver to operate certain types of vehicles, as well as transport certain goods and a certain number of passengers.

The endorsement is issued once the applicant has passed the required written and skills exam.

Class A, B, or C CDL endorsements:

  • Hazardous materials – For those who transport hazardous materials.
  • Tank vehicles – To drive the tanker trucks.
  • Passengers –  To operate passenger vehicles (more than 15 people, including the driver).
  • School bus-  To transport preschool, elementary, or high school students from home to school, school to home, or to and from school events. 
  • Double/triple trailers – To handle vehicles with a double or triple trailer. Triple trailers are not allowed on all state highways!
  • Tank and hazardous materials vehicles – For those who qualify for the Hazardous materials and tank endorsements.

Can you use a CDL from another state?

If you already have a CDL license but issued outside the state of Florida, it is possible to use it. Commercial driver’s licenses are accepted from other states in the US or Canada.

However, an out-of-state applicant with a hazardous materials endorsement must reapply for the same, including testing, background checks, and paying fees.

The bottom line

As you have seen above, you only require a Non-CDL to drive an RV in Texas. This means that you have to be careful about the weight you are driving/towing. In case you have any questions, tips or comments on the content, please let us know!

FAQ on Do you need a CDL to drive an RV in Texas?

How big of an RV can I drive without a CDL?

You can drive an RV of 6500 lbs or less without a CDL. However, this will vary across states, as in some places (Illinois, Arizona, Alaska, Nebraska, Mississippi for example) you don’t require a CDL for an RV no matter its size!

What license do I need to drive an RV in Texas?

To drive an RV in Texas you will need a Non-CDL special licence. This means that to drive an RV that weighs over 26,000 lbs you will need a Class B license, and to drive multiple vehicles (e.g. when towing) with a combined weight over 26,000 lb you will need a Class A licence. 

What driving Licence do I need to drive an RV in the USA?

In the USA, you will need either a CDL or Non-CDL type of licence depending on the state you registered your RV in, also on its weight, length and height.

References

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