How much does an empty box truck weigh?

In this article, we will answer the following question: How much does an empty box truck weigh? We will explain all the terms related to box truck weight and discuss their importance. 

​​How much does an empty box truck weigh?

An empty box truck has an average weight between 14,000 and 16,000 lbs, depending on the size of the truck, the materials used to build it and whether it has additional equipment installed (e.g. windows, roof-mounted AC, etc). 

In the US, a box truck is a Class 4 vehicle, and the GVWR of the vehicles under this category can reach even 26,000 lbs (16,000 dry weight + 10,000 payload capacity).

To better understand the classification system in America and for more information, see the table below.

Truck categories and weight limits in the US

US Truck ClassService ClassificationWeight LimitExamples
Class 1Light Truck0–6,000 lbs. (0–2,722 kg)Chevrolet Colorado / GMC Canyon, Ford Ranger, Honda Ridgeline FWD
Class 2aLight Truck 6,001–8,500 lbs. (2,722–3,856 kg)Chevrolet Silverado / GMC Sierra 1500, Ford F-150, Honda Ridgeline AWD
Class 2 bLight / Medium Truck8,501–10,000 lbs. (3,856–4,536 kg)Chevrolet Silverado / GMC Sierra 2500, Ford F-250, Nissan Titan XD, Ram 2500
Class 3Medium Truck10,001-14,000 lbs. (4,536-6,350 kg)Chevrolet Silverado / GMC Sierra 3500, Ford F-350, Ford F-450 (truck only)
Class 4Midsize Truck14,001–16,000 lbs. (6,351–7,257 kg)Chevrolet Silverado 4500HD / International CV, Ford F-450 (Cab Chassis)
Class 5Midsize Truck 16,001-19,500 lbs. (7,258-8,845 kg)Chevrolet Silverado 5500 HD / International CV, Ford F-550, Ram 5500
Class 6Midsize Truck19,501–26,000 lbs. (8,846–11,793 kg)Chevrolet Silverado 6500HD / CV International, Ford F-650
Class 7Heavy Truck26,001–33,000 lbs. (11,794-14,969 kg)Freightliner Business Class M2 106, Ford F-750
Class 8Heavy Truck33,001 lbs. (14,969 kg)Freightliner Cascadia, Business Class M2 112, 118SD and EconomicS; Ford F-750; Hino XL8; LT, HV and RH international

How to find the weight of my box truck?

All heavy goods vehicles, including your box truck, display their weight as well as the total weight of the maximum authorized load (GVWR) on the registration certificate. 

The maximum load includes the weight of the goods transported as well as the weight of the occupants. These are details provided by the manufacturer. 

In any case, you must not exceed the weight authorized by the registration certificate on one side, and on the other side, the GVWR is authorized by the regulations according to the Class of the vehicle.

The actual weight of the box truck should not exceed 30% of the actual weight of the truck. The GVWR which refers to the Class of the vehicle must also be respected. 

Of course, the circulation of a 40-ton truck is subject to several regulations that must be observed. It should also be noted that the trucks are equipped with conductive axles and carrying axles, but these are not the only classes of axles. Indeed, we also have the driving axles which transmit the power produced by the engine and the TANDEM and TRIDEM axles.

TANDEM axles are made up of a group of 2 axles that are less than 2 meters long, while TRIDEM axles are axles that are less than two meters long and are present in heavy-duty carriers. If the vehicle has these 6 axles, the heavy goods vehicle can accept an overload of one ton (+1 ton).

In the end, it is important to specify that non-compliance with these rules and all overloads lead to sanctions, we will even speak of endangering others.

The fine for exceeding the maximum charge can reach $135. It is therefore important to know the characteristics of the heavy vehicle that you are driving, before loading it and above all, before setting out on the road to avoid dangerous or risky situations.

Why do you need to know how much your empty box truck weights

Do you own a box truck or want to buy one? It is important to know the subtleties and in particular the meaning of this term: the GVWR of the truck. This is the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating, an important concept above all for your safety on the road. 

What is the GVWR of a box truck?

The GVWR is the total permissible laden weight, that is to say, the cumulative weight of the vehicle and its load. In summary: GVWR = empty weight payload. It is very important to know this GVWR value.

Note: be aware that if you exceed the regulatory GVWR, you are in violation and will be penalized in the event of a control. In addition, the weight greatly influences the braking time and distance, the regulatory GVWR must be respected for your safety and that of other users.

GVWR and box trucks: what the legislation says

There is specific legislation regarding the GVWR of commercial vehicles such as box trucks. It specifies in particular where the information must appear, as well as the penalties incurred in the event that the authorized total weight is exceeded.

For all vehicles, this information can be found on the registration certificate. It appears under the designation “loaded mass”. There is also the indication “empty mass” which is the empty weight of the vehicle.

How do you know the actual weight of your box truck?

Unfortunately, there is not (yet) an on-board system that allows precise information on the loaded weight of a vehicle in real-time. However, the solutions, more or less empirical, do exist.

For individuals and in the event that the weight of the goods transported is not specified, the value of this load can be estimated by knowing the empty weight indicated on the registration certification. It is then possible to roughly estimate the payload not to be exceeded.

It is also possible to have the vehicle weighed at agricultural cooperatives, materials companies or technical control centers.

For most professionals, the measurement is more precise:

  • construction companies know precisely the weight of the freight, whether by weighing (sand, loose gravel, etc.) or by conditioning (bricks, concrete blocks, tiles, etc.);
  • In other areas (transport, courier, industrial products, etc.), the weight of the freight is known (parcels, pallets, etc.).

It suffices then to add the value of the load to the empty weight to know precisely the GVWR.

Is it hard driving a box truck?

Driving a box truck can be hard, as it is not something you do every day. Even though the principle is similar to that of driving a standard vehicle, there are a few points that you must pay attention to.

The important thing is that you take the time to tame your new steed. Start by doing a few lengths and maneuvers in a parking lot before entering a congested lane or a roundabout for example. This will give you confidence and you will see that driving a truck is not rocket science. 

If you are hesitant before hitting the road then don’t let other motorists stress you out who might honk at you if you are a bit slow to turn on a narrow street, just leave them and don’t take it to heart. they tell you. Find out where the main controls are: turn signals, horn, gas flap, wiper and washer to name a few.


Knowing the empty weight of a box truck is important in order to avoid penalties and to keep yourself safe on the road. We hope that now it is clear how much a box truck weighs and how to measure it. 

If you have any other questions related to the content, please let us know!

FAQ on How much does an empty box truck weigh?

​​Do box trucks need authority?

Yes, box trucks need operating authority from the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration (FMCSA) in order to be able to cross boundaries or to carry goods for delivery purposes. 

Is it hard driving a box truck?

Driving a box truck can be hard, as it is not something you do every day. Even though the principle is similar to that of driving a standard vehicle, there are a few points that you must pay attention to.

What is good mileage for a used box truck?

Good mileage for a used box truck would be under 100,000 miles for gas engines, and under 200,000 miles for diesel engines. There is no need to retire the box truck after you hit this mark, but you will, however, need to pay more attention to its maintenance and you’ll definitely take it to service more often.

How to choose a box truck?

To choose a box truck make sure you respect the following criteria:

  • Fast delivery. 
  • Reasonable costs.
  • Efficiency.
  • Security. 
  • Precision. 


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