Are you insane!? That may be the response you will get when you tell your family, you want to carry more fuel on the tongue of the trailer. Forget that the added tongue weight may breach the tongue limit and focus on the safety issue. It may not be a smart idea.
If the laws of different states allow it and you are not exceeding the weight limit, then yes, you can do this. Keep in mind that fuel weighs roughly 7 pounds per gallon and a 50-gallon fuel tank adds 350 pounds to the tongue weight.
To learn more about this topic, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about before you complete this project. There may be legitimate reasons to try this but it just may not be the best idea you have ever had.
Yes, it is possible and as we mentioned earlier, you would have to check the weight limit for your tongue and then see how much the fuel tank will weigh. If you are considering putting more than, as an example, 30 gallons, you are adding a lot of weight to a part that needs to remain at 10 or 15% of the total trailer weight.
Next, you have to check with the State and Federal authorities governing trailers and fuel. There is supposed to be a limit on the number of gallons you are legally allowed to carry in an exposed container like an external gas tank.
That limit may be 115 gallons in some states or 109 in other states. On top of all that, you will have to consider the possibility of fuel theft. You would have to rig the tank in such a way that thieves cannot siphon the fuel out of the tank when you are sleeping or not around.
Or find a way to secure the tank so thieves cannot take the whole thing. remove the whole tank. In addition, you have to check to see what kind of trailer you can do this with.
This is a topic that has come up in our research. You may find that you cannot carry excess fuel in this matter. This is a safety issue, not a you can’t do that issue. Gas can explode at any time under the right conditions.
It is more volatile than diesel and diesel needs a lot of heat to get it to ignite. A spark won’t put you in danger nor will smoking put you in a risky situation. But with gas, both situations can cause you a lot of trouble.
Not to mention those around you. The cities, states, and the federal government may not allow you to transport gas in an aux. Fuel tank sitting on the tongue of your trailer. But that is something you have to discuss with the right transportation office to make sure.
Each state will have different rules so make sure you talk to those states you are planning to travel through as you may not get a pass when you leave your home state.
There are models made. Some weigh 124 pounds, not including the fuel. SO if you are going that route, you will have to add the 124 pounds, an example, with the weight of the 40 gallons this particular fuel tank holds. That would be 124 + 280 = 404 extra pounds on your trailer tongue.
The question you have to ask is, does your tongue weight limit allow for this extra weight? If you are towing an 8000-pound trailer the allowable tongue weight would be between 800 and 1200 pounds.
This may be doable if you do not have a lot of other items sitting on the same spot. But it is math that you have to work out. You will find that different RV retailers will have these tanks ready to sell to you.
They come in different sizes and the cheapest aluminum model that we found was roughly $1000 when not on sale. Some of these tanks come with restrictions. One restriction is that the tank is supposed to be connected to your primary fuel tank.
That may be difficult to do if you are going to place it on your trailer tongue. Even if it is going to fuel your generator, this option may not be a good fit. The best advice we can offer is to talk to people in the know and see if it is a viable project to do.
Here is a link to one website with an article titled-- DOT Regulations for Mobile Fuel Containers. The contents let you know what you can and cannot do when it comes to hauling fuel in external and aux., fuel tanks. Also, there are a lot of links in the content leading you to Federal regulations on the topic.
Here is the first paragraph of that website-- “A DOT specification tank meets the federal requirement for the transport of Gas and AV Gas over a public roadway per Title 49 (Transportation) for transport in bulk containers. DOT 406 tanks are also suitable for transport for Diesel and Jet-A, but NOT REQUIRED.”
It would be worth your time to read that link and the regulations it links to.
We are not going to say ‘yeah, go ahead and do this…’ It is a risky thing to do and there are too many regulations you need to meet to do this objective. Do diligent research first to make sure you are allowed to add an external tank to your trailer tongue.
Don’t forget to factor in the additional weight total to make sure you are not exceeding any weight capacities.