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How Much Weight Can A Pickup Truck’s Tailgate Hold?

When owning a new or used vehicle, it’s important to know that exceeding the weight limits of the vehicle can have serious safety concerns. 

The vehicle manufacturer will detail the allowable weight that the vehicle can safely handle and this information can be found in the owner’s manual. 

In this article, we will discuss the maximum weight that a tailgate on a pickup truck can hold. 

Not all trucks are the same and each make and model can have different allowable weights. 

How Much Weight Can A Pickup Truck's Tailgate Hold?

How Much Weight Can A Pickup Truck’s Tailgate Hold?

On average, a tailgate on a pickup truck can hold up to 1500 pounds depending on the make and model of the truck itself. Certain tailgates can only hold 300 pounds while others can hold 2000 pounds. There are other factors that need to be taken into consideration when determining a tailgate’s maximum weight including the age of the pickup truck, the condition of the tailgate, and other factors mentioned below. 

What is the tailgate?

The tailgate is a hinged part that is placed at the rear of a pickup truck which extends across the rear. The tailgate is designed to either fold up or down when loading or unloading. The tailgate will prevent items from falling out of the back of the truck.  

open tailgate of pickup truck

Pickup truck tailgate weight examples

As mentioned, the amount of weight a tailgate can hold will vary for each truck. Here are examples of different trucks along with their maximum tailgate weights.  

Note: Please contact the owners manual for your specific vehicle as these numbers can change.

Also, it’s possible for a vehicle manufacturer not to include the maximum weight limit for a certain tailgate. If you own one of these vehicles, it will be up to you to determine how much weight the tailgate will hold. 

Ford F150 maximum tailgate weight

The maximum certified tailgate weight for the Ford F150 is 600 pounds. 

Dodge Ram 1500 maximum tailgate weight

The maximum certified tailgate weight for the Dodge Ram 1500 is 2000 pounds.

Chevrolet Silverado maximum tailgate weight

The maximum certified tailgate weight for the Chevrolet Silverado is 1000 pounds. 

Toyota Tundra maximum tailgate weight

The maximum certified tailgate weight for the Toyota Tundra is 1500 pounds.

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What affects how much weight a tailgate can hold?

Although a brand new pickup truck will have a tailgate designed to hold a certain weight, this can change over time as the vehicle ages. 

Here are some factors that affect how much weight a tailgate can hold.

Vehicle age

As the vehicle ages over time, the tailgate may not be in the same condition as it was when new. It’s possible for rust to form causing the strength and weight capability to be reduced. 

Also over time it’s possible for the tailgate to become damaged and if the truck is used as a work truck, the tailgate will be in constant use. This will affect the amount of weight the tailgate can hold, possibly causing it to fail at weights lower than its maximum limit. 

girl laying on truck tailgate

Make and model of truck

As mentioned above, each type of truck can have different tailgate weights. It’s possible for each truck model to vary in weight as well. For example, The Dodge Ram 1500, 2500, and 3500 could have different tailgate weights.

Tailgate cables condition

Tailgate cables are sometimes called tailgate straps and they are designed to support the tailgate and keep it level when lowered. 

Heavy duty cables are made for pickup trucks that have a higher tailgate weight limit. As these tailgate cables are used over a period of time, they will age and weaken in strength. They are not as durable as they were when brand new.

It’s important to replace your tailgate cables if you notice them deteriorating as they can easily fail if not maintained properly causing your tailgate to fall with weight on it.

This can cause serious injury and it’s important to inspect your cables periodically to ensure the condition. 

truck tailgate cables

How much does a tailgate step hold?

Certain tailgates can have a tailgate step which is used to help step onto the tailgate and into the back of the truck. Although these steps can vary in allowable weight, on average they can hold between 350-400 pounds. 

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