The US market is dependent on trucks when it comes to delivering the majority of the products across the nation.
There is also a saying "if it has to go by road, it's delivered by a truck".
But different trucks are allowed to haul certain amount of weights. More than that, there is a truck classification by weight limit that categorizes trucks.
So, what kind of cargo can a truck haul depends on what its weight classification.
Below, I'll share a list of trucks and the type of cargo that these trucks are designed to haul.
1. Pickup trucks
Pickup trucks are very popular besides the fact that they are used to haul mostly household goods.
The most identifiable feature of any pickup truck is its open cargo bed.
The best-selling pickup truck is the Ford F-Series followed by the Chevrolet Silverado than the Dodge Ram.
A half-ton pickup can hold up to 3000 lbs of payload on the truck bed.
A three-quarter-ton pickup truck can hold up to 4000 lbs of payload on the truck bed.
A one-ton pickup truck can carry up to 6000 lbs of payload on the truck bed.
The cargo capacity that can be carried on a truck bed depends on the payload capacity of the truck's bed. Now, the pickup truck's bed depends on its make and model.
The pickup's GVWR of the truck's bed is assigned considering its engine, suspension, driveshaft, and other aspects.
So, it is advised to keep your load within the rated limits.
If you are not sure of how much weight can your truck bed carry, you can always check-up with your manufacturer or dealer.
So, besides the payload capacity of the pickup truck's bed, it also has the additional towing capacity if you hook a trailer to it.
Typically, your truck's towing capacity far exceeds its payload capacity because the majority of the weight is resting on the trailer axle, not on your truck's axle.
A cement truck or concrete mixer is a type of straight truck that has a concrete mixer on the back.
This type of truck hauls cement and water to create concrete. While transporting it to the necessary places, the mixer on the back of the truck is constantly rotating to maintain the concrete in the liquid form.
The mixing system of the truck maintains the concrete in its liquid state for very long. It gives the cement a longer-lasting period of use than if it's held in place.
The cement is discharged from the rear of the mixer.
3. Car Transporter
The car transporter truck and trailer are used to ship cars from the manufacturer to their dealerships.
The cars are loaded on the trailer using their power. The trailer is a single-decker or a double-decker that has multiple spaces designed to hold cars in place during a long transit.
This type of truck/trailer can be open or closed and it can have in-built ramps used for loading and unloading vehicles onto the trailer. They can haul as many as 12 vehicles at once.
The cargo type hauled by these trucks is extremely heavy and bulky making it difficult for them to brake, turn, or adjust to avoid any type of collision on the road.
Tanker trucks are used to haul mainly liquids and gases. These can be anything between oil, gasoline, water, liquid chemicals, fertilizers, pesticides, etc, and many times, the transported cargo on the tanker is associated with hazardous materials.
Due to the existence of many different liquids and gases, to transport them safely, many variants of tankers exist in the form of semi-trailers or straight trucks. Some of them are large, insulated or non-insulated, pressurized or non-pressurized, and designed for single or for multiple loads.
The tanker's high center of gravity makes them difficult to operate. Also, due to the type of cargo, they can be dangerous if they get into a collision.
5. Dump Trucks
Dump trucks are used to transport loose material like sand, gravel, dirt, loose material, or demolition rubble.
This type of truck is used on construction sites to move away from raw material for mixing or for crushing.
Once arrived at the unloading place, the open bed on the back of the truck is moved upwards with its hydraulic system so that the contents of the open bed fall out through the rear.
Semi-trucks, which are also known as bobtail trucks, are among the most popular trucks in the US because these serve as tractors with powerful engines to pull many different types of semi-trailers.
The characteristic that allows semi-trucks to hook or drop off semi-trailers is the fifth wheel.
The most popular semi-trailer that is used with a semi-truck to haul cargo is the dry van trailer.
7. Trailer Trucks
Dry vans are the most common freight hauling equipment for long distances.
They are used to haul any kinds of products such as consumer products, home goods, electronics, furniture, supplies, or even palletized freight.
In terms of size, the 53 feet container is the most used semi-trailer.
Dry vans are box-like equipment that protects the freight from any external factors like wind, rain, mud, or anything else that may damage the freight, during the transportation period.
Reefers are another type of semi-trailer that is moved by a semi-truck.
A reefer is a refrigerator on wheels. This type of trailer is fitted with cooling equipment to keep the cargo temperature controlled.
The reefer allows controlling the temperature inside the trailer no matter how hot or cold it is outside. These trailers transport sensitive items that require careful handling and storage to maintain their integrity such as perishable foods like fruit, meat, fish, or they can also transport things like pharmaceuticals, chemicals, or some type of hazmat materials. In short, they transport any perishable foods that require temperature control.
They are, however, more expensive than standard trailers since they use extra fuel to keep the temperature control system running.
9. Straight truck
These types of trucks are also referred to as box trucks, cube trucks, or vans.
A straight truck can carry cargo on the same chassis that has the cab and the power unit. However, it can only be loaded from the back.
They are commonly used to transport stuff like furniture and other small items.
Straight trucks are highly recommended for moving.
10. Box truck
A box truck is a chassis cab truck that has a cuboid or box-shaped cargo. Most box trucks have cabins that are separated from the cargo, but some have doors that lead to the other two areas. Most box trucks differ in their structures due to this very reason.
The former has no connection between the chassis and the cargo box and the latter has one.
Box trucks are usually 10 feet to 26 feet long and their weight capacity space can range from 12,500 lbs to 33,000 lbs.
They have a garage door like rear doors that roll up and are used by companies for transporting home appliances, furniture, etc.
11. Commercial van
The cargo van is another type of straight truck that comes in small, mid, and large sizes.
Vans transport equipment, tools, furniture, or it is very popular in the delivery service industry. In case, the van is equipped with seats, it can be used to transport employees to work and from work to home.