When driving regularly or for an extended period of time, the feel of your vehicle can quickly become second nature. You will get to know the pressure required to brake, how much leverage your clutch and accelerator need, and how sensitive the steering is. However, one thing many drivers don’t consider is how much the operation of your vehicle could change when transporting a heavy load, and how to adjust your driving accordingly.

What would be affected if you carry a heavy load

Starting off from a standstill

Carrying a heavier load can lead to additional friction between the tyres of your vehicle, and the road, making it feel slightly harder to stop and start. It may take you a little longer to get going once moving from a standstill position, and the load could also affect the ability to maintain your speed.


You may also notice that, once your car or van is travelling at a safe desired speed, there will be more weight driving forwards, and so the distance covered between you pressing the brake and your vehicle to come to a complete stop will increase.


Similar to braking, the weight within your vehicle can drive it forwards once you are travelling at your desired speed and in return you could find it harder to steer. Many drivers who are unaware of the effects of heavy cargo can find this confusing andend up overcompensating for the slow-moving turn.

Fuel consumption

Driving with a heavy load will of course require a little added horsepower, meaning you will be utilising you accelerator more frequently, and often with a greater pressure. In return, this will increase your level of fuel consumption.

How to adjust your driving accordingly

Pulling away

With the added friction between your tyres and the road leading to a slower start, it is important that you don’t overcompensate for anything. Instead, take a slow and steady approach. Increase your gear changes after extended periods of time, allowing the speed to pick up effectively without a gear change slowing you back down, or potentially stalling the engine.


When it comes to braking with heavy cargo on board, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, you will want to allow enough space and time to brake effectively. You will also want to brake in a way that allows your belongings to stay in place instead of shifting forwards. This could cause damage or a safety risk. Whilst you may be required to apply a little extra pressure to the brake, it is important that you do so gently.


Slow and steady really does win the race here. Slowing down to a steady speed will allow you to have more control over the direction you are looking to go. Keep a steady pace throughout the entirety of your turn, allowing you to straighten back up again with ease before regaining speed.

How much weight can your vehicle hold?

When it comes to transporting a large amount of goods, whether it be moving belongings to a university campus, or relocating your office and accompanying furniture, you must be careful to load your van in the correct way. Whilst there are ways in which you can load your van that save you space, and keep your goods safe and secure, there will also be a limit as to just how much you can transport. This will be known as your payload, and can differ depending on the model and size of each vehicle.

At Pace Van Hire, our fixed price vans for rental can cater to your payload, providing you with the smoothest drive whilst transporting your load. To speak to a member of our team, give us a call on 020 7277 9853 or send us an email at info@pacevanhire.com.

Contact Pace Van Hire

Contact Pace Van Hire

Give us a call on 020 7277 9853 with any questions and we’ll help you hire a van that’s right for you.
Or if you’d prefer to just get started, you can book online and we’ll give you a call back to confirm.