How Many Axles Does An 18 Wheeler Have As Well Semi Truck and Pickup Truck?

Author: Rohan Paulos
Updated On:

Are you new to trucking and looking to understand how many axles does a truck have and why axle on a truck is important?

The number of axles on a truck varies depending on the vehicle size. They range anywhere between two to five. However, semi truck axles or axles for an 18 wheeler surpasses five when it pulls other trailers.

How Many Axles Does a Truck Have and Why Important?

The ability of a truck’s suspension system to sustain the weight of the vehicle might come from just one truck axle or several truck axles working together.

It is possible, for instance, to mount a solid axle on leaf springs, which will be responsible for the majority of the suspension duties. 

However, leaf springs are intended to work in conjunction only with the axle to provide stability both when the vehicle is turning and when it is traveling over rough terrain.

  • Works as Steering Component

 In some configurations, the axle serves the function of a steering component, enabling the driver to direct the vehicle’s movement by adjusting the components housed within or surrounding the axle.

Axles are frequently constructed to house rear axle bearings, which provide frictionless movement of the driving wheels and other movable elements of the vehicle.

  • Axles and Wheel Bearing

Although the placement and function of such bearings can change depending on the type of axle used on the vehicle, most axles are inclined to work in combination with wheel speed enabling the wheels to revolve freely.

how many axles in small truck?
How many axles does a truck have today?

How Many Axles Does A Semi Truck Have (and 18 Wheeler)?

What are exact number of semi truck axles and 18 wheeler? Semis often feature two tandem axles and a single axle beneath the trailer’s front bumper. A pair of two axles are connected consecutively. Such that one axle immediately follows one other, which is also known as a tandem axle.

This causes the load weight to be spread between two axles evenly. It enables the loader to keep the load within legal limits. A standard 18-wheeler typically has 10 forward gears, including 2 reverse gears.

This configuration is the most popular even though it might have anything from nine to thirteen to fifteen or even eighteen gears. While shifting gears, drivers of 18-wheelers employ a “double clutch.”

When compared to driving a car with a conventional gearbox, truck driving is a completely different ball game. Also, discover how tall is a tractor trailer semi rigs!

How Many Axles Does A Pickup Truck Have?

A semi-truck is considered to have a total of 5 axles when it is completely loaded with a trailer. In the strictest sense of the word, a semi-truck will have 3 axles if it is not pulling a trailer. 

Some pickup trucks come equipped with extra axles, depending on their hauling. Some have what is known as drop axles, which are lowered only when they are needed to carry the extra weight.

Truck tire in the wheel
Are semi truck axles bigger or more then pickup?

How Many Axles Does A Box Trucks Have and Why?

As you read it above, axles depend on the total pair of wheels. Most box trucks are light-duty trucks that come with 2 pairs of wheels and require two axles, i.e., one front axle and one rear axle. 

However, you would need more axles if you wish to hook a trailer or a tow dolly! But, generally, box trucks have two axles. 

There are a variety of box truck sizes. The bigger the size, the more its payload capacity. A truck that carries heavy loads will have tandem axles or tridem axles. These axles provide stability and help medium-duty trucks carry loads. RELATED:  Truths about 18-wheeler truck rental costs today!

How Many Axles Does 26 Foot Box Truck Have Vs. 20 Foot?

As you have read earlier, the majority of the box trucks or straight trucks come with two axles. It does not matter whether it is a 26ft box truck or a 20ft box truck. It will have two axles unless you install a trailer or a tow dolly.

Installing a trailer will add two more axles to the truck while hooking up a tow dolly will only add one more axle.

How Many Axles Are Found on a Straight Truck?

In a standard configuration, a vehicle will have 2 axles. Because they have two wheels, such vehicles always have 2 axles, even if they are just conventional straight trucks or passenger cars

On the other hand, a truck pulling a front-wheel-drive car or a tow dolly will also have a greater number of axles. A truck that is pulling an automobile trailer will have four axles, but a truck that is pulling a tow dolly will only have three axles.

The triple back truck tire

How Many Axles Does A Dump Truck Have?

It depends on what type of vehicle and the state in which it has been used. Greater axles are required for a larger dump bed to uniformly distribute the weight since a larger dump bed could carry more weight. 

A single rear axle can be seen on certain smaller dump trucks. The rear axles of most big dump trucks are split into two.

While driving on pavement, most vehicles feature auxiliary axles that raise and lower to help with weight distribution; this is especially useful when going off-road or making a tight bend.

What Are 2 Axles, 3 Axles, and 4 Axle Vehicles?

Two axle vehicles have a front and rear axle. Usually, they are light vehicles, either cars or light trucks. Three axle vehicles have a front and two rear axles. Usually, these are heavier trucks and light semi-trailers (tractor-trailer combinations).

Four-axle vehicles are heavy rigid trucks with two front axles (both steer) or two driven rear axles. Also, there are heavy semi-trailers (tractor-trailer combinations) with one front axle and three rear axles to spread the load. You may see this on heavy tow trucks, used for towing very heavy trucks.

What is a Tractor Axle?

The single-axle, often known as the walking tractor, is among the most fundamental and fundamental forms of tractors. The operator often walks behind the machine while holding onto a pair of handles. 

It is a miniature tractor transported on a pair of wheels attached to a single-drive axle. In most cases, the engine will be in front of the axle, and tools will be mounted on a bar behind the axle.

Truck engine part

What Are the Different Kinds of Axles?

A truck will have a collection of axles already placed in it whenever it comes to axles. A vehicle’s front axle, rear axles, dead axle, full floating axle, dead front axle, car axles, three quarter floating axle, semi-floating axle, and stub axle are the three most common types of axles that will be installed.

  • Front Axle

This axle is located immediately at the front of the car, as its name suggests, and it provides assistance to the driver in terms of steering and absorbing shocks caused by driving on surfaces that are not level.

  • Rear Axle

Since this axle is in charge of producing all the power, it has the most significant function of all the axles. Half-shafts are the collective name for the two components of the back axle. The drive axle often referred to as the differential, is connected to these half-shafts in some rear-wheel-drive vehicles.

  • Stub Axle

Stub axles are fastened to the four wheels in front of the vehicle. You can easily spot stub axles among commercial axle vehicles.

The wiring plan of a van

What is the Ratio of the Axle?

So, how do you boost torque? Characterized by a high axle ratio. The axle ratio will inform you how many revolutions the prop shaft must go through for the driving wheels to complete one rotation. 

For instance, if the axle ratio is 2.64, the prop shaft requires to revolve 2.64 times for every single rotation of the wheel alignment.

It also indicates that the truck can pull greater weight and start on steeper hills than just a comparable vehicle, such as one with a ratio of 2.47.

 However, to increase the propulsive force of the engine, the rpm needs to be increased. Because of this, your gas costs will increase according to the amount of electricity you utilize.

Which Truck Has Only One Axle?

A tractor with a single rear axle is referred to as a single axle tractor. Most two-axle tractors have two back axles, but a single axle tractor will only have one rear axle. 

What is an Axle Drive?

An axle that produces motive power on a vehicle is called a drive axle. This type of axle is connected to the crankshaft by the differential, driveshaft, and gearbox, and it is the axle shaft that determines whether the truck moves forward or backward. 

Although it is feasible for a vehicle to have more than just dead axles, it is not always easy to know how many drive axles it does have or which type of axles they are.

A mini truck lift up a car

Axles and Loading Capacity

When it comes to a truck, the likelihood of it having 2 axles increases in proportion to how heavy-duty the needs are. Trucks with one pre-designed axle are now more likely to be metropolitan or mid-size trucks transporting general or chilled freight. 

For instance, these semi-trailers would be utilized while traveling on soft ground (such as forestry, mining, outback labor, etc.) or for heavy-duty hauling (such as hauling enormous cargoes).


How many axles does a tandem truck have?

A tractor’s axle housing is typically considered a component of the tractor chassis, in contrast to the axle housing of a car or heavy truck. When it comes to building a tractor axle, a separate axle housing is utilized by an extremely limited number of tractors.

If a tractor does not have a moving suspension system, it does not need the autonomy that comes with a distinct axle housing within the design.

How many axles does a dually truck have?

A dually is a pickup truck with two sets of wheels mounted on the back axle. Therefore, it has four rather than two wheels in the back.

Summary of how many axles does a truck have?

We hope that with the help of this article, you now equipped about semi truck axles as well how many axles other trucks such as 18 wheeler, box trucks and pickup trucks have?  We also cover front Axles and two steer axles and their importance whenever you’re driving a truck and carrying heavy loads with you.

2 heavy duty truck tires


Best Gas Mileage Truck

These Are The 20 Most Fuel Efficient Trucks with Super Gas Mileage for 2023!

Trucks are designed to do complex tasks such as towing, off-roading, and freight transportation. They aren’t renowned for helping owners save money on gas, but buyers seeking excellent the best gas mileage truck will be
are monster trucks street legal

Which States Are Monster Trucks Street Legal?

Are you wondering, are monster trucks street legal in any USA states? Monster trucks are difficult to maneuver in crowded areas and urban settings. As a result, most monster trucks cannot be legally driven on public streets and
Penske Truck Lease Offers Vs Rental Trucks

What is Penske Truck Lease Cost Vs Rental Prices?

Have you decided not to rent your commercial truck and now on the verge of leasing from either Penske or Ryder, but really desire to get ample tips about Penske semi truck lease cost and other


Sign up now to get the email newsletter and exclusive deals weekly.