DMV Registration 'Body Type' & PTI for PUPs in Calif.

davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
Some questions:
1) Are PUP tent trailers eligible for the 2 year (really low cost) PTI renewal program in Calif.?
2) If yours is in the PTI program A) what is the ‘Body Type’ on your registration? B) What is your PUP trailers’ closed & open lengths?
3) If PTI is not an option, anyone know if trying to change the Body Type code to CMP might yield a lower fee?

I just got the first California DMV registration renewal notice for the 1999 Pup we bought last August. My Reg. lists 'Body Type' CCH (Coach) with a fee of $123 (not PTI). The only other Body Type that seems possibly relevant is CMP (Camp).

List of Calif. DMV Body Type codes (scroll to bottom for trailers)

A Google search finds no correlation between DMV ‘Body Type codes’ and the ‘DMV trailer definitions’ (below).

My Pup fits all the definitions below (I think), except that when telescoped our for camping it IS longer than 16’ (14.3’ closed, 19.9’ open).


14.000 Introduction PTI program
Under the PTI program, trailers are issued a PTI license plate and a permanent identification card rather than regular trailer plates.

During conversion to the PTI program (starting with registrations that expired 12/31/2001), trailer owners were allowed to retain their existing trailer license plate or be issued new PTI plates. Those owners may exchange the retained trailer license plate for a PTI license plate at no charge.


CA DMV 14.005 Definitions: Chapter 14 Permanent Trailer Identification (PTI)
Camp Trailer (CVC §242)—A vehicle, other than a motor vehicle, designed to be towed on the highway, capable of human habitation for camping or recreational purposes, that does not exceed 16 feet in overall length from the foremost point of the trailer hitch to the rear extremity of the trailer body and 96 inches in width. Where a trailer telescopes for travel, the size shall apply to the trailer as fully extended. NOTE: A tent trailer is a camp trailer. A camp trailer is not a trailer coach.”

Trailer (CVC§630)—A vehicle designed for carrying persons or property on its own structure and for being drawn by a motor vehicle, and constructed so that no part of its weight rests on any other vehicle.”

Travel Trailer—A portable unit mounted on wheels, of a size and weight that does not require special highway movement permits when drawn by a motor vehicle and for human habitation for recreational or emergency occupancy (California Civil Code §799.24).”
 

Adam H

Active Member
Aug 22, 2015
555
California
My Avalon is registered as PTI. I would recommend going to AAA for registration, CA DMV is full if stupid people and may try to give you the more expensive type.
 
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davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
I found a (long) thread from 2011 on a two people getting their tent trailers reclassified as PTI. It was a big hassle for both requiring they bring -both- the trailer and Pink Slip to start the process. If the bank has your pink slip, DMV demands you get a copy from them, or get them to send the DMV a letter telling them it is OK for the DMV to change the trailer's classification.

Anyone have a story to tell of how they went about getting their pup reclassified to PIT? What Body Type code did you go from, then to?
 

davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
My Avalon is registered as PTI. I would recommend going to AAA for registration, CA DMV is full if stupid people and may try to give you the more expensive type.
Adam, what Body Type is your Avalon now listed as? Was it PTI when you got it, or did you change it over? Did it have a different Body Type before?

Does AAA handle registration revisions for non-members?
 

Toedtoes

Super Active Member
May 28, 2018
2,840
California
I found these statute definitions:

A “trailer coach” is a vehicle, other than a motor vehicle, designed for human habitation or human occupancy for industrial, professional, or commercial purposes, for carrying property on its own structure, and for being drawn by a motor vehicle. CVC §635.

All trailers, except trailer coaches and park trailers, are registered under the “Permanent Trailer Identification” (PTI) program. For example, PTI trailers include semi-trailers, boat trailers, utility trailers, flat bed trailers, box trailers or horse trailers. CVC §468

By the first definition, your camper is NOT a cch (none of ours are as they are not for industrial, professional or commercial purposes). So that would put them as "cmp". However, a camp trailer cannot exceed 16ft fully extended. So, many of us fall into limbo land.

With that, I would seek to get your camper re-identified as a "cmp" and then do the PTI. If they won't accept it as a "cmp", shoot for "varied". That should still allow you to register under the PTI. Be sure to stress that it is not for industrial, professional or commercial use so it is not definable as a cch per statute.

Fortunately, DMV doesn't have statutory, or even non-statutory, definitions for all these vehicle types, so a lot is determined on a "sounds good to me" basis. Be very nice and friendly with the dmv person. If they balk, say "OK" and go back another day or to another office to deal with a different person.
 

Adam H

Active Member
Aug 22, 2015
555
California
Adam, what Body Type is your Avalon now listed as? Was it PTI when you got it, or did you change it over? Did it have a different Body Type before?

Does AAA handle registration revisions for non-members?
It was already a PTI and I don't have the registration handy so I'll get back to you.
AAA will handle members only but it's worth the small fee to avoid the DMV once.
In case it's not obvious, I hate the DMV and the dummies that work there :)
 

Adam H

Active Member
Aug 22, 2015
555
California
Ok, you got my curiosity! My Avalon's body type model is CMP so that supports @Toedtoes assessment above. Except my camper is definitely longer than 16' open or closed, but they never asked and it doesn't list length anywhere on the title.
 
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davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
I found these statute definitions:

A “trailer coach” is a vehicle, other than a motor vehicle, designed for human habitation or human occupancy for industrial, professional, or commercial purposes, for carrying property on its own structure, and for being drawn by a motor vehicle. CVC §635.

All trailers, except trailer coaches and park trailers, are registered under the “Permanent Trailer Identification” (PTI) program. For example, PTI trailers include semi-trailers, boat trailers, utility trailers, flat bed trailers, box trailers or horse trailers. CVC §468

By the first definition, your camper is NOT a cch (none of ours are as they are not for industrial, professional or commercial purposes). So that would put them as "cmp". However, a camp trailer cannot exceed 16ft fully extended. So, many of us fall into limbo land.

With that, I would seek to get your camper re-identified as a "cmp" and then do the PTI. If they won't accept it as a "cmp", shoot for "varied". That should still allow you to register under the PTI. Be sure to stress that it is not for industrial, professional or commercial use so it is not definable as a cch per statute.

Fortunately, DMV doesn't have statutory, or even non-statutory, definitions for all these vehicle types, so a lot is determined on a "sounds good to me" basis. Be very nice and friendly with the dmv person. If they balk, say "OK" and go back another day or to another office to deal with a different person.

Toedtoes, Thanks for the good info.

It was already a PTI and I don't have the registration handy so I'll get back to you.
AAA will handle members only but it's worth the small fee to avoid the DMV once.
In case it's not obvious, I hate the DMV and the dummies that work there

Ok, you got my curiosity! My Avalon's body type model is CMP so that supports @Toedtoes assessment above. Except my camper is definitely longer than 16' open or closed, but they never asked and it doesn't list length anywhere on the title.

Adam, Good to get it confirmed that I need to get it changed to CMP to get it into the PTI program! I'll bring the pup, title and a brochure showing it is actually a 'Tent Trailer'. I'll also bring a printout of CVC 242: (I will leave out the sentence about telescoping fully extended length because it conflicts with the 'Note:')

CA DMV 14.005 Definitions: Chapter 14 Permanent Trailer Identification (PTI)
“Camp Trailer (CVC §242)—A vehicle, other than a motor vehicle, designed to be towed on the highway, capable of human habitation for camping or recreational purposes, that does not exceed 16 feet in overall length from the foremost point of the trailer hitch to the rear extremity of the trailer body and 96 inches in width. Where a trailer telescopes for travel, the size shall apply to the trailer as fully extended. NOTE: A tent trailer is a camp trailer. A camp trailer is not a trailer coach.”
 

Adam H

Active Member
Aug 22, 2015
555
California
I would pay for an AAA membership (they now service RVs and motorcycles) and do it there. First trip will make it all worthwhile
 

Toedtoes

Super Active Member
May 28, 2018
2,840
California
Let us know how it goes. My registration is due in August and if it goes well for you, I may do it for my FnR.

Also, let me know if you can keep your existing plate. Mine is original blue & gold and I don't want to get a new or fake old one. :)
 

Anthony Hitchings

Super Active Member
Silver Supporting Member
Mar 2, 2019
3,945
Oakland, California
Our Aliner is type "CMP" on the pink slip, and we have PTI status

it was one of the benefits of OUR camper being small - and short from rear bumper to hitch call rcvr.
 

davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
Been away from the site for a bit. My Pup's registration Expires 8/31/20, listed as Body Type: CCH (coach). So I need to get to the DMV to get it inspected soon and show the pink slip (and a brochure showing it is a tent trailer, if the person does not know what that is ;o). Those who have gotten their Pups. reclassified to Body Style CMP, were you able to just show up, or does this process require an appointment.

Looking forward to getting it onto the PTI program and save some fees.
 

Toedtoes

Super Active Member
May 28, 2018
2,840
California
I would make an appointment. With reduced workforce and limiting of folks allowed inside at one time, you could be there for days.
 

davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
I would make an appointment. With reduced workforce and limiting of folks allowed inside at one time, you could be there for days.
DMV site just said 'No appointments available'. I went to Chat and that agent said: "I can only answer general questions here. May I transfer you to a rep who can access the record to better assist you? I am unable to review your record myself." I said yes. Waiting for new rep in Chat now (10 mins).
 

davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
I did get the new rep on Chat. I mentioned that my VIN# label is unreadable, but I have the pink slip and registration. She said I need to go to a CHP office (not a weigh scale). Hopefully, they can complete the entire transaction and not just certify the VIN and then send me back to the DMV. :eek:/

Rep said that on Aug 15th, the window for appointments will open. So a lot like getting a camping spot. Call ASAP on the day the window opens!! ;o)
I'll get to a CHP office soon to see what they say.
 

davekro

Super Active Member
Aug 30, 2019
767
SF Bay Area, CA
UPDATE:
New VIN sticker for Starcraft (or Jayco I assume) can be gotten here: (Thanks to Richard Sellers post #15 here)

STARCRAFT RV (The Factory, now called "Jayco RV")
(800) 945-4787
903 S. Main Street
Middlebury, IN 46540
Kirsten Bailey...Knowledgeable Contact (She actually got the original self-adhesive sticker printed out.)

Understudy on Customer Care Line...."Jen" (was courteous, but was not able to help...she switched me to Ms. Bailey).
 




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