double-wides

Kaiapó

Senior Member
Portuguese
Hi everyone

"Berner's house was a newer white double-wide down a straight, narrow lane of other double-wides, most newer with neat, tiny yards..." (Canada, R. Ford)

First I thought the double-wides were some sort of pre-fabricated homes one can tow from place to place.
But then, the author refers to them as trailers or mobile homes. Is there any clear difference between them?
Do you call trailers this kind of houses. Or, other way around, double-wides are just double-sized trailers?

Thank you for your time

K
 
  • Kaiapó

    Senior Member
    Portuguese
    The kind you need a truck or a tractor to tow away, right?
    Not those smaller you can just hook up to your car,
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    Definitely truck or tractor time, yes. :) They're driven to their destination, unhooked, skirting is added to hide the frame and wheels, they're jacked up so their weight rests on blocks of some sort rather than on the tires, and you live in them as you would in a regular home.
     

    Florentia52

    Modwoman in the attic
    English - United States
    For the most part, a double-wide isn't moved once it's installed. It's too wide to take on the road in one section. But yes, you would need a truck in order to haul the sections.

    Functionally, these are inexpensive houses for people who don't have a lot of money, and not literally "mobile" homes.

    [Cross-posted with Copyright.]
     

    Kaiapó

    Senior Member
    Portuguese
    That is what puzzles me. We can call them just trailers, even though trailers (and mobile homes) are normally displaced bark and forth, or in holidays trips.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    That is what puzzles me. We can call them just trailers, even though trailers (and mobile homes) are normally displaced bark and forth, or in holidays trips.
    Trailers have axles and wheels and can be moved rather easily. Prefabricated homes that we call "double-wides" do not. Mobile homes are only "mobile" to the extent that if you disconnect the halves, jack them up, attach some axles on each section and attach a towing tongue on each section, you can move it someplace if you have:


    • a really big truck to pull each section
    • a vehicle driving in front with flashing lights warning drivers ahead of OVERSIZE LOAD to warn oncoming drivers
    • a vehicle driving behind it with flashing lights warning drivers ahead of OVERSIZE LOAD to warn drivers approaching from behind.
    • have removed furniture and other non-secured items.
    • disconnected gas, electricity, water, telephone and such permanently connected items.

    As you can see from the above, that which we call "mobile homes," are NOT :warn: "normally displaced back and forth, or in holiday trips."

    Moreover, I have never seen those dwellings we call "mobile homes" in France or Portugal ... or anyplace outside North America.
     

    Sparky Malarky

    Moderator
    English - US
    A mobile home, which is often (rather disparagingly) referred to as a "trailer" has an axle and wheels permanently attached. A double-wide mobile home is really two such "trailers," which fit together. During transport, there might be a temporary covering placed over one side of the two halves. Whether single-wide or double-wide, such homes are rarely moved, but they can be. A heavy truck (tractor rig) will have to be hired for the purpose, and if the mobile home has been in place a long time, it will probably need maintenance before moving. At the least, it will probably need to have the tires inspected carefully. Many people live in such mobile homes for many years, never moving them, and often building porches, decks, or other permanent structures attached to them, and/or on the property.

    A modular home, may be identical to a mobile home, but it does not remain permanently attached to an axle. It is designed to be transported once, and placed on a permanent foundation.

    So what is the big difference? It’s legal. A mobile home is personal property, like a car. A modular home is real estate, like a house.
     
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