How to Use a Roof Rack

The roof rack was once a sought after feature on American automobiles. Their use was widespread for a variety of applications from luggage to bikes to moving furniture. Larger vehicles, alternative towing options, and changes in the American lifestyle have rendered the roof rack nearly obsolete. However, where they are still available, roof racks can be an excellent way to secure your cargo.

Most factory installed Roof racks are intended for use with moderate weight items only. Things such as kayaks, bikes, and luggage are ideal for roof rack stowage. Many modern roof rack systems are modular, with available purpose built attachments and anchors for commonly used items. When this is not the case, however, it is important to secure cargo properly before heading out. Roof top cargo should be tied down, ideally with ratcheting nylon strap tie-downs. The flat profile of the strap makes webbing around the roof rack easier and is less likely to scuff your paint. Where possible, cover the cargo with a thick tarp before tying down to prevent damage from road debris. You should also be sure to orient cargo on the roof in a way that balances the weight evenly both front to back and side to side. Watch for low awnings and low parking deck heights and remember to drive carefully.




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