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If you own a bike, you would agree with us that circumstances can force you to carry it on your vehicle. Perhaps, you will want to take it to your next camping trip, transport it home from the buyer, or take it to a bike mechanic for professional servicing.
But, what if your bike can not fit into your four wheeler’s trunk? In this case, you will be left with the option of purchasing a good roof rack, and then use it to transport your bike safely and conveniently.
Nevertheless, just like any other bicycle accessory, stores have several bike roof racks for you. Some of them give a reasonable value out of your dollar, while other bike racks are likely to disappoint.
Would you want to avoid purchasing an inferior rack? If yes, we have gauged ten of the best roof racks used and recommended by many biking enthusiasts. Read on to spot a bike rack that would help you transport your bicycle securely to wherever you want to take it.
1 Swagman Upright Bike Rack
Swagman’s upright bike rack takes the first position on our best list for several reasons. It is made from stainless steel and industrial-grade plastic parts to hold up for as long as you will want to keep it. It is one of the most durable bike stands in bike shops.
This upright bike rack features an attractive minimalistic design that complements your vehicle’s aesthetics. It leaves out less essential parts that would make it heavier than its aluminum rivals.
Fixing this bike rack on your vehicle’s roof isn’t challenging. It comes with all the brackets you need to set it up, and a comprehensive manual to lead you through the fixing process step by step.
Cycling enthusiasts who have tried this roof rack say that they were able to fix it onto their car’s roof within a few minutes without the help of someone else.
This best bike roof rack comes with tie-down straps for securing your bike’s wheels, and a lock to hold your bike’s frame securely. With these safety features, you will have the confidence required to focus on driving your vehicle without keeping an eye on your bike.
Unlike those bike roof racks that fit on a few crossbars, Swagman’s Upright Roof Mount is versatile enough to fit on the crossbars of all vehicles. Therefore, if you own two or more vehicles, and yet, you don’t want to buy a separate bike roof rack for each, Swagman’s upright roof mount would be the most suitable option for you.
- Weighs just 5 pounds
- Has a weather-resistant finish
- Requires no wheel removal
- Built to last
- Can only support bikes weighing above 35lbs
- Its locking mechanism is quite flimsy
2 INNO Fork Lock III
Manufactured by INNO Advanced Car Racks, a respectable manufacturer of cargo systems, this Fork Lock features a multi-cradle design that can support 50-lb Mountain or road bicycles without issue. It stands among the industry’s most reliable roof racks.
INNO’s technicians fabricated this bike rack from a heavy-duty aluminum material to survive wear resulting from regular carrying for an extended period. Moreover, the aluminum frame offers excellent resistance to weather elements.
With a universal crossbar lock, you can fix this rack on round, square, and oval-shaped crossbars. Therefore, if you own multiple cars with varying crossbar types, INNO Fork Lock III will save you from buying separate racks for each.
This best bike roof rack comes with all the mounting accessories you will need to attach it to your car’s roof. You can mount it in seconds without using any tool, or hiring a technician to help you out.
INNO’s bike rack utilizes a strong holder to secure your bicycle’s front fork, and a plastic wheel strap to secure the bicycle’s rear wheel. These features keep your bike stable throughout your trip to the campsite or bike mechanic.
Since this fork lock secures your bike at the fork end, you will have to remove your bike’s front wheel before you mount it on the rack. This process can piss you off if you have little time to detach and attach your bike’s front wheel, each time you transport it.
However, if you don’t mind wasting a few minutes, then you shouldn’t shy away from purchasing this rack since removing the front wheel will deter bike theft, and it will make your bike light enough to load and offload.
- Ideal for carrying heavy bikes
- Has a five-year warranty
- Easy to install and uninstall
- Has a universal mounting system
- Quite heavy
- Need to detach your bike’s front wheel
3 CyclingDeal Alloy Bicycle Carrier Rack
CyclingDeal designed this best bicycle carrier rack from durable but light aluminum to last. The alloy has a reliable endurance to impact, prolonged exposure to UV radiation, and weather-related corrosion.
This bicycle carrier will be an ultimate pick for you if you intend to subject your rack to regular use or expose it to direct sunlight, rain, and any other outdoor weather elements for an extended period.
Despite its lightweight, CyclingDeal’s rack for bicycles can support one or two bikes weighing 66 pounds. It is the best budget option for people who want to transport several bikes without having to purchase a single rack for each bicycle.
Featuring a universal clamping system, you can affix this biking workhorse on square, oval, or round crossbars with a thickness of 30 mm. You don’t need any tool to attach or detach this best bike roof rack on the crossbar.
CyclingDeal bicycle carrier rack does not only fit on all crossbars, but it can also support all bikes. Use it to transport your Mountain bike, road bike, comfort bicycle, BMX, Tandem, or any other bike to wherever you are going.
For security and stability purposes, this bike rack comes equipped with a wheel and frame strap to secure your bike. The straps give the confidence you need to focus on driving your vehicle without having to keep an eye on your bike.
Polished with an attractive anodized coating, this best bike roof rack is virtually resistant to weather elements. It won’t rust when exposed to adverse weather elements, and it will maintain its glossy appearance for many years to come.
- Has a lifetime warranty
- Light and strong
- One bike rack can support two bikes
- Finished by anti-corrosion finish
- Requires no wheel removal
- Its rubber straps cannot deter bike theft
4 YAKIMA FrontLoader Bike Carrier
If you wish to transport your bike without damaging or scratching its paint, YAKIMA FrontLoader bike carrier has your back covered. It uses an innovative lock system that doesn’t make contact with your bike’s frame or paint.
Designed from premium metal, YAKIMA bike roof rack has sufficient strength to support bikes weighing up to 40 lbs. You can use it to transport Mountain, road, tandem, BMX, and virtually any type of bike with a wheel diameter of 20-29 inches.
YAKIMA’s bike stand boasts of a mirror black finish that blends well with your vehicle’s aesthetics. So, if you are one of those people who care much about their car’s aesthetics, then this bike rack wouldn’t disappoint.
With a twin-lock system, this innovative bike rack holds your bike securely, thereby deterring bike theft, as well as giving you the peace of mind you need to focus on your car’s steering. The manufacturer sells the locks separately.
This best roof rack from YAKIMA wedges your bike’s front wheel, thereby keeping it in an upright position. You will not need to dismantle the front wheel before you mount it on this roof rack.
YAKIMA bike rack can fit on round, square, and or aero shaped crossbars with a spread ranging between 16-48 inches wide. It comes fully assembled, and you would not need to use any tool to fix it on your vehicle’s crossbar.
- Has an attractive finish to complement your vehicle’s aesthetics
- Ideal for use in low-security areas
- Easy to fix on your vehicle’s crossbar
- Easy to load your bike
- Fits just one bike
- Quite heavy
5 GoPlus Upright Bicycle Rack with Lock
Equipped with an anti-theft lock, GoPlus bicycle rack stands as one of the most secure racks you would find in bike shops. It is a great buy if you are planning to explore places where your bike is likely to be stolen.
In addition to the anti-theft lock mechanism, this best roof rack has two tie-down straps to enhance your bike’s stability while on transit. One of the bands secures your bike’s front wheel, while the other one locks the back wheel.
GoPlus engineers constructed the bicycle rack from aluminum alloy, a light but durable material that can bear heavy use and abuse for a reasonable period. It can support all bikes that weigh up to 33 lbs. and with a wheel size of 1-2.5 inches thick
The rack has an anti-rust coating to repel rust and any other corrosion. Thus, you can leave this bike rack attached to your vehicle during those sunny, rainy, or wintery conditions.
Fitted with an adjustable support, this best bike roof rack holds your bike in an upright position. You will not have to detach and attach your bike’s front wheel whenever you want to carry it to your next trip.
GoPlus upright bicycle rack comes with U and T bolts used to affix it on standard car roof rails. While the bolts are compatible with almost all vehicle crossbars, using them to attach your roof rack is quite challenging since you will have to fasten them with a screwdriver and or a spanner.
A user guide that comes along with this bike roof rack guides you step by step through the installation process.
- Ideal for low-security areas
- Designed from high-quality aluminum to last
- Comes with a detailed instruction manual
- Lets you transport your bike without disassembling it
- Low weight limit
- Installation is quite challenging
6 RockyMounts TomaHawk Fat Bike Mount
Just as its name suggests, RockyMounts designed this bike mount for those who are looking to carry their fat bicycles conveniently. It can support bikes with a wheel size ranging from one to five inches wide.
Fitted with a universal installation bracket, you can mount this fat bike roof rack on all vehicles with aero, round, factory, or square crossbars. You will not need any tools or an expert’s help to fix it.
While TomaHawk is pretty similar to its rivals, RockyMounts’ technicians equipped its swing arm with a large release trigger to let you lock and unlock your bike quickly and effortlessly.
Moreover, the technicians equipped it with easy-to-fasten and unfasten wheel straps instead of the hard-to-use micro-adjusting clickers used in rival models.
It is designed from aluminum, a light, durable, rust-resistant material used to manufacture quality cargo-carrying systems. The frame has a black powder finish that keeps away corrosive elements, alongside enhancing the rack’s aesthetics.
TomaHawk rack features a universal crossbar-bar locking system that fits on round, square, and factory crossbars. You can attach it snugly without the need for extra mounting brackets or tools.
It doesn’t come into contact with your bike. You just ratchet the rack’s hook over your bike’s front wheel, and then, secure the wheels with straps. It is, therefore, an excellent fit for those who wouldn’t want to scratch their precious bikes.
- Built to last
- Mounts on any crossbar
- Doesn’t require wheel removal
- Installs easily
- Not ideal for the regular bikes with thin wheels
7 CyclingDeal 1 Bike Fork Mount Rack
If you are on a budget, and yet you want a good bike roof rack to carry your bike when going for a camping tour, visiting a bike mechanic, or even taking your bike home after purchase, CyclingDeal’s 1-bike fork-mount rack would be the best pick for you.
Despite the price tag, this bicycle roof rack comes with several features found on its high-end models. It is designed from premium metal to stand the test of time, and it is coated with steel powder to resist rusting and corrosion.
Like its rivals on this list, CyclingDeal 1-Bike fork mount rack comes with a universal mounting bracket that can fit on all standard crossbars or roof rails. You can fix it on aero, round, square, and oval crossbars with a maximum thickness of 50mm.
Equipped with a sturdy frame holder and a tie-down strap, this best bike roof rack holds your bike steadily in an upright position. Nevertheless, you will have to remove the bicycle’s front wheel before you secure it on the roof rack.
While detaching your bike’s front wheel will help you load your bike quickly onto your car’s roof, it may be take up much of your effort and time to attach and detach the wheel, each time you want to transport your bike.
- Fits on all crossbars
- Has a one year warranty
- Less costly
- Has a steel powder coating to minimize corrosion
- Requires front-wheel removal
- Cannot support bikes weighing above 29lbs
8 ROCK BROS suction cup bike rack
Fitted with strong suction cups, this bike roof rack stands as the best fit for vehicles without crossbars, as well as those with weak roof rails. The suction cups attach directly onto your sedan, van, hatchback, or any other vehicle’s roof effortlessly.
Rock Bros bike rack with suction cups uses the innovative vacuum pumping technology to stick firmly onto your car’s roof. They won’t give up even when the roof rack is fully loaded with your bike, as long as you drive below 120 kilometers per hour.
This best bike roof rack uses a tough clamp and sturdy Velcro straps to secure your mountain bike, road bike, BMX, or any other bike. It can comfortably support any bike weighing up to 30lbs.
Designed from aluminum, ROCK Bros bike rack’s fork clamp can withstand exposure to weather elements and regular abuse for many years to come. Its black finish blends well with most car paints, and it provides extra protection against weather elements.
Fixing this bike rack on your car’s roof isn’t difficult. You just clean your car’s roof, dry it, and then press the suction cups onto the clean roof. Your rack will stick firmly without scratching your car’s paint. Installation takes a few minutes.
An instruction guide that comes along with this bike rack walks you through the installation process. So, if you get lost while fixing the roof rack, or you just don’t want to miss out on any crucial step, refer to the manual.
- Easy to install
- You can use it to carry almost all bike types
- An excellent choice for vehicles without a crossbar
- Quality guaranteed
- Built to last
- Requires front wheel removal
- Not ideal for those who drive their cars at a speed of 120kmph
9 Thule Upride Bike Rack
Thule Upride features an innovative design which holds bikes by their wheels, instead of supporting them by the frame. This innovative design makes it an ideal option for carrying bikes with carbon frames, those with brittle polishes, as well as those with non-traditional frame designs.
Also, you can use this bike roof rack from Thule to carry the ordinary Mountain, road, BMX, hybrid, or any other bike with a wheel diameter of 20-29 inches, and a maximum weight of 44lbs.
Fitted with a universal locking system, this bike roof rack mounts on virtually all standard roof bars. You can use it on vehicles with aero, square, round, or aftermarket crossbars without using tools.
Thule Upride bike rack comes with two locks to enhance your bike’s safety while on transit. One secures the bike roof rack to your car’s crossbar, and the other lock safeguards the bicycle to the bike stand.
Securing your bicycle on this rack is simple. You just position your bike on the stand and then secure your bike’s front wheel using the rack’s hook, and the rear wheel using the rack’s ratcheting wheel strap.
Thule’s engineers designed this rack from a light but sturdy aluminum, an alloy that is virtually resistant to weather-related corrosion. In fact, you can leave the bike rack attached to your car’s roof for several days without issue.
- Supports adult and kid bikes
- Designed to last
- Doesn’t require wheel removal
- Mounts on all vehicle crossbars
- Mounting your bike on this rack is quite cumbersome
- The hook doesn’t secure bikes with thin tires tightly
10 SeaSucker Single Bike Rack for cars
This SeaSucker uses octopus style rubber suckers to stick on your car’s roof. It is suitable for cyclists who are unable to fit the standard roof racks on their vehicles, as well as those whose cars lack a roof rail or a crossbar.
You can also attach this rack on the trunk or hatchback of BMWs, Sedans, SUVs, Mazda, and any other car.
SeaSucker’s rubber suction cups are coated with a UV inhibitor to shield them against the damage resulting from regular exposure to direct sunlight.
Unlike the large crossbar-mounted roof racks, this rack from SeaSucker weighs less, and it has an ultra-compact profile that can even fit in your backpack. This feature makes it an ideal fit for cycling enthusiasts who want a unit that they can carry around easily, even when not attached to their car’s roof.
Even with the compact profile, this best bike roof rack can support bicycles that weigh 45 pounds. It grades among those best bike roof racks with the highest weight limit on this best list.
Installing the SeaSucker Talon onto your car’s roof isn’t complicated. You simply pump the suction cups until they stick onto your car’s roof firmly. An indicator band on the suction cups lets you know when the roof rack is securely attached and ready for use.
The SeaSucker Talon comes with two rubber vacuum cups. One has a fork mount that locks your bike’s front wheel, and another one has a ratcheting wheel band that secures the bike’s back wheel.
- Easy to install and uninstall
- Compatible with all bikes
- Suitable for cars with no crossbars
- Doesn’t scratch your vehicle’s paint
- Satisfaction guaranteed
- Can detach easily if attached wrongly
- Requires front wheel removal
What to Consider When Buying a Good Bike Roof Rack
· Check the bike roof rack’s weight
We all know that a car’s roof is not designed to carry heavy luggage. Hence, if you don’t want to overwhelm it, we suggest that you shop around for a lightweight but durable bike roof rack. In that way, you will relieve the roof from unnecessary weights that can fuel its wear and tear.
Into the bargain, light bike roof racks are easy to assemble and disassemble on your vehicle’s roof, single-handedly. If you settle on a heavy one, you will need to ask someone else to help you load or offload it from your car’s roof whenever you want to use your rack.
That is the reason why most manufacturers design their bike roof racks from aluminum, one of the lightest construction materials. Also, you can find light roof racks designed from stainless steel.
· Ease of assembly
Idyllically, bike roof racks aren’t intended to stay permanently on your car’s roof rails. You will only need to install them when carrying your bike and get them uninstalled once you get the bike to its intended destination.
For that reason, a good bike roof rack should have a locking system that attaches onto your car’s crossbar effortlessly. Such a mounting system will give you the freedom to attach or detach it anytime without using much effort and wasting a lot of time.
· Strength and durability
Just like any accessory, a good bike rack should serve you for a reasonable period before it wears out. Otherwise, you will keep wasting your hard-earned dollars on purchasing a bike roof rack each year.
But, how can you identify a bike roof rack that can serve you for long? We propose that you shop around for one designed from construction materials that can bear up heavy use and abuse for a reasonable period.
Many manufacturers prefer aluminum since it has reasonable strength, and it is virtually resistant to rusting and corrosion that can result from regular exposure to weather elements. Others use stainless steel or industrial-grade plastic. However, while these construction materials are as durable as aluminum, they are heavy.
Apart from looking for one built from premium materials, we suggest that you invest in a bike roof rack coated weather-resistant finish to minimize corrosion, a major cause of accelerated wear.
· Learn from other buyers
It is hard to gauge the quality of bike roof racks just by appearance. Thus, if you don’t want to fall in the trap of deceptive marketing promises, get the views of people who have used the bike rack you are eyeing before you purchase.
Ask friends or relatives to recommend a good bike roof rack that they have used. If they have never tried one, check out online reviews and testimonials from people who have already purchased and used the roof rack you intend to buy.
You may want to keep off those bike roof racks with many negative reviews since they may disappoint you when you need them most.
Different models of bike rack cars are designed to support bikes with varying wheel diameters, as well as fit on crossbars with a certain width. Therefore, before you buy a certain bicycle roof rack, confirm that it can fit on your vehicle and it can support your bike’s weight.
If you have multiple vehicles and or bikes, get a bike roof rack with a universal mounting system and bike frame holder. Suck racks will save you from buying separate units for different cars or bikes.
If your car doesn’t have roof rails or a crossbar, search around for a bike roof rack with suction cups. While many people doubt the stability of bike racks with suction cups, experts say that they are as reliable as their crossbar-mounted counterparts.
· Stability and security
Stability is a critical factor to take into account when looking to purchase a suitable bike roof rack. Good models should secure your bike’s wheels and frame firmly to give you the confidence you need to focus on driving without worrying about your bike falling off your car’s roof.
Apart from stability and security, a good bike roof rack should have a safety lock to deter theft. This feature is essential when traveling to places with poor security, or when you intend to leave your bike on your vehicle unmonitored.
Bike roof racks are essential for people who want to transport their bikes using their cars. Though finding a good model for your car roof can be a real hassle, more so if you are looking to buy a bike rack for the first time, and you don’t have a particular model in mind.
Are you unable to pick the best roof rack from the vast choices in bike shops? If yes, shop around for one designed from a sturdy but light construction material. Probably, you should get one designed from aluminum, a durable but light construction material.
Besides construction material, search for a bike roof rack designed to keep your bike stable and secure while on transit. Wobbly roof racks can deny you the peace of mind you need to focus on driving.
What if you lack time to gauge each bike roof rack in your favorite bike store? If you lack time to assess each bike rack, we evaluated ten of the best bike roof racks you would want to try out. Our picks are designed to fit on most vehicles and carry any bike.
Moreover, the bike roof racks on this best list are designed to endure regular loading and exposure to external elements, and they provide excellent stability and security. We hope that we saved you from buying a roof rack that could have disappointed.