Expert Tips for Choosing the Right Roof Rack

Having a big car isn’t always enough. There will come a time when you might need more space in your car to make room for your stuff and more passengers. What you’ll need to prepare for this situation is to add roof racks to your car.

Roof Racks: A Closer Look

If you own a car, you’ve probably heard of roof racks. Roof racks may look simple, but they bring a ton of benefits. One of the obvious advantages of having this is that you have more room in your car. This makes road trips more enjoyable as you and your fellow travelers can sit comfortably throughout the drive.

Another thing that you can benefit from roof racks is that it adds versatility to your car. With this, you can carry almost anything you need with you – be it luggage, sports equipment, tents, or even kayaks and canoes.

And believe it or not, it can add safety to your vehicle too. If you have roof racks, it’s easier to maneuver your car, especially if you’re driving uphill, as the weight of your stuff is equally distributed. Thus, there are lesser risks when driving.

On top of that, it positively affects the aesthetics of your car. It makes it look sturdier and stylish, which can make head turns as you drive.

But for you to experience these benefits, you have to get the right roof rack. You see, there’s no one-size-fits-all roof rack. There are several things you need to consider and check before you purchase one. Not to mention, they don’t come with a cheap price tag. So, you need to be more careful when making purchasing decisions.

Your Roof Rack Checklist

With so many kinds of roof racks in the market, it sure is overwhelming if you don’t know much about this car accessory. To ensure that you can get the right one for your needs and not pour your money down the drain, here are some tips for choosing your roof rack.

Know What You Want and Need

In anything you purchase, it is important to know what you need and want. This greatly helps narrow down your options.

When looking for a roof rack, one of the first things to ask yourself is what kind do you want. Do you want something that’s merely for aesthetics? Do you like something more functional? Or do you want it to be both stylish and functional?

If you’re only looking to enhance your car’s appearance, it’s easier to pick which ones will fit your car’s look. But if you’re looking for a functional one, then, you shouldn’t just look for the one you “want;” also ask yourself what you need. Do you need it for recreational or commercial use?

You see, there are different types of roof racks. There’s the naked roof, side rails, fixed point, canopy mounts, and rain gutters. And each of them caters to different needs.

Naked Roof

Don’t be fooled by its name. Just because it’s called “naked,” doesn’t mean it has no rack or rack capabilities. A naked roof actually features slim plastic rails.

This might not be considered as a rack that can carry your stuff by itself. But Prinsu roof rack specialists say it serves as a staging ground for future installations, allowing you to fully customize the rack system you want to use in the future. It’s already attractive on its own, which is perfect for when you only want a roof rack for aesthetics.

Side Rails

The side rails are usually found on vans, SUVs, and conversions. These are typically made with plastic or fiberglass.

They work fine with moving mattresses to a nearby area. But it’s not ideal for carrying weighty objects even if you strap them down because of their material. Still, they are a great addition to cars and make future installations easier compared to a naked roof.

They look sturdy, though, which can confuse car owners. But they’re not meant to carry heavy loads.

Canopy Mounts

Canopy mounts, on the other hand, are typically seen in larger vehicles. This includes vans, RVs, and trucks. These are sturdier as they are made with metal. It can hold massive weight. Plus, it can store more pieces of equipment than the first two.

This makes it ideal for people who travel a lot over great distances. But they come with an expensive price tag too. So, if you’re not a person who travels a lot, go for other roof racks instead of this.

Rain Gutters

This type of roof rack was initially made for aesthetic purposes. It was a huge deal between the 80s and the 90s that it kind of contributed a lot to the evolution of the car industry.

Since rain gutters were so common back in the day, companies eventually worked around this design and made it more functional. Even today, you can still find these, and they still provide sturdy and reliable storage for your stuff. The best part of it is that it gives your car a unique look regardless of your car’s size.

Knowing the functions of the roof racks you’re eyeing will help you determine which one to purchase based on your needs. This way, you will not waste your money on a rack that can’t hold the stuff you’ll be bringing with you.

Get to Know Your Car

Roof racks vary in size and weight. What fits a truck might not fit your car because of its size and weight.

So, once you determine your needs and wants, it is also worth considering if it actually fits your car. Before you checkout, decide how long and wide you’ll need the rack to be. This way, you won’t buy a rack that’s too big or too small for your car.

Make sure to double-check your measurements too. Always keep a measuring device with you as you visit shops and as you’re installing your roof rack. This way, they’re parallel to each other and are evenly-spaced to make sure that the weight of your stuff is evenly distributed.

Know How Much It Can Hold

Roof racks come in different shapes and sizes. They also have different capabilities.

All of them may look the same at first glance. But not all of them are made with the same materials. Some are made of plastic, others are made from fiberglass, there are those that are built with metal, etc. Thus, not all of them can carry the same weight.

Plastics and fiberglass aren’t meant to carry heavy objects. Metals, on the other hand, are sturdier and more reliable for carrying bigger stuff over long distances. So it’s best to know how much weight they can hold.

Once you spot a roof rack that looks just right for your car, make sure to ask about the materials used for it. This will help you determine if it will fit your needs, so you will not waste any cent. You can also ask for pieces of advice from the shop, and they can introduce various designs and materials that will suit your needs more.

Calculate Your Budget

It’s easy to find roof racks in the market. Online shops alone can give you thousands of results. But another question is, can you afford the one you’re eyeing on?

Roof racks come in different price tags too. This is because their pricing depends on many factors such as design, durability, functionality, brand, etc. Sure, that one roof rack may suit your needs; but does it suit your budget too?

Your budget is also something to consider when purchasing this kind of accessory. So before you seal a deal, don’t forget to ask yourself how much you’re willing to pay for a roof rack. Will it be worth it? Will it make you break the bank?

See What Others Have to Say

True enough, it’s your money you will be spending on your roof rack. But others’ feedback is also worth listening to.

Sometimes, it’s not enough that you know what you want and what you need. Knowing what others have to say about a product helps too. This way, you won’t regret your purchase decisions.

So before you say yes to a roof rack, don’t forget to check the reviews about the shop you’re buying from. This will help you to know if their products are long-lasting, faulty, or whatnot. It’s important to read their previous clients’ comments as they are the ones who already had their hands on the product you’re eyeing on.

Additionally, this will help you know how they respond to each issue. Are they professional enough? Do they provide good product support? Do they sell poorly-made rip-offs? Will they stress you out? Will they just take your money and disappear?

Knowing the answers to questions like these will help you foresee any issue in the future if you decide to purchase from them. Plus, you’ll have an idea how they will treat you if you encounter faults on the product.

If they didn’t handle the issue very well with their previous clients, it’s better to just look for another shop as there’s a high chance that they will do it to you too. Reading about others’ customer experience will prevent any stressful situation.

Ask for Recommendations

Recommendations are one of the factors that drive purchasing decisions. This especially works if the recommendation came from a friend or a family member.

Sure, you can ask experts for pieces of advice. But what will affect your decision more is what your loved ones have to say about it.

An expert’s advice does matter. However, it is often overshadowed by the recommendations from our loved ones because of the stronger bond and trust that we’ve built with them.

Another factor is that we know them personally too. So it’s easier to tell if they’re telling the truth or not.

In addition to that, because we know them personally, it’s easy to see if they’ve really tried a product or not. This helps you weigh your decisions more as you’re able to hear more honest feedback, compared to online reviews as they are sometimes filtered too.

So before you make a decision and purchase that roof rack you’re contemplating on, try to ask a friend or a family member first for their advice about it. Maybe they know better options with better materials or maybe they can help you find a shop with better deals.

Know Your Shop

Frauds and scams are everywhere. No matter where you go, there’s a chance that you might fall victim to it if you don’t know where to find the right shop. Roof racks are already expensive and no one can afford to lose such an amount of money from a scam or fraud. Thus, it’s vital to know your shop well.

To do this, one of the things you can try is to ask your friends or relatives. There’s a chance that they might know a legitimate shop where you can score great deals.

You can also just search for a shop online. However, before you make a transaction, make sure that they are legitimate sellers. One of the ways to determine that is to look for a verification sign if they have a social media account.

Don’t Settle for Less

Sometimes, when we have limited options in front of us, we just go for the second-best. Unfortunately, at times, we realize that what we bought doesn’t work well at all for us.

If you find yourself stuck, wondering if you should purchase the second-best roof rack near you, it’s better if you’ll just take your time deciding first instead. Who knows, you might find a better deal the next day. Or, you might be able to find the right roof rack that checks all your requirements.

Having a roof rack helps a lot, especially if you travel a lot. But for its perks to be viable, you need to choose the right accessory. These tips will help you narrow down your choices easily.


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