Many off-roaders and overlanders are familiar with the roof rack and the capabilities it brings to the vehicle. This helpful accessory to your vehicle will help you in numerous situations. Like most equipment, it will eventually show signs of wear. Knowing what signs to look for when your roof rack needs a replacement is essential.
After owning a roof rack for some time, the natural elements, from precipitation to wind, may wear down the integrity of the metal and cause rust. Rust on a roof rack is dangerous and may lead to sudden breaks if you place too much weight on it. Your roof rack needs to be evenly strong if you want the most efficiency while carrying your luggage as you travel. Don’t ignore rust when it first appears anywhere on the rack.
Over time, you'll use a roof rack to carry large and small objects. You may have sports gear, camping equipment, or bags and suitcases that you couldn't fit inside the vehicle.
Constantly moving items or jostling from uneven roads may rock the rack and unintentionally damage it. Damage is a clear sign it's time to replace your roof rack, and if you continue to use it, the damage will worsen and potentially impact your vehicle’s ability to hold extra items.
Bending in Various Parts
A roof rack should support the items you place on it and maintain that support for long periods. You may notice that the material bends in some spots, such as the crossbars or the tips of the towers, after extended time with continuous weight on the roof rack.
The roof rack manufacturer will provide a manual that tells you how much weight the rack will support. If you constantly exceed the weight limit, the rack will sink in until you feel the full weight on your car, which may damage the roof. If you notice a dent in your vehicle’s roof, it may be time to replace your roof rack with a better, sturdier option.
You've Owned It for Years
It's normal to keep equipment for years and not replace it until you can't use it anymore. It's time to find a replacement if you've used the same roof rack for the past decade.
New roof rack designs have features that make storage easier, making older designs look and feel obsolete. If your roof rack is reliable and frequently serves you well, you could hold onto it for a little longer. Be mindful that you risk the rack wearing down, rusting, or receiving damage.
Vehicles need great roof racks to transport items, but it's essential to know when to replace them. Look for these signs and ensure you have the best roof rack for your car so you won't worry about poor storage or performance as you travel.