A Guide to Roof-Racking Anything (Not Just Your Gear)

A Guide to Roof-Racking Anything (Not Just Your Gear)

When we travel, we will pack for the occasion, whether camping, lodging, or off-roading. Each item we bring is an essential element that we store on our roof racks to make use of space most efficently. Anything can go onto the roof rack system, but each of these items will need to remain secured throughout the ride, which requires you to configure the luggage layout for safety.

Why Are Roof Racks a Reliable Choice for Storage?

Although you may travel alone and have plenty of room in your vehicle's trunk or back seat, you lack the interior space that some items need to fit comfortably. The roof rack offers you the option of storing your equipment on top of the car to give you more breathing room inside the vehicle. Keeping the items on the roof gives you better visibility on the road, and decreases the chance of them obstructing your sight.

The roof rack will also prevent the potential threat of an object accidentally falling on the floor and rolling underneath the gas and brake pedals. And the roof rack will easily handle bulky items that are too large for the back seat and the trunk.

What Can You Store on a Roof Rack?

The roof rack has the ability to carry items both large and small, as long as they are secured or tied down. These items may range from a toaster oven to an ATV, provided your car will sustain the weight. Virtually it's easy to roof-rack anything on the roof rack for any occasion you may need it.


On a trip, bags are an essential item to travel with, as they are easily accessible and easy to handle. There are a variety of bags to use for various occasions; duffel bags are great for a short hotel stay or a visit to family, while a backpack serves as a comfortable, useful bag on a camping trip. You may store multiple bags on a roof rack given the amount of space available, and since most bags are easy to tie down, with their malleable fabric and multiple loops, it won't take much effort to secure them to the rack.

Electronics and Furniture

We live in an age where electronics are one of the constants in most folks’ lives, and we use different devices daily. The various electronics and machines we use, both large and small, will fit onto the roof rack. Devices such as radios, fans, and other machines will stay secure on the roof rack with the proper straps and tie-downs.

The roof rack is also reliable for carrying furniture, making it optimal for moving. There are different levels of sturdiness of roof racks, and a tougher roof rack means you may carry more weight. Roof racks offer couches, tables, and chairs a sturdy platform that will take the weight off of the car. However, your best option for transporting heavy, unwieldy pieces of furniture is usually a truck; you don't want to topple over when you make hard turns on the road!

Camping Equipment

Camping is a rejuvenating activity that allows you to get outside and immerse yourself in nature. Your roof rack will carry camping supplies such as tents and coolers with little effort. You will need to be careful to ensure that the cooler has nothing in it and that any equipment that expands, such as the tent or a tarp, is wrapped tightly; the roof rack will hold the supplies, but it won't always stop them from opening or unraveling, so wrap them tightly to keep them in place.

Sports Equipment

For those who love outdoor sports, the roof rack will hold various recreational items, such as bikes, kayaks, canoes, and sleds for winter adventures. Heavier items such as dirt bikes may require a stronger roof rack and more straps to ensure they don’t move around as much while making turns. These are attachable but require correct positioning to ensure they stay in place while on the road.

Keep in Mind Your Items’ Attributes

A roof rack system is a competent tool in your traveling efforts, but it also requires attention to detail to reduce the risk of items falling. You must be mindful of each piece of gear or luggage to have a safe journey. When securing them to a roof rack, measurements and positioning are essential.


A roof rack will handle only a certain amount of weight, as stated in its manual, even if the roof rack mounts are highly durable. You need to consider the heft of each item before placing it on the roof rack, as multiple objects will begin to add weight. It is always a good idea to overestimate the weight of each object, so you are unlikely to go over the weight limit.


Although roof racks can handle bulky objects of various shapes, measuring each item is essential to ensure you have enough space for other gear. If you plan on taking recreational equipment that cannot be folded up or made more compact, the size may be too cumbersome, and the items may simply be too challenging to maneuver. Always take the time to consider the potential risks associated with certain pieces of equipment.

Sharp or blunt objects are an essential risk to consider; ski poles are thin and don’t take up much space, for example, but they are sharp and may hurt someone if they slip off the rack. Measure the shapes and sizes of each object to gauge how much space they'll take and tie them down securely so they don’t slip.


Every vehicle has a maximum weight limit and a certain amount of durability, just like the roof rack. And although it is possible to roof-rack anything, you need to be careful where you position your cargo. Cars have a center of gravity that must remain stable.

If the vehicle has a dramatic tilt in one direction, this may affect driving and cause the car to tip over after a hard turn. To avoid this, place each item on the roof rack in a position that evenly distributes the weight. A balanced vehicle will make for a balanced drive with little chance of an accident.

How To Ensure That Anything Roof-Racked Stays Secure

You can utilize many methods to keep items secured and immobile. Straps and tie-downs work well for items on the edge of the vehicle that could roll off and will keep your cargo battened down tightly for security. Adding more crossbars will give you more versatility in how you want to place your belongings as well.

Roof-racking is an excellent way to ensure you have space inside your vehicle and a reliable carrier system outside the vehicle. But you must take advantage of the proper measures of security to protect the car, the items, and yourself.

A Guide to Roof-Racking Anything (Not Just Your Gear)

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