When we travel on the road, it's important to have the best means of convenience for carrying gear and attaching items we will use. For people with a lot of cargo to transport, a roof rack or a roof basket will assist you in storing and transporting. And although both systems offer great benefits to your vehicle, only one is better for your traveling needs.
What Is a Roof Basket?
A roof basket is a type of cargo carrier that attaches to the top of your vehicle. As its name implies, it does have the form of a widened basket that has a layout that's normally as wide as the vehicle's roof. These baskets are collapsible to make a smooth transition between being in use and being stored.
Types of Roof Baskets
There are various roof baskets, but they aren't the most variable styles. Most roof racks will have basket walls that extend and collapse and various forms of bars throughout the basket in different thicknesses. Some baskets may have higher walls that extend straight up or curve, but overall, the various models for roof baskets are similar in both structure and function.
What Can I Do With a Roof Basket?
Roof baskets are useful in carrying items and increasing storage capacity for your vehicle. Straps are attachable to the basket's walls to secure the gear stored in the basket. Using the roof basket will allow you to store more loose items, which may help in shorter trips when you only need to store a few items.
The Pros of a Roof Basket
The walls of the roof basket make it easy to secure or attach items since there are more surfaces to secure them to. Setting up a roof basket is simple and easy, as the extension of the basket walls only requires using locks to keep the walls erect.
The Cons of a Roof Basket
Although the roof basket is simple, it lacks unique features to set it apart from any other roof storage system. The roof basket is just that—a basket on the roof that holds items.
You aren't able to attach various pieces of gear that will help you on the road, like with the roof rack system. Also, there aren't as many upgrades it can have to ensure your luggage has more security.
What Is a Roof Rack?
A roof rack is a system of various parts that secure items on your vehicle's roof. Roof racks come in various forms and sizes to perform different functions. Compared to roof baskets, roof racks have seen a larger uptick in popularity and use as more people travel by road.
Types of Roof Racks
You may use numerous configurations for your storage and transportation needs. Some roof racks feature more crossbars for added support of heavier items and increased security. Others sit taller to ensure items don't roll off the roof.
Certain vehicles come with smaller rails on their roofs called side flush rails with fixed points for towers to attach to, while others come manufactured for towers to attach to the drip rail. Various vehicles have different roof racks to suit their size and capabilities on the road.
For example, a Toyota 4Runner roof rack will consist of materials such as aluminum and stainless steel, allowing access to the sunroof, and making accessibility easy with handholds.
What Can I Do With a Roof Rack?
Roof racks are for more than just storage and carrying more items. You can also use them to attach features that will help you on the road and while camping.
Floodlights are attachable to some roof rack systems with the correct configuration of crossbars and rails. A rooftop tent is also an available attachment for most roof racks and makes a convenient setup for your camping needs when you don't want to wrestle with a tent.
The Pros of a Roof Rack
A roof rack offers plenty of flexibility for travelers and campers. You can attach, secure, and transport your gear in various ways.
The various upgrades you can make give you multiple opportunities to carry more or offer support for heavier items. Carrying larger items such as bikes, boats, and other gear for outdoor activities is easier with a roof rack and the many accessories that come with it.
The Cons of a Roof Rack
Depending on your roof rack system, you may need to perform careful driving to ensure any items on top don't topple over. Smaller cars may also have increased stress on the roof with a roof rack attached. The added weight may be too much and could damage the car.
The Main Differences Between Roof Racks and Roof Baskets
While both roof racks and roof baskets have been used in carrying cargo, it is clear that there are differences between the two. The roof basket is more structured, while the roof rack is abstract, with various parts that may be added and replaced.
There is more freedom in configuring a roof rack, which allows you to carry more items and attach more things. Although a roof basket has an attached wall surrounding it and has an easier setup, the roof rack allows for variations in walling in cargo for better security.
Which Is the Best Choice?
Between buying a roof rack or a roof basket, the roof rack is easily the better choice. It's important to have life options, including how you travel. The roof basket is effective, but it’s too simple compared to what you can do with the rack. Roof racks will help in various situations and are adaptable to your various needs on the road.
The various roof rack accessories will assist in adding more security for your items and mitigate the few cons of the roof rack system. Most roof racks are also easy to disassemble and store away, much like the roof basket, so you won't need to worry about keeping it on your vehicle all the time.
The roof rack is a great choice compared to the roof basket, and any traveler will benefit from its many uses. Adding a roof rack to your vehicle is a good choice to help you as you drive through the world and create easier transportation and storage for your vehicle.