Additionally, it comes with four foam pads that you can adjust depending on the width of your craft. We still recommend getting another pair of ropes to secure the bow and the stern to the tow hooks.
The thing that we love the most about TMS products is that they offer a lifetime warranty on them. Thus, if you ever face any problem while using these J-cradles, you can quickly get in touch with the company to solve it.
Type: J-cradle Maximum weight: 75 pounds Maximum width: 36 inches Construction: Steel Item weight: 7.9 pounds Foam cushioning Lifetime warranty Plus, it has no virtual weight limit, which means that you can transport those bulky fishing kayaks without a problem.
The insides have a non-slip rubber padding to prevent scratching the hull. The package contains four movable pads, which you can adjust depending on the dimensions of the kayak.
It has a highly flexible operation Easy to use and install The rubber pads offer a secure a tight grip Compatible with most aftermarket crossbars It is quite easy to hit the kayak with the edge of the saddle and damage the hull AA-Racks doesn’t provide information about the maximum weight the rack can handle.
According to the supplier, the rack can take up to 40 pounds of weight off from the kayak that you are carrying. Once it is in place, you can secure both the bow and stern to the tow hooks of your car with the Thule Quicker tie-down straps.
The lift assistant takes 40 pounds off the kayak weight. Additionally, it takes little space, which means that you can use it with SUVs and sedans alike.
These J-cradles fit most aftermarket crossbars and are remarkably easy to install and use. Plus, it comes with 2 straps to fasten the kayak to the rack, and 2 tie-down cords to secure the bow and stern to the tow hooks.
Sadly, they don’t prove the maximum weight, although we believe that it has to be around 80 pounds since the rack construction is similar to other models that have this capacity. However, we recommend asking directly to the supplier or read the instructions before using the rack.
Maximum width: 36 inches Construction: Stainless steel Item weight: 17 pounds Foam and rubber padding Fully foldable Palette Yakima Allow is a fantastic J-cradle kayak roof rack and one of the best in this list.
First, it has a durable, stainless steel frame with rubber and foam padding. Additionally, it comes ready to install out-of-the-box, which means that you don’t have to waste time reading the instructions and figuring out where each piece goes.
Yes, you can use this rack in its traditional J-cradle position, or as a vertical stacker to accommodate two crafts at the same time. Though, Yakima suggests a 24 inches minimum distance between each bar.
The Malone Seating has a flexible polycarbonate construction with rubber padding that easily adapts to the kayak width. Therefore, the rack doesn’t increase the drag like other carriers in this list.
Plus, since they are quite small, you will have plenty of room to accommodate the rest of your gear. Additionally, while this is a low-profile saddle that has little wind resistance, it doesn’t perform as well with wide kayaks.
Similarly, the Seating design allows a quick and easy load and unload. Just fit the kayak in the back saddle and squeeze the rest of the craft to the front.
Type: Saddles Maximum weight: 70 pounds Maximum width: 36 inches Construction: Polycarbonate Item weight: 10 pounds Rubber padding Saleslady, most of the racks available in the market are either for sedans, SUVs, or trucks.
Fortunately, Candidacy has your back here with this temporary inflatable roof rack. The universal inflatable roof rack stays true to its name, as it fits virtually any car in the market.
Handicrafts added a handy bag to store your inflatable kayak rack while it is not in use. According to the Candidacy, this 420-denier nylon rack can hold up to 180 pounds of cargo.
However, we don’t recommend pushing it to its limits, especially if you are driving through a bumpy road. Additionally, it comes with four straps, one for each rack and the other to fasten the bow and stern.
Another Thule kayak roof rack that is quite similar to the Yakima Allow we reviewed before. While not in use, the Thule Hull-a-port AT quickly folds, so you don’t need to dismantle once you finish using it.
Type: J-cradle and vertical stacker Maximum weight: 75 pounds in J-cradle position and 130 as a vertical stacker Maximum width: 36 inches Construction: Stainless with plastic Item weight: 12.5 pounds Foam and rubber padding Fully foldable You have to purchase another set of straps if you wish to take two kayaks at the same time.
The Rhino stack rack can handle up to 4 kayaks at the same time, provided that they fit in the roof of your car, of course. It has an anodized alloy that is strong enough to keep all kayaks in place for the duration of your trip.
Additionally, each pole has a rubber padding to protect the inner kayak and a nylon reinforced base. And, make sure to read the instructions before hauling 4 kayaks in the roof and drive away.
Type: Vertical stacker Maximum weight: No information available Maximum width: 32 inches Construction: Anodized alloy Item weight: 7.47 pounds Rubber padding Foldable Sales is an ideal option for those looking for a simple, affordable, and reliable kayak roof rack.
Additionally, it comes with two straps to fasten the kayak to the crossbar, and two extra cords to secure the bow and the stern. And, even though AA-racks don’t show the maximum weight, we’ve tested this rack with a 90-pound kayak, and it manages to handle it.
The biggest drawback is that it is quite easy to hit the kayak with the saddle while loading it. So, we recommend resting the kayak in the bars first, and then move the pads to wrap it.
In this guide, we will show you the relevant features of kayak roof racks. With all this information at hand, you should be able to find the best kayak roof rack for you.
Therefore, the answer to the question of which is the best kayak roof rack depends on your particular need. A great thing about saddles is that they can accommodate large or small kayaks and take little space on the roof.
You can adjust each one separately to accommodate kayaks of different sizes, which is the main advantage of this design. In contrast, the second type of racks is a set of single saddles.
All that you need to do is to put the craft in the back carrier and squeeze it to the front. J-Cradles: If you are planning to engage in a long trip, and bringing a lot of gear, you should consider going for a J-like rack.
The most significant advantage of this type of rack is its small footprint. Additionally, J-cradles are sturdy, durable, and more than capable of handling large yaks.
Keep in mind that, as the kayak is almost in an upright position, the overall height will increase. Therefore, make sure that there aren’t any branches or bars that could hit your craft.
You don’t need sidebars to fix temporary racks, as they typically come with straps that you can use to fasten it at either side. Additionally, you have to rely on your strength and nothing else to secure the rack in place.
Therefore, we don’t recommend using this type of rack for long trips, especially under harsh conditions. This time, the kayak sits entirely in a perpendicular position.
However, it will be a little difficult to lift and put the kayak in place. Thus, make sure that the road is free from anything that can hit the roof rack.
Now that you have a general idea of the different kayak racks available, it is time to discuss some relevant aspects of these gadgets, and some extra things that you should consider before making any purchase. Most kayak roof racks come with a maximum weight rating.
Usually, you can exceed it, though we don’t recommend it, especially if you are engaging in a long trip at high speeds. Fixing things at the top of the car will only increase wind resistance, that’s a fact.
As a result, you will notice a decrease in the fuel economy, especially after long trips. Generally speaking, the farther the kayak sits from the roof, the more resistance it poses.
Do you remember when we told you to leave some room for error in the past section? The built material has a close relationship with the rack quality, and, of course, price.
For instance, plastic or foam carriers are the cheapest gadgets available. Plus, if you are transporting a kayak that is worth a month’s rent, you must make sure that it is well protected.
You should check the cord material beforehand to guarantee proper functioning. As kayak roof racks go above your car, the type of vehicle has an impact on which model you should purchase.
For instance, large SUVs have more room in the roof to accommodate larger kayak carriers or more than one rack at the time. For example, two sets of J-cradle racks can easily fit in an SUV roof without too much trouble.
Fortunately, most kayak roof suppliers provide information about product compatibility. Thus, if this is your case, a temporary rack or foam pad is the only logical choice.
Additionally, bear in mind that racks for a pick-up truck may not work on a sedan or SUV. For example, it will be difficult for you to lift the kayak to the roof if you have a massive SUV.
But don’t worry, you can either ask for a little help or purchase a rack with gas-assisted lifting or rollers. You must make sure that the rack can securely hold the kayak in place.
It might sound odd, but the distance influences the type of rack that you should purchase. For example, foam or removable racks are not suitable for long trips on a bumpy road.
There is not much of a point of purchasing an expensive rack if you are going to use it a couple of times each year. In contrast, if you are an avid angler that goes to the water each weekend, you should consider investing some good coin in a reliable kayak rack.
Some models like J-cradles and vertical stacker can carry more than one kayak at a time. Hence, if you wish to transport more than one craft at the same time, you should purchase a temporary rack.
Now, let’s take some time to answer some common questions that you may have when browsing for a kayak roof rack. The kayak either sits in its hull or side, and you secure the craft with a couple of ropes.
The main difference, as you can see, is how the kayak sits, and how you set up the rack itself. In the case of temporary racks, you merely need to pass the rope inside the car and tuck it with the door.
Then, you place the kayak in the pads and secure it with a set of straps. The great thing about these models is that they can handle more weight, and you don’t even need tools to attach them to the bars.
Most times, you will be loading the kayak by either a side or the back of the car. In contrast, you must lift the kayak and place it on the rack if you are loading it from the side.
That is a sliding bar whose job is to take the weight off from your arms. Then, pass it under the rack and make another loop around an anchor point.
For extra balance and security, you can tie the kayak to the front and rear of the car. Just take a couple of ropes, make a knot around craft handles, and then tie the other end around the tow hooks.