How to Fit Roof Racks

Updated April 17, 2017

Anyone who has travelled understands the popularity of roof racks. These devices are installed atop vehicles to transport luggage and other items. As a side benefit, passengers also enjoy greater leg room inside the vehicle. Make sure you buy a rack that fits your car to make installation easier.

Measure the roof of your car from the left side to the right side. Make sure you measure from end to end to determine the size of the roof rack needed. Clean the roof with a dry rag before installing the roof rack.

Find the load bars and the railing feet included with roof rack. Fit the railing feet inside the load bar. Assemble the other three railing feet and load bars (There should be four total). Make sure the railing feet fit snugly.

Place the combined load bar and railing feet on the stocked rail on the roof of your car. Tighten it to the car by twisting the knob on the side of the railing feet. Make sure it does not budge when you gently push it.

Install the rack to the roof by attaching it to the load bar. Fasten the hooks of the rack to the load bar. Twist the knob of the hook to hold the rack in place.


Aside from roof racks, different types of rack accessories can be installed to carry ski boards, bags, kayaks, and other large items.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Dry rag
  • Car roof rack set
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About the Author

Based in New Jersey, Robert Raphael has been writing health and technology articles since 1993. His work has appeared in “Natural Living” magazine and “Extreme PC” magazine. Raphael received the Jonathan Melman Literary Award in 1994. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Brandeis University.