How to Fit Thule Roof Bars

Updated February 21, 2017

Thule is a European company that solves cargo-carrying problems by offering various roof-mounted carriers and racks for vehicles. The Thule roof rack is comprised of four "feet" that are mounted to the roof of the vehicle. The roof bars -- which are purchased separately -- are then mounted to the feet to complete the assembly. You can fit Thule roof bars to your vehicle in just a few minutes with no special tools.

Install four Thule roof feet to the top of the vehicle in accordance with the instructions that came with the kit, if necessary.

Pull straight out on the tensioning cam on the inside of one of the feet. Pull up on the large square opening on the top of the foot and insert a Thule roof bar through the opening.

Continue sliding the bar through the foot until the end of the bar reaches to the foot on the opposite side of the roof. Pull out on the tensioning cam and pull up on the opening on top of the foot and insert the bar through.

Slide the bar as needed so that there is an equal amount of bar overhanging the outboard sides of each foot.

Place a fit kit bracket -- included with the feet -- over the outboard side of one of the feet. Screw a foot handle through the bracket and into the foot -- being careful not to cross-thread the bolt -- to secure the bracket and the bar into place. Pull back on the handle until it locks the tensioning cam in place. Insert the tab in the top of the handle into the slot on the bracket. Push the handle against the bracket until it is fully seated. Repeat for the foot on the opposite side of the bar.

Push the protective rubber caps into the end of each bar until they are fully seated.

Repeat to install the remaining bar at the opposite end of the roof.


Check the amount of overhang on each bar to ensure the bar did not move when the tensioning cams were locked down. Pull up on the handle on each foot, then slide the bar to the desired position if it did move. Push the handles back down to lock the bar into place.

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