There are many advantages of attaching a roof rack to your family vehicle; namely that you can increase your carrying capacity while maintaining safe visuals through your rear view window while on the road. A roof rack can be used to carry bicycles, kayaks, mattresses, or other large or bulky items that don’t normally fit in the boot of a car.
When you transport items using a roof rack, you need to pay attention to Queensland regulations on securing loads. These are under information about projecting loads because your loads project over the normal dimensions of your vehicle. Anything you carry on your roof should not extend outward past 150mm to the right, left, or behind the vehicle.
Find Your Maximum Load Capacity
Even if you want to transport very heavy duty items, if your car simply can’t carry over a certain amount, there’s no point. You should find out what the maximum load and projection capacities are for your vehicle based on your owner’s manual and go from there.
Then, estimate what you expect to carry in a typical year. Camping or fishing gear? Kayaks? Bicycles? How many and what materials are used? Generally, you can find the weight specifications of the products you own and transport on the manufacturer’s website. Doing the math beforehand will help make sure you make the right purchase.
Roof Rails and Racks
You need two parts to secure items to your vehicle’s roof — rails and racks. Some vehicles come with rails already installed, so you can attach your rack directly to it with heavy duty clamps. Others need a rail installation kit, which attaches rails to your door jams.
Never install a roof rack that will go over the capacity of your vehicle. Your owner’s manual will tell you what size rack you can fit onto your car.
Securing Items onto Your Roof Rack
The biggest worry with putting items on top of your car is that they will slide off. However, by using the right kinds of security measures, you can make sure your load stays exactly where it is the entire drive. Here are a few things you should do to secure things onto your racks.
Check Your Straps
Make sure your straps do not have any significant wear and tear, and replace them immediately if they are ripped. You should place the buckles of your straps on the items you are carrying rather than the car itself.
Use a Cargo Net
Using a cargo net over all of your roof rack is the best way to get peace of mind regarding the items you’re transporting. You can cover your entire load easily and safely with stop-rip mesh, such as Safeguard netting. With load ratings up to 1000 kg, you’ll know that any item you have will stay in place as you accelerate, minimising risks on the road.