How to put a Kayak on a Roof Rack

Written by Admin

Mar 31, 2022

March 31, 2022

How to put a Kayak on a Roof Rack

If you have a kayak, you’ll need to know how to put it on your roof rack. It’s not difficult, but there are a few things you need to know before you get started.

First thing first, you’ll need to choose the right roof rack for your car. There are many different types of racks available, so make sure you select one that is compatible with your vehicle. Most kayaks will fit on most types of racks, but it’s always best to check first.

How to put a Kayak on a Roof Rack

Once you have the right rack, you can begin loading your kayak. Start by placing the kayak onto the roof rack crossbars.

If your rack has clamps, make sure they are tightened down securely. Next, you’ll need to secure the kayak in place. This can be done with straps, rope, or bungee cords. Ensure whatever you use is secured tightly so that the kayak doesn’t come loose while driving.

So, now you realize how important it is to follow the right method to put your kayak on a roof rack to drive at peace of mind. Let’s through in detail each of these significant steps for you to know how to put a kayak on a roof rack:

Carrying Your Kayak

– Weight & Size Effect: Weight and size definitely affect how easy it is to carry a kayak on your own. Heavier and larger kayaks are more difficult to move around, especially if you have to lift them onto your car or submit them down a rocky shoreline.

If you’re paddling solo, you’ll want to pay special attention to the size and weight of the kayak you choose so that you can easily handle it both in and out of the water.

– Lift Up a Kayak from Ground: The proper kayak lift technique is to use your legs and hips to generate power, and then use your arms to hold onto the kayak and guide it into position.

First, stand in front of the kayak with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees and squat down, then thrust yourself up and forward using your legs and hips while simultaneously grabbing the kayak’s carrying handles.

Guide the kayak up onto your shoulders, making sure to keep your back straight. Hold on to the kayak with your arms and walk it over to where you want to store it.

– Carrying Methods: This is probably the easiest way to transport a kayak, especially if it’s a lightweight model. All you need is a simple kayak cart that can be attached to the front or back of your vehicle.

If you have a heavier kayak, you may need to carry it on your shoulder. To do this, loop one arm through the cockpit and the other around the back of the boat. Make sure you have a good grip before lifting! 

Have the Right Gear

– Proper Roof Rack: It’s important to have a proper roof rack to transport kayaks because it will keep your kayaks safe and secure while you’re driving.

Without a roof rack, there’s a greater chance that your kayaks could fall off of the car and get damaged or even lost. So if you’re looking to transport your kayaks safely and securely, be sure to invest in a quality roof rack.

– Padding: Paddings play an important role in transporting a kayak. They protect the kayak from scratches and dents, and they also keep the kayak stable by absorbing the shocks during transport.

There are many different types of paddings available, and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. Some paddings are made from foam, while others are made from neoprene or nylon.

– Cam Straps: Cam straps are used to secure a kayak to a vehicle for transportation. They are often used in place of rope because they are less likely to damage the kayak.

The straps go around the kayak and then through the crossbars and sometimes the vehicle’s doorframe or window frame and are tightened down.

This secures the kayak in place and prevents it from slipping or shifting during transport. Typically, cam straps will come in a variety of colours and lengths.

Recommended Products

01. MPH Production Universal Roof Rack – Cross Bars

This Universal Fit For Most 4-Door Models Vehicles ( Cars, SUVs, Trucks, etc.) with Naked Roof. It’s important to note that this will not fit vehicles with actual side rails like integrated side rails raised side rails.

The design is Window-Frame-Type Aluminum Roof Rack Cross Bars With Mounts & Locks.

This is 48″ in Length and an Adjustable Distance of 52″ Maximum in Length. It has a durable Tube Construction With Hold Up To a 150lb Capacity. They attach to side window frames to transport any cargo.

02. Cartman Lashing Straps

Cartman 12-foot long-by-1-inch wide lashing strap in 6-pack. Great for general use cargo tie down where a hook is not needed. Securely tightens loads to 200-pounds of actual use and 600-pounds of break strength.

This features silver protectant finish that offers a rich appearance and 3x more corrosion resistance. This includes solid steel cast metal clamp and a carry bag.

03. HEYTRIP Roof Rack Pads

This is an upgraded version. With a built-in non-slip mat inside, Heytrip roof rack pads will grip the crossbar more tightly. The strong Velcro and adjustable buckle straps of the pad will double secure the pad.

It is designed to fit almost all crossbars. 30 inches wide will give your crossbar full protection. You can protect your kayak/surfboard/SUP/canoe or any other luggage from being scratched. This roof rack pad set comes with all the accessories you need to attach the pads to the crossbar.

Different Orientations

01. Cockpit Down Side

02. Cockpit Up Side

03. J-Style

Putting the Kayak on Roof Rack

Option 01: Lift the kayak into the place with the help of someone else.

Option 02: If you are going solo, first put a blanket/towel to the back of the car above the rear windscreen, then lift the bow of the kayak onto the back of the car. Then lift the kayak from the stern and slide it into place.

Option 03: You could use a sliding bar/wheels that can be fixed to the rear windscreen of your car by air suction cups. First, lift the bow just like in option 02, then slide the stern into place.

Strapping the Kayak

The best way to strap a kayak placed on a roof rack is to use two sets of straps, one around the Hull and one around the cockpit. Thread it through the front and rear tie-down loops on the kayak for the Hull strap.

Cross the strap in front of the cockpit, and then bring it up and over the load bar. After that, bring the strap down under the load bar and back up through the rear tie-down loop. Finally, thread it back through itself and pull tight.

For strapping down the cockpit, start by threading one end of the strap through both side handles of the cockpit.

Then, cross the strap in front of the cockpit opening and bring it up and over the load bar. After that, bring the strap down under the load bar and back up through the side handle on the other side.

Tie-down the Bow & Stern

You can use bungee cords to secure the kayak bow and stern. Bungee cords, you’ll want to attach one end to the edge of the bow/stern and the other edge to the front/back of your car right below the buffers. Stretch it until it’s tight, and then clip it in place.

If your family is looking for whitewater kayaks to enjoy, you can find the Best Beginner Whitewater Kayaks here.

Visual Explanations

i. Put a Kayak on a Roof Rack (Solution 01)

ii. Put a Kayak on a Roof Rack (Solution 02)

Related Matters

01. How to put two kayaks on a roof rack?

There are a few options for how to put two kayaks on a roof rack. You can either put them side by side or one on top of the other.

If you put them side by side, you’ll need to make sure that they’re the same size and shape so that they fit together nicely. You’ll also need to make sure that they’re both facing in the same direction so that the weight is distributed evenly.

you can find the Best Angler Kayaks here.

If you put one kayak on top of the other, you’ll need to make sure that the smaller kayak is placed on top of the larger kayak. This will help distribute the weight more evenly. You should also use padding between the two kayaks to prevent any damage. 

02. How fast can you drive with a kayak on the roof?

Well, that depends on a few things! The aerodynamics of the kayak, the wind conditions, and of course, your car.

If we’re talking about a basic sedan, you’re probably looking at top speeds around 50-60 mph. But if you’ve got a fancy sports car with a sleek design, you could potentially go much faster. Of course, there’s always the factor of safety to consider – you don’t want to take any unnecessary risks! 

03. How do you load a kayak on the J rack?

Loading your kayak is a relatively easy process if you have a J-Style Kayak Rack. Simply place the kayak onto the rack with the bow (front) facing towards the front of the vehicle, then secure it in place by either tying it down or using straps. The J-Shape keep your purchase stable while in transport, so you Don’t have to worry about losing your load.

Some kayaks even come with specific features such as tie-down loops, making this process even easier. Thanks for the question!

04. Can I transport a kayak without a roof rack, and how?

Transporting a kayak without a roof rack is possible, but it depends on the type of kayak and the vehicle.

If you have a small or lightweight kayak, you can place it in the back of your car. You may be able to fit two smaller kayaks next to each other in the backseat, or you can use bungee cords to secure the kayak to the top of your car.

If you have a larger or heavier kayak, you’ll need some type of roof rack system. There are many different types of roof racks available, so consult with a retailer or online forum to find the best system for your vehicle and kayak.

05. How do I identify the maximum kayak size for my car?

There are a few things you’ll need to take into consideration when determining the maximum kayak size for your car. First, you’ll need to know the dimensions of your car’s roof.

You’ll also need to take into account the weight limit for your car’s roof rack. Finally, you’ll want to consider how easy it will be to load and unload the kayak from your car.

The dimensions of your car’s roof will ultimately dictate the maximum size of kayak that can be safely transported on top of it. To get these dimensions, simply measure the length and width of your car’s roof.

Keep in mind that most kayaks are around 12 feet long, so you’ll want to make sure that your car’s roof is at least that long.

How to put a Kayak on a Roof Rack

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