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Here's How to Choose the Best Type of Bike Rack for SUVs

How to Choose the Best Bike Rack for SUVs
Transporting your bike from place to place seems like an easy task. You just need a good bike rack, and the job is done. However, with the number of options available, selecting one that could fit perfectly on your SUV seems like a daunting task. To save you the trouble, WheelZine has enlisted the different types of bike racks for SUVs.
Kulbhushaan Raghuvanshi
Last Updated: Mar 10, 2018
Plasticine Cars
Did You Know?
The most popular type of bike rack is the hitch bike rack. It offers the most protection for the vehicle by placing the bikes at a distance. Hitch bike racks are extremely easy to handle, and very user-friendly.
If you are an avid cyclist, you obviously know the importance of a good bike rack. The right type of rack ensures smooth transportation of your bike from place to place. It also fits perfectly on your SUV, avoids blocking the rear view, and protects your SUV from getting scratched. It also saves the trouble of stuffing the bike in the back seat, thereby preventing any damage the interiors might suffer.
Tips to Choose the Best Bike Rack for SUVs
  • It is essential to weigh the SUV specifications like space, load bearing capacity, hitch size, spare tire, and bumper size to ensure that the bike rack proves immensely useful and safe.
  • All bike racks vary in their capacity to accommodate bikes, and some of them are designed to occupy bikes with different frames.
  • Certain styles of bike racks may limit accessibility to certain areas of the vehicle, hence choose a style that provides maximum accessibility to you.
Types of Bike Racks for SUVs
Bike racks for SUVs are divided into three categories: Roof Mount Bike Racks, Hitch Mount Bike Racks, and Rear Tire Mount Bike Racks
Roof Mount Bike Racks
Roof mount bike racks
The most popular way of bike transportation, roof mounted racks place your bikes on the roof, and keep it away from the vehicle's perimeter. With a roof mount rack, the user can carry almost any type of bike, including special ones such as tandem and recumbent. Some designs allow you to remove the front tire of the bike, and lock it safely, and with some you can carry almost two to three bikes. Before purchasing a roof mount rack, read the car's manual to check how much weight its roof can support. If your bikes are mounted on the roof, be careful while driving through an area of low overhangs.
Hitch Mount Bike Racks
Hitch mount bike racks
Hitch mount bike racks are attached to the rear of the SUV, making loading and unloading of bikes extremely easy. They are easy to attach, and do not affect the exterior of the vehicle. Some hitch mount racks can also be folded, so that you can have easy access to the vehicle's back seat. However, hitch mount racks does add the expense of a hitch, which some SUVs might not have. You also need to be extra cautious about the bikes being damaged either from backing or getting hit from behind. Hitch mount bike racks aren't capable enough to support more than 2 to 3 bikes.
Rear Tire Mount Bike Racks
These racks are designed for vehicles with an externally mounted spare tire. They attach behind the tire, which means you don't have to part ways with the spare just to accommodate the bikes. However, these racks do have limited strength and are capable enough to carry only two bikes. It also extends the length of the vehicle, increasing the possibilities of a rear collision. This rack also blocks the brake lights, license plate, and back-up sensors.
Installing a bike rack is a great way to enhance your cycling experience. Due to the number of options available, the task can get difficult, and if you become confused, you can always opt for reputed brands such as Yakima, Thules, and Pacific Square, or talk with experienced bikers to help you narrow down your choices.