Best Kayak Roof Rack – Top 5 Reviews

Best Kayak Roof Rack

Have you ever thought about using roof racks for your kayaks? Well, if you have, it’s nice that the reality is hitting on you, however, if you haven’t, trust me, this is one of the best articles you can invest your precious time to read on. Why? I’m sure you’d want to get the most out of your kayaks, and one of the ways to achieve that is through roof racks. 

If you have a kayak and you have zero means of bringing it to the water, it is pointless. Often times, most kayak owners nag about the weight of kayak trailers that are designed for some cars and adding to that, they say the price is on the high side. But when contrasted with roof racks, they are by far better options – as long as you are investing in the best ones. But you might still wonder, why is that so? 

One of the foremost reasons is because they are cheap. Additionally, they are suitable and fitting for nearly all vehicle types, and the ease of use is a must to mention. 

If an angler can invest in the best kayak car rack, they are opened to incredible opportunities to use them in any season they so desire. I know to you that’s good news since you will be able to have all-round season experience and thus come across enjoyable moments. 

For decades now, kayaks have been an excellent sport for a lot of people, and manufacturers are tapping into those opportunities to design more roof racks in abundance. As a result of that, there’s so much for you to pick when you want to buy one.

But I understand that moving from one manufacturer to another can be tiring and time-consuming, in fact, you could give up and purchase just anyone you find. On that note, we took it over, made extensive research and have come up with 5 best roof racks that will efficiently work in transporting your kayak to the water with zero or no stress. 

Factors That Will Help You Choose a Kayak Roof Rack

Before we get to analyze these best kayak roof racks, it will be helpful to reveal those qualities we checked before we handpicked them. These are fundamental features that attention needs to be paid to. 


There are a few points to be considered when considering the design. Take, for instance, if you are searching for the best kayak roof rack that will function for a car, then, it should be able to transport your kayak with no hassle on your vehicle. In essence, it makes no sense if you purchase a roof rack which design isn’t for carrying a kayak. 

Although, if you are in the market, likely, you will find some roof racks which will be suitable and functional for carrying other goods, but not made for carrying kayaks. Therefore, be sure that your roof racks are designed for carrying kayaks before you make payment.

Also, just like confirming if a roof rack is designed to transport kayak is vital, it is imperative to get a reliable and effective carrier for your car. Don’t try and say: “I want to make it fit.” You will be heading for a severe disaster – damaging your vehicle and even the kayak you purchased. 

Your Car

Another factor that needs to be carefully analyzed is the type of car you will be using. On this, two essential elements have to be considered. For the first one, you must confirm if the kayak rack is compatible with your car type. If you figured out that they aren’t, then don’t bother making a purchase. Secondly, you need to confirm that your car type is fitting for your kayak. 

The Towers

Another essential part of the roof rack planning is the towers. One of the reasons why it is so is because that’s where the strength of the rack comes from. They carry the weight of the kayak, the bars, and must be fixed on the toughest part of your roof. You should never invest money on a rack that isn’t compatible or suitable with the vehicle you will be using.

If you are seeking for the best towers, pay keen attention to the material. It must surely be of high-quality! Also, the fastening must not be of low quality. And you can’t boycott this because the movement of your car will break weak and low-quality fasteners even when you have a top-quality tower. .

The Bars

Apart from the towers, the bars too are vital features to consider. Typically, there should be two premium bars and four high-quality towers. When the function of the tower is to fit accurately onto the roof of the car near each edge of the roof, the position the bars face is to sit elegantly across a vehicle in a horizontal way. 

Also, there are other vital things to note when considering a roof rack system. An essential one is how they are neatly fastened to the towers. It is ideal that they should be simple and easy to fit, and must also be safely mounted. The moment anyone fixes it on their car, it mustn’t move up and down with zero control. 

Worthy of note is that the bars that should be searched for must be of premium quality. And then, the strength must be able to comfortably and conveniently keep your gear safe.

It isn’t out of place to ensure that the kayak rack is capable of holding one of the most substantial items you will go with. Further, they must be very long enough to extend from one tower to another tower. 

Lastly, on the bar, the mode and manner of fastening kayaks to the bar needs to be learned. You must pay real attention to fasteners that will keep your kayak safe and highly secured. Strength and durability are accurately preserved. More to the point, either saltwater or the sun, you need to invest in a fastener that wouldn’t be affected. Materials should be soft, yet, the fastener must hold the kayak well. 

Roof Racks

Does your car have built-in rails? Then, to acquire the best kayak rack is an incredible option. Security is one of the reasons why their popularity is expanding. Also, some who have more than one kayaks and are willing to transport them will be able to do so with the built-in rail. But you’ve got something to do. 

One, you need to ensure that your kayak is secured and you can strap rightly. Well, height becomes a subject of concern since strapping the kayaks to your car will add more height. So you might be restricted in some areas, including garages. 

Best Kayak Roof Rack Reviews

1. Yakima Jaylow

One of the Best manufactures of a roof rack is Yakima. Their Kayak roof carrier testifies to that pleasant truth. Take, for instance; it has the capability of taking more than 79lbs in weight on crossbars that are just 24″ or more. And when it comes to maintenance, Jaylow is one for the lowest roof racks that deserves less money to invest in. 

Jaylow has multiple settings, which gives it the ability to bot in J-Cradle style. And that position is two boats in a vertical position, and ability to fold down when it isn’t in use.

Further, this roof rack offers an item that no other roof rack has, and that is aerodynamic options. It is also amazing to note that rather than having an unorganized and poorly connected system, Yakima is designed with a small tube which allows the rack to be minute and then, offer a little weight system, and will still have the capacity of lifting heavy loads.

Why Choose This Kayak Roof Rack Stand?

  • Lightweight package 
  • Aerodynamic 
  • Simple and easy to apply the strap system. 

2. Malone Downloader Kayak Roof Rack

When you need a roof carrier, you might want to invest in a universal system. And that’s precisely what Malone promises. This roof carrier comes designed with hardware essentials.

Also, the system is straightforward to use. All needed to do is to fold the system and then be ready for your kayaking. And since it is foldable, then you will be able to pass through any desired territory, even in an underground parking slot, regardless of the height. One Assurance you can have with choosing this is that your vehicle wouldn’t be dented or scratched. 

Why Choose This Kayak Roof Rack? 

  • Low profile 
  • Comes With all the Hardware. 

3. Thule Pro Rooftop Kayak Roof Rack

If you desire to make purchase a roof rack from manufactures that have long been in the business of designing Kayak Roof Rack, then getting one from Thule is no mistake.

This firm has been in operation for more than seven decades; they began the process the year 1942. And with that, they’ve earned impressive and in-depth knowledge about roof rack.

Also, the fact that they can understand some of the required specifications or features on roof kayak by buyers has given them an edge to only design what is generally considered by the public as premium. 

For instance, it has a PFD lever, which functions for folding and for pulling. It comes with two ratchet system which guarantees easy to use in the water will less time. And again, for installation, no tool is required. 

The design is made from steel rust resistant tubing that is only designed to gain additional strength. Also, there are just two correctly added tick pads, which make sure that kayak stays off what could scratch it and stay in the position where it is placed. The pocket designed with it allows users to add additional strap to avoid being blown away. 

Undeniably, this is one of the best and standard rooftop kayak carrier that is capable of holding a kayak that is more than 33 inches wide, and more than 70lbs. For their uniqueness, they added a limited lifetime warranty. This is done to avoid replacing them each time a piece breaks. Just contact one of their representatives they will help remedy the issue. 

Why Choose This Kayak Roof Rack? 

  • Designed With Premium Materials 
  • Comes From Experienced Company 
  • Has Limited Warranty 

4. JDM Universal Roof Rack

JDM is also a fantastic company who are leaving positive marks in the heart of buyers. Kayak holder designed for vehicles is designed from rigid and heavy-duty steel. And in fact, it weighs below 17lbs each. The design is capable of carrying some of the heaviest kayaks that are known today. For example, the roof carrier can sustain a weight up to 165lbs. 

Additionally, you need not worry about rust, because it is designed with coasting that is resistant to rusting, so with confidence, they can stand up to any test that comes their way. To ensure ease of transportation, everything that comes with the roof rack is in pairs which can cover for those who need to transport two kayaks. 

Why Choose this Kayak Roof Rack? 

  • It has a high capacity of carrying weight 
  • It comes with two pairs of carriers 
  • It’s Lightweight.  

5. Malone HandiRack Inflatable Roof Rack

Do you have a car without rails? Then you are covered with this rack. The benefit of this rack is that you don’t need any fastening to your vehicle. The advantage is that the rack only loops around the roof of your car. 

It applies two inflatable pockets that make it quite easy to strap your kayak and neatly transport it. And the beauty? You can also carry more than a single kayak on the roof. More to it, you can move any form of gear that will be needed. 

The design system is impressive. It’s made with strong and durable 420D nylon. Within minutes, it inflates with a dual-action Handi Pump. Besides, this roof rack also has 5D-ring anchor points which can and smoothly connect to your vehicle.

Interestingly, Malone has a charming capacity of 180lbs. This is very close, or near to the peak limit of the capacity of a kayak roof carrier can sustain. And to relax the minds of those who have a little doubt due to it being an inflatable design, the manufacturer added a one year warranty to assure buyers that it is durable and reliable. 

Why Choose Malone as Your Kayak Roof Rack? 

  • It has an excellent carrying capacity 
  • It’s excellent for both winter and summer 
  • It has 1-year Warranty. 


The Yakima Jaylow is the best overall in our list of top kayak roof rack while the JDM Universal Roof Rack is the best budget kayak roof rack. However, you could also consider other factors to determine the suitable choice for you as we have highlighted them in the review.

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