The essentials of traveling hit you when you’re going to a long vacation, an adventurous trip, or an outdoor activity, which all requires you hauling oversized gears or pieces of equipment that won’t obviously fit in your car. Crossbars are one of the most important things to install on your vehicle’s roof. These things are the ones that support your cargo on your roof and are mostly where you hook your things on to.
This article tackles the best roof rack crossbars that you may choose from, or add to your choices and must-try vehicle accessories.
|CargoLoc Rooftop Aluminum Cross Bars
|Vault Universal Roof Rack Crossbars
|Summates Universal Rooftop Cargo Rack Crossbar
|Apex Universal Aluminum Locking Roof Cargo Bars
|Apex RCB-3745-U Universal Strap-Attached Roof Crossbars
|AUXMART Roof Rack Crossbar
|Apex RLB-3201 Universal Roof Crossbar
|TMS J-Bar Rack Crossbar
|Apex RB-1004-49 Universal Side Rail Mounted Crossbars
|Thule AeroBlade Edge Flush Mount Rack
|SportRack Complete Roof Rack Crossbars
|Kodiak AeroGrip Universal Roof Rack Crossbars
- Buying Guide
- 12 Best Crossbars for Roof Rack 2024
- CargoLoc 2-Piece 52″ Aluminum Roof Top Cross Bar Set – Fits Maximum 46” Span Across Existing Raised Side Rails with Gap – Features Keyed Locking Mechanism, Silver (Tools & Home Improvement)
- Roof Rack Crossbars 54” Universal Locking Crossbars by Vault – Carry Your Canoe, Kayak, & Cargo Safely with Aerodynamic Design – Mounts to The Rooftop of Your Car or SUV
- Summates Universal Roof Top Cargo Racks Cross Bars -1Pair (47“ Cross Bar)
- Apex Side Rail Mounted Aluminum Roof Cross Bars – Universal up to 50″ (Automotive)
- Apex RCB-3745-U Universal Strap-Attached Roof Crossbars for SUV (Automotive)
- AUXMART 1Pc 39″ Roof Rack Cross Bar Universal fit for car with Raised Side Rails – Aero Dynamic Design
- APEX LEGENDS RLB-2301 Universal Side Rail Mounted Steel Roof Crossbars, 46.5 inches, Pack of Two, Fit Raised Side Rails, black (Automotive)
- TMS J-Bar Rack HD Kayak Carrier Canoe Boat Surf Ski Roof Top Mounted on Car SUV Crossbar (Automotive)
- Apex RB-1004-49 Universal Side Rail Mounted Crossbars (Automotive)
- Thule AeroBlade Edge Flush Mount Rack (1 Bar) (Sports)
- SportRack Complete Raised Rail System – SR1098 (Sports)
Because a lot of companies are offering the same products that only differ with the design and style it has, it’s pretty hard to figure out what you have to purchase, especially if you’re new to the situation and equipment.
The things that you have to know before purchasing crossbars are somewhat similar when buying cargo boxes. You should know the things you’re bringing along with you on your trip; possible weight, how bulky it is, and the likes. Be aware that the weight capacity of your crossbars matters a lot and you should always be careful not to exceed the given maximum weight capacity. Knowing which crossbars are compatible with your vehicle saves you a lot of time and protection against damages like car scratches and broken equipment. You can search for different crossbar units to know if the crossbars are suitable to install on your vehicle.
12 Best Crossbars for Roof Rack 2024
In this section, counted roof rack cross bars of different brands are reviewed and are labeled as the top 10 best roof rack cross bars available in the market today. Below are the chosen products for you to choose from.
1. CargoLoc Rooftop Aluminum Cross Bars
CargoLoc’s 2 piece aluminum roof bars are 46 inches each and are lockable for guaranteed security. CargoLoc sees to it that they only distribute products of high quality and durability, strength and consistency, to offer the best product to their consumers and exceed their expectations. The roof cross rails can hold a weight capacity of up to 150 pounds, featuring great functionality, especially for those travels a lot with multiple gears with them. The manufacturer provides a limited lifetime warranty for this unit.
- Made from aluminum material
- Measures 46 inches in length
- Lockable for security
- 150 pounds weight capacity
- This will not fit on a 2008 Jeep Liberty
- It might be difficult to install
- In some conditions, this might have a tendency to break
2. Vault Universal Roof Rack Crossbars
Vault Cargo Management’s universal roof crossbars are designed to haul multiple amounts of gears for outdoor use. These roof bars are 53 inches long from end to end, 1 inch high and 2 inches wide. They are lockable and have 2 sets of keys to secure your cargo. These offer an aerodynamic low-profile design to make your traveling more convenient. Vault’s roof cross rails come with end caps for protection against sharp edges. The crossbars can be detached with one tool that comes with it. Additionally, the unit has a weight capacity of 150 pounds and is compatible with a variety of cargo like roof bags, kayak racks, canoes, and roof boxes.
- 53 inches in length
- Removable cross bars for roof rack through a tool that comes with the unit
- Weight capacity of up to 150 pounds
- Lockable rails for added cargo security
- End caps against sharp edges
- Compatible with multiple types of cargo
- The product seems to be a bit flimsy
- The instruction for installation is not that clear
- It produces noise while on the road
3. Summates Universal Rooftop Cargo Rack Crossbar
Summates’ universal roof cross bars are constructed from high strength aluminum and are finished with metallic silver marine grade powder coat. These are lockable roof bars that provide cargo security and have an adjustable width for extra fitting. They are each 47 inches in length and have a weight capacity of up to 200 pounds. However, it’s an important note that the cargo must not exceed said maximum capacity. It’s also very essential that you frequently check the crossbars’ mounting screws to know if it needed to be retightened.
- Maximum weight capacity of 200 pounds
- 47 inches in length
- Lockable for security
- High strength aluminum construction
- Metallic silver marine grade powder coat finish
- Produces whistle sound when on the road
- The oval shape of the unit makes it difficult to hook things to it
4. Apex Universal Aluminum Locking Roof Cargo Bars
Apex Universal Aluminum Locking Roof Cargo Bars each measures approximately 53 inches in length, 1.5 inches wide and 1 inch high. The crossbars make use of the car’s side rails to provide increased storage space. These are also lockable for security measurements. Being the roof bars for cars, trucks, SUVs, and minivans, these can be installed on most vehicles today. These are made of high strength aluminum, providing a weight capacity of up to 150 pounds.
- Heavy-duty aluminum material
- 53 inches in length
- Lockable for security
- Maximum weight capacity of 150 pounds
- Makes annoying noise
- Cargo should not exceed more than 150 pounds
5. Apex RCB-3745-U Universal Strap-Attached Roof Crossbars
This model of Apex’s crossbars can be attached to the car’s roof using straps, making the installation quicker and much easier than the normal ones out there. With its 150 weight capacity, it has the ability to haul oversized items or gears and utilizes the space on the roof. The bars are made of thick steel, providing high durability. They are also rubber coated to protect the vehicle’s roof and rubber end-caps are also included in the unit for scratch protection.
- Straps with gator clips for easier and quicker installation
- Maximum weight capacity of 150 pounds
- Heavy duty thick steel construction
- Rubber end-caps for scratch protection
- Non-mar rubber feet for roof protection
- Universal crossbar
- Noisy along the highway
- A bit flimsy
6. AUXMART Roof Rack Crossbar
AUXMART’s crossbars for roof rack fit most vehicles’ (with raised side rails) roofs as these have a universal design feature; in addition, they are compatible to a number of roof cargos and gears such as bike rack, cargo basket, and etc. The bars are made of lightweight aircraft aluminum and nylon, featuring high-level durability and functionality. Both bars have a weight capacity of 175 pounds. The unit features a streamline water drop design that reduces unwanted noise while in the go. Its self-adaptive base feet enable angle adjustments. It has thick rubber gaskets and rubber covers on each end to prevent any scratch on the cargo and vehicle. It also features easy assembly and disassembly, with the instructions included in the package.
- Lightweight aircraft aluminum and nylon construction
- Streamline water drop design for noise reduction
- Rubber gaskets and end-cap for protection
- Easy assembly and disassembly
- There might be whistling sounds
- Locks seem to be kind of useless since they’re easy to pull out
7. Apex RLB-3201 Universal Roof Crossbar
Apex’s universal rooftop cargo carrier crossbars measure 46.5 inches in length and have a maximum capacity of up to 130 pounds. These bars also clamp to the roof side rails of the vehicle. The unit is constructed from black epoxy powder coated steel, providing heavy-duty durability; additionally, the bars have adjustable rubber coated feet to allow easy installation. These are great roof bars for cars, trucks, and other vehicles.
- 45.6 inches long
- Weight capacity of 130 pounds
- High strength steel construction with black epoxy powder finish
- Rubber coated feet for ease of installation
- The unit is not that stable
- The clamps only fit round bars and not flat bars
8. TMS J-Bar Rack Crossbar
This rack crossbar is focused on hauling kayak gears, with its adjustable padding for the carrying strength and protection of the said gears. These roof bars have a quick on and off hardware that enables quick and easy installation and removal. The J-bar feature allows you to easily load and unload up to 36 inch wide kayaks. These crossbars can handle a weight capacity of up to 75 pounds.
- Scores big in kayak gears hauling
- Adjustable padding
- Ease of installation and removal with the quick on/off hardware
- J-bar design provides more storage space on the roof
- Can accommodate kayaks with up to 36 inches width
- Maximum weight capacity of 75 pounds
- There are no instructions on how you strap the kayaks on the rack
- The straps included in the unit don’t do well
- The design may not fit certain vehicles
9. Apex RB-1004-49 Universal Side Rail Mounted Crossbars
Apex’s universal crossbars are specifically designed to support different types of cargo on the vehicle’s available space on its roof. The bars are attached to the vehicle’s side rails, increasing the space for cargo transport. The unit has a weight capacity of 180 pounds and requires a 36-48 inch distance between the side rails. It comes with rubber-coated clamps that hook on the side rails and lock into place with the use of its turn-knob feature. The knobs are lockable that can be locked or unlocked with keys; this is to provide preventive measures against theft. These crossbars are constructed from heavy duty thick carbon steel with a smooth black paint finish.
- Maximum weight capacity of up to 180 pounds (do not exceed)
- Adjustable rubber-coated clamps and turn-knob design
- Attached to existing side rails
- Heavy duty thick carbon steel construction
- It might not be mounted on some vehicle models
- The locking and tightening mechanism is kind of difficult to access
- Whistles might be heard when on the road
10. Thule AeroBlade Edge Flush Mount Rack
Thule’s AeroBlade Edge Flush Mount Pack features a complete rack system, which comes with an integrated aerodynamic, low-profile design. The good thing about this product is that it offers the highest carrying capacity. This unit is pre-assembled and can be mounted to your car with a good vehicle-specific fit kit.
- Can be installed and fit easily if you have the mounting points
- WindDiffuser technology
- The load capacity of 800 lbs
- OneKey load cylinders
- Available in three different sizes
- Features the SmartSlide system
- Can cost more if you need extra parts for it to work properly
- The product may produce a lot of noise when driving at high speeds
- Some people may find it expensive
11. SportRack Complete Roof Rack Crossbars
SportRack Complete Roof Rack System is a complete package with 2 bars and 4 feet. For added protection, you can lock this system with a special tool that the package includes. Aside from this, the rubber lining offers protection to the railing surface so it won’t have scratches. It measures 48 x 4.5 x 4 inches and weighs only 10.9 pounds. The shipping weight is 11.1 pounds.
The installation won’t take more than 5 minutes the first time. It might make a bit too much noise but you can eliminate it easily. The crossbars are open-ended. All you need to do is cover the ends with tape and there will be no noise.
- Build with strong material
- Easy to install
- Very affordable
- The directions are easy to follow
- Might make a lot of noise when driving fast
12. Kodiak AeroGrip Universal Roof Rack Crossbars
Kodiak AeroGrip Universal Crossbars can make your life easier. Whether you want to ride your bicycle on open roads or just need some extra roof box space, you can rely on the Kodiak AeroGrip Universal Crossbars. They will meet your loading needs.
The steep strap and the main body of the base units are made with sturdy composite steel. This steel is coated in a waterproof and rust protected the plastic compound. So, you can enjoy a better grip and protection against the weather.
- The universal T-track adapter slot allows you to connect the accessories to the AeroGrip crossbars
- The installation is quick and easy with the AeroGrip technology
- Offers anti-theft locking covers
- The base length of the crossbar is fully adjustable
- Strong cross-section design
- Can bear up to 150 pounds of load
- Aerodynamic design
- The rubber padding is not top quality
- The locking system might be a bit mid grade
This is the end of the review article about roof rack cross bars. Hopefully, the article helped you a lot and gave you more options for you to choose from when deciding to purchase one.