Bike Rack / August 15, 2018 / Avelaine Labrecque.
Your first decision should be if you are looking for a trunk or rear mounted bicycle rack or will you invest in a bike rack that is mounted on the roof of the car. This can be something that seems irrelevant but after purchasing it could turn into a major problem. Choosing a roof mounted bicycle rack protects the bikes finish from scratches. It will prevent most damage to the bikes frame. Having a roof rack will eliminate any visibility issues when looking in the rear. Backing up or parallel parking will never be an issue if purchasing a roof rack. Purchasing a roof rack allows you to access your trunk with ease.
Hitch mount back racks that fit into the receiver come in either 1.25-inch or 2-inch shank sizes so it is essential that you know the size of your receptacle. Consult the vehicle owners manual for this information. Many racks however can be adapted to fit either trailer hitch. The size and style of carrier you buy will depend upon the type and number of cycles you have to transport. Know the tongue weight (TW) of the bike rack you plan to buy which is not a difficult task as there are only two. The 1.25 TW (1.25-in shank) can safely carry one or two bikes while the 2 TW (2-inch) can handle up to five.
Because there are a wide range of prices out there and because there are many features available in all price ranges never start with price considerations first. Instead consider the following: Tip 1: What vehicle are you planning to use the rack on? You need to know exactly what type of vehicle and if at all possible exactly which vehicle you will mount the carrier on. You need to know all this so you can decide on how you want it to mount on the vehicle. Will it bolt to the frame? Will you be mounting it on brackets or braces attached to a bumper? Once you know the details you can choose the right rack for your specific vehicle.
Tip 2: How many bikes will you usually be carrying with your bike rack? You might find a great deal on a 2-bike rack which would be perfect for you and a friend. But suppose you have a group of friends or a family and you want to carry 4 bikes on the rack? Likewise a great deal on a 4- or 6-bike (theyre HUGE!) rack isnt very "great" if you will never need to carry that many bikes. A bike rack thats too big can be cumbersome and nearly useless.