For car owners who use their cars a lot to transport luggage and heavy materials, roof racks are of important requirement. They keep the vehicle free from clutter, allowing more passengers than baggage inside. Roof racks have been designed differently, mainly due to keeping up with how the vehicles are designed – bare roof, fixed point, side rails, factory bars, and gutter mount roof racks.
The most commonly used type is the gutter roof rack. This type has been around for decades and is very affordable. While there are abundant options of gutter roof racks, it is wise to consider the basics of this system first – gutter mount. Choosing the best gutter mount roof rack is the key to an effortless hauling of your gear, therefore you should choose the most ideal one. Read on as we help you find the best gutter mount roof rack that will work for you.
Best Gutter Mount Roof Racks
#1. Highland 2006200 Black Heavy-Duty Bar Carrier – Best Value
For less than $100, Highland 2006200 Black Heavy-Duty Bar Carrier is the best value for your hauling needs. Carefully designed with high-quality heavy-duty steel, it can carry objects of different shapes and sizes. This gutter mounted carrier works best with almost any vehicles with rain gutters.
Materials and fabrication: Highland 2006200’s 37-inch to 62-inch crossbars are well-built stainless steel that was aerodynamically designed for vehicles with rain gutters. It is sturdily built to steadily hold items of up to 125 pounds. Its heavy-duty gauge steel with silver or black marbled finish is perfect in extending the life of the crossbars to last for a long time.
- Designed with heavy duty gauge steel for commercial use
- Expands from 37 inches to 62 inches
- Constructed from high-quality heavy gauge steel
|Easy to assemble, install, and remove||Clamps finish chips off and edges can scratch the paint|
|Affordable compared to other products||May need to drill a couple holes to really reduce the clattering sound|
|Perfect for vans with gutters||Clamps expose steel to rust and corrosion|
Tony, who drives a 1989 2.5t 5spd Caravan, said, “I am very glad I bought these, they work perfectly and tightly with Rain-Sill-Gutters if your vehicle has them. They are insanely STOUT and I joke that my van will crumble under the weight of an object before these bars break, and that probably isn’t a joke.”
#2. SportRack Complete Roof Rack System – Well-built for cross country trips
SportRack SR1002 is a low-cost removable roof rack that fastens directly to your car’s bare roof. It is constructed and designed to support bikes, roof boxes, snowboard carriers, kayaks, and almost anything you need to transport.
Materials and fabrication: This roof rack system’s crossbars are made with sturdy steel materials that are finished with black plastic to protect against rust, corrosion, water and UV rays. Rack feet are also capped with molded rubber ends ensuring no scratches on your car’s finish. This complete roof rack system has an integrated locking system that always guarantees complete safety and security of the racks. Backed up with a limited lifetime warranty, SportRack SR1002 can bear up to 130 pounds of weight.
- Complete roof rack system that comes in a single package and is ready to install
- The lock system offers appropriate anti-theft protection
- It has adjustable, rotating foot pads, allowing the pivots to turn back and forth
|Fits most of today’s popular vehicles||Whistling noise is noticeable while driving|
|No drilling required||Buyers complain about parts either being damaged|
|Corrosion, rust, and UV resistant|
TZ, who drives 2012 Honda Fit & 2012 Nissan Versa, said, “We took an 800-mile right trip with a luggage bag on top. There rack worked flawlessly. This is not the highest of quality, but this is also one of the cheapest. You’ll pay with less ease of install, but overall, it is a great value, in my opinion.”
#3. Thule Roof Rack Gutter Mount Foot Pack – Your reliable gutter mount roof rack
Give extra space for your luggage with Thule’s Gutter Mount Foot Pack. This gutter mount foot pack can be paired with almost any roof rack crossbars, but, of course, will work best with its Thule’s 542 Artificial rain gutter brackets.
Materials and fabrication: Constructed with galvanized stamped steel and finished with black polyester powder paint, Thule Roof Rack Gutter Mount Foot Pack is easy to use for cars with rain gutters. It can strongly hold up to 165 pounds of weight if evenly distributed.
- 5 inches of clearance above rain gutter
- Designed with vibration-damping and finished with anti-slip vinyl coating
- It’s One Key System- allows the mounts to be locked with four lock cylinders
|Fits perfectly and securely even on constricted and narrow gutters||These are just foot packs. You must buy the cross bars separately|
|Easy to install and remove||Paints chip off easily|
|Rust and corrosion resistant. Thanks to a durable black polyester powder coating||A little pricey for just the mounting feet only|
Matt, who drives a Jeep Wrangler, said, “I’ll be honest I had my doubts, but these have impressed me. They are sturdy, and I have complete confidence in them. I’ve carried kayaks, canoes, and even a couch using these. I wouldn’t advise the couch. I don’t always make the best decision.”
#4. Vault Roof Rack Crossbars 54” Universal Locking Crossbars – Your easy gutter mounted roof rack
Vault Cargo Management’s Roof Rack Crossbars 54” Universal Locking Crossbars shouldn’t come in as a surprise to be in this list. Given that they are in the business of cargo management, they sure know what is needed to transport your items with ease.
Materials and fabrication: Worry not about eating up all the maximum load capacity of your roof. VCM’s Universal roof racks are made from aluminum. But, just because it is light doesn’t mean it can’t keep up with the steel-made ones. Its overall maximum capacity is up to 150 pounds. The aerodynamic design helps to cut down on wind resistance that affects the car’s performance.
- Universal size fits almost any vehicle
- Padded clamps to avoid scratches on your car’s finishing
- Up to 150 pounds load capacity
|Roof rack stays firm and does not slide around. No movements at all||Noticeable whistling sound when driving at the speeds of 50 mph|
|Well-built lightweight bars||Instruction manuals can be confusing |
|Affordable than most roof rack systems in the market||The rubber clips could fall off|
Cheap Steve, who drives a Dodge Journey, said, “Skeptical at first… I read the reviews and purchased these crossbars for a Dodge Journey. I waited until a 10-hour trip to North Carolina to comment on the quality. First, they are easy to install. I placed 2 Kayak carriers on them holding 2 Kayaks. I drove 10 hours and hit speeds of 75 MPH. The roof crossbars held and never needed to be retightened. Solid construction of the bars easily handled the weight of the carriers and the Kayaks. Just think, I was going to spend 325. on OEM crossbars. I am very happy with this product.”
#5. MaxxHaul 70440 Gutter Mount Van Rack – Better than expected!
Need a sturdy help in carrying your ladders, canoes, lumber, and pipes to your job site? Look no further. MaxxHaul 70440 Gutter Mount Van Rack is the perfect solution for all your transporting needs. With different height options, you will have better clearance on your car’s roof, helping you attach it securely to the gutters.
Materials and fabrication: Constructed with strong and durable stainless steel, MaxxHaul 70440 has been finished with powder coating making it corrosion and scratch-resistant. It clamps easily on your gutter leaving no drills used. The system includes 2 pieces of racks that hold up to 500 pounds of weight. Make sure to double-check your vehicle’s owner’s manual to make sure it can withstand that much weight. The center of the upright crossbars has rope hooks, so you can strap down your load and be worry-free as you drive.
- Telescoping crossbars that adjust to match the width of your vehicle
- Powder coat finishes protecting the system from corrosion and scratches
- Clamp-on installation – no drilling required
|Tie-down points let you keep your cargo locked and secured||Most customers reported about lacking screw, nuts, bolts, and washers|
|Generous maximum weight capacity of 500 pounds||Did not come with installation instructions|
|Durable stainless-steel make isn’t as flimsy as the aluminum ones||Driving at about 50 mph causes excessive vibration and wind noise|
Agroman said, “Nice rack. Good quality construction. Easy to install and take off when not in use. Use as a surfboard rack with pipe insulation foam and duct tape to secure. Not elegant but super functional and cheap. Very secure, even fully loaded at 70-75mph. Don’t need $500 Yakima racks!”
#6. Rhino-Rack USA SG60 SG Roof Rack System – Your stylish and sturdy roof rack
Carry anything on your roof, whether they are bikes, kayak, ski, snowboard, cargo boxes – Rhino-Rack SG60 SG Roof Rack System will keep them safe and sound.
Materials and fabrication: Rhino-Rack SG60 roof rack system has been designed with an aerodynamic shape that helps reduce wind noise and drag. This system is constructed with lightweight, structural-grade anodized aluminum and is UV-treated. Legs are also glass-reinforced nylon making them weather-resistant. It can be easily and securely installed by simply clamping it to your gutters. Its crossbars that measure 50 inches long, by 3 1/8 inches wide, by 1 3/16 inches tall, helps in holding the weight capacity of up to 88 pounds.
- Noiseless roof-rack system that lets you mount carriers on the roof of your vehicle via gutters
- Elongated crossbars form an exceptional aerodynamic system
- Clamp-on installation to gutters with the help of integrated clamps and straps
|Rubberized Vortex strips help lessen drag and wind noise||More expensive than most brands|
|Weather resistant||Limited weight capacity|
Douglas, who drives a 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee said, “I was looking for a reasonable solution for cross bars for my 2017 Jeep Wrangler unlimited. The cost was unreasonable. Last year. I had purchased RhinoRack cross bars for my 2017 Grand Cherokee and was really happy with them. When I found the Rhino Cross bars for the Wrangler, at a good price I was relieved. They came in just when they were supposed to arrive and mad a good choice. The quality is great and the assembly easy.”
#7. Thule TracRac Van Rack System – Carry a lot like a truck with TracRac
Expand your van’s carrying capacity with Thule TracRac Van Rack System. Load different items such as ladders, lumber, kayak, ski, cargo boxes, and more with ease. Its functionality and strength will surely make your traveling with a load a breeze.
Materials and fabrication: The carrying capacity of Thule TracRac that is up to 500 pounds lies between its two 65-inch crossbars, supported by four rain gutter corner mounts. These durable crossbars are manufactured with 6063 T-6 aluminum. It also features built-in slots for mounting and easy adjusting accessories, such as the included load stops. The lightweight aluminum rack that attaches to your gutter is built with an inner web structure. The outsides are also protected with dual-stage powder coat for improved resistance to scratches.
- Aerodynamic design lessens drag and wind noise. No more whistling, thanks to Airfoil trip strips
- Easy installation – no drilling required
- Dual-stage powder coat finish adds extra rust protection
|Carrying capacity of up to 500 pounds. (Be sure to check with your vehicle manual for the total load limit allowed)||Limited type of vehicle it can fit to as it is specifically designed for vans|
|USA-made with a limited lifetime warranty||Nuts and bolts supplied were reported to be of low quality|
|Heavy-duty, aluminum load stops keep cargo in place|
John A. Peterson, who drives Ford E-250 said, “I had recently purchased a new van that didn’t come with ladder racks. I bought them locally, but distributor only had double rack set. My van is Ford E-250 which is long. So, I looked online and found a single and it appeared the same as the ones I purchased as if it came wi the set and they look good and work great. Also, very easy to install with easy to read instructions. Highly recommended.”
What are Gutter Mount Roof Racks?
A lot of regular passenger vehicles since the early 1970s have rain gutters. These are the gutters formed by the welded projection on both sides of the car’s roof panel. These gutters made attaching an accessory or an aftermarket roof rack a reasonably simple process. Gutter mount roof rack systems lock straight on to your vehicle’s gutters. They are easy to install with not many tools required. Gutter mount roof racks are ideal for commercial and contractor vans being easy to install and remove.
Buying Guide: What to Consider in Getting Best Gutter Mount Roof Rack?
A roof rack provides more space for your vehicle. Think about it like a second story to your vehicle. There is a large selection of gutter mounted roof racks making it hard to pick one. Take time to go over each one, compare, and research. Here are some points you may want to consider as you go through your search of the best gutter mounted roof rack.
Roof rack requirement
Before anything else, do you really need a roof rack? Sure, it adds up to the appeal of your SUV but, you also know how manufacturers tell you that you need it, even when you don’t. Unless part of your yearly routine is going out on a camping trip at least once a month, or you find yourself constantly helping other people move out of their house and haul their things, then yes. You need a roof rack.
Each vehicle has a load-carrying capacity. The load rating is how much weight the car roof can hold. Most SUVs have a maximum roof carrying capacity of about 100 to 200kg, including the roof rack. A complete roof rack system weighs about 40kg. That should give you enough basis of the capacity your ideal roof rack should have.
Different loads require different kinds of a roof rack. If you are the adventurer who likes to go on a trip every week, that’s cool! You can have the one that can be easily installed and would have no problems leaving them up there. Some may not be as exciting exploratory but still drives the car around with hauled items occasionally. They can go with the easy to install and easy to remove roof racks. You know a roof rack is good for you if it’s convenient to use and pack up.
The thing we mentioned about the load-carrying capacity of a vehicle also comes into this part too. We necessarily put the roof racks up to allow more space inside the car for more passengers. Sure, they could be big luggage, otherwise, you wouldn’t think it would get in the way of passengers. But, other than your load is large, they could be heavy too. Manufacturers try to make roof racks as strong as they should be, in the lightest way possible. You wouldn’t want to use up the whole roof carrying capacity of your car just for your rack, right?
Should I Get a Gutter Mount Roof Rack?
If rain gutters still exist on your car’s roof and you are looking to get a roof rack system that is affordable, then it could just be what you need to get. Gutter mount roof racks are easy to use and are conveniently strong. Just clamp them to your gutters, and you will have your sturdy, solid rack without any fuss.
When your items just won’t fit inside your vehicle or you need that extra space for your passenger, a roof rack is a handy solution. Picking one shouldn’t just be based on how it looks on your car or how much load capacity it can bear. It should be fitting on the lifestyle you have in your car. If you are the adventurous nut, get that sturdy and durable carrying gear with massive weight capacity – like that of Thule TracRac Van Rack System. Or, if you just feel like going to the beach with a cooler to transport, on a weekend, Highland 2006200 Black Heavy-Duty Bar Carrier will be the best value for your money.
The range of roof rack system is endless, you just must be wise in picking with one work for you.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
✅ Will a gutter mounted roof rack work with my car?
This type of roof rack system only works with vehicles that have a rain gutter. Such cars are the older ones although there are still car manufacturers that design their vehicles with the gutter. If yours is a modern car that doesn’t have gutters, then you may get the system that includes removable and permanent mounts, rails, fixpoints, or clamps.
✅ How high above the roof should the gutter mount roof racks be?
It should be the same as with most roof racks systems – around usually 115mm above the roof. The gutter roof meets this by roof clearance requirements along with two specialty rain gutter foot packs.
✅ Are there laws preventing me to use roof racks in hauling my stuff?
There are countries where they strictly implement laws about loading a top of a vehicle. But, with governing laws or not, if you have taken the safety precautions, took consideration of the roof rack compatibility with your car and did not exceed the total load capacity of your vehicle, then you’re good.
Overall Top Pick: Highland Black Heavy-Duty Bar Carrier
With all the options for gutter mounted roof racks and the factors to consider getting one, it really could be a challenge to pick one that is right for you. Below is a list of roof racks we have reviewed that could meet your needs. One that stood out is Highland 2006200 Black Heavy-Duty Bar Carrier. The cheap price tag doesn’t compromise its ability to keep up with expensive brands. And, is also the most versatile when it comes to car compatibility.