How to carry your bike on a car rack



Take care with your bike.

Use pipe lagging around frame tubes then tie with cable ties or string. This can be bought from DIY or plumbing shops. Go for large size with largest inner hole to go round bike tubes. Especially front forks. Flying stones can damage a frame badly from small high-speed impacts.

The shaking on top of car or worse a rear rack is magnified and can make anything fall off! Make sure your bike is securely fastened to the car rack.

BUT REMEMBER to pack with kit anything that you have removed before you travel including cycle bottles. Bike bottles nearly always fall out at some point during carriage on top of car, plus they get very dirty and unhygienic. Take off any loose spares. The number of people I know who have left things behind when packing bike after stripping down bike before putting it on car rack.

Take off bike computer. Remember to also pack your heart rate monitor bike mount etc. Use a cycle lock to secure bike to secure car rack. Even the best locks can move during travelling and can cause damage to the frame so be careful. Cable ties also are a quick good and safe option for opportunists but a professional thief will be prepared.

If carrying two or more bikes tie them together with string so if one comes loose the other secure bike will hold it.

A chain that has been oiled then placed on a bike rack driving at 40 mph + with rain can force out oil from links in chain and other parts including cranks. When using oil keep it away from wheels and brakes before putting bike on car rack to protect it. DO NOT over lubricate chain, as excess will attract dust etc cause quicker wear and tear. Excess oil on chain will attract dust and dirt so DO NOT oil chain too much. Wipe off any excess oil after lubricating it.

If it rains during your journey wipe the chain then oil it again, wipe the chain of any excess oil as this attracts dust and causes faster wear and tear.

If carrying two or more bikes tie them together with string so if one comes loose the other secure bike will hold it.

Check your tyres when you arrive as many car/bike holders can cause tyre wall damage where you attach wheel to clamp or toe straps that have a metal grip. A word of warning if it is very hot the sun can damage the tyres if exposed for many hours.

Remember your car height is much higher if you place bike on top. BE CAREFUL with low trees and some height restrictions only designed for average height cars. Be careful went entering some car park with bar restrictions. You and your car may fit under but NOT your bike.

Clean your brake blocks-Slits that can harbour dust and grit, which will then damage your carbon rims.

Check for any unusual noise after travelling with bikes. Go for a 5 minute spin to check wheels are secure and everything is working fine after journey. Hold bike and look for any extra movement when taking regular break stops to make sure nothing has come loose or someone has attempted to steal your bike and made things unsafe.

Safe Cycling