We all know the frustration that occurs when you knock over a row of improperly stored bikes. If you want to avoid potential future damage to your cars (and the annoyance of picking them up), then we recommend getting a proper bike rack. Whether you want something to transport your bikes around on your car, or just something practical for garage storage, you deserve the best bike rack out there. Luckily, on this list, we assembled some of the best bike racks available on the market right now. Come check them out!
[amazon box=”B00TRTSMG4, B07D64KTRH, B00P6EQ22K, B07B6W1QXC, B00DWIKMY6, B00TRTSGBA” template=”table”]
How Do We Rate the Bike Racks on this List?
We rate the bike racks on this list by looking at three distinct areas for each product. Specifically, we look at the reliability, features and overall price. For each of these areas, we ask a series of questions that help us determine where the product truly shines, and where it could use improvement. Once we identified the strengths and weaknesses of each bike rack, we then rank them on a scale of five stars. Here are some of the questions we ask for each section:
Top Eight Best Bike Racks
In our opinion, here are the best bike racks available on the market right now, ranked from best to worst. We include both bike racks that fit onto cars and freestanding shelves that you can use in your home. However, even the lower ranked products still work pretty well — but, they might have some defects you should be aware of before buying.
Allen Sports Bike Rack
The Allen Sports bike rack is at the top of our list because it has received an overwhelming amount of positive reviews. If you want your bike rake attached to your vehicle, then we do not think you can choose a better product than this one. The rake attaches to the back of your car hitch while tie down systems hold any size bike securely in place thanks to padded cradles on the frame. Twenty-two inch carrying arms can collapse when the rack is not in use. The mounted car bike rack comes at the following sizes and prices:
Like any bike rack on this list, this one comes with some pros and cons. The advantages are it is sturdy and durable, albeit a bit heavy. It rarely wiggles during movement thanks to the tension bolt installing system, as opposed to the more traditional pin system. While the rack itself is more stable than the pin system, the tension bolt is hard to take off. Some people also report that the arms that hold the bikes wiggles a little during movement. While this might cause some minor scratching on the bikes, it does not do anything significant.
[amazon box=”B07D64KTRH” template=”horizontal”]
While this parking rack might not look like much, do not be deceived. The Bikehand rack is perhaps the most stable free standing rack to there. This stability is thanks in large part to the point hold system which secures either the front or back wheels much better than a traditional one or two old system. A stable center ensures that the bikes cannot be tipped over — no more bicycle domino falls. What is more, the product can handle heavy bikes. Even steel frames that weigh over fifty pounds will be stable as long as you secure them properly.
This bike rack is also among the most portable — it weighs around twelve pounds and can fold into itself — so you can take it on the go. The only complaint associated with the product is if you put it too close to the wall, then the tires might leave smudge marks from the dirt. However, you can quickly solve this problem by moving the rack a little ways away from the wall. The Bikehand bike floor storage comes at three different sizes and prices:
[amazon box=”B00P6EQ22K” template=”horizontal”]
If the roof of your car contains crossbars, then you might prefer a bike rack that can fit on your roof. The aluminum Travel Life roof carrier does not weigh much and can hold two bikes on top of the car. Like all good things on this list, it is straightforward to use — yet remarkably effective as well. Once you are driving, there is no noticeable wind resistance or noise, and the bikes stay secure to the top.
If you prefer roof racks, then we think this one is one of the best out there. However, the roof can get only a maximum of sixty-six pounds split between two bikes. So, if you want to transport a heavy steel framed bike, then you will want to look at some other rack system. Also mounting the bikes will be a little more difficult since you must lift them over the car. We recommend a small stepping stool if you find installing the bike on your roof difficult. One frame costs one hundred and fifty dollars. When compared to other roof racks, this price is quite good.
[amazon box=”B07B6W1QXC” template=”horizontal”]
The Dirza bike mount takes the simplicity and elegance of the Bikehand floor rack and transfers it into a mounted wall rack. Just install the steel plate base into the wall using a drill and then hang your bike on the rubber hooks. Though the bike rack weighs barely more than a pound, it can hold up to sixty times its weight.
The Dirza bike rack costs nineteen dollars for two bike racks, or eleven dollars for one — both of which are an incredible bargain. If you have a lot of bikes taking up space in your garage, the Dirza mount can be a great way to deal with a lot of them without dropping a whole bunch of money.
What is more, the product comes with a lifetime warranty — so as long as you are happy with it, you will never need another home rack. However, you should know that a lot of users say that the mounting screws that come with the product are of poor quality. Many times they snap under the pressure of a drill. As such, you will likely need a backup from a hardware store. However, besides some minor installation problems, we think this might be the best bike rack on this list regarding overall value.
The Swagman is another roof mounted bike rack that will not break the bank. The Swagman roof rack is much cheaper Travel Life roof frame — a stand that holds one bike costs fifty-five dollars at retail value. However, a lot of this comes down to the types of material the two products use. While the Travel Life brand uses an aluminum alloy, Swagman uses steel and plastic. While this does not necessarily make it any less reliable than more expensive pieces of equipment, it does weigh a lot more.
Some users also noted that their bikes felt a little unstable during the ride — through this complaint most likely came from a user error. The main problem with the product involves putting the bike on and off of the roof. It is much harder than the more expensive one, and it will take a lot more time. Still, if you are on the lookout for a good, affordable brand, then Swagman is a good choice.
[amazon box=”B00TRTSGBA” template=”horizontal”]
If your car does not have a hitch, but you still want a bike rack on your compact vehicle, then the Allen Sports Deluxe bike rack is for you. Like most trunk mounted bike racks, the Allen Sports’ is very affordable — costing only thirty-five dollars. It will probably take you some time before you master the art of big bikes into this thing. However, once you figure out the secret, it works like a charm.
And, unlike most trunk mounted products, it is pretty stable. However, you will need to reinforce it with straps of your own. Many people reported that one of the snaps broke while they were driving. As such, it is safe not to trust the manufacturer's hardware. However, a simple bungee cord fixes this problem. So, when you consider that it only costs thirty-five dollars, then you can just put some of the money you saved into a standard bungee cord. Problem solved!
The Omni bike storage rack is another good stationary product that can clear up a lot of space in the garage. While it is not as affordable as the Dirza rack, it does off a good value — five bike space capacity for seventy dollars. It does an excellent job at holding up the bikes with a heavy duty steel construction. It is also reasonably easy to install — usually taking less than twenty minutes.
Another downside, when compared to the Dirza rack, is the fact that you cannot customize how far apart the bikes are from one another. While this might not be an issue for everyone, some people did not like the fact that the bikes hung so close together and wished they could change it. Other people complained that their shipment arrived with missing parts. While obviously, this issue does not apply to everyone, it is worth noting.
For the customer who owns a truck, but does not want to use their hitch for a bike rack, you can use this Heininger Automotive bed rack. This product, which looks a lot like a traditional bike rack, fits against the end of your truck and can fit up to four bikes. The main benefit is it is a lot easier than strapping the bike into one of the rear or roof racks. All you need to do is load them into the bed. One unit cost one hundred and thirty-three dollars.
Unfortunately, many customers reported that it did not fit the bed of their truck. As such, you should make sure your bed is the right size before purchasing it. Others complained that the product scratched the interior of their trucks. So, if you are protective of your vehicle, you may want to choose a safer option.
Bike Rack Buying Guide
If you do not know much about bike racks, then do not feel bad. In this section, we will teach you about the pros and cons of each type of car rack. You should know everything about the kind of bike rack you want before you buy it since the type you get can determine where you travel and how hard it will be to store your bike after each use. Keep in mind that this section does not cover non-car bike racks.
Hitch Bike Racks
Hitch bike racks mount onto a hitch located at the bottom rear of the vehicle and usually hold between two to five bicycles. These racks do not require much regarding installation and loading the bikes generally does not take as much time as roof models. However, many bikes swing a little when locked into the hitch racks. As such this can cause some light scrapping on the bikes. It also obscures the vision in your rearview window and might block some of your tail light.
Trunk Bike Racks
Trunk bike racks are very similar to hitch bike racks in that they both occupy the rear of the vehicle. However, trunk bike racks do not require a hitch. They also do not cost as much and are much lighter and portable than hitch racks. Unfortunately, when you have them on you will not be able to access your trunk. These types of frames are also prone to more swaying than other kinds. The stability of the racks depends a lot on how adept the person is attaching it is.
Roof Bike Racks
Roof racks present safer driving conditions than rear racks because they do not obscure any of your vision while you are driving. Most of them are sturdy and do not shake at all — even during intense weather like snow and wind. However, loading the bikes on and off of these types of racks is a bit of pain. Also, for some vehicles, the added height of bikes might make it difficult to park or drive in certain areas with height restrictions.
Truck Bed Bike Racks
If you own a truck and want to utilize the space in the back of your bed, then you can get a truck bike rack. These types of products usually hold between two and four bikes upright in the bed. They can cost more than regular stands, but they are generally pretty stable when you install them correctly. However, they are a bit of a hindrance since it takes up almost all the space in the bed of your truck. If you want to use it for something else, then you will need to install it.
We hope this article helped you figure out which bike rack works best for you. Find the best bike rack is essential, not only for the safety of your bikes but also for those around. If you are driving on the highway and one of your bikes falls off, then it can create a potentially life-threatening hazard for those driving around you. As such, you should make sure that you get a product that properly fits on your vehicle. And make sure it is appropriately secure before driving your car.