Do you happen to see bars attached on top of vehicles? That is a roof rack that gives extra storage and permits safe transfer of bulky items like luggage and large containers. It could also support the transport of sports equipments like bicycle, canoes, skis and others.
If you are fond of taking camping trips and out-of-town vacations, a roof rack can solve your worries of how you could bring everything you need by providing maximum capacity for all your belongings. If you have company, they would be spared from the hassle of being clogged inside the vehicle with things that could not fit anymore in the usual vehicle compartment.
When there is no available spot in the camping area where you can throw your rubbish, the roof top is a good place to keep it. Just be sure that the trash is kept on a separate bag so its smell will not spread on your things and have it securely tied on the bars to avoid falling on the road.
Having mentioned some of the advantages, this luggage system also has its disadvantages. One very noticeable disadvantage is the additional height it would give to your vehicle. You should always check the clearance when passing an underground car park to ensure clear passage. Consider also the height of your own garage! Furthermore, the weight of the baggage on top of the car and the weight itself of the bars provide extra burden on the capacity of the vehicle. It may affect the performance of the vehicle on the road. It may also make the vehicle to wobble while moving.
Be concerned also of the things you will place on the rack. Liquids, like fuel and water should be reduced to a minimum level because the weight load shifts as the vehicle moves. As the weight of the liquids shift, it may cause an undesirable swaying of the vehicle as it turns on every corner of the road. The driver may not safely handle such situation.
Another consideration is the type of material you will choose. Some are made of steel, others are made of aluminum. Steel racks are very strong; however, these are also very heavy. Those made of aluminum may not be able to carry the load the steel bars can. But, it also has an advantage; it does not corrode unlike steel. Make use of roof rack storage bags to shield your things from dust, rain, and other elements. The bags would also keep the things in order and organized.
You could buy ready-made racks that come as one complete unit and the one with detachable luggage tray. The type with a luggage tray that is detachable would help you transport some long and big items during your everyday driving. You could also carry along your sporting equipment anytime you want.
After learning the advantages and disadvantages and the types of available roof racks, you could now decide which one to install on your vehicle.