Best Bicycle Racks – Reviews And Guide

There is something about biking the open road or a winding trail through the rugged countryside that speaks to the soul. The feel of fresh air rushing into your lungs, the burn in your calves and the adrenaline that rushes through you when you tackle and conquer a big hill is indescribable. But what happens when the open road or that winding trail is out of biking distance? Do you give up that feeling and stick to the side roads around the area in which you reside or do you invest in a bicycle rack that installs directly on your vehicle so you are ready to go whenever the urge strikes? The latter is definitely the better option, which is why today, we are going to look at the best bicycle racks out on the market and break them down by feature, function and affordability.

Best Bicycle Rack Comparisons

Brand

Details

Our Rating

Tyger Auto TG-RK2B202B Deluxe Black 2-Bike Trunk Mount Bike Rack

  • Dimensions: 79 x 12 x 8 inches
  • Weight: 12.2 lbs.
  • Warranty: lifetime

Hollywood Racks HR1400 Sport Rider SE 4-Bike Platform Style Hitch Mount Rack

  • Dimensions: 27 x 36 x 10 inches
  • Weight: 85 lbs.
  • Warranty: lifetime

Saris Bones 2-Bike Trunk Rack

  • Dimensions: 30 x 8 x 30 inches
  • Weight: 10 lbs.
  • Warranty: 5 years

How to Choose

When it comes to a bicycle rack, you want a model that is functional but also affordable, one that offers the best construction for a long life and one that also has a sleek modern look without coming across as bulky and cumbersome. You want a model that is lightweight but solid enough to hold multiple bicycles if necessary and one that will easily install on your vehicle and can be removed if needed without fuss. That’s the goal today, to find and provide the readers with the information they need to be back on that open road for the next big biking trip.

Ease of Installation

One of the most important things to look at when considering which bicycle rack to purchase is the ease of installation. You don’t want a model that will require a large amount of tools, which you might not own, or a huge chunk of time to install, which you don’t have when you need to leave for that biking trip within the hour.

You want a model that is easily installed within minutes and can be done with standard bike tools right in the driveway of your home. A model that has to be professionally installed, while secure and solid in their own right, can be a bother when you have to make an appointment with your local vehicle service shop and then pay for the labor associated with the installation. Suddenly the price tag on the bicycle rack you chose has increased and you aren’t even able to place any bikes on it!

The ease of installation can also refer to the ease of which you can lock the bikes in place. If it’s a model that is stationary and cannot be swung out of the way, you are blocking valuable space of your vehicle. If it a model in which a ladder is needed to secure the bicycles, suddenly the danger aspect of the task has increased. A model that you need a second set of hands for can also be a bother if a second set of hands is not readily available.

Customer Service

With any product that requires installation and the chance that a refund or repair will be needed, it is important to use a brand that has a positive customer service reputation. A lot of people notice these pop-up stores that offer the similar products to established brand names but at a fraction of the cost. While these are great for saving money, it can be hard to track them down if you need to make a return or repair when you discover that the product is not what you were looking for.

We work extremely hard for our money, which means that we don’t want to waste it on products that will cause more grief than what they are worth and we don’t want to waste our valuable time playing a game of back-and-forth with customer service representatives trying to get somewhere with the purchase. To avoid a customer service nightmare, simply use a brand or agent that you can trust from previous interactions or you can Google ratings on established brands (online stores, physical retailers, etc.) by entering into a search engine the name of the brand and the consumer reports on said brand.

When looking for a brand with a positive customer service reputation, you want one that has high ratings for:

  • Making the customer feel like they matter
  • Will go above and beyond to solve conflict
  • Will offer reimbursements or special deals in compensation for the issue
  • Will offer returns, refunds or extended warranty on a product for a reduced cost.

What You Are Looking For in A Bike Rack

The next important thing when it comes to trying to figure out what bicycle rack is best for your individual needs and wants is to narrow down exactly what it is you need in a bicycle rack. It is a waste of time looking at bicycle racks that feature a truck mount when you drive a SUV and it can be a waste of time looking at roof bicycle racks if you drive a smaller car but you need to transport more than one bike at a time.

Keep in mind some basic questions when considering what bicycle rack to purchase and use the following guidelines to narrow down your search for products:

  • What is the maximum number of bicycles you might have to transport at any given time?
  • What style of bicycle do you have? A standard bicycle? A mountain bicycle (thicker tires)? Or a custom bicycle?
  • What type of vehicle do you drive to narrow down what type of bicycle rack will be best for your needs – a truck, a car or a SUV     a. A truck can use a truck mount bicycle rack or a hitch mount bicycle rack; a car can use a roof bicycle rack or a trunk mount bicycle rack; a SUV can use a roof bicycle rack or a hitch mount bicycle rack.
  • Will you want to leave your bicycle rack on the vehicle for the season or remove it each time you are back from a weekend of riding?

Top 5 Bicycle Rack Reviews

Tyger Auto TG-RK2B202B Deluxe Black 2-Bike Trunk Mount Bike Rack

  • Dimensions: 79 x 12 x 8 inches
  • Weight: 12.2 lbs.
  • Warranty: lifetime

The Tyger Auto TG Deluxe bicycle rack is a trunk mount model that holds two bicycles at any given time. This model will installed directly on to the back of the trunk of any hatchback or small car or even a minivan. With its sleek black design and easy installation combined with the lower price compared to other models, it is no wonder that is bicycle rack has garnered a four-star rating online. The rack itself also has a rust-resistant coating to help it withstand any poor biking weather conditions or chemicals that could happen to get on the bicycles from riding in uncharted areas.

The padded frame of this bicycle rack ensures that both the vehicle and the bicycles are kept away from each other, avoiding damage such as scratches and paint chips. With a secure locking mechanism complete with safety straps, this rack also comes complete with an installation kit so you can install and remove whenever you need to.

Pros

  • Easily installed in minutes with included installation kit.
  • Mounts directly onto the trunk of the vehicle but is not recommended for use on a vehicle that is over 18 feet long or on a trailer/camper.
  • Rust-resistant coating helps increase the lifespan of your purchase.

Cons

  • Can only fit two bicycles at any given time.
  • Cannot be installed on a vehicle that has a rear spoiler, whether it is factory or aftermarket.

Hollywood Racks HR1400 Sport Rider SE 4-Bike Platform Style Hitch Mount Rack

  • Dimensions: 27 x 36 x 10 inches
  • Weight: 85 lbs.
  • Warranty: lifetime

This next entry is a different model as it is a hitch rack model that can be installed directly on the hitch located on your truck or SUV. The Hollywood Racks Sport Rider model features a platform which can hold up to four bicycles at any given time. This model comes pre-assembled so installation is fast and efficient.

The platform features slots in which the tires of the bicycle are fitted and padded clamps slide down to lock the bicycle(s) in place. The platform itself locks onto the hitch with a locking pin mechanism and is doubly secured by a locking cable. When not in use, the platform folds up to rest flat against the vehicle without touching the actual paint to avoid damage.

Pros

  • Can be converted to a two bicycle holder if needed or extended to a four bicycle holder using the conversion kit included in the purchase.
  • Uses locking pins and cables to avoid movement of the platform holding the bicycles while in use.
  • Safety straps ensure the bicycles will not sway towards the vehicle causing damage.

Cons

  • Is pricier than other models but that can be contributed to the fact it holds up to four bicycles.
  • Heavier than other models so single-person installation can be difficult.

Saris Bones 2-Bike Trunk Rack

  • Dimensions: 30 x 8 x 30 inches
  • Weight: 10 lbs.
  • Warranty: 5 years

The Saris Bones 2-Bike Trunk Rack is a lightweight and sleeker model that installs directly onto the trunk of any smaller car or family sedan. This model comes complete with locking mechanisms to securely hold two bicycles at one time up off the ground but away from the vehicle to avoid any damage to both the vehicle and the bicycles themselves. The locking arms and construction used injection-metal for a stronghold that can withstand up to 35lbs. for each bicycle.

This model is also an organic or green model as the entire construction uses only 100% recycled materials to ensure that once it has outlived its usefulness, it can be recycled at the nearest metal depot.

Pros

  • Lightweight constructions makes it easy for one person to install the bicycle rack directly on the trunk.
  • The 100% recycled materials have been treated to avoid rust damage to the rack, even when left exposed to the elements.
  • Can be installed on vehicles that feature spoilers on the trunk, whether they are factory-installed spoilers or after-market products.

Cons

  • The locking arms for the bicycles are held in place by plastic screws, which some customers reported aren’t strong enough for highway driving.

The Bottom Line

While all the models that have been described here today are among some of the best on the market, you may still find yourself looking in another direction at a model that speaks volumes to you and your needs. You want a product that will meet those individual needs but also fulfill each desire you have for a solid bicycle rack. With the heftier price tags attached to some of these models, it is understandable why you would shop around and discuss among your biking peers what would work best for you.

Consult with your biking peers, visit your local bicycle specialty shop for more insight and have patience when it comes to making a final decision. The most important thing to remember is not rush into a decision as it might not be the best fit for you, whether it doesn’t securely lock the bikes in place as you thought or it is too heavy for you to lift into place alone. Maybe the model you impulsively grab needs professional installation which can take time for the appointment and money for the service. Think wisely, spend wisely, and before you know it; those open roads and winding trails are yours.

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