Are Suction Cup Roof Racks Safe? Important Tips to Consider When Using Suction Cup Racks

Are suction cup roof racks safe? Is a question you might have asked yourself a thousand times. Transporting your bike is one of the ways of expanding your cycling experience outside your comfort zones. But are suction cup roof racks really worth it?

At first glance, the racks could fill you with scary thoughts like your bike falling off while on the road.

However, you should be confident since the racks are designed in such a way that they can handle the weight of your bike.

If you are not convinced, this article will help convince you. Continue reading to learn more.

Are Suction Cup Roof Racks Safe?

Yes. Suction cup roof racks are safe to use with your bicycle and will hold your bike firmly in place when you are on the road.

The suction cups make it easy to mount, remove or swap it to another vehicle. The bigger diameter for the cup makes it easy to create enough vacuum, thus eliminating safety concerns.

We recommend this ROCKBROS Sucker Bike Rack

The cups have a pull force of more than 210lbs, making your bike as safe as it can be while on the road.

The racks are bike-friendly, and they can fit in a bike bag or a backpack, or carry-on. This makes is convenient for you to store them when not on use thus preventing theft.

Also see: Are Bike Racks Easy to Install?

There is no set time length on how long it can hold. It will depend on where you are attaching it, the weight of the bikes, and the vacuum’s condition. But, as long as everything is in good condition, you shouldn’t worry about safety.

Also, if the suction begins to lose vacuum, the safety ring in the pump will extend outside to warn you.  Once you see the indicator, you should re-pump it before you use it.

How Fast Can You Drive with Suction Roof rack?

You should limit your speed to 75mph (120 kilometers per hour) or below, especially if your bike is attached to the rack. 

Even on a dirt road, the speed of your car won’t affect the stability of the rack.  But the manufacturer recommends regularly checking on the rack and bike, especially if it’s a long-distance drive.

Some drivers have attempted to go above 75 mph. Even though there hasn’t been any reported incidence, it is safe to stick to 75mph.

But like with the other racks, you should be careful how you drive since you have extra weight on your vehicle. You don’t want to lose control and veer off the road and injure someone in the process, do you?

Remember, when you are driving at high speed, the wind is working against you. In case something unexpectedly ran across the road, you could lose control.

But, if everything is carefully attached and the vacuum mounts are not loose, there shouldn’t be any issues.

Can a Suction Roof Rack Be Able to Hold the Weight of My Bike?

Yes, the suction roof rack is designed in such a way that it can handle the weight of your bike.

The vacuum can mount on metal or glass surfaces and even fiber glasses and hold bikes of up to 45 lbs.

Unlike the other racks that depend on straps and bolts to keep the bike secure, suction cups depend on the vacuum mounts.

The suction cup gets its gripping power when the pump, which is thumb-driven, eliminates air between it and the car’s surface, thus creating a pressure difference. This difference gives the rack the power to hold the weight of your bike.

If the cup is no longer in good condition, the safety of your bike and rack will be compromised.

Safety Precautions to Take When Using a Suction Cup Bike Rack

Before you mount your suction bike rack, you need to consider all the safety precautions to avoid making costly mistakes. Some of these precautions include:

  • Ensure you keep an eye on the suction cup for the safety indicator to alert you in case of the loss of the vacuum. Ensure you do this before using the racks, even if you are on the road.
  • If mounting the rack on the roof, make sure you position it next to either the front or the back windshield. This is because the roof has more internal support in these areas, and it can safely support your bike.
  • If you choose to mount the bike on the rear windshield, make sure the wheels are not hanging lower than your vehicle’s bumper.
  • Before mounting the rack, ensure that you thoroughly clean the surface and dry it. You can use soap and water for the cleaning. Keep in mind that dirt, dust, and mud will affect the vacuum’s ability to attach to the surface.
  • Also, when attaching, ensure you first moisten the vacuum cup with water but not lubricants or cleaners.
  • You should be extra careful when installing the rack, even though you need minimal mechanical skills.
  • Removing the bike rack from the vehicle is easy. If you are starting from the front cup, press the release valve and pull if it’s the rear. Start by the press both the pull and the tab at the same time for the pressure release.
  • Ensure you place the vacuum in protected pads in a protected case when you are not using them.
  • Also, don’t carry more than the recommended weight of the bike.
  • Finally, before you begin your journey, make sure everything is in the proper place.

Final Word

One greatest invention when it comes to bicycles is suction roof cups after a two bike storage rack. Suction cups attach to a surface the same way a squid attaches to its prey.

The grip offered by the cups gives it the power to hold the rack and the bike in place. This then eliminates the need to have bolts and straps, thereby eliminating the hassle.

However, even with these advantages, you may still ask, are suction cup roof racks safe?

The rucks are safe even when driving on a dirt road. As long as you follow the above precautions, you should be safe.

Happy Cycling.