Guide to the Best Kayak Roof Rack For Your Equipment

best kayak roof rack

Hauling your kayak up for some water adventure?

What you need is a kayak rack.There are plenty of kayak roof racks and carriers that you’ll find in the market. But the best ones would have the highest kayak roof rack reviews.

Basically, the best kayak roof rack is the one that’ll fit to your vehicle roof and carry your kayak efficiently. Even if you don’t have a kayak yet but you’re planning to get one, then a kayak roof rack would be in order.

Don’t know what to look for in a kayak roof rack? You don’t have to worry. With our top 5 list, you get to know which kayak roof rack are the best in the market and would be worth your money.

1. TMS J-Bar Rack HD Kayak Carrier

TMS J-Bar Rack HD Kayak Carrier

On top of our list is the J-bar rack kayak carrier by TMS. This is the best kayak carrier on this list with the highest kayak roof rack reviews.

As a J-bar rack, the TMS carrier enables you to have more space in your car roof for other gears. The bar rack comes with a steel design and adjustable paddings for added strength and to protect your kayaks better. This also makes the TMS kayak carrier very sturdy. The J-bars also has a wide mouth so you don’t have to worry about the loading and unloading of your water gears. It’s also very to install with a quick on and off hardware available.

2. Malone Downloader Folding J-Style Universal Car Rack

Malone Downloader Folding J-Style Universal Car Rack Kayak Carrier

Second on our best kayak racks is another J-style car rack from Malone. Just like the TMS J-Bar rack, this one is another J-bar kayak rack which allows you to put up your kayak on one side. The Malone kayak carrier comes with a built-in boarding ramp which makes kayak loading quick and easy for you.

It also uses a fold down technology so you get more overhead clearance for your car roof when the racks are not in use. More than that, the carrier’s oversized padding helps keep your kayak protected during transport. You also get extra protection with the addition of buckle protectors and load straps.

3. Yakima JayLow Folding J-Cradle Rooftop Kayak Rack

Yakima JayLow Folding J-Cradle Rooftop Kayak Rack

When it comes to making the best roof rack for kayaks, Yakima is a name well-known for the job. Compared to the first two kayak rack on this list, the Yakima JayLow folding kayak rack is a bit more expensive. Nevertheless, the price you’d pay for a Yakima is well worth it. Their kayak rack is able to carry one kayak when placed in a J-cradle or two when stacked in a vertical position.

The kayak rack is fully-assembled when taken out of the box so installation is a breeze. You don’t have to use any tool to install the bars. The integrated ramp and cam lever makes kayak loading very easy. What makes the Yakima roof rack even better is that it comes with heavy-duty tie-downs for the stern and bow

4. Malone HandiRack Inflatable Universal Roof Top Rack

Malone HandiRack Inflatable Universal Roof Top Rack

On the fourth spot is another kayak carrier from Malone. What makes this one quite unique from the rest of the list is that the Malone HandiRack is an inflatable roof top rack. The HandiRack is a portable and convenient option for those who do not want to install a permanent roof rack. If you’re looking for temporary convenience, then this is the best kayak roof rack for you.

The HandiRack is made up of tough and durable 420-denier nylon. It also comes with 5 D-ring anchor points to help secure your kayak upon loading. The carrier fits most vehicles and comes with plenty of extras for easy set-up and installation. With the HandiRack, you get a double-action Handi pump for quick inflation, load straps, and a travel bag.

5. JDM Universal Canoe Car Top Mount Carrier Roof Rack

JDM 2 Pair Universal Canoe Car Top Mount Carrier Roof Rack

Last on the list of the best kayak car rack is the Universal Canoe Car Top Mount Roof Rack by JDM Auto Lights. It’s another J-bar rack that comes in two pairs so you can carry more than one kayak and other gears for your water adventure. Since the JDM kayak carrier has a universal fit, it’s suitable to work on most crossbars already installed on vehicles. It doesn’t matter if it’s flat, oval, round, or square. The JDM Universal roof rack is made durable and lightweight with a heavy-duty steel construction. JDM also used rust-resistant materials so you’re sure that this roof rack would last you a long time. Installation is also very easy with the addition of mounting hardware and four straps included.


So again, a kayak roof rack is something that you should definitely have if you own a kayak or canoe. It’s even more a necessity if you constantly bring it out for some fresh air or water sports. With these carriers on hand, transporting your kayak would be much safer and more convenient for you to do. For the best kayak roof rack for the money, you get to choose between the TMS J-bar rack or the JDM Universal roof rack. If you have more budget to spare, then you can take your pick from the rest of the list.

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