Do you have roof racks or other car accessories installed on your car? To ensure you get the most out of your roof racks, you’ll need to ensure you are properly maintaining them.
The first thing you need to do before attempting to clean your roof racks or accessories is to make sure you remove all items from your roof.
When you’re going to clean your roof racks, you want to use the right products. If your roof racks are left in a dirty condition, you risk damaging the paint and pads on the roof rack. To avoid this, you need to make sure your roof racks are maintained and kept free of any dirt. The best way to do this is manually clean the roof racks on a regular basis. Use only a solution of water with and a standard car wash liquid without alcohol, bleach or ammonium additives..
Remove the roof racks: for the best clean, remove the roof racks from the car. Use warm and soapy water for a thorough clean. Ensure your roof racks are completely dry before mounting them back on the roof of your car.
Lubricate: over time your roof racks can become loosened as a result of the vibrations from the car. Make sure you lubricate the bolts and tighten any knobs, locks and washers.
Wear and tear: Inspect the roof racks and roof accessories for any wear and tear. If any of these pieces have become corroded make sure these are replaced before using the roof racks again. Only use original spare parts obtained from the manufacturer. Also check the tie-down straps you’re using – if they have become frayed or have loose buckles it’s best to replace them to avoid any danger occurring.
To properly look after your roof racks, it’s best not to constantly leave them on your roof. Instead, you should occasionally remove them. This gives you the opportunity to properly wash both the roof racks and the roof of your car. If you wash the roof racks while they are still attached to your car, dirt can be pushed underneath the pads of the racks, making them lose functionality over time.
When you’re reinstalling the roof racks to your car, ensure both the racks and the roof of your car are clean. If your car’s roof is dusty, this can also stick to the pads and damage the paint of the roof racks.
Can roof racks go through a car wash? If you’re going to take your car through a car wash, you must remove your roof racks before doing so. Roof racks and any accessories can be damaged going through a car wash. Brushes from the car wash can get stuck in the roof racks and cause the roof racks to be pulled off your car.
Always read thru the maintenance and installation paperwork provided to you when you purchase your gear. This will help you keep your gear in the best possible condition and avoid any damage to either your vehicle or your load.
*Our friends at Yakima have helped provide us with this research and images for this blog post.