If your vehicle is lacking in cargo space, transporting luggage can be a bit of a challenge. The good news is, there is a way to transport goods on your car’s roof with the right equipment and precautions. As a professional and experienced hitch shop in Calgary, one of our most popular and highly recommended products is the Thule roof rack and cargo boxes for carrying items. Of course, the most important thing to prioritize is the safety of you and other passengers on the road. Let’s take a look at how to safely and securely carry luggage on top of your car.
Check the load capacity
Before packing your luggage up, the first thing you’ll need to do is check the owner’s manual of your vehicle for the load capacity. It should specify how much weight your vehicle’s roof can support. Keep in mind that SUVs, trucks, and minivans can support more weight. Additionally, having a sunroof can affect how heavy of a load the roof can bear.
It’s important to follow your vehicle’s load capacity, regardless of how slight the additional variance is or how quick the drive takes. It can be tempting to carry a heavier load for a short drive to the airport or someone’s home, but the consequences can be severe. If your car can’t support the weight, you can end up with damage to your vehicle’s roof that is costly to repair, or worse, cause an accident on the road.
If your luggage is over the load capacity and you need different options, we’re more than happy to answer your questions about possibly attaching a hitch to your vehicle for a small trailer. In any case, we can recommend the right solution depending on what type of additional luggage you’re carrying.
Invest in a cargo box
The latest advancements in technology have made it possible for cargo boxes to carry an impressive amount of items without significantly impacting your vehicle’s performance. Rooftop boxes allow you to free up precious cargo space in your car. Thule cargo boxes in Calgary are handy for road trips and camping in a city known for outdoor adventures and enthusiasts. Because of their secure design and sturdy material, you can store items directly into the box, such as sporting gear, golf clubs, and outdoor equipment, with the peace of mind that they’re protected from rain, snow, and hail damage. Cargo boxes can also be locked to protect your items from theft. Again, remember to refer to your vehicle’s load capacity when packing up your cargo box.
Ensure good weight distribution
The key to a safe cargo mount is proper placement and weight distribution. If the load you’re carrying has different parts or individual items, use the centre of the roof for the heaviest or largest item. The bottom of the load must lay flat and secure on the roof for optimal support. Avoid cargo placement where the object hangs over the edge of the windshield or trunk as this can cause an updraft and can significantly impact your vehicle’s drive and safety.
Test the load
Last but certainly not least, once you have your cargo securely loaded onto your Thule roof rack, it’s important to test the load before you drive through busy streets or highways. Take a slow and steady drive around your neighbourhood or to an empty parking lot where you can practice turning and going over bumps. Although the cargo may be fitted correctly and securely, doing a test drive ensures the load movement is restricted as much as possible.
When you’re ready to transport luggage to your destination, always drive within the speed limit and be extra mindful of your surroundings. Avoid sharp turns, sudden lane shifts, or sudden braking. The above tips combined with good driving habits will help you safely carry luggage on top of your car.