Getting ready to purchase one of the besst truck bed bike racks which your money can afford? Biking is one of the best sports that you can engage in to keep fit both mentally and physically. But the problem is that not everyone has the time and chance to get up on the bike and start riding. There are certain scenery and terrains which are required for biking to take place. Basing on that, it might mean that, you will have to organize for driving trips or biking trips for you to visit a place where you can be able to ride your bike.
When it comes to planning these trips, it might be easy but the problem might arise when it comes to ensuring that, you transport your bike with you in the truck. It is possible to mount your bike on your vehicle and use straps to secure it, but that does not offer the required security and thus, there is a risk of your bike getting damaged along the way.
Comparison Of Truck Bed Bike Rack
Truck Bed Bike Rack Review
1. Allen Sports Hitch Rack For Bikes
One of the best features of this particular rack is that it has ease of use. If it is the one you want to settle for, then you will find it easy to use. The design is rugged and you will be able to use it to transport up to 4 bikes in a safe way. It could be ideal when you are going on a road trip, camping, and other adventures outdoor. It features individual cradles which have a tie down design that secures and protect your bike.
It has to carry arms which you can drop or fold out of the way when it is not in use. It is also possible for you to tilt rack back conveniently in case you are in need of accessing your vehicle. I find it to be an excellent rack due to the fact that it is capable of accommodating different types of bike design frames.
It is a bike rack which is highly recommended if you need to transport several bikes at a go. It is a model which is compact, holding up to 4 bikes due to the hitch mount design which is innovative. It comes with several functionalities which most modern bike racks have. Its tie down system allows it to be able to accommodate several bike frames in the market.
1. It can accommodate various types of bikes
2. It comes with tie downs for protecting and securing your bikes
3. When need be, you can fold the arms of the rack away
4. It has a quick install feature that comes with two keys
5. Good value for money
1. If the bikes are too heavy, there is a possibility of the bar bending
2. Swagman XC Hitch Mount Rack
If you are looking for a hitch mount rack with a firm grip on bikes, then this might be the option for you. it is best if you are looking for a frame which can accommodate two bikes in an upright way at the back of your vehicle.
It has upright ratcheting arms which makes it possible for the rack to hold any frame that is below 59 cm. The paint coating will be preserved due to its frame grip and thus, keeping the bike looking good all the time. It also protects your vehicle from scratches due to the presence of hooks which are cushioned.
The rack has foldable arms and thus, if you need to access the back of your vehicle, all you need to do is to fold the arms. It is a feature which makes it easy for you to be able to carry and at the same time store the rack when it is not in use.
It has an inbuilt anti-wobble device which ensures that your bike remains stable when you are on the move. If you are looking for a way to enhance your tandem security, you will have to purchase a security cable and locking pin separately.
1. Can hold bikes of different frames
2. Easy to store and carry
3. Gentle on your vehicle and bike paint
4. Accommodate two bikes
5. Has a firm grip on the bikes
1. You cannot carry fat tire bikes unless you buy a fat tire tray.
3. Kuat Rack Sherpa
I bought this particular bike rack for my friend John who is a hardcore adventurer and a mountain biker and he seems to be like it all. It has been 3 months since I gave him as a birthday gift and he is all praises about it.
It is a rack which looks sturdy and features front tire cradles which are adjustable together with a new innovative pivot design that comes with an optional foot assist.
It is all new and improved, lighter, user-friendly and secure. The body construction is all aluminum making it to be lightweight and also improving the gas consumption of the vehicle. It is easy to adjust this particular bike rack by using a single hand.
The design of the cradle is foldable, creating enough clearance so that, the bike will not be able to hit each other. Its foot actuated lever will allow you to lower the rack using one hand.
It has a design which is low profile with powder finish that is gloss metallic. You will get it in 3 different colors and thus, an option to pick the best for yourself.
1. Storage easy due to the foldable design
2. It is lightweight
3. Optional foot lever
4. Easy installation
5. Good value for money
1. The bolt holes aren't aligned well.
4. Yakima Ridgeback Hitch Rack
I recommend this product due to the fact that it comes with a hitch mounted design, a carrying arm which is extended and which you will attach the tubes of your bike. It is a bike rack which is easy to install. There is the provision of attachment points by the SpeedKnob, making installation very simple.
It is a model which can carry up to 4 bikes and thus, a good choice if you are planning to go out on an adventure with friends and family. There are various models with some accommodating up to 5 bikes. Its superior carrying capacity makes it a rack which is perfect for family outings.
Other great features of this particular rack are the zip strips and upper hand lever. The lever allows for tilting down of the rack or folding it flat when not in use. The zip strip ensures that your bike is secured to the rack.
It is a model that is equipped with an anti-sway feature which is found on its cradles thereby, no bike to bike contact while you travel. It is versatile as it fits hitch receivers of between 1.25 inches and 2 inches. It comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer so that, if you are satisfied, you are covered.
1. Tool-free locking
2. Gentle on bikes
3. Easy to use
4. Anti-rotation inserts
1. Possibility of the rack bending if you carry heavy bikes.
5. Yakima Products Hold Up Tray Bike Rack
This is another platform style bike rack which focuses on loading your bikes as fast as possible, in an easy way without touching on the frame. Whether it is a 29-inch wheel or just a 20 inch, it has a strongarm design which helps with a quicker load of your vehicles without having to contact the frame.
If you compare it to other counterparts, it tends to have stronger performance and just to test it out, I bought it for my brother. He has been using it for the last 5 month and it is still giving him service. It could be due to its beefed-up arm pivot. It is also possible for you to adjust the side of the bike by side. This will prevent unwanted interference of bike to the bike when you are traveling.
Their weight limit is at 60 lbs per bike which adds to 120lbs capacity. It is a rack which at 49 lbs, is very light and compact to store in the trunk or back of your car when not in use. Though it can carry two bikes, there is an optional plus 2 attachment which can enable it to accommodate 4 bikes.
1. It is a platform style bike rack
2. It enables you to load your bikes fast
3. It has a strong performance as compared to its counterparts
4. It is lightweight
5. It is easy to store as it is compact
1. Cannot carry more than 120lbs of bike weight
6. Thule T2 Pro XT 2 Bike Rack
If you are a cyclist with diverse types of bikes to carry on your adventure, then this might be the rack for you. Its design is to accommodate two bikes and if you purchase an add on, it can be able to carry up to 4 bikes.
It is an easy to attach rack onto your hitch and thus, no need for tools during installation. It will allow you to access your vehicle rear easily due to the fact that you can be able to tilt the hitch swivel switch down to be able to create space. You can also tilt it up when you are not using it, and thus, no need to keep on installing and uninstalling.
If you are looking for a rack that is secure, then this might be your rack of choice. It comes with a 24 inch integrated lock which secures the bike to the rack and also a built-in lock cylinder to ensure that the rack is well secured onto your vehicle. When you are not using it, this cable lock retracts back into the ratcheting arm.
With this particular rack, you can be able to mount fat tires, mountain, downhill, and bikes that have carbon frames. It is capable of accommodating bikes between 20 inches and 29 inches wheels and with tires up to 5 inches without contact with the frames. It has a well-sized ratcheting arm. It has enough clearance when putting the bike onto the rack and thus, no bumping into each other.
1. Inbuilt lock cylinders
2. Cable Lock
3. It protects the frames of the bike and your car paint
4. Good value for money
5. No need to keep on installing and uninstalling
1. At 52 pounds, it is weighty.
7. Heininger Automotive 2025 Bedrock
If you are planning to get out of town on a bike trip to exercise and experience nature with your bike, then this might be the rack to use to carry your bike with you on the truck.
It is a rack which can hold four bikes of any style and size without the need to remove the front wheel of your bike. This means that it comes in handy when you are being accompanied by a larger group with bikes for the trip.
To set up the rack is an easy thing as you will just lock and fit parts together and it will definitely fit in compact and full-sized truck bed without even utilizing the spacers which come with it.
The padding is exceptionally soft to ensure that, no damage happens to your paintwork when you are fitting it on your truck. Its fitting system allows you to easily install and remove. Considering its size, it is important that, when it is not in use, you remove it.
It comes with a spacer which will allow it to be compatible with several vehicle types as it can extend between 54.5 inches to 66.5 inches without the spacers and between 60.5 inches and 72.5 inches with the spaces. You will have to note that, it is not compatible with step side pickups.
You can also use the rack as floor racks in your porch or garage to hold your bikes. Seeing that its price is fair, compatible with most truck beds, and serves several purposes, I think it might be one of the best to think about when you are considering to buy a rack.
1. No need for drilling during installation
3. Can fit well in most truck beds
4. Comes with a lock for security
5. Can carry up to 4 bikes
1. It is expensive
8. Saris Freedom Bike Rack
It is a platform style rack which has a side to side wheel cramps. It is a worthy contender on this list due to the features that have. It is one of the most stable racks with no frame contact.
Though it is lightweight, it has a capacity of carrying up to 2 bikes with a maximum of 32 lbs each. It can accommodate any type of bike and with its integrated lock system, it will ensure that, during travels, your bikes are safe.
When it comes to installation, it is easy and also using it is very easy. All you have to do is to tilt down for you to have access to your car or truck rear. When you want to store, all you will have to do is to fold it away and store it in your car trunk. It is 100 percent made in the USA.
1. It is lightweight
2. Can carry two bikes
3. It is made in the USA
4. It is easy to install
5. It is easy to store when not in use
1. Can only accommodate two bikes
9. Saris Kool Mount Rack
This is a rack which is cool looking, designed to be able to accommodate one bike in your truck’s rear. But it is possible to have an add on with the limit to the number being the width of your truck.
It is designed to be able to grasp your bike’s fork preventing the bike from being able to twist while you are on the move, thus safer and less likeliness of damage. It is a simple bar which is designed to be able to fit snugly across your truck bed’s width. You can perfectly use it in trucks with a varying width of between 50 inches to 74 inches.
It comes with pivoting rubber pads which will be able to stick to any surface meaning, it can be used with or without a load liner and your truck will not be damaged. The inbuilt hydraulic pump is a unique feature with this particular rack. To activate the pump, you will have to hold the bar in position. This will ensure that the bar fits snuggly with the right pressure amount.
When you want to remove it, there is a switch to release which reduces the amount of pressure allowing the bar to be easily removed. It is a rack which fits in seconds without the use of any tools and I tend to also like it very much.
Once you have locked it into place, you can lift the bike into the back of your truck. You won't have to remove the wheels. You can use the skewer for quick release to move into position the fork, and then go ahead and attach the forks of your bike. It comes with two fork blocks which allow you to carry two bikes. But to increase the number of bikes to carry, you can buy additional forks.
The rack is made from recyclable materials and there is no rusting. It is environmentally friendly and incredibly durable. While it looks cool and adaptable., you will also have to note that it is versatile as you can use it to secure other loads on your truck. It has no locking system.
1. Made in the USA
2. It has a pressure release valve and hydraulic pump
3. The materials are nonrusting
4. Protection of the bike from scratches due to the availability of the rubber grip pads
5. It can accommodate bikes of various sizes
1. No locking system in place
Why You Need A Bike Rack For Your Cars And Trucks: Pros And Cons
There are several things which the bike do to make your life easier. They are capable of ensuring that you get through a traffic jam while others are sitting frustrated in their vehicles. They are able to cut down on your gasoline expenses on a monthly basis. They give enjoyment and exercise at the same time and thus, no need to burn out on the riding experience. The bike racks will add easiness to ensure that, you carry your bike wherever you go on your truck. You are going to benefit from bike racks in the following ways:
1. Grab and Go
Before the introduction of bike racks, there was a need for one to disassemble the bike so that they could take them for road trips in the truck. You had to remove the wheels from the chassis to ensure that storage became easier. This meant that, when you leave and arrive at your destination, there was disassembling and assembling of the bike.
With the improvement in the bike rack technology, it has become easier to install your bike on a rack and take it whenever you go. It has made the riding a bike as a pastime instead of a chore.
2. Ease Of Travel And Added Space
Whether you are using the trailer hitch or rooftop, there is added space when you use a bike rack thus, easing travel. Where in olden days there was a need to share your space with a bike and other travelers, nowadays it is possible to take your friends and family to vacations and picnics with your bikes in tow. Togetherness, exercise and the room to ensure that it happens is there. It has made life easy for bikers.
Types Of Bike Racks For Cars
1. Trunk/Hatch Mount Racks
This is the cheapest in the market, designed to rest on the back of your car trunk while secured in place using straps. Cradles and arm support the bike to ensure that it is in place. The frame of this particular rack has straps which attach to the rear bumper, hatchback, or trunk of the car. It is durable, inexpensive, and easy to store and install. They tend to be very portable and thus, can be used on various types of cars
Pros: If you are a recreational cyclist, then this might be the best bike racks for you. And due to the fact that the fit is adjustable, you can use them on various vehicles. They are highly portable, light, and when not in use, easy to store. After practicing, you will find that they are easy to take off and mount on your vehicle.
- Better locking system
- Multifunctional as it can carry several bikes at once
- Cheap in price
- Saves space as it is compact to store
- Can easily be attached and detached from the vehicle
Cons: These particular racks are limited in their load capacity they can hold. And when you load them on your trunk, it becomes hards to access your trunk. If you don’t secure the straps well, then the security of your bike might be compromised. If your concern is security, then the design of these racks can make it hard to lock your bike.
- Requires maintenance
- Lacks stability as the bike might thud into each other while on the move
- You have to keep on checking the straps to know whether they are still tight or loose.
- It is easy for them to damage your vehicle due to the fact that, the weight of the rack and that of the bike rest on the vehicle.
- With time, the straps wear off, become very loose and can easily snap.
- It is easy for thieves to cut them off.
- When you install this particular rack, it will become hard for you to open your trunk.
- The straps on can be an obstruction to the taillights, driver’s side rear window view and license plate.
2. Roof Mount Racks
It is a versatile bike rack which will mean that you will have to lift the bike onto the top of your vehicle. The cost is moderate but it will tend to be expensive if you start adding cradles or if you decide to build the system of the rack from scratch.
Many vehicles from the manufacturer come with build in crossbars or mounting points to secure bike racks. If your vehicle doesn’t have this, you have an option of building your own using the specifications from your manufacturer. These racks are also great for hauling things like cargo boxes, skis, or small boats.
Pros: It enables the bikes to be tucked out of the way leaving room to access the interior of your car and trunk. Due to the availability of various systems for all kinds of gear and for different seasons, it is a rack which is versatile. And because of the several locking systems, it is an option which is very secure. It is hard for bikes to sway or move easily.
- The rack mount is stable as bikes remain firm and no wobbling
- Proper view for the driver as no blockage of the rear end
Cons: To secure the bikes, you will need reaching and lifting and thus, not an option for cars which are taller or if you are someone who has issues with lifting heavy loads. It is not easy to remove the racks and thus, you will need tools to uninstall. You might notice wind noise or wind resistance as you drive. It also makes the cost of gas mileage to go up due to the added weight.
- Not detachable as it remains permanently on the vehicle
- Unloading and loading is hard especially for tall vehicles
- During wind, it might make noise
- If the bikes are tall, the vehicle might become unsteady in the breeze which is high cross
- Fuel consumption goes up due to the reduced aerodynamics of the car
3. Hitch Mount Racks
Although they tend to be a bit expensive as compared to the trunk mount racks, if you are a frequent user, then they might be a great option for you and especially if you will be in need of carrying more than three bikes with you. they are designed to carry two to five bikes. You will get them in either hanging cradle style or platform style, with both having their own pros and cons.
Hanging Cradle Style
This is a style where your bike is hanging on the rack. Its pros are that they tend to be less expensive as compared to the platform style, offer more ground clearance and lightweight. The cons are that your bike will not be held securely in place and when on the move, it will sway and make contact with the rest of the bikes in the rack. This will then result in minor abrasion to your bike.
In this rack style, the bike sits on a platform. Its pros are that the bike will be able to stay in place, making it easy and secure, preventing damage or any abrasion happening to your bike. The cons are that they are going to cost you a lot of money. They can also be awkward and a bit heavy to carry and store when you are not using them.
When you go purchasing the hitch mount racks, you have to check out the tongue load capacity of the hitch for your vehicle. Depending on the class of the hitch, if you place a lot of weight, it might cause the hitch to break or bend if you don’t load it well. You have to ensure that you check out the owner’s manual to determine the capacity of the load.
Pros: These type of racks are easy to install and they tend to be sturdy when you compare them with the trunk mounted ones. If you are a frequent user, then it might be a great choice for you. You can easily remove them when you don’t want to use them. Most of them come with locks or your hitch can be secured easily using a cable lock.
- Easy to set up
- Detachable design
- The bikes are loaded a certain distance from the vehicle and thus less contact
Cons: The platform model of hitch racks have features which allow the rack to drop or swing out of the way of the rear door or hitch of the vehicle. They tend to be expensive. But if you go for inexpensive models without the above feature, then they will tend to block the entry to the rear doors or trunk.
- Going for a model that can carry four to five bikes means that, you will get a rack which is heavy. When you mount it on your vehicle, it is possible to have sway when fully loaded.
- There are models which are cumbersome
- At times it doesn’t fit perfectly
- You might have to buy frame adapters for bikes with full suspension
- It is at times difficult to mount bikes with locked straps
4. Spare Tire Mount Racks
It is a rack which is similar to trunk mount. It is easy to quick to mount, and affordable in price. If your vehicle has a spare tire mount on the rear, then this might be a great option to go for. The rack rests on the screw or tire in the tire mount.
Pros: They are easy and quick to install. And they are not permanently installed to your vehicle. They are also affordable.
- Easy and simple to install
- Price is low
- It is easy to detach
Cons: They can only hold up to two bikes and there will be a need for you to remove the tire covers, which might be an inconvenience. It adds extra length to the vehicle and thus, you will need to be a bit cautious when negotiating tight spaces.
- You have to remove the covers of the tire
- Only two bikes can be mounted
- It might cause obstruction to the rear view
- Chances of bikes dashing into each other are very high
How Bike Racks Work
Most bike racks attach to your vehicle. Whether you are strapping them in a truck bed or roof, you will need it to be snuggly fitted with little or no clattering if possible. If the rack is too loose, then there are chances that, you might lose your bike or you might scratch the paint on your vehicle or the bike.
Most installation for the racks are simple and straightforward but you will need some tips to remember when you are doing the installation, turning your vehicle into a long distance transport for your bike.
If you are using a hitch mount rack for your bicycle, and at the same time want to carry a spare tire, then you will need to use a hitch extender. It will be able to allow you to store the bikes far from your vehicle rear, leaving room to carry your spare.
Using extra cradle can also be able to increase your capacity with up to two more bicycles. If you find out that your hitch mount bike is rattling, then get a hitch stabilizer which can fit both the receiver and the rack.
There is a variation in designs for bicycles and thus, you might be required to get a bike rack which is specialized for tandem bicycles. You can use a conversion bar to fit the nonhorizontal frames of the bicycles, the abnormally shaped ones such as the ones for mountain bikes and those for women.
Though installing the bikes might seem simple, you will need to be careful with the weight of your bike and the needs of your vehicle before you decide on which rack is best for you. The more you are likely to use the rack, the more money you will need to invest in it. The higher the quality, the higher the chances of it being able to withstand elements.
If you are planning to use it most of the time, you will ensure that it doesn’t interfere with other road users. If you think you cannot do it on your own, then utilize a vehicle professional who will install a rack to suit your specific needs.
Things To Consider Before Purchasing A Truck Bed Bike Rack
There are several things which you will need to consider when you are choosing the best truck bed bike rack. Here are what I consider to be some of the significant factors that you will need to consider to pick a bike rack that will suit your needs.
1. Your Budget: The price of racks is normally influenced by several factors which include the manufacturer, the size and style. Even though you are looking for the best rack to transport your bikes, you will need to, first of all, consider your budget and work within it to get the best in that bracket. You have to get value for your money.
2. Security: It is necessary that you get to know the security which a particular bike rack is going to provide you. You will come across bike racks that lock in the back of your truck. Others don’t offer any locking features and thus, you will need to improvise when it comes to security. I would recommend that you get a bike rack which is able to offer the best security system, within your budget.
3. How Many Bikes Need To Be Transported?: The number of bikes the rack you are choosing is going to accommodate is very important. I am sure that, most of the time, you will go out riding with family and friends and thus, the need for one which can accommodate several bikes.
4. Can It be used for other functions?: Other than supporting the bike, some racks can be used to serve other additional functions. Whether it is going to hold your bike in your garage when not in use, or whether it is going to prevent the sliding of heavy luggage in your truck bed, that could be an added advantage you should look out for.
5. How often you will use it?: This is an important factor to consider as it affects your budget factor. If the bike rack you are looking for is going to be used less often, then it will be best if you got one which is the cheapest of them all. But if you are going to use it quite often, then get one that is more durable.
6. Reputation: Get to know the reputation of the manufacturer of the bike you are about to purchase. There are some who are famous for goods which are substant, others use shortcuts in their production and thus, the need for you to avoid them. With aspects like durability and quality, you don’t have to compromise as the value for your money will get lost.
7. Storage When Not In Use: Ensure that, when the bike rack is not in use, it will be easy to store. It has to be compact enough.
To find the best truck bed bike rack for you might be an overwhelming task considering that, a number of manufacturers and models are available in the market. But the good news is that I have tried to analyze some of the best in the market. Among the ones I have ranked to be best, you will see that there are some which lower capacities than others, but depending on the company which you prefer most, I am sure that you are going to settle for the best that will meet your specific needs.
Try these products and I am sure that your outdoor experience will never be the same again. Enjoy great trails, scenarios, without having the worry of how safe your bike will be when you will be driving back home. Always remember that quality is the king and thus, it should be top of mind. My best pick is Heininger Automotive 2025 Bedrock due to the fact that there is no need for drilling during installation, it is multipurpose, can fit well in most truck beds, comes with a lock for security and it can carry up to 4 bikes.