How To Transport A Kayak Without A Rack

Have you bought a kayak only to realize your car doesn’t have a rack to transport it, or there is no ideal rack for your vehicle in the market? If so, you don’t have to worry since there are plenty of options that you can explore. Unless you’re fortunate enough to reside a few meters from the lake or ocean, you’ll require to transport your kayak to and from your kayaking spot. Most kayakers are accustomed to roof racks when it comes to transporting kayak from one destination to another; however, this option isn’t ideal for everyone. The article outlines other methodologies of transporting a kayak in the absence of a roof rack.

In order to transport a kayak without a roof rack, you’ll need to find the following:

A pool noodle is a soft polyurethane tube material with a hole in the center. Pool noodles can be purchased in various places, such as supermarkets. When buying a pool noodle is densely packed, heavy and broad enough to wrap the size of your car’s roof.

Ratchet Strap

A ratchet strap is fitted with flexible buckles that aid you in keeping your kayak intact. They are made up of rigid nylon. To tighten your kayak, you’ll need two or more ratchet straps. These straps are all over the automotive stores making it easy to find.

Here are the steps to transport your kayak without a roof rack

transport a kayak without rack

Step 1: Install Noodles on Your Car

Place the pool noodles over your car’s roof. Erect one at the back, center, and close to the front. There is no limitation to the number of noodles you can use, especially if you require additional padding, but in most instances, three are more than enough.

In case you discover that the noodles exceed your car width, cut them to fit the size of your car. Another option is to thread a strap via each noodle and tighten them via the interior side of your car for extra security.

Step 2: Put Kayak On Your Car

This is a hassle-free task provided you have another person to help you lift it in your car. It’s recommended to place your kayak facing the right way up while the hull resting on the noodles.

Curved hulls are more convenient, but they should be placed upside down on your car roof for more stability.

Upon placing yak on top of the noodles, you can lift the various components of your yak to realign the noodles and ensure they’re all in parallel. Additionally, ensure your yak is perpendicular to the noodles for the bow or stern to face your car’s direction.

>how to lock a kayak to a roof rack

Step 3: Tighten It with Straps

Here you need two pairs of either spring-loaded or ratchet straps while at the same time keeping the front and back car doors open. Tighten your kayaks middle part by inserting strap across the body, to have the straps ends at both sides of your car. Hold the two strap ends and bring them together on your car’s interior side via the front doors.

Adjust and secure them so that there is no movement among themselves and keep in mind to place the buckle on the exterior close to your yak so that it’s effortless to tighten. The objective of twisting the straps is to mitigate noise resulting from the wind while driving.

To further impede movement, tighten your kayak with the second strap via your car’s back doors. However, avoid overtightening the straps as it can inflict damage to your yak hull or the roof of your vehicle.

Step 4: Tie-Down the Bow and Stern

For additional security and safety when traveling, it’s recommended truss the bow and stern of your yak. This can be accomplished with the aid of ratchet or spring-loaded straps.

Attach straps to the front and rear of your car handle, tighten the two to a tussle spot with a hook beneath your vehicle. A towbar acts as the most effective spot to secure your trap.

Use Foam Blocks

Foam blocks can be used in place of a roof rack when it comes to transporting your kayak. They apply the same working principle with pool noodles but renders more stability. Here are the steps to attach kayak to your car via foam blocks:

Step 1: Erect the Blocks on Your Car Roof

Place two blocks on the roof of your car, at the front and the rear of your vehicle.

Step 2: Place your Kayak to the top

Once you have erected foam blocks, lift your kayak and rest it on the blocks.

Step 3: Tighten the Kayak with the Straps

Tie-down your kayak using the straps while keeping your car doors open to secure it from within the vehicle. For more stability, use additional straps.

How To Tie Down A Kayak Without A Roof Rack

Now that your kayak is in situ , it’s time to secure it to your vehicle. Open the front and rear doors of your vehicle and run a group of ratchet straps over the front of the kayak. Attach the straps inside your vehicle and use the cam or ratchet strap to secure it in situ . As you pass the straps through your vehicle, remember to twist them to stop them from emitting a high-pitched howl when driving.

Repeat this step with the rear of the kayak. Remember to not over-tighten the straps or they’ll damage your kayak hull and therefore the roof of your car. confirm the buckles are easily accessible in order that they are often adjusted on the go. If you drive in colder weather, the straps may loosen and you’ll got to adjust them during the ride.

How to Tie a Kayak Down the Right Way

  • Do not over-tighten the straps. If the straps put an excessive amount of pressure on the kayak, it can cause it to arch, especially if it’s a plastic hull. Leaving your kayak tilted for long periods of your time can permanently affect the hull and its performance within the water.
  • Heat and weather can affect your belts. If you’re changing from hot to weather , or have left the ratchet straps within the rain for an extended period of your time , remember to see whether the straps have come loose before driving.
  • Over time, the nylon ends of the ratchet straps can fray, making it difficult to undergo the buckle. you’ll fix this by carefully exposing the frayed end of the strap to an open flame and, without contacting your skin, applying pressure thereto . The melted nylon is comparatively easy to reshape and can make the straps much easier to lock .

Use Kayak Trailers

Kayak trailers can also be used in place of a roof rack when it comes to transporting your kayak from one destination to another. Kayak trailers are more preferred over roof rack because of their closeness to the ground. Another advantage of using a kayak trailer is that it saves energy when it comes to lifting kayak because it is close to the ground. The other advantage is that it can transport more than one kayak at a time. This gives additional room to carry extra vacation items via the roof of your car. Eventually, this will alleviate the wind resistance on your vehicle.

Once you’ve found the ideal trailer for your kayak, connect it to your car and then place the kayak on your trailer. The great thing about trailers is that they’re fitted with straps to tighten your kayak. Connect the trailer to your car and commence your journey.

Now it’s apparent that you don’t have to shell out a lot of money to move your kayak to your favorite destination. Keep in mind that safety is paramount, thus ensuring your yak is safe and secure prior to driving.

With plenty of options to choose from, you can now transport your kayak in a hassle-free manner provided you adhere to security and safety.

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