|Cargo / Luggage Carriers
|If you are looking for a convenient way to
carry your luggage and other items without
making your vehicle too crowded, cargo carriers
(also called "luggage carriers")
can give you the space you need. Mounted
either on top or in the back of your vehicle,
they come in a variety of sizes, construction,
and costs. The size of the items carried
and the vehicle used will determine how large
a capacity carrier you should get. If you
often carry various sizes of load, consider
getting 2 small carriers, using one with
a small load and both with larger loads.
Carriers are constructed as a basket, soft
bag, or hard shell. Baskets are wire framed,
topless boxes great for carrying items like
camping gear, construction materials, and
items that weather wonít affect. Straps are
needed to secure the items being carried
so they donít fall off. Bags are made from
lightweight fabric, provide protection from
the weather, and fold up for easy storage.
If not completely filled, you might encounter
some flapping noises. Shells are rigid box
carriers that are heavier but often are aerodynamically
designed to reduce fuel consumption. Because
of their rigid shape, they do not have to
be completely filled.
Features to look for:
- Weatherproof is not the same as waterproof.
If the carrier is not waterproof, get a waterproof
liner so you donít run the risk of having
wet luggage if it rains.
- Dual openings so you can get to items easily
from any side of the vehicle
- UV and rust resistant materials to keep the
carrier looking nice longer.
- Wheels and handles (like those on suitcases),
either built-in or attachable, makes moving
the carrier easier when off the vehicle
- Secure locking systems both to hold the carrier
to the vehicle and to prevent theft of items
in the carrier.
- Optional attachments to carry fishing poles,
skis, and other sports gear or consider purchasing
specifically designed racks for these items.
Bikes generally require specially designed
bike racks instead of a cargo carrier to
prevent damage to them while traveling.
Two accessories that you might find helpful
protection pads that go between your vehicle
and the carrier to prevent scratching and
a tire step that can be put on your tire
when needed to give you a lift up for easier
access to the carrier.