Car Bike Rack Tips


Here are a few car bike rack tips for your triathlon bike

When it comes to picking out a car bike rack that will make your triathlon training and trips there are several things to consider. There’s no doubt that many people who have taken up the sport of triathlon. Not all of them have the convenience of getting on their bike in front of the house and heading out for a 50 mile training ride.

Some people live downtown and there is no way on this earth they would even consider locking myself into the pedals of a tri-bike and bike 10 miles to a highway where it’s safe to ride.

car bike rack tips -bike transition zone

Make sure your triathlon bike gets to the race

First of all, cyclists are at risk in my city because of the high volume of traffic and people in a hurry to get places. Also, it would take forever to get where you are going because of all the stopping and starting at traffic lights. Into the pedals, out of the pedals, into the pedals, out of the pedals.

It just made no sense to me. Hopefully these car bike rack tips will help you avoid this.

So when you take up the sport of triathlon the first thing you should do is head out and get myself a car bike rack. Even if you are able to start training rides outside your front door you will still need a bike rack to get to and from out of town races.

Of course the best option is to be able to put your bike “inside” your vehicle, but not everyone can do this.


A trunk-mounted bike rack seems to work best for most people. They find it more convenient than securing their bike onto a roof rack.

So the rear-mounted car bike rack was great as far as convenience went. It was just a matter of putting it on the rack, securing it with a couple of tie-downs and I was good to go. However, this method of hauling a bike around also has it’s draw-backs.

car bike rack tips  -rear mounted bike rack

Rear-Mounted bike rack

For one thing triathletes tend to really prize their bikes. They can also be a big financial outlay for some people.

All it would take was one inattentive driver to rear-end your vehicle and your bike would be nothing but a piece of twisted, mangled rubber and metal. It’s very expensive to insure a bike and it usually requires an addition to your auto insurance as it is not covered under most regular policies.

Also, if you are traveling to a race your bike is exposed to the weather elements, road tar, and flying rocks. When you get to your race venue you will have to spend extra time cleaning your bike as the road dirt will be embedded in your gears. Of course that’s true of any bike rack that exposes your bike to the elements.

Care must also be taken to protect your bike frame from the rack as there will be some sliding back and forth and the last thing you want is to have metal exposed to metal.


Of all these car bike rack tips the concept of a roof-mounted rack just never made any sense to me but I suppose for some people its an alternative that works for them.

First of all you are dealing with all the same issues as far as your bike being exposed to the elements and the dirt, grime, and rock-chips of the open highway if you are traveling to a race.

Secondly, it seems that it would be a bit less convenient putting your bike up there and getting it down again as opposed to a bike rack mounted on the back of the vehicle.

car bike rack tips -roof bike rack

Roof mounted bike rack


These bike rack extension that are made to fit onto your trailer hitch. It has all the same pros and cons of any rear mounted bike racks.

You can still be rear-ended and your bike is still exposed to the elements. The one advantage is that there is no contact between your vehicle and the bike rack.

This is a key feature to these car bike rack tips.


I really think if you can manage it with ease this is the ultimate way to travel with your bike regardless if you are triathlon training or heading to a race in some far-off city.

Ideally it would be great to have a big enough SUV that you could put the bike right in and not have to remove the wheels. Once you get to your destination you just take you bike out and you are on your way.

This is also the perfect way to get in some excellent transition training. There were many times when I would park out on the side of a country road and bike for 60-80 kilometers.

Often I would think how great it would be if I could just put on my running shoes when I got back to my car and go for a five mile run.

car bike rack tips

Bike inside your vehicle is the best of all choices

When I was ironman training this would have been great transition training. It just works better if you keep the transition time between your bike and run as short as possible.

So really, the type of car bike rack you choose will vary between individual needs and the type of vehicle you drive.

As an added car bike rack tips be sure to take care of the chain on your bike when traveling. The oil on the chain attracts dirt and dust like a magnet. If it’s loaded outside your vehicle and the oil and grime on the chain will often get all over you as well when unloading and loading.

If you are transporting your bike “inside” your vehicle, it’s all the more reason to keep the chain covered. Chain oil and grime can easily stain the interior of your vehicle.


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