How to avoid noise during travel?
What exactly is a roof rack and what is a car top carrier?
A roof rack consists of hardware permanently installed on the roof
of a car and intended for fastening hard or soft luggage carriers.
Roof racks consist of either side rails (running front-to-back along
the sides of the car), cross bars (running side-to-side across the
width of the car), or both.
Some roof racks include a metal basket, while others are
specialized for fastening bicycles, kayaks, etc.
A car top carrier is a closed bag or box that rides on the roof of
the car and allows carrying cargo on the roof of the car.
What is the difference between hard and
soft car top carriers?
Hard car top carriers are rigid plastic boxes that require a roof rack and
metal hardware, special risers and tools to attach to the rack. They are
waterproof, durable and keep their aerodynamic shape when empty.
But they are expensive, heavy, difficult to install and remove, and
difficult to store. They are also noisy, because of the turbulence that
forms in the space between the roof and the box.
Soft car top carriers are large bags that fasten with straps to a roof rack.
They are easy to install and remove, economical, and easy to store. On the
downside, some are not durable or waterproof.
RoofBag car top carriers have been perfected over 16 years and are durable
Additionally, RoofBag's unique design allows fastening to a roof
rack (if the car has a roof rack) or to the roof and door frame of the car
(if the car has no roof rack).
And because the RoofBag carrier is in contact with the roof and has
an aerodynamic shape, it is quieter than a hard roof top carrier.
What is the difference between Cross Country and
Both models use the same fabric and have the same size and shape. Also in
both models the zipper, which spans three sides of the carrier, is
waterproof and is covered by a 2-inch flap that further deflects water from
The difference is in the technique used to make the
In the RoofBag Cross Country carrier, the zipper flap is welded, so that
this car top carrier has no exposed stitching at all, making it 100%
In contrast, in the RoofBag Explorer, the zipper flap is stitched
instead of welded, creating the possibility of minor water penetration
through the needle holes along the stitching. Because of the possibility of
minor water seepage in heavy rain, we describe the Explorer as being 99%
We recommend the Cross-Country RoofBag cartop luggage carrier when the best
protection is desired, when heavy rain or snow is likely, and when the extra
cost is not a problem.
We recommend the Explorer RoofBag cartop luggage carrier for short trips, when heavy
rain is not likely, or when a more economical price is an important factor
in the decision.
How waterproof is the RoofBag Cross Country
The RoofBag Cross Country is the most waterproof soft car top luggage carrier in the
market. The fabric used to make the RoofBag carrier is coated with a heavy
layer of vinyl on each side, which makes this fabric 100% waterproof.
All the joints are electrically sealed, not sewn, making the joints
fully waterproof. A 2-inch double-thickness zipper flap covers the zipper.
The zipper tape is polyurethane coated, which makes it waterproof.
Our carriers have been tested successfully under the most extreme weather
conditions, and countless customers have confirmed that our car top carriers
are not only waterproof, but also snow-proof and dust-proof (see
Car Top Carrier Reviews and Testimonials
However, water can enter the carrier through the zipper if the zipper is not
closed all the way or if the zipper flap is not pointing down all the way
PRECAUTIONS TO AVOID WATER ENTRY
- Install the RoofBag carrier with the logo toward the rear of the car.
- Close the 2 zipper sliders all the way until they touch at the rear of
- Use the carrier full or almost full whenever possible. This forces the
zipper flap to point down and cover the zipper.
- When using a half-empty carrier, fasten the straps so that the zipper
flap points down all the way around.
With proper installation, water cannot enter the carrier under any storm
How resistant to heat, cold, sun, etc. is the RoofBag car top carrier?
We designed the fabric for Roofbag car top carriers to provide maximum protection from the elements:
DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT, CAPACITY
• Will not rip or tear: 480 pounds resistance without tearing.
• Will not weaken or fade: blocks the sun's damaging UV rays.
• Will not get damaged in extreme heat or cold: can withstand heat up to + 250° F and cold down to - 40° F.
What are the dimensions of the RoofBag car top
- Size 11: 37 inches wide x 40 inches long.
- Size 15: 38 inches wide x 48 inches long.
- Height of both carriers is approximately 10 to 11 inches at the front
and 17 to 18 inches at the back.
- The width is measured side-to-side and the length front-to-back.
You can find more dimensional details on this page:
RoofBag Car Top Carrier Dimensions
What is the distance between the straps in the
Front-to-back, the strap guides are separated by 22" in the RoofBag carrier
size 11, and by 31" in the RoofBag carrier size 15.
Side-to-side, the strap guides are separated by 19" in the RoofBag carrier
size 11, and by 22" in the RoofBag carrier size 15.
You can find more dimensional details on this page:
RoofBag Car Top Carrier Dimensions
What is the weight of a RoofBag carrier?
A RoofBag carrier size 11 weighs about 8 lbs, and size 15 weighs about 9
How large is the box in which the RoofBag carrier
comes from the factory?
We fold each RoofBag carrier meticulously so that we can ship it in a small
box. We ship the RoofBag size 11 in a box 14" x 12" x 6", and the RoofBag
size 15 in a box 16" x 12" x 6".
How much weight can I put in a RoofBag carrier?
Since the RoofBag carrier is flexible, the weight limit is really determined
by the roof of the car and not by the RoofBag carrier. We have heard that
customers carry 100 lbs, or even 150 lbs of cargo in the carrier without a
As long as the weight is distributed over a wide area of
the roof, the normal weight of items that people normally carry in luggage
bags like clothes, camping gear, etc. does not cause any damage to the roof
of a car.
How much stuff can the RoofBag carrier hold?
A RoofBag carrier size 11 holds 11 cubic feet of contents, which is the
equivalent of 3 medium-sized suitcases.
A RoofBag carrier size 15 holds 15 cubic feet of contents, which is the
equivalent of 4 medium-sized suitcases.
Can I put suitcases in the RoofBag carrier?
It is possible to place suitcases inside the RoofBag luggage carrier.
However, you will use the space inside the carrier more efficiently if you
place the items in the carrier directly, without the suitcases.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT SIZE
you carry suitcases in the RoofBag carrier, cushion the interior points of
contact between the hard edges of the suitcases and the fabric of the
RoofBag carrier with towels or blankets to avoid damage to the fabric of the
Which size carrier is right for my car?
You can find a sizing guide on the Sizing Info page:
Car Top Carrier Sizing Guide
, which includes a list of car models and the recommended
carrier size for each.
In general, size 11 cu ft is recommended for
most sedans, and for small SUVs. Large sedans, mid-sized SUVs, vans and
station wagons can use either size 11 cu ft or size 15 cu ft.
don't think you will need the extra space of a size 15, you may be better
off choosing size 11, as a full RoofBag carrier rides quieter than a
If my car accepts sizes 11 cu ft or 15 cu ft, which size
should I choose?
If you need as much storage space possible, then choose size 15. But if you
don't think you'll need the all the storage space of a size 15, you may be
better off using size 11.
INSTALLATION OPTIONS: CARS WITHOUT ROOF RACK
A full RoofBag carrier works better than a
half-full carrier: quieter ride and better fuel efficiency. In addition, a
full carrier makes the zipper flap point down all around, which protects the
zipper from water entry.
Do I need a roof rack on my car to use the
RoofBag car top carrier?
No, RoofBag car top carriers can be fastened securely to a roof rack (if the
car has one), or to the roof and door frame of the car (if the car has no
How is the RoofBag car top carrier fastened to a
car without a roof rack?
1 - PASS-THROUGH STRAPS - A RoofBag car top carrier intended for a car
without a roof rack is shipped with 2 Pass-through Straps that fasten the
carrier to the door frame of the car. This attachment is secure.
The straps are 1,000 lbs strong, and the buckles are tested to 365
lbs. Additionally, the straps are thin (0.5 mm) and water-repellent to avoid
interference with the door seal or water wicking into the car. See
installation diagrams for a car without rack using
2 - STRAPS WITH DOOR HOOKS - An alternate installation method for a car
without a rack uses the optional Straps with
, which attach to a ridge that 70% of cars have on the top
section of the door frame.
Straps with Door Hooks need to be ordered separately. See the
Car Top Carrier Extra Straps
section of the Products Page.
If your car does not have the ridge required for the Door Hooks, or if you
are not sure, we recommend using the Pass-through Straps that come standard
with the RoofBag carrier when you order a carrier for a car Without Rack.
Pass-through straps work on any car.
My car has doors with no frame above the window.
Will it work?
Yes, the Pass-through Straps fasten the RoofBag carrier to the door frame
that is the rigid continuation of the roof, not to the door itself. The
doors just close over the straps. So, it doesn't matter if the top of the
door is a metal door frame or the glass window.
Can the RoofBag car top carrier be fastened to a
No, the roof of the car needs to be rigid in order for the RoofBag car top
carrier to be securely fastened to it.
Can I use the Straps with Door Hooks?
INSTALLATION OPTIONS: CARS WITH ROOF RACK
The straps with door hooks have the advantage that they don't take away
overhead space inside the car as the inside straps do. However, for the
Straps with Door Hooks to work properly, the top part of the door frame of
the car must have a ridge as described on this page:
Car Top Carrier Door Hooks
If your car does not have this ridge, or if you are not sure, we
recommend using the Pass-Through straps that come standard with the RoofBag
carrier when you choose a carrier for a car without a roof rack. These
straps work on any car.
How is the RoofBag carrier fastened to a roof
The RoofBag carrier can be fastened to any type of roof rack. When you order
a RoofBag carrier for a car with rack, we include 2 straps that fasten the
carrier to any type of rack: to side rails (straps go left-to-right), or to
cross bars (straps go front-to-back). See installation diagrams on the
Installation page of our website:
Fastening Car Top Carrier to a Roof Rack
Some side rails don not have slots for the straps to go through and
thus are unsuitable for fastening the carrier to them.
My side rails are only 36 inches apart, and the
38 inches wide. Will it
Yes, the RoofBag car top carriers are flexible and can be squeezed into a
space a few inches smaller than the width of the carrier.
My cross bars are closer together than the length
of the RoofBag. Will it still work?
Yes, the RoofBag car top carrier works with cross bars that are close
together. If the cross bars are adjustable, it is best to separate them as
much as possible. If the RoofBag is still a few inches longer than the
separation between the cross bars, the RoofBag carrier can be squeezed in
the space available between the cross bars.
If the cross bars are considerably closer together than the length
of the RoofBag carrier, the carrier can ride over the rear cross bar. See
Can the RoofBag cartop carrier ride over the cross bars
of a roof rack?
Yes, the RoofBag cartop carrier can ride over the cross bars. It is best to
first separate the cross bars as much as possible.
The installation is most stable when the front of the RoofBag
carrier is right behind the front cross bar. The rear cross bar can be under
the carrier. See installation diagrams on the Installation page:
Car Top Carrier with Cross Bars
If both cross bars are under the RoofBag car top carrier, the bag may flap
and create noise during travel.
If the car has both cross bars and side rails, we recommend buying an extra
set of Straps for Rack, and using one pair left-to-right on the siderails,
and the second pair front-to-back on the cross bars.
Can the RoofBag cartop carrier be installed on a
RoofBag cartop carriers have been installed successfully on cars with
sunroof by many customers. We are not aware of any problems resulting from
We recommend distributing the weight evenly and using good judgment when
deciding the amount of weight placed on the sunroof. If in doubt, please
consult the car manufacturer.
If I buy a RoofBag for a car without rack,
can I use it also on a car
The RoofBag carriers for cars with roof rack or for cars without roof rack
are the same. The only difference between the two models is the traps.
SHIPPING AND DELIVERY
Each RoofBag carrier for a car with rack is shipped with 2 Rack
Straps. Each RoofBag carrier for a car without rack is shipped with 2
If you want to use your cartop carrier on a car without rack and
also on a car with rack, order a carrier "for a car without rack" and also
order an extra set of straps "for Rack". Then you'll be equipped to use your
car top carrier on any car.
How soon can I have my RoofBag car top carrier if
I order today?
If you order Monday through Friday before 3 PM California time, your order
is guaranteed to be shipped today. This means you can have your RoofBag car
top carrier as early as tomorrow morning, if you choose next-day delivery.
We offer shipping options ranging from next day service to ground
service. Ground service takes between 1 and 5 business days, depending on
You can see all the shipping options available, along with cost and
arrival dates by entering your zip code in the small box in the Shopping
Cart, which is visible on each page of our website.
Is the arrival date quoted in your website
The Arrival Date is a best estimate provided by the shipping company. These
estimates are accurate 98% of the time. We cannot guarantee that your
package will arrive on the estimated arrival date, since about 2% of the
time, the shipping company delivers a package late for reasons ranging from
bad weather to overflow of their system in busy season.
If shipping company delivers a package late and you decide to return the
package, we will refund the value of the items purchased, but we can refund
the shipping cost only if you have chosen a guaranteed service and the
shipping company has issued a refund. (See below for list of guaranteed
Even with guaranteed services, the shipping companies will not issue a
refund if the delay was due to bad weather, system overflow or a faulty
Which shipping services are
If you choose a guaranteed service, the shipping company will issue
a refund for the cost of shipping if the package is delivered later
than the date quoted during the purchase, except if the delivery
delay was caused by bad weather, system overflow or a faulty
The following services are guaranteed by the
U.S. DESTINATIONS |
FedEx Express Saver
FedEx 2nd Day
FedEx Standard Overnight
FedEx Priority Overnight
UPS 3-Day Select
UPS 2nd Day Air
UPS Next Day Air Saver
UPS Next Day Air
USPS - Express
USPS - Express Mail International
USPS - Global Express Guaranteed
Do you sell your products at stores?
We only sell online, through our dedicated and secure RoofBag.com website.
We ship the same day you order (if you place your order before 2:45 pm PST),
and we offer a variety of shipping options, including next day delivery
service. Thus, you could have your carrier tomorrow!
By selling online, directly to the customer, we avoid the extra cost
of distributors and dealers. We pass these savings on to our customers,
which is why our prices are so reasonable.
Not only can you buy a
top-quality car top carrier at a very affordable price, but when you order
online, your purchase is fast, encrypted and secure, and on top of that, you
don't pay sales tax if you purchase from outside California.
Does the carrier come with everything I need?
Each RoofBag car top carrier is shipped with 2 straps.
are either RACK type if you specified WITH RACK, or PASS-THROUGH type if you
specified WITHOUT RACK.
The carrier and the straps are basically all you need to fasten the
carrier securely to the car.
However, we strongly recommend the
Protective Mat, an accessory that keeps the carrier from moving during
travel and protects the roof of the car from being scratched or marred by
Extra straps can also be purchased for extra attachment strength.
Other accessories provide added convenience, such as the Duffle Bags,
Padlock, Tire Step, Travel Blanket and Storage Pouch.
Do I need any accessories?
We strongly recommend purchasing the optional Protective Mat, which keeps
the RoofBag car top carrier stable on the roof without the need to tighten
the straps with excessively tension and also protects the roof from
The Duffle Bags add considerable convenience to the tasks of loading and
unloading the carrier.
Extra Straps can be purchased for additional fastening options and to
add strength to the attachment.
A Padlock brings peace of mind by securing the zipper of the carrier.
The Tire Step allows to easily reach the top of the car, SUV or van for
effortless loading and unloading of the carrier.
The Storage Pouch is used to conveniently store the carrier and the
accessories when not in use.
The Travel Blanket is a high quality, soft-top, waterproof-bottom pad
that can be used as a pet pad, picnic blanket, emergency blanket, etc. It
folds into an easy-to-carry package with carrying strap.
What's the purpose of the Duffle Bags?
The Duffle Bags ease the task of loading and unloading the carrier. Three
Duffle Bags, when filled, nest well and fill the space inside the RoofBag
The Duffle Bags can be filled at home and then brought to the car
using the sturdy handles. This is easier than loading the carrier by
bringing all the items individually to the car. Easier also than trying to
fill the carrier at home and carrying it to the car -- it gets too heavy to
lift when it's full.
Also transporting the contents of the carrier, for example during a
hotel stop, is easier with the Duffle Bags.
Additionally, the three Duffle Bags, when filled, conform to the
aerodynamic shape of the RoofBag carrier, providing a quiet ride and
improved fuel efficiency.
What type of fabric is used in the Duffle Bags?
The Duffle Bags are made of soft polyester fabric coated on the inside with
polyurethane for water-repellency. It is a lighter fabric than the fabric
used on the RoofBag carrier.
Are the sides of the Duffle Bags rigid?
Do they hold the shape?
The Duffle Bags are meant to be light-weight and take a small volume. They
do not have rigid walls and can be folded flat when they are empty.
However, when filled, the Duffle Bags are shaped higher at the rear
and lower at the front, to conform to the aerodynamic shape of the RoofBag
carrier. When you fill the Duffle Bags, place more items toward the rear, in
order to maintain this aerodynamic shape.
What is the purpose of the Protective
The Protective Mat is made of a special non-slip, soft, rubbery webbing
material. It is placed between the car's roof and the bottom of the RoofBag
car top carrier.
The Protective Mat adds friction to the contact between the bottom
of the RoofBag carrier and the roof of the car to prevent motion of the
carrier during travel.
The Protective Mat stabilizes the carrier on the roof, and creates a
quieter ride. It also protects the roof of the car by cushioning the contact
between the carrier and the roof.
Is the Protective Mat necessary?
The Protective Mat is not absolutely necessary, but it provides a more
stable and quiet ride. Also, without the Protective Mat, wind and vibration
can rub the dirt that collects between the roof and the carrier, scratching
the roof's finish.
Due to the extra friction provided by the Protective Mat, only slight strap
tension is needed to keep the carrier stationary during travel.
Can I use a blanket or a
towel instead of the Protective Mat?
We do not recommend placing a blanket or a towel between the carrier and the
roof of the car.
A blanket or a towel can actually make the contact between the
carrier and the roof slippery, encouraging movement during travel, which is
the opposite of the stabilization accomplished by the non-slip Protective
Do I need to buy extra straps?
The two straps that come with each rooftop carrier are sufficient to hold
the carrier securely. However, an extra set of straps can add stability and
quietness to an installation.
We recommend extra straps whenever there is room to install them. For
example on cars with side rails, 4 straps can be installed side-to-side,
parallel to each other.
On cars with side rails and cross bars, 2 straps can go on the side
rails, and another 2 on the cross bars.
Cars with no rack can also benefit from 3 or 4 side-to-side straps,
especially on a curved roof, or when using a roof top carrier size 15 on a
Installations through the rear gate on vans, SUVs or coupes, may require
lengthening the straps, which can be accomplished by ordering extra straps
and splicing them together.
Can I use my own padlock?
Yes, you can use any padlock with a shank up to 1/8" thick to secure the
The padlock we sell is a high-quality, custom-made, solid-brass lock with 3
keys. The key cannot be taken out of the keyhole while the padlock is open,
a feature that prevents lost keys.
Additionally, the RoofBag name is engraved on the keys so you never
have to wonder what these keys are for.
Solid brass means rust-proof, so our lock can get wet and will never rust or
Also, the keyhole is on the side of the padlock, not on the bottom,
a feature you will appreciate if you have to open the lock in the dark or in
rain or snow.
How to avoid noise during travel?
The vast majority of users experience a quiet ride. Follow these tips to
prevent noise during travel:
1 - Using a Protective Mat helps cushion and quiet the contact between the
car top carrier and the roof.
2 - Keep a distance of at least 8" between the front of the carrier and the
front end of the roof. This avoids the air turbulence at the front end of
3 - Fill the RoofBag carrier to capacity if possible. This preserves the
aerodynamic shape of the carrier, which creates a more quiet ride.
4 - If the car top carrier is not full, avoid flapping noise by packing the
carrier so that the outer surface is as smooth as possible. Hold down any
loose carrier fabric with the straps.
5 - Taut straps sections in open air (as opposed to the sections that are in
contact with the carrier) can hum, whistle, or vibrate. Adding a 1/2-turn or
a 1-turn twist to the noisy segment of strap will stop the noise.
6 - Tie and tuck the free ends of straps to keep them from flapping.
7 - When fastening the straps, make sure they are as vertical as possible,
to create a secure attachment and to avoid movement during travel. Follow
the strap angle guidelines shown here:
Car Top Carrier Strap Angles
8 - On a curved roof, use a second pair of straps to secure the car top
carrier. This keeps the front of the bag carrier from lifting and flapping.