Mounting Spare Tire To Roof Rack: Methods And Steps

For mounting a spare tire to the roof rack, gather the necessary materials first. Then place the hook, secure nut, place the spare tire, tighten it, and finally check the stability. 

You can also use 5 different methods to do so. These involve the usage of ratcheting straps, cargo brackets, threaded rods, tire chains, or motorcycle cables. 

If you want to know more about mounting spare tire to roof rack and how they do it, keep reading. 

Key Takeaways

Beginner’s Guide To Secure A Spare Tire To A Roof Rack

Here’s a summarized step-by-step method for beginners on, how to mount a spare tire to a roof rack.

  • Gather Materials: You’ll need a spare tire, a hook, a nut, and a tool to secure the nut.
  • Hook Placement: Insert the hook through a designated hole or attachment point on your vehicle’s roof rack or basket.
  • Secure the Nut: Thread the nut onto the hook from underneath the roof rack. Use a wrench or tool to tighten the nut. It should be secure enough to hold the tire in place.
  • Tighten the Nut: Use the wrench or tool to tighten the nut. Ensure it’s snug enough that the tire doesn’t move around.
  • Check Stability: Give the tire a gentle push and ensure it’s stable. If it’s firmly secured, it shouldn’t move.

You can follow this video tutorial for a better visual and mount the spare tire to the roof rack. 

5 Additional Methods For Mounting The Spare Tire To Roof Rack

After thorough research, we came up with  five methods to securely attach a spare tire to a roof rack.

diy roof rack spare tire mount
Source: Pinterest

Method 1: Using a 3-Way Ratcheting Strap

  • Gather Materials: Collect a ratcheting strap with 3-way rubber-coated mounting hooks.
  • Position the Tire: Place your spare tire over the car roof basket.
  • Secure the Strap: Attach one hook of the strap to the eye bolt on the rack.
  • Repeat for Other Hooks: Connect the remaining hooks to the middle cam buckles of the strap, securing them tightly to the tire.

Method 2: Using a Mounting Cargo Bracket

  • Gather Materials: Get rectangle tubing, a mounting cargo bracket, or Roof Box U Bolt Clamps, metal screws, and bolts.
  • Install Tubing: Weld a bolt into the middle of the rectangular tubing. Place it in the center of the roof rack and secure it.
  • Mount Bracket: Attach the mounting bracket inside the tire’s rim and weld a wing nut with a lock bolt onto the rack.

Method 3: Setting Up a Threaded Rod

  • Gather Materials: You’ll need a threaded rod, flat washers, galvanized large plates, stainless nuts, U-bolts (8 by 2 inches), fuel bolts, and a rubber plate.
  • Create Bracket: Position the galvanized plates and threaded rod to form a bracket. Drill holes in the bottom plate and attach U-bolts under the rack.
  • Secure Plate: Place a rubber plate on the tire rim for protection. Pass the threaded rod through the rim, place the flat washer and nut, then tighten.

Method 4: Using Tire Chains

  • Gather Materials: Get a sturdy tire traction chain.
  • Position Chain: Lay the tire chain beneath the roof rack.
  • Thread the Chain: Pass the chain through the tire rim and under the rack bar.
  • Secure the Chain: Tighten the chain to prevent tire movement.

Method 5: Wrapping with Motorcycle Cable

  • Gather Materials: Choose a heavy-duty motorcycle cable with a lock.
  • Wrap the Cable: Wrap the cable around the tire rim from top to bottom.
  • Position the Cable: Pass the cable under the rack bar.
  • Secure the Cable: Close the keyed lock to secure the tire.

Different materials offer different ways to secure your spare tire to the roof rack, depending on your preferences and materials. Always ensure the tire is tightly fastened to guarantee safety while driving.

Product NameProduct Features
3-Way Ratchet Strap Quick and easy-to-use rubber-coated hooks, Adjustable ends and fits up to a 35” UTV tire.
X AUTOHAUX 4 PCS Universal Roof Box U Bolt ClampsBuilt of iron and plastic to be anti-oxidant, wear resistant, temperature resistant. It is difficult to break and deform, and durable to extend service life.
Peerless 0232405 Auto-Trac Light Truck/SUV Tire Traction ChainAutomatic Tightening And Centering Is Provided in this light truck. It has  Worry-Free Self-Tightening Ratchets and can be installed and removed within Minutes.

Things You Need To Consider: 

When you’re putting your spare tire on the roof basket, there are some really important things to remember. These are-

Roof Rack Size:

First, check how big your roof rack is. You need a spare tire that fits just right in the basket. If it’s not a perfect fit, you might need a new basket that’s the right size. 

Picking How to Attach:

There are different ways to put on your spare tire. Some are easy on your wallet, while others might cost more. You should choose the way that feels secure to you.

Taking Care of It:

Don’t forget about looking after your spare tire once it’s on. When you attach it, do it properly so it’s not loose. A tight fit means it won’t fall off unexpectedly. 

Spare tires normally do not have pressure sensors. But if you have a full-size one, make sure to take special care to maintain the tire’s pressure sensor

Keeping these things in mind, you can make sure your spare tire is safely attached to the roof rack. That means a smoother journey and less worry on the road.

Advantages Of Mounting A Spare Tire

There are numerous benefits to opting for the installation of a spare tire on the roof rack. Here are the advantages of mounting a spare tire.

  • Enhanced Storage Space: Roof rack frees up trunk space for luggage during trips.
  • Easy Tire Replacement: Quick access for tire changes compared to undercarriage.
  • Convenient Portability: Ideal for road trips, allowing you to carry extra tires without using interior space.
  • Wind Protection: Acts like a shield, keeping the roof stable in strong winds.
  • Improved Ground Clearance: Helps protect larger tires from road obstacles.
  • Preserved Cargo Space: Interior storage remains unaffected as items are placed on the roof.
  • Rear Visibility: Unlike swing-out carriers, it doesn’t block the rearview.
  • No Departure Angle Impact: Doesn’t affect the car’s angle on uneven terrain.
installation of a spare tire on the roof rack
Source: cherokeeforum

But before mounting take a look at the lifespan of the tire. Regularly look or check if the spare tire is okay or flat.

Disadvantages Of Mounting A Spare Tire

Despite the remarkable advantages, there are several disadvantages associated with installing spare tires on the roof rack. 

  • Roof Damage Risk: Uneven weight distribution can harm the roof without proper support.
  • Added Weight: The extra weight can make the car unstable and harder to handle.
  • Mounting Device Reliability: Over time, the mounts holding the tire could weaken, leading to detachment while driving.
  • Aerodynamic Impact: The added weight creates wind resistance, lowering fuel efficiency and increasing noise.
  • Accessibility Challenges: Retrieving the roof tire can be difficult and time-consuming.
  • Aesthetic and Legal Concerns: It might impact the car’s appearance and might not comply with legal regulations.
  • Potential Vehicle Damage: The stress from the added weight can cause lasting damage to the car’s structure.

Considering these drawbacks alongside benefits is vital when choosing roof rack mounting. Meanwhile, note the fact that enough lubrication is mandatory for the bead while mounting. Otherwise, the tire bead may get damaged because of the mounting procedure.

Alternative Mounting Options

You may also consider other alternative mounting options for your spare tire. Some alternatives are-

  1. Trunk Storage: Traditional method in a well or against the cargo area; easy access and hidden.
  2. Roof or Hood Mounting:
  • Roof: Good for off-road with ladder; theft risk in urban areas; aerodynamic impact.
  • Hood: Adds front weight, obstructs view; function over style.
  1. Hidden Cargo Area: Under trucks; hidden but hard to access in tough terrain.
  2. Back or Tailgate Mounting:
  • Tailgate: SUVs like Wrangler; access vs. space; theft risk.
  • Back: Historical; access but impacts looks.
  1. Trunk Carriage: Mid-20th century; style and function.
  2. Running Board-Mounted: Early cars; easy access and style.
  3. Under Hood: Uncommon; heat and rubber drying issues.

Each storage type offers unique benefits and limitations, catering to different vehicle types and driving needs. You can also look into the details and, the pros and cons of mounting spare tires according to other experienced people.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): 

Can You Use A Spare Tire Permanently?

No, you can not use a spare tire permanently. Spare tires are typically rated for speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. Exceeding this speed limit can result in adverse effects on the vehicle’s engine components.

Why Would You Put Your Tires On The Roof?

People choose to mount tires on roofs to remove wind-rumbling noise. It helps in providing a quieter driving experience. This method also contributes to the protection and preservation of both the tire and the vehicle’s roof.

What Is The Weight Lifting Capacity For A Spare Tire Host?

The weight lifting capacity for a spare tire host is up to 120 pounds. The spare tire can be kept on the basket to prevent rust and shredding. 

Concluding Line

So, now you know the methods for mounting spare tire to roof rack. Also, securely mounting offers practical benefits such as enhanced storage, easy tire replacement, and wind protection. 

While various methods cater to different preferences, it’s crucial to weigh advantages against drawbacks and consider alternative options. Make an informed choice to ensure safety and convenience during your journeys.

Abdullah Anas

I am Abdullah Anas, a tire expert. I hate seeing people struggle to find the right tires for their cars. That is why he puts much effort into writing well-researched content about car tires. Today, it’s six years since he started the good work. I have received a lot of positive feedback from his readers and friends. Now my target is to let you understand every detail about all the tires available in the market

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