Can You Install Bike Rack Without Hitch?

If you’re wondering ‘can you install a bike rack without a hitch?’ you may also be wondering which is the best non hitch bike rack.

Most people tend to favor hitch mounted bike racks as they are easy to use. But what if you don’t have a hitch? Afterall, if you only use it a few times a month, why go to the unnecessary expense of having one fitted? 

In this article we discuss the pros and cons of different bike racks, so read on to find out more!

Can You Install Bike Rack Without Hitch?

The short answer to this is yes you can! There are various different types of bike racks that don’t need a hitch.

These include trunk mounted racks, roof mounted racks and there’s even a spoiler mounted rack option. Personally, I find the trunk mounted rack the easiest to use, but then I’m short, so it’s not so easy for me to put my bike on the roof of my car!

Do You Need A Hitch For A Bike Rack?

You only need a hitch if you are using a hitch-mounted bike rack. Roof racks, trunk racks, and spoiler racks are all hitchless bike racks and do not need a hitch.

Is It Worth Getting A Hitch For Bike Rack?

Whether it’s worth getting a hitch for a bike rack is entirely up to you.

If you regularly travel with your bike, or you ride as a family then it may be worth considering. There are hitch-mounted racks that can carry up to four bikes and they come in a variety of configurations. 

How Much Does It Cost To Put A Hitch On A Car For A Bike Rack?

The cost to put a hitch on a car for a bike rack will vary depending on the make and model of your car.

Plus, you may want to have it professionally installed, or if you are a little bit handy, you can save money by installing the hitch yourself. Typically, you can expect to pay anything between $30 to $300 just for the hitch itself. Installation fees by a professional will vary, but they will charge for labor by the hour.

For some people, installing a hitch will cost more than their bike. Therefore, if you’re considering it, think about how often it will be used and will it make life easier?  

Which Is Better Roof Rack Or Hitch Rack?  

Both roof racks and hitch racks have their pros and cons.

A roof rack is more versatile as it can be used to carry other sporting equipment, plus you still have access to your boot. However, a hitch rack is easy to install and has the advantage that you don’t have to hoist your bike overhead, especially with higher SUV’s.

Plus, with a hitch rack, you don’t have to worry about driving under a bridge or the height restriction of your garage, but you do have to remember that extra length when parallel parking or driving in urban areas.

Also read: Do You Have to Have a Hitch for a Bike Rack?

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Jo Charnock — Mud Bike Writer

Jo biked overland from Cairo to Cape Town on a folding bike, then set up a bike shop selling Dahon folding bikes in South Africa when she got home and opened a MTB tour company in Zanzibar. She resides in Cape Town or Zanzibar, where she has been writing professionally since 2018.


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