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Roof Rack Options for Transporting Kayaks on 1996 Honda Civic Hatchback

Question:

Ive got a 96 honda civic hatchback looks like i need a yakima system or a sportrack -does either system come with locks? -how reliable is the sportrack barnd? ive never heard of it. -would either one fare better with kayaks on top of foam blocks? thanks!

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Helpful Expert Reply:

Since you intend to transport a kayak(s) on the roof of your 1996 Honda Civic Hatchback my suggested starting point is a review of your owner's manual to confirm how much weight the vehicle's roof can safely handle. If you cannot find this in your manual a local Honda dealership should be able to check this using your car's VIN number.

Depending on that roof weight capacity, and the weight of your kayak(s), the very lightweight foam block type of kayak carrier may indeed be a good option if your kayak weight load is near the roof's limit. Some of the foam block type carriers do not require a roof rack at all, which means you will not lose any of the roof capacity to the weight of a roof rack and you could potentially save some cash also.

For reference, SportRack is a highly reputable company (and a division of Thule), and we offer foam block kayak carriers both from them and Yakima; all can be seen on the link provided. These kayak carriers require no roof rack, but they are also not lockable.

There are roof racks and some kayak carriers with locks. For your 1996 Civic Hatchback with no existing roof hardware we offer an Inno square bar rack made of parts # INB107, # INSUT, # INJK and # INK707. The other roof rack option is a square crossbar system from SportRack, and this does include locks, parts # SR1003 and # SR1116. Both racks come with a manufacturer's limited lifetime warranty.

If you prefer kayak carriers that will work with these racks you can use the two links provided to view carriers that will fit these square crossbars.

Please feel free to let me know your preferences and I'll be glad to make specific suggestions.

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