Discover the weight limit of the Subaru Outback roof rack and explore effective strategies for organized and secure cargo loading. Enjoy hassle-free adventures with ample storage space.

Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Limit: 2024 Comprehensive Guide

Discover the Subaru Outback roof rack weight limit for safe and efficient transportation. Learn how to maximize storage capacity while staying within weight guidelines.

Subaru Outback owners love the versatility and outdoor capabilities of their vehicles, and many use their Outbacks for various adventures. One popular accessory for the Subaru Outback is a roof rack, which allows owners to carry additional cargo, kayaks, bikes, and even rooftop tents. However, it’s crucial to know the weight limit and select the best roof rack for your Subaru Outback to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

The weight limit for Subaru Outback roof racks varies depending on the generation of the vehicle. On average, the roof racks can carry approximately 176 lbs (80 kg). However, it’s essential to consult your vehicle’s owner manual to confirm the specific weight capacity for your roof rack and crossbars.

For example, the 6th generation Subaru Outback (2020-2022) and the Subaru Outback Wilderness have a roof rack weight capacity of 165 lbs (75 kg) for both crossbars. Make sure to distribute the weight evenly across the roof rack and crossbars to avoid any issues.

According to the majority of Subaru Outback manuals, it is recommended to not exceed a weight limit of 100-165 lbs when storing items on the roof rack, crossbars, or other roof additions.

Subaru Outback ModelsWeight Limit of Roof Rack
2005 – 2009 Subaru Outback 100 – 150 lbs
2010 – 2014 Subaru Outback150 – 165 lbs
2015 – 2019 Subaru Outback165 – 176 lbs
2020 – Present Subaru Outback176 – more lbs

How much cargo can the Subaru Outback’s roof rack store, then? The solution is contingent upon the specific models of your trucks. Furthermore, it is not advisable to install a roof rack on a truck without prior knowledge of its weight capacity, as doing so may cause significant damage to the roof surface.

It is advisable and prudent to adhere to the load capacity restrictions when installing the Subaru roof rack onto your vehicle. If a large bag exceeding the weight limit of your Subaru rack is carried, it may result in damage to the roof of the vehicle, such as breakage or severe rusting.   

In addition, it is likely that collisions with other drivers may occur as a result of the substantial weight on your Subaru rack. Driving at high speeds on varied terrains while carrying loads can negatively impact stability and performance. It is advisable to refrain from carrying items without prior knowledge of the weight limit.

subaru outback roof rack weight limit

Understanding Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Limit

  • The Importance of Weight Limit: Discover why knowing the weight limit of your Subaru Outback roof rack is crucial for safe and secure transportation.
  • Weight Capacity and Safety: Learn about the specific weight capacities of different Subaru Outback roof rack models and how exceeding these limits can impact vehicle performance and safety.
  • Distributing Weight Properly: Understand the significance of distributing weight evenly on the roof rack to maintain balance and minimize the risk of accidents or damage.

2005 to 2009 Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Capacity

The roof racks on a Subaru third-generation can support at least 100 kilograms. However, you can load up to an additional 50 pounds onto their backs without issue. However, it is recommended by most professionals that you don’t go over the maximum capacity stated in the manual. 

It’s only natural to pack heavily for a road trip, but if you don’t know what you’re doing, you could end up denting your 3rd-gen Subaru’s roof rack. You should think about how it will affect your gas mileage and how loud it will be.

2010 to 2014 Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Capacity

The racks on the latest generation of Subaru vehicles are rated to carry the same 150–165 lb. as those on the previous generation. Not all Outback roof racks from 2010-2014 can hold 165 pounds of gear including bicycles, skis, surfboards, suitcases, and more. 

Therefore, these roof racks are the best option if you need to transport items that are not too cumbersome. Consider your belongings and final destination before making a decision. 

2015 to 2019 Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Capacity

The typical weight limit for items carried atop a Subaru 5th generation roof rack is 176 pounds. Most, though, have a weight limit of just 165 pounds, which won’t have any effect on your truck’s aerodynamics or gas mileage.  

If you frequently transport multiple large items, these roof racks are a good option for your Subaru Outback. 

2020 to 2022 Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Capacity

The 6th-generation roof racks can carry 176 lbs of cargo, which is more than can be said for many other models. These roof racks are the finest option for anyone looking to transport cargo on top of their Subaru Outback.

The roof racks on a 6th generation Subaru are designed to accommodate a wide variety of loads, including baggage, camping gear, a tent, and even a sofa. They can carry over 176 pounds with no problems with noise or wind.

Tips for Choosing a Subaru Outback Roof Rack

In this guide, we’ll provide you with valuable tips and insights to help you select the perfect roof rack that suits your needs, ensuring a seamless and enjoyable adventure.

1. Consider Your Needs and Activities:

  • Assessing Your Requirements: Determine your specific needs and the activities you plan to undertake with your Subaru Outback. Are you carrying bikes, kayaks, or camping gear? Understanding your requirements will help you choose a roof rack that accommodates your specific equipment.

2. Research Different Roof Rack Types:

  • Understanding Roof Rack Varieties: Explore the various types of roof racks available, such as crossbars, cargo baskets, or platform racks. Learn about their features, benefits, and compatibility with your Subaru Outback.

3. Check Weight Capacity and Load Limits:

  • Evaluate Weight Capacity: Consider the weight capacity of different roof rack options and ensure they can safely support the items you intend to carry. Adhering to weight limits is crucial for optimal performance and safety.

4. Compatibility with Your Subaru Outback:

  • Confirm Fitment: Ensure that the roof rack you choose is compatible with your specific Subaru Outback model year. Double-check the dimensions, attachment mechanisms, and mounting points to guarantee a secure and seamless installation.

5. Durability and Weather Resistance:

  • Opt for Quality Materials: Look for roof racks constructed from durable materials such as aluminum or steel to withstand various weather conditions and provide long-lasting performance.

6. Consider Ease of Installation:

  • Installation Convenience: Evaluate the ease of installation for the roof rack you are considering. Some models may require professional installation, while others offer user-friendly features for easy setup.

7. Compatibility with Accessories:

  • Accessory Accommodation: If you plan to use additional accessories like bike racks or cargo carriers, ensure that the roof rack you select can accommodate these add-ons and provide a secure attachment.

8. Budget Considerations:

  • Setting a Budget: Determine your budget range and explore roof rack options that align with your financial plan. Consider the long-term value and durability of the chosen roof rack within your budget.
subaru outback roof rack weight limit

Best Roof Racks for Subaru Outback

There are various aftermarket roof racks available for the Subaru Outback, as well as racks designed specifically for different generations, like the 2000-2004 version or the 2015-2019 model. Some popular options include:

1. Front Runner Slimline II Subaru Outback Roof Rack

Front Runner makes Slimline II roof racks for several Outbacks. For 2000–2004, 2015–2019, and 2022–present Outback Wilderness, they developed one.

Side rails boost this platform rack’s weight capacity. Roof-carried items are distributed by the side rails. Three Front Runner Slimline II versions include 660-lb roof racks.

Roof racks grasp roof rails, making installation straightforward. Superb platform. Rooftop tents, kayaks, canoes, and hundreds of Front Runner aftermarket rack attachments can be attached. It’s guaranteed for life.

This Subaru Outback roof rack sits over the side rails, making it taller. The automobile raises 2.5”. 

What we like

What we don't like

2. Prinsu Subaru Outback Roof Rack

Prinsu builds all racks in Idaho. Subaru Outback roof racks are available for the 2010–2014 4th Gen, 2015–2019 5th Gen, and 2020–2022 6th Gen. This review covers the 6th-generation Subaru Outback roof rack.

American-made low-profile platform roof rack holds over 500 lbs. It can carry roof top tents or bike racks.

Drill-free roof rack installation. Your Outback’s roof sides hold it. It comes with a normal wind deflector to reduce noise and mileage or a 40-42-inch light bar cutout. Regardless, this overlanding roof rack is great.

What we like

What we don't like

3. Rhino-Rack Subaru Outback Crossbars

Rhino-Rack makes popular car crossbars. Thule and Yakima match Australia’s quality and dependability. Cortex crossbar systems are versatile. Rhino-Rack Vortex Subaru Outback crossbar system JA9141 fits 2020–2022 6th-generation Outback and Wilderness.

Outback roof side rails have two black vortex bars. Self-installation takes 45 minutes. The Outback crossbars support 150 lbs. while moving. Canoes, kayaks, surfboards, snowboards, and roof-top tents are okay.

Rhino Rack has crossbars for the 2020-2022 Outback and Wilderness, as well as the Legacy (2015-2019).

Given rising petrol prices, crossbars scarcely reduce fuel usage. When empty, they don’t affect your Outback’s MPG because they’re light and wind-resistant.

What we like

What we don't like

4. YAKIMA - EasyTop, Instant Rack

YAKIMA EasyTop Immediate Rack is a great rooftop cargo rack with many features. The YAKIMA Easytop fits Subaru Outbacks.

Attaching the YAKIMA EasyTop Quick cargo rack to the door frames is easy. Its double-latch buckling system secures your stuff while traveling. These 44-by-12-by-6-inch YAKIMA racks can hold 80 pounds.

These affordable YAKIMA fast cargo carriers protect your roof with thick cushioning. A limited lifetime warranty is included.

What we like

What we don't like

5. Thule 838 Hull-a-Port Aero Kayak Carrier

The Thule Hull-a-Port Aero Kayak Carrier is a high-quality Subaru outback attachment that protects your kayak. The Thule carrier is easy to set up and use as a bike rack.

The Thule Hull-a-Port Rooftop Carrier’s thick cushions protect goods. The Thule carrier’s straps will secure your belongings for the trip.

Thule Hull-a-Port PRO Rooftop Kayak Carrier tool-free installation simplifies life. The Thule J-Profile wide-mouth makes kayak loading and unloading easy.

What we like

What we don't like

subaru outback roof rack weight limit

Using Your Subaru Outback Roof Rack Safely

When using your Subaru Outback roof rack, it’s essential to follow these guidelines:

  • Always check the weight of the items carried and ensure they don’t exceed the weight limit for your roof rack and crossbars.
  • Distribute the weight evenly across the roof rack to avoid wind resistance or damage to your vehicle.
  • Be mindful of wind noise and drag, which can affect your gas mileage and create more wind resistance.
  • Secure your cargo, bikes, or kayaks properly to ensure a safe and secure drive.

Maximizing Utility with Subaru Outback Roof Racks

  • Rooftop Tent Options: Discover how Subaru Outback roof racks can support rooftop tents, allowing you to create a comfortable camping setup wherever you go.
  • Carrying Kayaks, Canoes, and More: Find out how to safely transport water sports equipment like kayaks and canoes using your Subaru Outback roof rack.
  • Optimizing Storage Capacity: Learn about different methods to maximize the storage capacity of your Subaru Outback roof rack, ensuring you can carry all the gear you need for your adventures.

Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Limit: FAQs

Q: Can I use a rooftop tent with my Subaru Outback roof rack?

Yes, you can use a rooftop tent with your Subaru Outback roof rack, provided that the combined weight of the tent and your cargo does not exceed the maximum weight capacity of your roof rack and crossbars.

Q: How do I know if a roof rack is compatible with my Subaru Outback?

Check the product description and compatibility information provided by the manufacturer. You can also consult a Subaru Outback review or contact the manufacturer directly for more information.

Q: How do I reduce wind noise and drag from my roof rack?

Choose an aerodynamic roof rack design that reduces wind resistance. You can also use accessories like wind fairings to help minimize wind noise and improve gas mileage.

Q. What is the difference between roof rails and roof racks?

When comparing the functions and weight capacities, roof rails and roof racks diverge significantly. The roof racks will allow you to transport more items because of the increased storage capacity. They also prevent further damage, provide extra space, and provide ease. 

The roof rails, on the other hand, are meant to be installed onto the vehicle in an upward and downward fashion, parallel to its length. They also improve the truck’s aerodynamics, making it easier to keep the vehicle on the road. 

Q. What happens if you load your car heavily?

The stability and balance of your vehicle may be compromised if you carry heavy loads on the bed. Your truck’s center of gravity may shift due to the weight of its cargo, reducing its efficiency.

Subaru Outback Roof Rack Weight Limit: Final Thoughts

By understanding the weight limits, best roof rack options, and essential tips for using Subaru Outback roof racks, you can confidently embark on your outdoor journeys with peace of mind. Whether you’re planning a camping trip or need extra space for equipment, choosing a reliable roof rack system is key. Remember to adhere to weight limits, distribute weight evenly, and consider your specific needs when selecting the best roof rack for your Subaru Outback. With the right roof rack setup, your Subaru Outback can become a versatile and capable vehicle for all your outdoor pursuits.

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Daniel Wisdom
Daniel Wisdom

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