Can You Go Through a Car Wash With a Bike Rack?

If you’re an avid bicyclist, you may have wondered if it’s possible to go through a car wash with your bike rack still attached to your car. After all, it can be a hassle to constantly take the rack on and off, especially if you use it frequently. But is it safe to go through a car wash with a bike rack? And what precautions should you take to ensure that everything stays secure?

In this blog post, we’ll delve into all of these questions and more to help you decide whether or not it’s a good idea to go through a car wash with your bike rack.

Types of Bike Racks

Before we get into the specifics of going through a car wash with a bike rack, it’s important to understand the different types of bike racks that are available. There are three main types of bike racks: roof-mounted, trunk-mounted, and hitch-mounted.

Roof-mounted bike racks attach to the roof of your car and are held in place by straps or clamps. These racks are often the most secure, but they can be difficult to load and unload due to the height of the car. They also have the potential to damage your car’s paint job if not used properly.

Trunk-mounted bike racks attach to the trunk of your car with straps or clamps. These racks are usually the most affordable and easiest to install, but they can put a lot of strain on your car’s trunk and may not be as secure as other types of racks.

Hitch-mounted bike racks attach to the hitch on the back of your car. These racks are typically the most secure and easiest to load and unload, but they require that your car has a hitch installed.

Each type of bike rack has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to choose the one that’s right for you based on your needs and your car’s capabilities.

Preparing for the Car Wash

Preparing for the Car Wash

If you’ve decided that it’s a good idea to go through a car wash with your bike rack, there are a few steps you should take to prepare. First and foremost, it’s essential to secure the bikes to the rack properly. This means making sure that all straps and clamps are tightened down and that the bikes are not able to move around.

You should also remove any loose items from the car, such as water bottles or bags, to ensure that they don’t become dislodged during the car wash. It’s also a good idea to remove any items that might be damaged by the high pressure jets, such as phone holders or GPS units.

When choosing a car wash, it’s important to look for one that is designed to accommodate bike racks. Some car washes have low-hanging arches or other obstacles that could potentially damage your bike rack or bikes. It’s best to avoid these types of car washes or to remove the bike rack before going through.

Going Through the Car Wash

Going Through the Car Wash

Once you’ve prepared your car and bike rack for the car wash, it’s time to actually go through. The most important thing to remember is to go slowly and avoid high-pressure jets whenever possible. These jets can cause damage to the bike rack or bikes if they hit them directly.

It’s also a good idea to keep a close eye on the bike rack while you’re in the car wash to make sure that everything is staying secure. If you notice any issues, such as a loose strap or a bike that seems to be moving around, stop the car immediately and fix the problem before continuing.

Maintenance and Care of the Bike Rack

After going through the car wash with your bike rack, it’s important to properly maintain and care for it to ensure it stays in good condition. Here are a few tips for keeping your bike rack in top shape:

  • Regularly check all straps, clamps, and other components for signs of wear or damage. Replace any parts that are damaged or showing significant wear.
  • Clean the bike rack after each use to remove dirt, grime, and other debris. This can help prevent rust and other issues that can shorten the life of the rack.
  • Store the bike rack properly when it’s not in use. If possible, keep it out of the weather to prevent rust and other issues.

Carwash with Bike Rack

Conclusion

Going through a car wash with a bike rack is definitely possible, but it’s important to take certain precautions to ensure that everything stays secure. By following the tips outlined in this blog post, you can safely and confidently go through a car wash with your bike rack without worrying about damaging your bikes or your car. Just remember to secure the bikes well, choose a car wash that is suitable for bike racks, and go slowly to avoid high pressure jets. With a little bit of care, you can keep your bike rack and your bikes in great condition for many rides to come.