If you’re in the market for bike racks, you know they’re expensive. It can be hard to shell out another few hundred dollars for racks after you’ve already spent a lot of money on your bike. We know you want to get on the road and riding, so we’ve got the greatest options for you that give you a quality bike rack without sacrificing your hard-earned money.
All of our rack options manufactured by Graber, a longstanding company in the bike market out of Wisconsin. These racks are made completely in the United States and come with a lifetime warranty. These racks have been thoroughly tested, so keep reading to find out our top recommendations.
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The Graber All Star Bike Rack is our top choice for affordable bike racks because of its unique and versatile arms. It holds two bikes with a low profile and folds down for easy access to the rear of the vehicle. This is a great option for bikers on the go as it can be left attached to the hitch with minimal interference in normal daily activities. It doesn’t hurt that it comes with great customer reviews, too!
3 Best Graber Bike Racks In 2021
1 – Graber All Star Bike Rack – Top Pick
This Graber bike rack is our top pick due to its unique structure and adjustability. It is like nothing else on the market. It is a platform rack with adjustable arms and wheel trays to fit many different types of bikes. It attaches to standard hitch receivers, and its folding upright bar allows access to the rear of the vehicle when not in use. It is an American-made product with a lifetime warranty, so you can transport your bikes confidently on the road.
Dimensions: 24.25 x 15 x 8.5 inches, weight: 22.45 lbs, two-bike platform tray rack, wide wheel trays, up to 35 lb per bike capacity (70 lbs total), adjustable arms, folding upright pole, fits 1.25 inch and 2 inch hitch pin connection (adapter block included)
- Adjustable arm and platform wheel trays
- Easy to assemble
- Bike stays in secure position with adjustable straps for tires
- May not fit angled top tubes as securely as straight top tubes
- No locking feature on rack
2 – Graber 3 Bike Hitch Rack – Best for Multiple Bikes
The Graber 3-Bike Hitch Rack is our choice for transporting multiple bikes. This is a hitch receiver compatible rack that features a sturdy hanging pole. A double arm securely fastens many styles of bikes by their top bar to the rack. The product features a tilt-out arm to access the rear of the vehicle, and then poles fold down for a slim profile when not in use. It is an American-made product so you can transport your bikes confidently.
Product dimensions: 35 x 12 x 13 inches, weight: 23 lbs, hitch receiver car rack fits both 1.25 inch and 2 inch hitch receivers, carries 3 bikes, single pivot point to fold arms, multiple contact points, hold-downs, soft top bar cradles, steel construction
- Sturdy steel racks
- Low profile when not in use
- Adjustable straps for tires
- Easy to assemble rack
- No locking feature
- 2 inch adapter has been reported to sway in hitch
3 – Graber 3 Bike Trunk Rack – Best for Versatility
We chose the Graber Guardian 3 Bike Trunk Rack as our best option for versatility. It is similar to the 3-Bike Hitch Rack, but it works on many different cars, rather than only the hitch receivers. This rack comes with a strap and hook system to safely, but gently, attach the rack to the back of your trunk or hatch. It is a great lightweight and compact option for easy breakdown and storage in your car trunk when not in use. Like our other rack options, it is also an American-made product.
Dimensions: 36 x 21 x 24 inches, weight: 7 lbs, trunk/back mounted, 3 bike capacity, multiple-strap system, multi-point hold downs, soft cradles for top bar, fits most sedans, hatchbacks, and vans
- Adjustable for many different vehicle type
- Lightweight rack, but strong material
- Secure bike fit
- Assembly required
- Cradles move freely along bars
What to Look for When Shopping for Outback Graber Bike Racks
There are many options when selecting a bike rack. How many bikes do you need to transport? How do you want it to attach to your car? Did you want a permanent solution or a rack that can be easily removed?
In order to make an informed decision, you’ll need to know what to look for (and what your personal preferences are). Before we outline our top picks, we want to review important options and features that may be available to you.
The capacity of the rack is how many bikes it can transport. You will want to choose your rack based on how many bikes you are looking to transport at once: more bikes would equate to a larger rack. Similarly, you would not want to buy a large 3 or 4 bike rack if you are only trying to transport 1 bike. .
The type of the rack is how the rack would attach to your vehicle.
A hitch rack is available for vehicles that have a hitch mount. These are typically available in hanging and platform variations. A hanging rack contains straps to secure your bike from the top tube. A platform rack provides a platform or cradles for the wheels to rest on.
Trunk racks are a rack fastened to the trunk with a collection of hooks and straps. Trunk racks are typically only available in hanging variations. Trunk racks are great options for cost and weight concerns. They are also the most versatile options and they can be attached to cars, hatchbacks, and vans. Trunk racks also the easiest racks to store when not in use.
While there are not any roof racks on this list for review, they are still an important option to discuss if you are shopping for bike racks. Some vehicles come with cargo racks on their roofs, and there are a variety of bike racks that can be attached. They are great racks for a more permanent and low profile option for transportation.
Load weight is an important factor because you want to make sure that the rack can support the bikes you are transporting. Load weight is usually displayed per bike and the total capacity of the rack. For instance, a rack may hold two bikes up to 40 lbs each, for a total rack capacity of 80 lbs. As there are many bike sizes for many different types of a cyclist, there is not one rack that can fit all sizes of bikes and weight.
Product weight may not be the first consideration to make when shopping for a bike rack, but it can still be important. You want to make sure you can lift or manuever the rack if needed. You may also need to consider if your vehicle can handle the combined weight of the bike and the rack.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you attach a Graber bike rack?
The instructions for installation are going to vary by model and type of rack. However, there are some basic principles that can be followed.
A hitch rack will connect to the vehicle directly into the hitch. Most hitches are 1.25 inches or 2 inches in diameter. Graber hitch racks fit 1.25 inch hitches by default, but come with a 2 inch adapter. Typically, you will want to put together the rack and then attach it to the vehicle’s hitch. If you have a heavier rack, you can also build it directly into the hitch. Be sure to follow the steps in the manual that came with your rack to insure proper installation.
- Attach the hanging poles to the main mast of the rack.
- Attach the mast to the hitch bar.
- Insert the hitch bar into the hitch, and secure with adapter or shims if needed.
This type of rack will hang from your trunk with a series of hooks and straps. You should assemble the rack fully before attaching it to the car. Most products will have adjustable poles to ensure a snug fit. For easy reassembly, label the straps and hooks before you remove them from your vehicle and rack. Again, make sure you refer to the instruction manual for proper installation steps.
- Attach the rack arms to the base/cradle.
- Thread the straps and hooks through their appropriate positions.
- Adjust the base/cradle so that it fits securely to the car.
- Tighten straps as needed.
Do rear bike racks damage your car?
Rear bike racks themselves, whether they are hitch or trunk, are designed to avoid damage to your car. Any damage that occurs will be from improper rack installation, incorrect bike type for the rack, too heavy of weight for the rack, worn out parts, or improperly secured bikes. If you have real concerns about a specific Graber model, always check out customer reviews to study any feedback or visit a bicycle store to speak with the experts.
What is the best bike rack for an SUV?
The best bike rack for your SUV depends on a few factors:
Does it have a hitch?
If your SUV has a hitch, you may want to consider a rack that utilizes the hitch connection. While it is typically used for heavyweight activities like towing, the hitch connection could be perfect for transporting your bikes. It is easy to attach and remove a hitch-based rack as there is only one point of contact to the car. I also recommend for you to view our recent article about Best Bike Racks for SUVs of 2021.
Does it carry the spare tire on the back?
If your car carries the spare tire on the back of the hatch, you will have to be cognizant of the rack dimensions if you are using a hitch connection. Some variations of hitch racks may not work with the tire in place. Similarly, traditional trunk racks will likely not work with the tire attached. There are, however, a variety of trunk racks that use the spare tire to attach to the vehicle, so this variation of a trunk rack may be perfect for you. If you want to learn more, you might want to take a look at our spare tire back racks review of 2021.
Are there rails already installed for a roof rack?
Many SUVs come from the factory store with roof rails installed. If this is the case for you, there are racks that you can purchase that attach to the roof rails. This is a good option if you have no issues reaching the roof, or have no way to attach the bike rack behind the car.
Are Swagman bike racks good?
Swagman produces quality bike racks at a price that are lower than other high-end bike rack manufacturers. They have a number of different types and styles. Their average price point, though, is slightly higher than Graber with similar reviews. If you’re looking for good quality and a good price, we recommend starting your car bike rack journey with Graber.
In Conclusion, What are the 3 Best Graber Bike Racks?
Graber bike racks are an awesome value for the money. Reviews state they use high-quality materials to build sturdy and nice looking bike racks. All of their products are covered with a lifetime warranty, increasing their value for the cost.
While you want to consider the best rack to fit your car and your needs, we’re recommending the Graber All Star Bike Rack. It’s unique collapsible design by Graber is a great feature if you’re balancing riding and everyday life, as it allows access to the trunk without removing the entire rack. You can quickly attach and secure the rack with a short assembly time, and it’s easy to load. You can’t go wrong with this Graber bicycle rack. Also, you may be planning to go on a trip with your ski and snowboard, our recent post about the best Jeep Wrangler snowboard carriers can help you out!
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