The 3 Best Roof Racks for the Jeep JK

In this short review, we will be introducing you to the best roof racks for the Jeep Wrangler JK.

We tested a wide variety of roof racks and chose our favourite ones. These are our picks for the best built, most sturdy, and of course most useful roof rack for the Jeep Wrangler JK. 

After much deliberation, we present the Hooke Road cargo basket as our top pick. This robust rack has a ton (not literally!) of load capacity and also offers a secure fitment on the Jeep. You’d be hard pressed to find a better balance of features and performance. 

We are all about vehicle accessories here at Beast Auto. For the past 10 years, we have been testing and reviewing roof racks and other vehicle accessories. So rest assured that our recommendations have plenty of research and evaluation backing them up. 

Keep reading for more info on the best roof racks for the Jeep Wrangler JK.

Hooke Road Hard Top Cargo Basket

Best Overall

Hooke Road plays it safe with this Jeep Wrangler JK roof rack. It is made from alloy steel and has more than enough space for all of your cargo. The included LED lights at the front are a seriously useful addition that we wouldn’t even have thought of!

The alloy steel used for this Jeep Wrangler JK roof rack is a higher grade than others. This gives it better rigidity on the highway. The e-coating on the rack is more resilient to rust and corrosion. It also soaks up any scratches from general wear and tear. In fact, the manufacturer provides a 5 year warranty for the whole rack. 

It’s a pretty sizable rack too. It comes in at around 56” by 51” so you can carry larger items like suitcases, coolers, sports equipment, etc. It’s also almost 7 inches high, so you don’t have to worry about smaller items falling out in transit. 

Despite the larger size, this rack manages to keep a pretty low profile. The slightly angled front end directs airflow up and over the rack, keeping the drag low and the wind noise non-existent. Mileage does not suffer much, and there are no annoying noises to deal with inside the Jeep Wrangler JK. 

Moving on to load capacity, we see the usual 150 lbs rating for racks of this size. However, that is just the manufacturer rating. We have determined that you can get away with loading just a little bit more, given that the cargo is distributed evenly and properly tied down. 

This roof rack was specifically made for the Jeep Wrangler JK so it is exceptionally stable and firm. It will bolt right on to most recent model cars and the installation process is dead simple. The one problem is that it only fits 4 door models, so 2 door Wrangler owners will have to look elsewhere. 

It has integrated LED lights on the front, helping you see your cargo and the road ahead a little bit more clearly at night. This is a must have for any Jeep that goes off the beaten path every now and again. 

You will be happy to know that all of the mounting hardware is provided in the box, and the install shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes if you know what you’re doing. 

Pros

  • Alloy steel construction
  • E-coating resists rust and corrosion
  • 150 lbs load capacity
  • Wider proportions for holding more cargo
  • Aerodynamic shape
  • No wind noise 
  • No wind resistance
  • Easy to install
  • All the mounting hardware is provided
  • 5 year manufacturer warranty
  • LED lights integrated into the front

Cons

  • Does not fit 2 door Jeep Wranglers JK

Hooke Road Roof Rack Cross Bars

Best Budget

For the budget conscious, Hooke Road’s Cross Bars are a great option that still offers a great build and an impressive load capacity. The design is also a little bit more restrained than larger cargo baskets and full size racks. 

The construction of this budget rack is reminiscent of pricier options, with aluminium and high quality ABS plastic used throughout. We see this combo more and more in the budget cross bar category, and for good reason. The aluminium subframe keeps the whole rack rigid and firm, while the plastic exterior gives it best in class resistance to rust and corrosion. 

Load capacity isn’t the highest we’ve encountered, but that is to be expected. It is rated to hold just under 90 lbs of cargo. But the cool part is that it is designed to be loaded up to the max on long haul journeys and still stay flex free. Not to mention, the compact design allows for more functional cargo space, so you can carry larger items. 

We also liked the ‘staggered’ style of these crossbars. The rear bar is slightly longer than the one up front, in keeping with the Jeep Wrangler’s unique roofline. This aids aerodynamics and helps the whole vehicle stay more streamlined. 

Speaking of, we tested this Jeep Wrangler (JK) roof rack on the highway and did not notice any drops in mileage. The special noise reducing strips integrated into the rack do their job perfectly as we did not have to put up with annoying wind noise. 

Fitment is precise and sturdy. The actual installation process doesn’t take more than 15 minutes, thanks to the included instructions which are really easy to follow. All of the mounting equipment is provided in the box, so you won’t have to go running to the store every time you need that one bolt. 

We were disappointed to find that these crossbars are only compatible with the 4 door hardtop Jeep Wrangler (JK) models. But that’s the trade off for a totally bespoke fit that just works.

Pros

  • Aluminium and ABS plastic construction
  • More rigid than alloy steel
  • Completely rust resistant 
  • Integrated noise reducing strips
  • No wind noise or creaking at speed
  • 88 lbs load capacity
  • Compact design allows for more cargo space
  • Rear bar is longer to conform to Jeep Wrangler’s roofline
  • Aerodynamic styling
  • No change in mileage
  • No excessive drag
  • Easy to install
  • All mounting hardware is included

Cons

  • Only fits 4 door hardtop Jeep Wrangler models

Trail FX J029T Roof Rack

Premium Choice

BThis TrailFX roof rack for the Jeep Wrangler JK is not for the faint of heart. It is a truly rugged roof rack that demands to be taken off road. Its unique fitment is more stable than any conventional roof rack design and keeps your luggage secure when you’re out on this rack’s namesake. 

Let’s talk about build quality. The Trail FX opts for good old fashioned alloy steel to get the job done. The 2” thick wall tubing is just as rigid and flex-free as aluminium or any other material. It is also covered in a special e-coating that stops rust and corrosion in their tracks. 

How about that fitment though? Well, this roof rack uses ¼” thick brackets that are exceptionally stable and secure. We took our Jeep Wrangler JK off road and never once did the roof rack shift or creak or rattle or squeak! 

As for load capacity, all we can say is ‘Other racks ain’t got nothin’ on this’. This behemoth of a Jeep Wrangler (JK) rack is rated to carry a whopping 350 lbs of load. And yes, that’s dynamic weight capacity for all of you off road nuts out there. 

Feel free to load up off road gear, camping supplies, road trip luggage, sports equipment, your mom, and anything else that weighs around 350 lbs! 

As for installing the rack, the process is a bit more involved and time consuming than with most other roof racks. The included instructions are plenty useful and easy to follow, but you might be better off getting the rack professionally installed, especially if you aren’t super confident wrenching on your Jeep Wrangler JK. 

Finally, we doubt the off road crowd cares about wind noise or creaking, what with the bumpy terrain and trails you’ll be tackling, but surprisingly, the Trail FX’s on road performance matches the off road. 

Wind noise in a non-issue, drag is only nominally higher than usual, and there isn’t much buffeting to report. That said, you are adding a decent chunk of steel to your Jeep, so expect to get slightly fewer miles to the gallon.

Pros

  • 2” thick alloy steel tubing
  • ¼” thick brackets
  • Powder coating prevents rust and corrosion
  • 350 lbs load capacity
  • Has more mounting points on the Jeep Wrangler 
  • Very stable and firm at speed
  • No wind noise or rattling 
  • Best for offroad use
  • Plenty of tie down points for your cargo

Cons

  • Installing the rack requires a bit more leg work and elbow grease
  • Slight drop in mileage, nothing that we didn’t expect

In this article, we will be recommending the best headache racks for your truck. 

We have been testing and reviewing vehicle accessories for over a decade, so we know what makes an accessory great. Allow us to help you make a better purchase decision. 

Our review encompasses things like the build quality, utility, and the value each headache rack provides. We also consider the design and look of each option before recommending it to you. 

With that in mind, our top pick has to be the Backrack Truck Bed Headache Rack. This alloy steel headache rack combines durable construction with a sleek design that looks great and performs outstandingly. It is also universally compatible with most late model trucks.

Keep reading for more information on the Backrack and other top headache racks for trucks. 

SnailFly Cross-Bar Roof Racks

Premium Choice

Snailfly’s cross bars for the Jeep Wrangler JK are another solid option. They are the first and only all-aluminium offering on this list and perform really well. Load capacity is on the high end, complementing the stable fitment. 

These cross bars have a pretty stellar load capacity of just under 170 lbs. We were able to carry all of our luggage for a recent road trip on this Jeep Wrangler JK roof rack. It does not bend or flex under heavier loads. The design is also pretty minimalist, freeing up precious cargo space for larger items as well. 

That load capacity is thanks to the aluminium construction of this roof rack. Aluminium is not only more rigid than alloy steel, but also lighter. It is also unfazed by rust and corrosion, so feel free to park your Jeep Wrangler out in the rain overnight. Despite the enhanced rust resistance of aluminium, Snailfly still treated it with a thick powder coating for added protection and style. 

On the road, we were quite impressed by this roof rack’s performance. It stays perfectly stable and secure, even at highway speeds. That stability is attributed to the 4 heavy duty clamps that keep the rack in place. 

Speaking of mounting hardware, you get all of the necessary equipment in the box, making installation that much simpler and quicker. We got the job done in under 20 minutes, and found the included instructions to be really easy to follow. 

If Snail Fly came out tomorrow and said they tested these Jeep Wrangler JK crossbars in a wind tunnel to achieve the perfect aerodynamics, we wouldn’t be surprised. The crossbars don’t make so much as a peep at speed. There is no wind resistance or buffeting to deal with, and you won’t notice any drops in mileage either. 

The inside of the clamps is lined in a soft material to avoid scratching or damaging the paintwork of your Jeep Wrangler JK. This is also one of the few crossbars that is compatible with Jeep Wrangler JK models from 2007 all the way up to 2022.

Pros

  • Aluminium alloy construction
  • Lightweight build
  • More rigid than alloy steel 
  • Thick powder coating for even better corrosion resistance
  • 165 lbs load capacity
  • 4 sturdy clamps 
  • Aerodynamic styling 
  • No wind noise or drag
  • Mileage is not affected
  • Clamps are lined in rubber to avoid scratching paint
  • Ample space for large cargo
  • Many tie-down points to secure luggage

Cons

  • Doesn’t fit Jeep JK models pre-2007

Leave a Comment