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RV Bike Racks

In recent years, cycling has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity. More and more people escape from their stressful workday, relax and recover by cycling through nature. Summer attracts many cycling enthusiasts to go on vacation and get to know a fantastic vacation area by bike. This way, longer distances can be covered comfortably and at the same time, the sporting activity is in the foreground. Since the invention of e-bikes, cycling is no longer reserved for physically fit people. There is the right bike for every age group, one likes it leisurely, the other fast-paced, whether on the road or across the forest, everyone can find the right bike for their needs.

 

A bicycle carrier makes transport easier: It is practical that it can be attached in just a few steps as a roof rack, rear carrier, as a bicycle carrier for the trailer hitch on the car, or as a tow-bar carrier for the tow bar on the caravan or motor home. In this way, bike fans can transport two to four bikes comfortably and safely.

What types of bike racks are there?

As a rule, the space in the trunk is not enough to store one or more bicycles there. When traveling, space is often needed to accommodate the bulky luggage there. For the transport of bicycles, you need a bike rack for this reason, so that the space in the trunk is available for other things. On the market, there are various models of bike racks from numerous manufacturers. Although the most popular bike racks are meant for the trailer hitch, there are other ways to transport a bike:

  • Roof racks: this type of bike rack is mounted on the car roof. The car rack can be used to transport one to four bikes at a time. Mounting on the roof allows a clear view through the rear window. In return, drivers have a relatively large resistance on the roof, which may affect the driving behavior. When driving with a roof rack, drivers must ensure that they do not exceed the legally prescribed maximum speed of 74 mph. Depending on the model, the wheels can be placed either upright or lying on the carrier. You should keep in mind that with a roof rack you have to lift the wheels up onto the roof and secure them there, which often involves a lot of effort. Some models have lifting aids specifically for this purpose, which are commercially available. For transporting bicycles, the roof rack is usually the cheapest option in view of the respective price segment.
  • Rear carrier: Those who do not have a trailer coupling on their car can rely on a rear carrier as an alternative. Drivers can mount this carrier on the tailgate, which can be done quickly on most models. Special tension straps are used for mounting, which allows simultaneous transport of up to two bicycles. The advantage of these models is the ease of mounting the carrier. A disadvantage is that the view through the rear window is blocked. In addition, improper use of this variant can cause damage to the paint. For this reason, bike fans rarely use rear carriers anymore.
  • Coupling carrier: This bicycle carrier is mounted directly on the ball head of the coupling. Depending on the model, additional rails can be purchased, so that two or three wheels can be transported, for example. With appropriate models, even the carriage of up to five bicycles is possible. The additional load is usually shifted to the rear. In this way, driving behavior hardly changes and fuel consumption increases only slightly. Coupling carriers can usually be purchased independently of the car model. However, you should pay attention to the load capacity of the trailer coupling. Some models are available with a special automatic lowering system. Due to their high weight, a maximum of one or two electric bikes or pedelecs can be taken along with this bike carrier. Since hitch carriers can be mounted quickly and easily, they are popular among motorists.

Best Overall

Swagman XTC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack

Swagman XTC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack
  • arms fold down to access the trunk without removing the rack
  • made to fit 1-1/4 in. or 2 in. hitch receivers and carry 2 bikes
  • soft frame coating protects the bike’s finish for a lasting look

Best Ladder

Mounted Rack - Camco RV Ladder Mount Bike Rack

Camco RV Ladder Mount Bike Rack
  • easily installs to fit standard RV ladders
  • bonus straps provide added security
  • folds for storage

Best Budget

Swagman 2-Bike RV Bumper Rack

Swagman 2-Bike RV Bumper Rack
  • designed for 4″ to 45″ square RV bumpers
  • installs with 65″ and 8″ long bolts around the RV bumper
  • transports 2 bicycles on an RV or camper trailer bumper (max 30 lb per bike)

About the author. Max Welder is a mechanic enthusiast. Currently, working at a small company. Experienced in electronics, car tools and security systems. In his spare time, he writes articles for various blogs. Read More…

6

Models Considered

36

Hours of Research

60

Reviews Analyzed

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RV Bike Racks Best Choice

Swagman CHINOOK Hitch Mount Bike Rack

 4,7 Rating

Swagman CHINOOK Hitch Mount Bike Rack

  • fits most frame sizes, shapes, and styles (fits 12″ to 29″ tire sizes)
  • easily transports up to 2 bikes
  • compatible with a class 2 or higher, 1-1/4″ and 2″ hitch receiver
View on Amazon

What is important for motorhomes

Before buying a bike rack, there are some important things to consider. The size of the rear carrier, how many bikes need to be transported. How should the carrier be in the handling, stowability, or in the assembly and disassembly? Possibly there are additional fees on ferries if the motorhome bike carrier still extends the vehicle. Manufacturers offer a wide variety of models, simple variants for occasional use, which are cheap to buy. As well as models for the demanding camper, for frequent use. These models are more expensive to buy, but also more comfortable to use and suitable for more consultative use.
Especially for competitive athletes, the more expensive models are suitable, which are designed to withstand the highest loads. Some carriers are only suitable for certain types of motorhomes. Others are compatible with all types of motorhomes. The respective motorhome manufacturer is also always the optimal bike rack for the vehicle model to get. When a new acquisition of a motorhome is also recommended, buying directly the rear carrier. So you can save money. Quick handling in the loading of the bikes is certainly relevant for every buyer, as well as a safety device for the bikes. The carrier should be space-saving to store when not in use.

In addition, it is also important whether the bikes on the bike carrier have a lockable device and how heavy the respective rear carrier model is. The carriers for e-bikes are all between 37 and 44 lbs in weight, with camper bike carriers for normal bikes, the weight of the manufacturers varies.

Depending on the material from which the bike carrier is made. Aluminum is the lightest option, but in some models, only certain parts are made of aluminum. Only a few manufacturers offer the whole rear carrier completely in a lightweight way. We have various carrier models of different price categories under the magnifying glass, highlight the advantages and disadvantages of each model.

Bike Racks for Motorhome or Trailer Review

RV and Trailer Bike Racks

Best bicycle carrier for caravan & motorhome

1

Swagman XTC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack

Swagman XTC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack
  • arms fold down to access the trunk without removing the rack
  • made to fit 1-1/4 in. or 2 in. hitch receivers and carry 2 bikes
  • soft frame coating protects the bike’s finish for a lasting look
2

Mounted Rack - Camco RV Ladder Mount Bike Rack

Camco RV Ladder Mount Bike Rack
  • easily installs to fit standard RV ladders
  • bonus straps provide added security
  • folds for storage
3

Swagman 2-Bike RV Bumper Rack

Swagman 2-Bike RV Bumper Rack
  • designed for 4″ to 45″ square RV bumpers
  •  installs with 65″ and 8″ long bolts around the RV bumper
  • transports 2 bicycles on an RV or camper trailer bumper (max 30 lb per bike)
4

Swagman CHINOOK Hitch Mount Bike Rack

Swagman CHINOOK Hitch Mount Bike Rack
  • fits most frame sizes, shapes, and styles (fits 12″ to 29″ tire sizes)
  • easily transports up to 2 bikes
  • compatible with a class 2 or higher, 1-1/4″, and 2″ hitch receiver

 4,5 Rating

View on Amazon
5

Leader Accessories 2-Bike Platform Style Hitch Mount Bike Rack

Leader Accessories 2-Bike Platform Style Hitch Mount Bike Rack
  • foldable and tilt-back design
  • anti-wobble system
  • easily transports up to 2 bikes and is compatible with 2″ hitch receiver
6

Swagman RV Approved Around the Spare Deluxe Bike Rack

Swagman RV Approved Around the Spare Deluxe Bike Rack
  • carries up to 2 bikes
  • attaches to a 4″ – 4-1/2″ continuously welded steel bumper
  • anti-sway cradles prevent bike-to-bike contact

 4,2 Rating

View on Amazon

All our reviews are based only on expert judgment or practical experience with most of RV Bike Racks for Motorhome we consider. We strive to ensure that our leadership is independent and as detailed as possible.

What to Look for When Buying a Motorhome and RV Bike Racks

Who wants to buy a bike rack, at the beginning, faces the basic question: roof rack or rear rack? We have already mentioned the advantages of the two types above, but the choice depends on the conditions of the vehicle. Mounting on the roof is possible only if the car already has appropriate basic racks, which are needed, for example, for roof racks. Up to four bike racks of this type can fit side by side on the roof, as long as they do not exceed the total permissible load of the roof. Trailer hitch carriers, which many manufacturers mistakenly call rear carriers, are only suitable for cars with a trailer hitch. At this point, it is important to note the permissible draw bar load of the vehicle. Not only the weight of the bikes, but also the weight of the bike carrier is relevant. Two bikes fit on most models as standard. In addition to the weight, the aerodynamics of the vehicle with bike carrier sometimes also play a role. Which model you choose also depends on how often you want to go on vacation with your bike, how easy it should be to mount the bike, and how much money you are willing to spend on a bike carrier. These are the criteria when buying a bike rack:

  • A number of bikes/maximum load: bike racks offer different numbers of bike spaces and are designed to carry different loads. Roof racks are usually sold individually. A maximum of four of them can be mounted side by side on a car roof. The maximum load per wheel for these models is  44 lbs, which is lower than for rear carriers. However, the distance between the carriers is greater than with hitch carriers. Wide mountain bikes with suspension forks and disc brakes, therefore, fit on roof racks. Bike carriers for the trailer hitch allow a higher payload of up to 30 kilograms per bike. For this reason, they are often suitable for transporting e-bikes or pedelecs. These carriers usually offer space for up to two bikes, but can sometimes be expanded to include a third space.
  • Mounting the carrier/bikes: With a bike carrier for the trailer hitch, the plug connection is important. It is used to connect the additional lighting on the bike carrier to the car. Otherwise, the installation of a bike carrier for trailer hitches is easy to do. The bikes can be easily lifted into the holders and a second person is usually not required for this. With roof racks, there is no plug connection. Consumers must attach the bike rack to the base racks that are bolted securely to the roof of the vehicle. For attachment, cyclists always have to lift the bikes onto the vehicle roof first, in the case of a roof rack – this is strenuous and usually requires four hands. Carriers for the trailer hitch or rear carriers are the more convenient option.
  • Stowability: A roof rack usually does not have to be dismantled every time it is not in use. They can be easily folded and do not affect the driving experience. With rear racks, care must be taken to ensure that they can be easily stowed. Some models can also be folded and transported in the trunk.
  • Anti-theft device: An anti-theft device should ensure that the bikes on the bike carrier do not fall victim to thieves. However, many tests in recent years have shown that these usually only deter casual thieves. Anyone who wants to park their car with the bikes for a longer period of time should make sure that they are additionally secured with U-locks. If necessary, it may make sense to remove the bikes and lock them to a separate bicycle stand.
  • Power connection: If the bike rack covers the rear lighting of the vehicle, an additional lighting system must be available. To do this, they need electricity. As a rule, most carrier models have a 13-pin plug. However, older vehicles may still be equipped with a 7-pin plug. In such a case, you will need an adapter installation so that the plug of the lighting system is compatible with the socket of the vehicle.
    Width of rails: Users should make sure that the width of the rails matches the width of the tires in the wheels when buying a bike rack.

So it is highly recommended that you follow the instructions in the manual for your level.

RV Bike Racks Price:

Under $50

  • Camco RV Ladder Mount Bike Rack

Under $100

  • Swagman 2-Bike RV Bumper Rack

Under $150

  • Swagman RV Approved Around the Spare Deluxe Bike Rack

Under $300

  • Swagman CHINOOK Hitch Mount Bike Rack

Under $400

  • Leader Accessories 2-Bike Platform Style Hitch Mount Bike Rack
  • Swagman XTC2 Hitch Mount Bike Rack

Conclusion

Manufacturers have a variety of different motorhome bike rack models, whether for the rear garage of the motorhome or for attachment to the motorhome. There are models for families, athletes, and also older sports enthusiasts. Simple models that are cheap to buy, but also models that are equipped with a motor or lift. This makes loading and unloading a breeze. Care should be taken to ensure that the delivery includes good security for the bicycles. In addition, it should be considered whether in the future more than two bicycles are to be transported, here are particularly suitable models that are expandable. This is very important, especially for families. If e-bikes are to be transported or normal bicycles, here a special eye should be placed on the payload of the carrier and also on the weight of the bicycles to be transported. Individually tailored to personal needs, every buyer will find what they are looking for on the bike carrier market.

Swagman XTC2 – Video

❓ Which bike rack is the best?

A blanket answer to this question is difficult. Depending on the person and the vehicle model, either a roof rack or a carrier for the trailer hitch is a possibility. For this reason, it is important that buyers are clear about their requirements for the bike rack before purchasing.

❓ How many bikes can a bike rack hold?

The most common carrier models can hold one to four bikes. More important, however, is the vehicle’s allowable roof and tongue load. The bike carriers have a load limit, which must also be observed.

❓ To what extent does a bike rack change driving behavior?

When driving with a bike carrier on or on the car, the changed driving behavior of the vehicle must be accepted. The changed weight ratio of the vehicle is responsible for this. In addition, there are the wind conditions and the slipstream, because the bicycle carrier and bicycles provide an additional surface of attack while driving.

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Max Welder (Reviewseye)

Max Welder (Reviewseye)

Max Welder is a mechanic enthusiast. Currently, working at a small company. Experienced in electronics, car tools, and security systems. In his spare time, he writes articles for various blogs.

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