How To Install Crossbars On 2017 Toyota 4Runner

I placed an order for the factory crossbars for my 2010 4Runner Toyota.

The plastic end caps must be taken off because the bars must slide in from the back during installation.

My part did not come with the nylon removal tool that is meant to be included, but a putty knife or small pry bar will work. I taped my part to prevent damage.

The End cap should be pushed down and inward, and the small plastic tabs on the outside should be pulled up.

When the outer edge of the tabs has been removed, rock the inner tabs off by pushing the endcap upward and inward.

Simply slide the cross bars into place from the back after removing both end covers. I gave the screws holding the bar to the wall a little room to move forward during installation, so I didn’t tighten them until afterward.

Please use caution; the end caps are quite brittle and the tabs appear to be brittle. Make sure nothing is forced and that no caps are broken.

Can I put up crossbars on my own?

With a roof rack, your car becomes an all-purpose, trip-taking machine for your active family. Even while basic roof racks are a common feature on many vehicles and SUVs, if your vehicle doesn’t already have one, you can install one yourself.

Whatever your car’s starting configurationbare roof (no rack at all), roof rails (no crossbars), or complete rackwith these suggestions, you’ll quickly have your gear loaded and prepared for your next family vacation.

Full Roof Rack

Your objective has already been mostly completed if your car has roof rails and crossbars. You merely need gear adapters, that’s all. For example, customized adapters clamp to your current crossbars to transport a bike or a kayak.

Installation takes only a few minutes and only a few simple tools, if any at all, are needed. To make moving your equipment even simpler, several automakers, like Subaru, sell individual parts. After installation, load your equipment in accordance with the manual that came with the adapters.


Your car’s roof rails are really just a smaller version of a full roof rack. A set of crossbars is the ingredient that is lacking. Although your car’s manufacturer presumably makes crossbars specifically for your particular make and model, you can also likely find aftermarket crossbars that connect to your existing roof rails. Use the provided tool or a set of simple hand tools to attach them. Once the crossbars are in place, you must locate the proper adapters to mount the particular equipment you are towing.

Bare Roof

Factory and aftermarket alternatives can get you and your gear on the road with minimum hassle even if all you have to work with is a plain roof. Your service center can typically provide the templates and drilling needed for factory roof racks. On the other hand, you can install a set of factory roof racks in about an hour with the right equipment, factory instructions, and persistence.

There are alternatives to factory roof racks. Bolt-on roof racks will demand careful consideration while designing and building, especially with regard to waterproofing. When not in use, clamp-on roof racks are simple to mount and demount without the need for drilling.

Things to Keep in Mind Regarding Roof Racks

Depending on your car, aftermarket roof racks could not come as a kit but rather as individual pieces. Similar to this, gear adapters are specialized, e.g., for a cargo basket or snowboard, so you just need to acquire what you require. Look for security elements that can help prevent theft of your roof rack, adapters, and most crucially, your equipment, such as a keyed clamp, special installation tools, or a security cable pass-through.

Any non-factory racks, or at the very least the crossbars, should be taken off while not in use. Even empty roof racks can significantly harm your car’s aerodynamics, reducing its fuel efficiency. Of course, you won’t have to worry about this if you’re actually carrying stuff.

Be careful when loading and unloading your gear because roof racks are high, possibly even above your head. You might damage yourself, break a window, or scratch the paint. However, if you put in a little extra work, you’ll soon be cruising to the beach or the slopes without any mess!

Consider shopping for all the cargo accessory products on NAPA Online or having your regular maintenance and repairs handled at one of our 17,000 NAPA AutoCare facilities instead. Consult a qualified specialist at your nearby NAPA AUTO PARTS shop for more details on roof racks.


The way they lie is the main distinction between roof rails and roof racks. From the hood to the trunk, roof rails extend the length of your car. From the driver’s side to the front passenger’s side of your automobile, roof racks and roof bars are installed crosswise.


Roof rails are frequently included in the design of your car. They communicate in a variety of ways. Some have a raised design that results in a space between the rail and the car’s roof. Others are seated right up to the car’s roof. These rails’ main use is to give roof racks mounting points. They do not act as carriers in and of themselves.

In contrast, roof racks serve as a transporter for your cargo. They often have a platform or rack of some kind in addition to a set of crossbars or roof bars. This platform could be a modular rack system, a kayak rack, or a cargo box. The vehicle’s current roof rails are where the roof bars are mounted.

We notice the distinction in the names of roof bars and roof racks when we examine them more closely. Roof bars, also known as crossbars, are a group of typically two bars that span the top of the vehicle. In contrast, a roof rack has multiple crossbars and frequently has a modular design. The racks occasionally observe a fixed layout with a predetermined number of crossbars.

In some cases, the roof rack system can be mounted at the same locations as the existing rails. In order to install the roof racks, you must here remove the rails. Typically, flush roof rails are installed in this manner in automobiles. The method for installing the roof racks depends on the type of rails your vehicle has. Your choice of roof racks will also affect how they are installed.

Elevated Roof Rails

These enable the clamping or connection of crossbars. They have a gap between the rail and the roof of the car that is about two inches wide. Although less aerodynamic than flat rails, they nonetheless provide a surface to which rope can be attached.

Flush Rails

These are attached flush to the roof of the car. They have a much more fashionable appearance and outstanding aerodynamic qualities. Perfect for anyone who values fuel economy. The drawback of these rails is that installing roof rack systems requires removing them. Additionally, attaching ropes to these rails is not a possibility.

Roof racks must be installed. These systems are purchased separately from the vehicle. Your choice of roof racks will depend on the type of vehicle you drive and their intended use. Depending on your car’s roof, these systems will need to be installed differently.

Bare Roof Vehicles

These vehicles frequently use universal roof racks for vehicles with no roof. Typically, the set will clamp to the car’s doorjamb, fastening the crossbars. Crossbars themselves are available everywhere. However, the clamps that attach the bars to the car are made to work with a particular type of car. The Rhino Rack Vortex 2500 Silver 2 Bar Roof Racks is one such instance of a roof racks system.

Cars with bare roofs can also have roof racks installed by drilling into the body of the automobile. This installation procedure is difficult and long-lasting. Using this method, you may securely fasten your roof racks to the car’s roof. And while it is robust, if done incorrectly, it could result in problems like water damage.

Rain Gutter Roof Systems

A clamp-style mounting technique is frequently used to attach roof racks to roofs that have rain gutters. The set will secure the racks in place by clamping to the door jamb and rain gutter of the car. Rain gutters can be found on some vehicles, such as vintage Jeeps, but not on contemporary automobiles.

Factory Mounted or Flush Rail Systems

Some roof rack systems attach to factory-installed mounting points that are already present on the vehicle. These points can be found on the roof underneath approved coverings, flush rails, or weatherstripping. You may reach the mounting points by removing weatherstripping and the pre-existing flush rails. The rack system would then be bolted to these positions. Toyota Tacomas and 4Runners are two vehicles that use this system as an illustration.

Raised Rails

Roof rack installation is a breeze with these rails. This only takes a few minutes as the roof bars clip onto the already-existing rails. The ease with which the roof rack system can be removed is a benefit of this arrangement. a professional who makes cleaning and storing simple and hassle-free.

Carrying Luggage

You cannot solely rely on roof rails to transport items like kayaks and surfboards. They don’t provide stability or durability for carrying objects. For instance, your suitcases would rest flat on your car’s roof. Your paintwork would get dented and scratched as a result. Not to mention that the weight will cause the roof to sag.

Kayaks and fishing rods would need to be tethered across your truck. This is risky for a variety of reasons. The merchandise’ overhang would be much larger than what is permitted by law and might snag on trees and lampposts. Additionally, this inclination increases drag. Drag impacts how well your automobile handles and how much gasoline it uses.

Another minor concern is that flush rails cannot be used to attach ropes or bungee cords. How would you secure your bag? In addition to being against the law, leaving stuff lying about on your car’s roof is dangerous. Additionally, it is doubtful that you will carry your items with you when you reach your location.

Carriers are roof racks. They fasten to your car’s roof or rails. These systems function by evenly distributing the weight of the load applied to them. This keeps the roof of your car from buckling.

Your luggage is elevated off the roof using roof racks. They guard against paintwork scratches and damage. The system improves the aerodynamics of your load by suspending your things. Your fuel consumption and vehicle handling stay at their highest levels thanks to improved aerodynamics.

These rack systems also provide many of locations for you to rope or cable your merchandise. You and other travelers will remain safe if your luggage is properly secured.

Are crossbars on a roof rack necessary?

We strongly advise owning a roof rack. They let you transport practically anything that your automobile can’t or won’t fit. Large items like bikes or boats may be involved, as well as filthy items like hockey or camping gear.

Some automobiles have rack systems fitted from the outset; others do not. If your crossbars are factory-installed, you might not require an aftermarket rack system and instead can purchase attachments (like kayak carriers) with universal attachment mechanisms that will snap right onto your factory-installed bars.

You’ll need to purchase a rack system if your bike doesn’t come with factory crossbars. Your roof’s appearance and the items you intend to carry will determine the type of rack you purchase.

What is a rack system?

Do roof rack crossbars need to be installed?

Having a roof rack is strongly advised. They enable you to transport practically anything that your vehicle cannot or does not want to fit. Large items like bicycles or boats may be present, as well as undesirable items like hockey or camping gear that is wet.

Some automobiles have factory-installed rack systems, but others do not. If your vehicle already has factory-installed crossbars, you might not require an aftermarket rack system and instead can purchase accessories (like kayak carriers) that have universal attachment methods that can be mounted directly to your vehicle’s stock bars.

A rack system must be purchased if you don’t have factory crossbars. What you plan to haul and the design of your roof will determine the sort of rack you should purchase.

Do Baja racks work well?

The greatest quality racks are those from Baja. The racks are reliable and fit perfectly on vehicles or SUVs. If you enjoy camping, you must bring all of your necessary supplies with you in order to have a good time.

If you balance them appropriately, bajaracks are sturdy and powerful enough to hold all of your camping equipment.

Baja Racks has flat racks and baskets for Tacomas, 4Runners, Toyotas, Landcruisers, and other vehicles that are frequently used for camping to assist you balance big items on the roof.

Can you climb a Baja roof rack and walk on top? Excellent reviews and feedback on the durability of the frames may be found for Baja racks. Here are two comments made by two forum users of the Toyota 4Runner about the quality:

“Mine has been active for just over two years. No problems with the powder coating, good rack construction. Although I haven’t loaded it with more than 200 lbs., I haven’t detected any denting under the mounts either. I haven’t stood on it and have distributed the weight evenly because I have seen the same threads about the mounting.”

“I’m not sure about the installation on the Runner, but I have three Baja Rack racks on my FJs and have never experienced powder coat or shipment damage. One rack had been on my FJ for more than six years and was in excellent shape. It’s still in use on a friend’s FJ. The wind deflector’s clear coat peeling off was the only problem I’ve ever experienced. With a little sanding and a spray can, it would be an easy remedy.”

Baja racks are convenient to use since they have solid mounts and ladders.

On the other hand, gobi racks are also incredibly robust. Because the racks were made using high-quality materials, it is simple to transport big items with little denting or bending.

Bicycles, cargo boxes, camping gear, tents, kayaks, ladders, and other large goods can all be supported by Gobi roof racks.