How To Load Kayak On J Rack By Yourself- The DIY Approach!

how to load kayak on j rack by yourself

Last updated on September 2, 2022

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It can be a daunting task to load a kayak onto the J-rack of your car. How do you get it up there without hurting your back, damaging your vehicle, or dropping the craft? Thankfully, even if you think you’re not strong enough or are too short, there is an easy way to accomplish this (and do it safely). In this article I will share how to load a kayak on J Rack by yourself and without any injuries. Know how to load kayak on j rack by yourself?

What Is J-Rack?

The J-Rack is a great way to transport your kayak. The rack has the shape of an ‘J’, which allows it on top and perpendicular carry positions for easy access while driving or parking with little effort required! A J-rack is a type of rack for carrying kayaks, canoes and other watercraft. It consists of two metal bars that are connected by several horizontal crossbars at either end. The bars themselves have hooks on the ends which allow them to connect with your car’s door frame or roof rails (if it has any). You typically attach one bar on each side but you do not want to put both attached on the same side as this can lead to damage during transport due to imbalances in weight distribution. How sturdy they are depends upon how expensive it was when you bought it as cheap ones will be less stable than premium brands that come with strong welds and thick tubing materials. Getting a good quality j rack is important as it will last you for years and be able to handle the weight of your kayaks.

Other Kayak Rack Types

There are many different types of kayak racks for vehicles, including hitch-mounted and V-shaped ones. You can also find pads that will keep your boat safe from scratches on the car alone!

It is important to note though with these new options there may be some drawbacks like not being able tow behind it since they don’t hold much weight or take up too much space when installed properly at all four corners unless you’re one those strange people who uses their vehicle as if its own personal floatation device but hey whatever floats ya boat right?


One alternative to using j-racks is kayak pads. These are plywood or plastic surfaces that attach to the sides of your vehicle and keep the boat from touching anything inside (or outside) it. How they work depends on how you install them but typically you just put them over your car’s doors, close everything up, and then slide in your kayak between them. The only real downside to using pads is that they don’t work with all vehicles, depending upon where the doors are at. They also don’t do anything to protect your car so you need to watch out for any loose straps during transport.


If you have crossbars on your vehicle, strap a kayak right onto them. You can also get these if not already installed and make sure the ones for this type of situation are compatible with what kind of bars or roof rack system that will be holding up your car’s load! Flip over any boats facing upwards before tightening down straps in order to avoid breaking anything while trying tight it all up – don’t forget about those plastic ties from earlier either! If your kayak is too heavy even for this method, you might need to invest in a j-rack.

The crossbars are generally a good solution for those who have a hard time getting kayaks onto j-racks or just don’t want to bother with any of that stuff and want to be able to do it all quickly and easily.

Hitch Mounts

Hitch mount racks are an excellent choice for those who own trucks. They allow you to place one end of the kayak on top, while supporting it with your crossbar and another mounted securely in-between two vertical supports that can be adjusted according to whatever specifications are needed for each individual vehicle model (or type) as well!

V-Shaped Racks

Like J-shaped racks, V-shaped roof rack require that your vehicle already have crossbars or an existing roof. These are a cheaper option which also requires very little time for proper installation and can be installed quickly in just one piece with no need to cut down parts from different manufacturers’ products because they’re all designed specifically around the shape of this specific type of mount point!

The upside? You’ll know exactly where best place your boat once it’s up there – on top facing towards front so as not sacrifice any view out back through these wide open spaces between empire waist windows (you read correctly).

Vehicle Type

J-racks are a great way to transport your kayak on the roof of any car, truck or SUV. Installing these racks will require you lift it up high enough so that the top edge of its skirt touches somewhere behind where drivers seat would be located when in their normal riding position (to prevent scraping). Make sure not only is there room anywhere near what looks like an appropriate mounting surface but also if this area can handle both weight and torque from holding gear as well as whatever else might go wrong during vehicle conversions such(towing hitch balls) which could potentially cause damage without safety belts installed properly first!

Tightening Your Racks

Tighten the straps to secure your kayak as tightly as possible without damaging either one of them! If you’re having a hard time keeping it steady or find that there is too much play and wobbling, try tightening up all four (or more) straps evenly. Remember: if any part becomes loose for even a second while you drive then this could result in a serious accident one day.

Once you’re done, make sure to use a knife or blade of some type to cut away any excess material left over from the straps before going on your way! If there isn’t enough room for it up front near driver’s seat, do not fret as long as you have a sharp enough blade to do the job.

When you’re finished, try using your kayak with whatever gear it has and see how well they manage on their own – most importantly making sure that there is no wobbling or excess movement (other than what’s expected from wind)! If everything is good then congratulations: you’re kayaking in style and safety!

How Is A J-Rack Helpful In Carrying Your Kayak?

When you own a kayak, the idea of transporting it can be quite daunting. Even if your destination location is close by and easy access available to all sides, there’s still an element or fear involved in moving across land with such an expensive possession on wheels following behind- check out these J racks for some help! The best part about them? They’re affordable so chances are that even if something goes wrong at first try (which doesn’t always happen), another $25 will get everything set up as good as new again before too long.

How to load Kayak on j rack by yourself?

The J-Rack is a type of roof rack that can be installed on most vehicles. This particular style has two sides and allows users to carry kayaks easily with the use of their car, truck or SUV as well! The first step in installing one onto your vehicle depends upon what height you need it at for carrying gear like fishing rods inside too (a taller setting will allow room). You’ll also want make sure there are compatible racks already attached somewhere near where this would live since these installations require extra hardware including straps/hooks which may take up some usable space so check beforehand if possible.

J Rack Installation Tips

J racks can be quite heavy and difficult to install for those who aren’t super strong. If you don’t want any accidents, it is best to ask a friend or someone else around your area if they’d help out!

First, decide where exactly you wish place the J rack on top of your vehicle and then begin by marking the spots on the roof after cleaning it thoroughly with soap and water to remove any industrial pollutants that may have settled over time.

Next, use a power drill in order to make holes where you’ve marked out for mounting before putting them into place! Be sure not to rush this – if anything is slightly off then your boat will end up lopsided and you’ll have to take the J racks back down again. After putting them into place, make sure no cords or wires are hanging out of your car where they might get snagged on a roof rack as well!

Other Ways to Get Your Kayak from the Car to the Water

There are many different ways to transport your kayak. You can drag it by grabbing onto the bow or toggle hold, if you have a plastic boat like I do; however this will scratch up the paint on any cheap ones from Dick’s Sporting Goods anyway so beware!

If your kayak is too heavy and you’re using a rope to pull it behind, make sure that the anchor point (e.g., tree or car bumper) can handle all of this weight combined with whatever else might happen during transport- especially if pulling from tail end!

You may also consider renting an ATV for transporting purposes as well or even a kayak trailer if you have the funds to spare so this doesn’t happen again in the future. Plus, if you’re not a fan of how slow these kayaks can be in water then inputting your time into the gas tank will result in way more fun any day of the week!


If you need to transport your kayak but don’t have someone to help, there are a few tricks for loading it onto the J-rack by yourself. One way is to get in the car and put one end of the rack on its side against the door frame or roof rail. Once this has been done, walk around to load up the second bar with hooks before lifting both bars together so they are parallel with each other. You can then hook them onto either edge of your kayak and carry it over while keeping an eye on where you place your feet (you want both racks touching your shoes). Then grab hold of one bar at a time and pull until all four corners touch down securely into their slots.

But if you still have questions about loading it onto your vehicle, leave a comment to know How to Load a Kayak on a J Rack By Yourself accordingly!

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