How Do You Transport a Kayak on a Small Car?

Transporting a kayak on a small car can be a bit of a challenge, but with the right equipment and techniques, it is possible. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about how to transport your kayak safely on your small car.

Step 1: Choose the Right Rack

The first step in transporting your kayak on a small car is to choose the right rack. There are two main types of racks that are suitable for small cars – roof racks and hitch-mounted racks.

Roof racks are mounted on the roof of your car and provide a secure platform for your kayak. Hitch-mounted racks, on the other hand, are mounted on the hitch receiver at the back of your car.

Step 2: Install the Rack

Once you have chosen the right rack for your small car, it’s time to install it. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully to ensure that the rack is installed correctly and securely. Make sure that all bolts and screws are tightened properly.

Step 3: Load Your Kayak

Now that you have installed the rack, it’s time to load your kayak onto it. Start by placing one end of your kayak onto the rack and lifting the other end onto the rack as well. Make sure that your kayak is centered on the rack and secured tightly.

Step 4: Secure Your Kayak

Once you have loaded your kayak onto the rack, it’s important to secure it properly. Use straps or tie-downs to secure both ends of your kayak to prevent it from moving around or falling off during transport. Make sure that all straps are tight and secure before hitting the road.

Tips for Transporting Your Kayak Safely

Transporting a kayak can be risky if not done properly. Here are some tips to help you transport your kayak safely:

  • Always make sure that your kayak is properly secured to the rack before driving.
  • Use bow and stern lines to secure your kayak to the front and back of your car.
  • Check your kayak and rack regularly during transport to ensure that everything is still secure.
  • Avoid driving at high speeds or in strong winds when transporting your kayak.
  • Make sure that your kayak is not blocking your view or the view of other drivers on the road.


Transporting a kayak on a small car can be a bit of a challenge, but with the right equipment and techniques, it is possible. Choose the right rack, install it properly, load your kayak carefully, secure it tightly, and follow these tips for safe transport. With these steps in mind, you’ll be able to enjoy kayaking adventures wherever you go!

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Lindsay Collins