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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am planning a trip to Florida and was wondering if anyone had installed thier own roof racks. I would like to try but am feeling a teensy bit intimidated about the whole procedure. Any thoughts?Also how much would putting stuff on top cut into the gas mileage?
 

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I think I read somewhere that a roof rack can reduce your mileage as much as 5%. So if you got 25 mpg without the roof rack, you would get about 23.75 mpg. A loss of about 1.25 mpg. However I think those were for just bare roof racks. If you stick a bunch of stuff up there, the extra drag would probably decrease another 5% or more.
 

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wow, i didnt realize that your mpg would go down so much! thnx for the info!
 

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[quote:cee89711a0="jimxenus"]I think I read somewhere that a roof rack can reduce your mileage as much as 5%. So if you got 25 mpg without the roof rack, you would get about 23.75 mpg. A loss of about 1.25 mpg. However I think those were for just bare roof racks. If you stick a bunch of stuff up there, the extra drag would probably decrease another 5% or more.[/quote:cee89711a0]

Note that the potential 5% decrease is based on a loaded roof-rack. I highly doubt an unloaded roof-rack would result in a 5% decrease... If this were true spoilers everywhere would be fouling fuel consumption.
 

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With the brick like aerodynamics :eek: of the E, I think the effects of a "bare" rack are probably minimal compared to some other vehicles.
 

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thesometimesregret is right. I did a little research and found out that the consensus is up to 5% decrease with a fully loaded rack and up to 1% with a bare rack.

Below are some further tips on increasing mileage:

1. Do not use the clutch too much.

2. Switch the vehicle off at red light stops.

3. Drive in gear corresponding to the speed.

4. Get your vehicle serviced regularly.

5. A poorly tuned engine can increase fuel consumption by up to 50%

6. Driving at 90 kilometers an hour rather than 100 can reduce fuel consumption by 10%

7. Under inflated tires can increase fuel consumption by 5%

8. A loaded roof rack will increase fuel consumption by as much as 5% in highway driving.

9. Even an empty roof rack can increase consumption by 1%. If the carrier is not attached to the vehicle, remove it when not in use.

10. Avoid "Jack Rabbit" starts, not only do they increase fuel consumption, but are hard on your tires. Anticipating stops and avoiding abrupt stops will decrease fuel consumption and increase the life of your brakes and tires.

11. Avoid unnecessary steering wheel movement since each sideward movement of the tire causes fuel-consuming drag.

12. Maintain a steady speed.

13. Accelerate slowly on gravel or slippery roads.

14. Avoid unnecessary braking.

15. Reving the engine just before turning off the ignition costs extra fuel and may cause engine damage.

16. Take advantage of rolling resistance rather than heavy braking to help slow you down. This deceleration technique is one of the best for fuel saving.

17. Avoid using the air conditioner at lower speeds.

18. Changing spark plugs regularly can save a lot.
 

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Mounting the rack is pretty straight forward - don't worry. If you get stumped take it in to yur dealer. I don't think you'll have any problem. I would check out Thule racks though. There isn't any room to 'overhang' on the factory rack, but this may not matter to you.
As for mileage -come on- who really cares? I just travelled 800 miles with a Thule cargo box on top, the AC on and stuck in a crap load of traffic several times (Pittsburgh to Ocean City, MD via Baltimore) and averaged 24 mpg with a std. trans. I did as wells as 26 mpg. Put the stuff on top and be comfortable.
 

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I purchased the factory racks from handa-accessories.com and installed them myself in less than 45 minutes. Just follow the clearly written and illustrated instructions, work methodically, and make sure whatever you are standing on to reach the roof is stable :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Okay I am having a awful time choosing between a Thule and a Honda roof rack. Alot of sports enthusiasts feel Thule is better, been around a long time made for cargo and windsurfers etc, others say go with Honda , its made for the Element and has accessories to modify it for sports. The thule you can have some hang over but I don't know about the Honda. Anybody know anything?I will be installing it myself.
 

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I have the Honda roof rack with Malone Autoloaders installed (for my Sea kayak). I like the stock Honda rack and I regularily put three kayaks or one kayak and a canoe on the roof. What are your plans for the roof rack?
 

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Don't like them, but that's just me, I think if you're used to them and like them, they're great, but getting all that stuff waaayyy up there on top of my Element, just doesn't seem like fun to me. I have a trailer hitch and one of those flat hitch mounted carrier things for everything I don't want in the car. For the windsurfer, I'd say Thule might be your best bet. The Honda racks are contoured and not exactly flat straight across, plus the weight limit is less than the Thule's. Easy peasy to mount, too. Go to a racks r us or some such store near you and talk to them, while they are like any other salesman, they will at least tell you the options. I'd say stay away from Yakima. They're round, they spin in their mounts and they are too expensive. I've never liked them, but again, that's just me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Well my vote lost out. The husband and our best friend had a meeting and ordered the honda roof racks already. I was going to go to the sailboat place and have a little powwow with the gal that works there but was informed ahem the rack problem has been solved already...by us. So since I have never loaded a cargo bag, canoe, windsurfer or surfboard I bowed to the wisdom and experience of those who have. We are going to look at windsurfers while we are on vacation (for my husband) :?: . I would like a little sunfish to learn to sail with my 3 year old. We did not have a trailer hitch put on because we have one on our little pickup. I will be putting one on in the next year though so I can get a little boat and trailer. What do you reccomend? The honda one or something else?
 

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The hitch was the easiest thing I put on my E. Don't get the Honda hitch either, they're a ripoff. I got mine here: http://www.etrailer.com/
They have the correct hitch and wiring for less than half of what the Honda hitch goes for. I think I paid less than $150 for both.
 

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Dan

I would like to see a pic of the kayaks on your roof. Just wondering. How much does a kayak weigh?
 

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Yeah Dan, we need to see some pictures! I haven't purchased a roof rack yet and have started to look into which one to get. My boyfriend and I have kayaks and we would want to be able to put both on at the same time.
How hard it is to put the boats on with the height of the E?
 

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I don't even own a regular camera, let alone a digital. But I do have an example for you! http://www.theautoloader.com/

One day I'll get pics of my car and my boats, but until then...This is all I got.

The malone Autoloaders are a lot easier to load than laying the boat flat on the roof. You just slap it up there and tie it down. Be careful of garage entry heights. I had to take 3/4 of an inch off of the top of my racks to get the car inside. But that's because I'm far too lazy to remove the racks all the time. Besides, I go paddling 3 times a week or more.
 

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I get a error with the link Dan. I'm using a mac, is this a pc only website?
 

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hidden hitch def. better no drill and much cheaper than honda draw tight you have to drill holes in spare tire pit sounds like a start to rust to me
 
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