Can You Drive With Empty Rooftop Carrier?

Every roof cargo box has its maximum weight capacity. So you have to make sure that you are not loading too much load in the box. 

If you load items in the box more than its capacity, then it can damage your roof box or the roof of your car.

But if you are not loading anything in the box and your box is full empty, but you still want to keep the box on the roof of your vehicle, there some questions rise like can you drive with an empty roof cargo box, is it safe or not?

No. Driving with an empty roof box is not safe at all. If you want to know more details, then you can read this article. Here we are describing why driving with an empty box is not safe.

Basics

The first reason you should remove the box from your vehicle’s roof after using it is roof boxes increase your car’s drag, and the drag increases your fuel economy. Like the roof boxes that are fully loaded with stuff, the empty roof box still affects your vehicle’s mileage. So if you want to lessen your fuel economy and want to get good mileage, you have to remove the box from your vehicle’s roof every time after using it.

TopRoofBox

Most of the roof cargo boxes of the market are easy to install and remove. So you do not have to do so many things to remove the box when it is not in use. Moreover, removing a box can save you a lot of money by increasing your vehicle’s mileage because having anything weighted down on top of your car will cause you to use more gas or diesel to operate your vehicle.

Weights of roof racks are not so much to increase your fuel economy. Moreover, often these are permanently attached to the vehicle, so you can’t remove them. The roof racks may have some small impact on your fuel economy, but these are not so noticeable at all.

What About a Spare Tire in Your Carrier?

Many people claim they’ve read the recommendation of placing a spare tire in the roof box when it isn’t being used. But this technique is useful in reducing the noise of an empty box because empty roof boxes often make Whistling noises when you are driving. So putting something heavy such as a spare tire can help you to reduce that annoying noise while driving. Moreover, placing a spare tire in the roof box is also recommended so that your roof box does not stay so light.

So removing the roof box from the roof of your car is far better than leaving it with a spare tire inside the box. It also makes the look of your vehicle aesthetically pleasing, especially if you don’t like the shape and color of your roof box.

Some Practical Suggestions

But still, if you want to drive with an empty roof box, we are recommending you to make sure that all of the bolts are tight enough to keep the box secured with the roof of your car. Moreover, you have to make sure that your roof box is fully closed so that water cannot leak into it and damage the box’s interior.

rooftop bag carrier

These suggestions are for roof boxes only. Because roof boxes are hard and you can’t fold them. But roof bags are super easy to install and remove. They are flimsy and lightweight. Even they are very easy to store. Storing a roof bag does not require so much space. You can fold a roof bag and store it anywhere you want. Because of being so light, these roof bags does not create so much difference in the fuel economy as roof boxes.

But after all, it is best to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations about empty roof cargo carriers. By doing this, you will not have to worry about what you did – if it was right or not, and you can rest easy.

-our editorial board has reviewed this article and has been approved for publication according to our editorial policy.

Best Seller Rooftop Cargo Boxes:

Bestseller No. 1
SportRack Vista XL Rear Opening Cargo Box
1,459 Reviews
SportRack Vista XL Rear Opening Cargo Box
  • 18 cubic foot (510 L) internal cargo capacity
  • Made from durable UV-resistant ABS material
  • Rear opening for easy access away from traffic
  • Tool-free mounting hardware for easy installation and removal
  • Includes key and lock to secure contents in the box, and the box to your rack
Bestseller No. 2
Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo Box, Medium
853 Reviews
Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo Box, Medium
  • Functional rooftop cargo box provides 14 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Rugged and durable design keep contents protected
  • FastGrip quick-mount system assembles in minutes
  • Passenger-side opening for easy loading and unloading
  • Central Locking system provides maximum safety
Bestseller No. 3
Thule Sidekick Rooftop Cargo Box Grey, One Size
689 Reviews
Thule Sidekick Rooftop Cargo Box Grey, One Size
  • Compact roofbox, ideal for small loads such as camping gear or golf clubs
  • Sturdy U-bolts with reinforcement plates and adjustable brackets provide a secure fit to rack
  • Compact design leaves room for other roof mounted accessories
  • Passenger side opening for easier loading and unloading
  • External Dimensions: 54 x 25 x 15.5 in
Bestseller No. 4
Waterproof Heavy Duty Hard Shell Roof Top Mount Car Storage Travel Luggage Box Cargo Carrier with...
  • ▶️ This roof top storage box is universal fit for mounting to max 13 inches wide cross bar. Please check the dimension before purchase.
  • ▶️ The package comes with [1] 53 inches length storage box, [2] security lock key, and [4] heavy duty tool free installation mounting brackets.
  • ▶️ It is constructed of rugged, impact-resistant ABS material to ensure a long lasting life in outdoor conditions. More, it can open from the side and stay open till you close it with the strong support arm.
  • ▶️ Opens on the passenger side to 14 inches wide to store bulky items from the side and stays open till you close it. Easy to install, no tool need to assembly and installation.
  • ▶️ Overall Dimensions: 53" L x 34" W x 15" H | Capacity: 11 cu. ft. and up to 110 lbs
Bestseller No. 5
JEGS Rooftop Cargo Carrier | Hard Car Top Large Luggage Box | Waterproof Storage | Heavy Duty Solid...
  • SECURE & PROTECT YOUR GEAR in this 18 cubic ft. HDPE plastic hard shell car top cargo carrier; high-capacity interior dimensions 57 L x 38 1/2 W x 17 3/4 H inches; aerodynamic design for fuel efficiency
  • WATERPROOF STORAGE FOR YOUR LUGGAGE with a four corner locking system, front latch, and weather-tight seal for ultimate car rooftop protection and security
  • EASY & CONVENIENT LOADING AND UNLOADING from either side of the car make for smooth travel and hassle-free storage
  • NO TOOLS REQUIRED, EASY ASSEMBLY AND INSTALLATION. All mounting hardware and simple instructions are included to get you safely on the road quickly
  • MADE IN USA, LIMITED LIFETIME GUARANTEE. The JEGS Rooftop Cargo Carrier’s high-quality construction and performance give you peace of mind
Bestseller No. 6
Thule Motion XT Rooftop Cargo Carrier, XXL , Black
854 Reviews
Thule Motion XT Rooftop Cargo Carrier, XXL , Black
  • Oversized roof-mounted cargo box provides 22 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Designed for optimal space efficiency, aerodynamics, and vehicle fit
  • Quick-mount system "clicks" when roof box is secure and properly mounted
  • Dual-side opening for quick access from either side of the car
  • Easy to open and close with grip-friendly handles and supporting lid-lifters
SaleBestseller No. 7
DNA MOTORING PT-ZTL-8166-BK Car Roof Top Mount Travel Storage Box Luggage Carrier w/Lock with Cross...
30 Reviews
DNA MOTORING PT-ZTL-8166-BK Car Roof Top Mount Travel Storage Box Luggage Carrier w/Lock with Cross...
  • CONSTRUCTION: Constructed of Rugged, Impact-Resistant ABS Material with Black Texture Finish for Durability
  • OVERALL DIMENSION: 53" L x 34" W x 15" H; Opens to 14" Wide to Store Bulky Items
  • CAPACITY: 10 cu. ft.
  • STRENGTH: With Strong Support Arm, Opens from the Side and Stays Open Til you Close It
  • NOTE: Attaches to Vehicles with Cross Bars Only
Bestseller No. 8
Goplus Cargo Box, Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Carrier, Heavy Duty Roof Storage Box, 14 Cubic Feet...
389 Reviews
Goplus Cargo Box, Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Carrier, Heavy Duty Roof Storage Box, 14 Cubic Feet...
  • Perfect for Road Trip---Take the cargo box to the park, the beach, the sports field, or any place you need to store. Works on all vehicles with rack, suitable for cars, vans, SUVs, etc. Sleek aerodynamic design to reduce drag and has less noise.
  • 14 Cubic Feet of Cargo Space---With the large capacity, the roof cargo box can help you securely carry 14 cubic feet worth of essentials, can increase vehicle cargo space without impeding on passenger comfort, more capacity, more pleasure!
  • Robust & Security Design---The roof cargo box is designed to withstand heavy use in different types of weather conditions. The metal lid stiffeners at the bottom makes the roof box more stable and safer. With the double-lock design for protecting your valuables. 【Note】This product is suitable for vehicles with rack (the width of the luggage rack is adjusted to between 16.1 inches and 24.8 inches, and the width of the roof crossbar is less than 3.1 inches).
  • High Quality Material---The roof box is manufactured from sturdy ABS and PC material for long-lasting use, able to protect your valuables from exposure to the elements and can load 165 lbs capacity, suitable for round, square, factory and most aerodynamic bars.
  • Easy to Install---The Goplus roof box equipped with 4 quick connect anchors for easy install and super latch security ensures your lid secure to its base, and your gear is safe. Dual-sided opening for easy access on either side of your vehicle to increased efficiency and convenience.
Bestseller No. 9
Pair Adjustable Aluminum Roof Top Side Rail Cross bar w/Storage Cargo Box Baggage Carrier
  • ▶️ Universal Style Cross Bars: Aluminum Bar Construction
  • ▶️ Fits Vehicles with Roofs up to 120cm Wide
  • ▶️ Cargo Box: Heavy Duty ABS Plastic Construction
  • ▶️ Overall Dimensions: 55" L x 34" W x 15" H
  • ▶️ Opens from the Side and Stays Open Til you Close It
SaleBestseller No. 10
DEISNGB Rooftop Cargo Carrier 21ft³ and 15ft³ in One Vehicle Cargo Carrier Expandable 100%...
  • 【X-LARGE&EXPANDABLE SIZE】: DEISNGB Rooftop Cargo Carrier with 21 cubic feet X-large size, 21 ft³ capacity size:L41.4”X W33.85”X H22.8” expanding from 15 to 21ft³, With a zipper for expandable space easily to hold up to 6X suitcases for your adjustable command,with TSA lock helps you pass Canada customs.
  • 【100% WATERPROOF】:Many car roof bags claim to be waterproof but aren’t. DEISNGB Rooftop Cargo Carrier is made of the newest 100% water resistant 900D fabric, and waterproof PVC bottom with dual-layer fabric waterproof zipper on each side, without seam to ensure they are watertight. 100% Waterproof and rainproof under extreme weather,tested by high pressure water pipe.
  • 【100% SAFE & APPLICABLE DESIGN】: DEISNGB Rooftop Cargo Carrier use 6 reinforced adjustable straps and heavy duty buckles, keeping the roof bag tightly secured for the entire trip. High-density tear-resistant 900D Oxford Cordura waterproof cloth, effectively protect your luggage against rain, grit, snow, wind, and sun on the road.
  • 【FITS ANY CARS WITH/WITHOUT RACK】: Rooftop Cargo Carrier is universal luggage type for SUV,MPV,Sedans,etc. Easy quickly and easily installed in minutes whether there is a rack installed on car or not.
  • 【PACKAGE CONTENTS】: Expandable Rooftop Cargo Carrier, Anti-Slip Protective Mat, Dry Wet Separated Backpack,6 Door Hooks, TSA lock, Storage bag, User Manual. 4 Reinforced straps and 4 rubber handles on roof bag .

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Last Update : 2021-11-30