How to Install a Graber Bicycle Rack to Your Car?

Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

A bicycle rack is used on your car to carry and transport several bicycles safely. Depending on the rack you have, the number of bikes you can take will vary, but in general, you will be able to move two or three standard bicycles on a single rack. Most racks, like the Bones model from Graber, are easily installed to the rear of the car on the trunk. You can have your rack installed on your car in just a few minutes, without any tools.

Wipe down the back of your car with a chamois cloth and cleaning solution. You need to clean any part of the car that will come in contact with the bike rack.

Loosen the knobs on the left and right ends of the rack with your hands. These knobs keep the legs of the rack in position, so loosening them will allow you to adjust the legs.

Set the second leg on the right and the left so they rest on the bumper of your car. These two legs are the ones that curve down toward the ground.

Move the outer most legs so that they rest against the back window or on the trunk of the car. These feet should be placed on the car so that the support arms on the rack are horizontal. These legs are called the rear legs.

Secure the position of the rack by tightening the knobs you loosened. Make sure that the feet don’t move at all and the arms remain horizontal.

Pull the end of the upper strap that has the hook on it and latch it onto the top edge of the trunk, along parallel lines with the rear legs of the rack. If the trunk is smooth with no exposed edge, hook the strap onto the next highest surface, going up to the roof if necessary.

Put the lower hooks so that they latch onto the lower edge of the trunk, parallel with the bumper feet. Use the edge of the trunk door that is exposed when you open the trunk.

Attach the side hooks onto the trunk along the side edges of the trunk. You can place the hooks anywhere along the lower edge or corners on the sides of the trunk door.

Tighten each of the straps so they are all taut and in the correct positions. Once you are sure the rack is in the correct position, you can tie the loose ends of each strap so they don’t hang down.


Graber recommends checking the security of your rack after 30 miles of driving after initial installation and after every subsequent 200 miles to ensure the safety of the rack.


Never block the exhaust on your car when you load the bikes onto the rack.