If you often travel by car with family and friends, you probably know the struggle of not knowing where to put everybody’s luggage, which is why you need the best waterproof rooftop cargo bag! This will help you free up space within your car and also protect your stuff from the elements.
In this article, you’ll know more about the 10 best products this year as well as tips in choosing and using a rooftop cargo bag.
Top Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bags
I know the sheer number of different brands and types of waterproof rooftop cargo bags out in the market can be overwhelming. So, to help you narrow down your search, I listed down my 10 most favorite products along with brief descriptions of each:
Keeper 07203-1 Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bag
Protect your gear and luggage from the sun, rain, wind, and road grit with the Keeper 07203-1 Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bag! Featuring a heavy duty construction, you can rest assured that this product is meant to last long and withstand all elements the road has to bring.
Thanks to the soft sides, this cargo bag can store all kinds of items, regardless of their shape so you do not have to worry about causing yourself and your passengers any discomfort.
Made with rubber laminated nylon, this bag is waterproof and durable. Whenever not needed, you can easily fold it compact for hassle-free storage. This bag measures 44” by 34” by 17” and offers 15 cubic feet of space.
While the Keeper 07203-1 is compatible with all roof racks that have attachment capabilities on four sides, proper caution to ensure secure attachment is advised if three or fewer sides are in use.
Apex RBG-02 Waterproof Roof Cargo Bag
Offering 10.3 cubic feet of storage capacity, the Apex RBG-02 Waterproof Roof Cargo Bag may be a little smaller but offers the same protection as other similar models. It measures only 11” by 9” by 4” and weighs 4.75 pounds.
This vehicle cargo storage has soft sides to accommodate and store oddly shaped gear and items easily. It is also compatible with side rails or roof racks of all-terrain vehicles especially the Honda CR-V and other vehicles with roof rails that are closer together.
The bag uses a waterproof PVC coated nylon material that protects your stuff from rain and other weather elements. It comes with a self-repairing zipper system and features an integrated storm flap for even better protection and durability.
The package also comes with 4 adjustable tie-down straps for easy and secure installation.
RoofBag Waterproof Car Top Carrier
The RoofBag Waterproof Car Top Carrier is another product that is so easy to install and store. It works on baskets, crossbars, side rails, and even on bare car roofs!
Featuring a heavy-duty construction, this bag also has 3000 pounds strong seatbelt-style straps to attach the bag securely to your car no matter what speed you go. These straps also have an Anti-Wick technology to prevent water from entering your vehicle for cars with no rack.
Available in two sizes (11 and 15 cubic feet) this bag can fit any car from SUVs and vans to full-size sedans. The size 11 measures 48” by 38” by 18” and weighs 8 pounds.
The bag is made with heavy duty canvas material with an abrasion-resistant waterproof vinyl coat on both sides. A premium option also features the Triple-Seal technology and a 2-year warranty to assure maximum weather protection.
Reese Explore 63604 Rooftop Cargo Bag
Measuring 59” by 18.5” by 24”, the Reese Explore 63604 offers 15 cubic feet of dry storage for your and your family or group’s gear and personal belongings. It is perfect for your general travel needs.
It features a rainproof construction to protect your stuff from weather elements and includes 6 straps and tie-down points for a secure attachment. It even folds flat so you can store it easily when not in use.
ROLA 59119 Rainproof Rooftop Cargo Bag
Designed to withstand weather elements like rain, wind, and snow, the ROLA 59119 will ensure nothing stops you and the gang from having a great time while traveling. This bag features a rugged weather resistant construction using quality waterproof vinyl and other materials for durability and performance.
The seams are also sonically sealed and welded to keep your stuff protected and secure. An ingeniously engineered six-strap system is easy to set up and keeps all your gear and cargo in place.
Thanks to the soft materials, this bag also folds up easily for a quick and hassle-free storage whenever you do not need it. All zippers are concealed and protected by rain flaps for an extra layer of protection.
It measures 59” by 24” by 24” and offers 20 cubic feet of storage capacity but is lightweight at only 8.37 pounds.
The package includes all tie-downs and installation hardware. This product even comes with a limited five-year warranty for your peace of mind.
Rightline Gear 100S20 Sport 2 Car Top Carrier
Constructed from premium quality PVC Semi-Coated Mesh XT and Hydrotuff that is both waterproof and UV-protected, the Rightline Gear 100S20 promises durable protection and dry storage for your travel needs.
This bag also features a Dual Seam Technology construction which means the materials are not only sewn together to make them strong but are also welded to reinforce the stitching and seal all seams for waterproofing.
The ZipRight system helps keep water out by placing the urethane-coated zipper in a protective flap. The flap is then secured and folded down to the carrier via hook and loop closures.
You can use this rooftop cargo bag for cars like crossovers, mini vans, or SUVs with or without a roof rack. It is also aerodynamically designed to reduce air resistance and not hamper your car’s speed.
This product measures 44” long by 36” wide and 14 to 19” high and offers 25 cubic feet of storage space. However, it is also available in other sizes that provide capacities of 9, 12, or 18 cubic feet.
The package includes the carrier bag, 4 car clips, 4 attachment straps, and a stuff sack with the set-up guide.
CURT 18221 Rooftop Cargo Bag
Made from thick and durable 500 by 500-denier, UV-resistant black vinyl, the Curt 18221 Roof Rack Cargo Bag is designed to protect your cargo from water, wind, dirt, and more. The seams are also welded to seal water out.
The zippers have large holes to accommodate a padlock to keep your stuff extra safe. Zip closures also feature hook-and-loop flaps to keep the interior completely dry.
Thick, 1-inch wide tie-down polypropylene straps allow you to secure the bag to a cargo carrier frame. This specific model is compatible with the CURT roof rack cargo carrier 18115 and extension 18117.
The whole unit weighs 8.09 pounds, measures 59” by 34” by 18”, and offers 21 cubic feet of storage capacity. It even folds easily for compact storage and comes with a 1-year warranty.
Rhino Rack Luggage Bag
The Rhino Rack Luggage bag is made with sturdy abrasion-resistant UPVC base and a 100% water-resistant and dust-resistant body. This also makes it super easy to clean and fold and stow away for storage.
The heavy-duty stitching and extra-strong compression straps contribute durability and long-lasting performance.
Available in three sizes, this model comes in a half-size (55 inches), large (59 inches) and small (43 inches). The 59-inch luggage bag is meant to fit rooftop cargo racks and comes with lockable zippers for your security.
Marksign Waterproof Car Rooftop Cargo Carrier Bag
Expect 100% waterproofing with the Marksign Waterproof Car Rooftop Cargo Carrier Bag! It is made with waterproof and UV-proof heavy duty tarpaulins or nylon mesh with vinyl coatings on both sides welded together electrically for a strong, seam-sealed construction.
Even the zippers are waterproof and PVC coated. Velcro tabs also secure the rain flaps that protect and seal the zippers off from the outside environment for a completely rainproof design. This also ensures that the bag and whatever it is you store inside it will last for years.
With a bigger capacity than most other carrier bags, the Marksign Rooftop Cargo Carrier Bag measures 51.2” long, 35.5” wide, and 16.5” high offering a total volume of 17.5 cubic feet.
This bag is easy to use and attach with the included 4”x1” nylon straps with durable adjustable buckle systems. It fits all vehicles that have cross bars or roof racks.
The aerodynamic design not only maximizes your car’s fuel use but also helps reduce wind noise. This product comes with a 5-year warranty.
AUXMART Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bag
Last but not the least is the AUXMART Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bag which offers complete protection from snow, dust, wind, and rain thanks to the waterproof 500 x 500D PVC tarpaulin material and heavy duty construction.
This bag allows you to use 15 cubic feet of dry storage and measures 37.5” by 37.5” by 18”. Install it with no problems through the 8 included straps with adjustable quick-release buckles for secure attachment to roof baskets, side rails, crossbars, or roof racks.
The collapsible design allows you to conveniently fold and store the unit when it is not in use.
Important Features to Look for When Choosing the Best Waterproof Rooftop Cargo Bag
Believe me, knowing what to look for and understanding which features you absolutely want and need will make it so much easier to choose a certain product you are planning to purchase.
In the case of waterproof rooftop cargo bags, long hours of research and actual experiences of myself and my friends have led me to come up with the following important features and considerations:
Whenever you invest in something, you want it to last long and stretch the value of your hard-earned money. So, look for a cargo bag made with quality materials and construction, which will determine its durability. The materials should be strong and thick.
PVC or vinyl are usually among the best materials available. Make sure the outer covering is waterproof and weatherproof to protect the items inside the bag. Look for sturdy straps, buckles, or zippers. This will make your bag easier to attach, close, and open while also allowing it to last longer.
Another important thing you should take note of is the size, both of the bag and your car. Waterproof rooftop cargo bags usually range from 10 to 25 cubic feet in volume but vary greatly in terms of dimensions. Some are longer than they are wide and some are vice versa.
First, consider the things you plan to bring on your trips. How much stuff do you usually carry and what types of items do you want to store in a cargo bag? With this information, it will be easier to know what size or dimensions of a carrier will fit your things.
Also, measure the size of your car. Obviously, it is not ideal to have an extra large cargo bag on top of a small vehicle. You have to ensure that whatever carrier bag you buy will allow you to store as much stuff as possible but without causing any damage to your car or its rooftop.
When it comes to rooftop cargo bags and carriers, the shape is not just about aesthetics. Some bags may be sleek and long while others may be wide and short. Different manufacturers often offer different carrier shapes.
Aside from ensuring that your gear will fit properly inside the bag, another reason why you should pay attention to the shape is that the wrong shape can increase wind noise and drag.
Fortunately, sleeker, more aerodynamic shapes are now available. This will help reduce air resistance, reduce fuel consumption, and let you reach your destination in a shorter amount of time regardless of the amount of gear you have in store on your car’s roof.
4. Mounting Hardware
Of course, cargo bags should come with some kind of means to attach them to the roof of your car. The type of mounting hardware will determine how easy and secure the installation and attachment process will be.
Make sure that you won’t need any special tools outside of the package when installing the bag. Some bags might require at least two people and a longer time to install depending on the size.
You should also consider the number of straps, the buckle systems, and the material used for the straps to make sure they are not flimsy and will withstand the wind and other forces the bag will be exposed to while you travel.
While I understand that a product’s price can largely affect our decision to buy or not buy it, remember to never compromise on quality for a cheaper price. More often than not, cheaper options are less durable and of inferior quality. Sure, there are great deals available but I suggest that you do not give up a good product just because it is a little expensive.
Trust me, it is much better to spend more on a high-quality product that will last long and perform well than have to frequently buy and replace a cheaper one.
Tips in Using A Rooftop Cargo Bag
● When packing a cargo bag, make it a point to fill it up good. Otherwise, the rain flaps will not guard the zippers properly. If there is any space left inside, you can throw in some light yet voluminous items like pillows or blankets.
● Try to place the tallest or bulkiest items around the middle part of the bag to create kind of a dome shape. This will cause rainwater to slide off the sides and not pool on the center.
● Do not over-tighten the tie-down straps. I know you might think this will secure your stuff better but the reason why there are four to eight straps is to distribute the load of holding down the bag among them. When you overtighten, the unnecessary stress can reduce the lifespan of the straps.
● Speaking of straps, tie down the excess straps after you are done securing the bag so that they won’t go flapping in the wind or getting caught on low-hanging tree branches.
● Put a rigid foam or piece of cardboard at the bottom of the bag before you put anything in it. This will help you maximize the space and organize your stuff better.
● Use smaller bags or boxes within the cargo bag to make loading and unloading much simpler and easier.
● If you are using a cargo bag for the first time and have not really tested it out yet, put anything that can be damaged by water in ziplock bags, vacuum packs, or trash bags. This will keep them safe in case water does get in through a tear, the zippers, or the seams. You can also do this if you are worried if your cargo bag really is waterproof.
That’s it! I hope you liked this best waterproof rooftop cargo bag buying guide and product reviews. If you frequently go on trips in groups or with your family, you might also want to check out this article on finding the best waterproof tent for a family!