How to Install Roof Rack on Toyota 4Runner?

Are you one of those Toyota 4Runner enthusiasts who bought the SUV a few years back but kept deferring on opting for an appropriate roof rack? There’s no gainsaying that installing a roof rack for 4Runner offers you peace of mind as the rack enables you to transport your belongings safely. On the other hand, the roof rack relieves you from the hassle of having to pack your bits and pieces inside the vehicle.

If you’re looking for a sturdy truck topper for camping for your Toyota 4Runner, then you can choose from popular brands like Rola, Arksen, Curt, and N-FAB. These well-known manufacturers offer vehicle roof racks that are compatible with a wide range of automobile brands including Toyota, Ford, Jeep, Land Rover, and Mercedes.

Once you’ve bought a durable roof rack, you’ll need to follow some simple steps relating to “How to install roof rack on Toyota 4Runner”

Removing the Plastic Shafts

No matter whichever roof rack brand or model you purchase, the product will come with the standard hardware such as brackets, bolts, and support plates for installing the stand. On the other hand, you may need some essential tools like ratchet wrench, 13mm socket for roof bolts, a small crowbar (or screwdriver), and RTV silicone.

Go through the installation instructions outlined in the manual supplied with the roof rack for properly mounting the stand atop the vehicle. First remove the plastic covers fitted on the vehicle’s roof (some models may not have any factory set roof rack). Slide the covers back as far as possible, and gently wedge the screwdriver’s tip in between the rubber casing and the plastic covers.

Keep pushing upwards mildly with the screwdriver till the covers come off of the clips.

Detach Factory Set Roof Rack

You’ll find two bolts or screws beneath every plastic cover which you need to unscrew and detach using the 13mm socket. Now, carefully disengage the built-in rack and lift it upwards slowly to remove it. Since the factory installed roof rack is heavy you may need assistance for detaching it effectively.

Detach Factory Set Roof Rack

Next, pry open the rubber gaskets by hand on all the plastic covers and remove them.

Coat RTV Silicone

Now, you’ll need to daub RTV silicone in the gaps that come into view once you remove the rubber gaskets. The silicone works as a sealant, preventing water from seeping inside your SUV.

Attach the Support Plates

At this stage, you’ll need to install the four support plates and the cutouts. Lay every support place into the respective mounting slit for covering the gaps that were revealed after you removed the brackets. Place the cutouts around the silicone pipes or tubes.

Install the Brackets

You’ll see the brackets marked alphabetically (A, B, and C). Brackets labeled will be installed nearest to the front and C-brackets at the rear end. D-P marked brackets stand for driver or passenger side brackets. Just install the brackets exactly in the order mentioned in the roof rack manual by placing a washer and a bolt.

Do not tighten the bolts now as you will have to do the same after you have installed the rack on the brackets. Ensure to smear RTV silicone on the threading of the roof bolts to check leakage.

Position the Roof Rack on Brackets

You’ll again need the help of a family member or friend for lifting the roof rack and positioning the same properly over the brackets. Exercise caution while placing the rack on the brackets, and put in bolts along with washers through the slots atop the rack. Now make the rack firmly stay in place using nylon insert lock nuts.

Roof Rack on Brackets

Repeat the above steps for all the remaining seven slots or holes, and coat grease on the bolts to thwart seizing.

Assemble Front Brackets

Before installing the front brackets, you’ll have to assemble and adjust these correctly for maintaining the height. Put in a bolt along with a washer via the circular slots, and ensure that the nylon nut and washer on the backend are loosely fitted. Leaving the nuts and bolts loose is essential as you will have to adjust the bracket’s height.

Install Front Brackets

Now position the brackets onto the rack and check out whether they have been placed correctly. At this point, take out the plastic from the underside of the brackets so as to make the double sided tape becomes visible. You should be very cautious while mounting the brackets owing to the stickiness of the tape.

Thereafter, you’ll have to press down forcefully onto the rubberized roof conduit. Next, decide on the bracket height you want to maintain, and tauten the bolts.

Double Check if Everything Has Been Installed Securely

In the final step on “how to install roof rack on Toyota 4Runner” doubly ensure the rack’s perfect placement, and make tighter all the remaining screws.

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