Check the straps!

Roof rack strps broken due to excessive sun light

Check roof rack straps for fading as this may cause weakening

As I pulled one of our kayak straps down to secure a kayak onto the roof rack today it snapped. Luckily I was pulling downwards and not diagonally. Otherwise I’d have take a nasty fall.

The strap looked okay except that it hard torn apart and I know I’m not that strong! A closer inspection revealed the webbing had become brittle and I could even tear it by hand.

The straps were less than 2 years old. There was no sign of excessive wear and tear. The only clue was the faded colour which suggests it had weakened as a result of the sunlight?

We use our straps a lot running a kayak tour company in Jersey so there is a lot of loading going on.

However, there are lots of people who drive about with their kayak loaded onto the roof rack. If this is happening perhaps it is a good idea to test your straps. I’m not sure if it is just the red straps or a problem common to other colours. The thought of losing a kayak from the roof rack is not a nice thought.

I’ll be replacing our straps annually from now on.

Tip: Have you checked your kayak roof rack straps?