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Dealer vs Factory installed roof racks

I’m looking at a Honda which has no roof rack which I desparately need. Do dealer installed roof racks leak?

Not for the most part if done right.

And this may allow you to customize it’s function by getting exactly what you need ( kayaks, canoes, bikes, skis, tepees, tornado weather gear, ladders, survey tripods, viewing platforms, machine gun turrets. )

In fact, many o.e. are just generic and may be too light duty or need modification anyway.

Thule and Yakima make racks that fit your vehicle very well. They are pricey but if you car is not brand new design they are available used on craigslist or ebay typically.

The trick is not to destroy the headliner during the installation process…Some racks can make an annoying amount of noise when you get over 60 mph…They all reduce mileage a little…

Which Honda? No sunroof, I hope.

I’ve seen and also installed a large number of dealer roof racks and there’s never been a problem with any of them except one.
That one exception was a customer who wanted one on a new Subaru he had just purchased, we mechanics were swamped at the time, and they let the company lot man install it. He was a young guy with a certain amount of mechanical skills so this this should have been a slam dunk.

Unfortunately, he misplaced the mounting screws and installed it with about 2 dozen screws he pulled from the hardware bin.
These screws were all about 2.5 inches long and when he got in the car after completing this task he looked up and found about 2 dozen screws protruding through the headliner.

I’ll bet he learned some new expletives when the shop foreman found out.

factory only on a new car
used car that which meets your needs

Many roof racks do not need any drilling in the metal; they clamp on the roof rails, and are custom made for your car.

I have a factory Toyota rack and it’s not quite as good as the better aftermarket, such as Thule, Yakima, and others. My son has a Thule on his Mazda 3 and it fits perfectly without drilling. He has the bike, ski, and snowboard box oprtions. Roof rack dealers are especially licensed to install these and they do a better job than the car dealers.

I categorically do not recommend the cheap, one size fits all types you may find at Walmart.