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two hullavators on roof

Two Hullavators, is it possible?

Thule Hullavators are a great way to make the process of loading and transporting kayaks easier on your body. They are easy to use, secure, and of course the best part being their load assist capabilities. However, mounting two Hullavators to crossbars unfortunately isn't always as simple as it sounds. This article lists out the factors that need to be taken into consideration prior to your purchase and installation!
hullavators closer up

Crossbar Requirements

The crossbars are the most important part of this entire system. There are a few key things to keep in mind when shopping for a new system, or determining if what you have already will work with the Hullavator.
  • Overhang: To use the Hullavator at least 4 inches of overhang past the towers is required, but no more than 8 inches. This ensures that when the Hullavator is being brought down to the side of the vehicle there will be enough clearance for the system and the kayak to clear the side of the vehicle
  • Weight Capacity: The Hullavator themselves weigh roughly 40 pounds per kayak loading system, so you need to factor that weight into the overall weight capacity of your roof rack. for example, if your roof rack has a weight capacity of 165 pounds, then you only carry two kayaks that weigh a combined total of 85 pounds. This would for fine for most recreational kayaks, however if the weight rating is lower on your vehicle you can see how it can limit you quite a bit.
  • Crossbar Style: Last, but certainly not least. The mounting hardware for the Thule Hullavator is not universal, and will only work with a select few styles of bars. Mainly crossbars with what is called a "T-slot" on the top of the bar, this is essentially a slot cut out specifically for mounting various accessories. The Hullavator also includes the hardware to mount specifically to the Thule Squarebar crossbar.
hullavator in down position

Potential Compatibility Issues

  • Clamp-on Roof Racks: Two Thule Hullavators can technically be mounted on Thule clamp-on racks, but it is not recommended in all circumstances. Clamp-on racks are not as secure as other types of roof racks when nearing the weight capacity of the system. If you are going to use clamp-on racks, it is very important to make sure that they are rated for the full combined weight of the Hullavators and the kayaks. 
  • Thule Crossbars: When using Thule Crossbars, it is important to make sure that the bars are long enough to accommodate two Hullavators. However, the channel on the bottom of Thule bars only goes 7 inches from the edge of the bar in. This means that if too wide of a crossbar is being used, it is possible that the mounting hardware that attaches the crossbar system to the vehicle is unable to come in far enough to mount in the proper spot on the roofline.
  • Yakima Crossbars: Yakima Crossbars have a channel on the bottom of the crossbar that runs the entire width of the bar, so you don't run into the same issue as with Thule crossbars. However, Yakima has it's own quick that can lead to a system that does not work well with two Hullavators. Yakima crossbar have large jumps in between crossbar width unlike Thule. This can come into play when you have a vehicle that may not have enough overhang to use two Hullavators with Yakima's 50" crossbar, and too much overhang with the 60" crossbar. This can pose a major problem with too much flex in too long of a crossbar, and cause damage to the crossbar system itself or your vehicle under load of two Hullavators.
hullavators from back

Wrapping it up

By following the above guidelines, and taking into consideration the potential compatibility issues. You can take this knowledge and apply it to your research to see if two Thule Hullavators is possible on your vehicle. Of course, if you would like to speak with an expert do discuss if this setup will work for you we have helpful staff available to assist you with all your rack needs!

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