Crossbar Adapter For Car Carriers (Easy Solution)

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If you have a trunk or hitch-mounted bike rack for your car and a bike that doesn’t have a ‘standard’ horizontal top tube, then you may well be puzzled as to how you’re supposed to hook the bike onto the rack.

It’s a challenge that many people face, so you’re not alone! There are so many different varieties of bikes that don’t have a horizontal crossbar, from ladies’ bikes, to low-step or step-through bikes, BMXs, kids’ bikes, and full-suspension mountain bikes. It’s a long list of bike types.

Thankfully, there’s an easy solution to this problem that won’t involve changing your car, or bike, or bike, and I’ve got the details here for you now. Shall we have a look?

The answer to this problem is to get a crossbar adaptor and this one from Yakima is perfect.

Quick to install, the TubeTop adapter hooks securely onto the seatpost and handlebars. Highly recommended

Outside the US? Get this one from Amazon.

Best top tube adapter?

When you have a hanging rear bike rack such as a trunk-mount or hitch-mount, you’ll need a crossbar adaptor to ‘bridge the gap’ and provide a temporary top tube for your bike.

There are two great options for this:

Yakima TubeTop Bike Rack Adaptor

This is my top recommended crossbar adapter for car carriers.

It’s super-simple to hook each end onto the seatpost/handlebar stem. Once it’s in place you can just load the bike onto your bike rack as you would with a standard bike. The hooks have large molded collars so are strong and hold your bike securely, but are gentle on the paintwork.

The adapter weighs 3.3 pounds and is approximately 22” long with a tube diameter of around 1”. It is also rated for bikes weighing up to 45 pounds – giving plenty of capacity for most bikes. You can find fitting instructions for the Yakima here.

The Yakima is a fantastic product and a really straightforward solution to this bike-carrying problem.

Tyger Auto TG-RK1B108B Deluxe Bike Telescopic Adaptor

If you’re outside the US, then I’d recommend this crossbar adapter from Tyger Auto: the TG-RK1B108B Deluxe Bike Cross Bar Telescopic Adaptor.

It operates very similarly to the Yakima and there’s a YouTube video from Tyger Auto below showing how to fit and use the crossbar adapter.

Look closely and you’ll see that the video is only 54 seconds long – which gives a good idea of how easy these adapters are to use!

Top tube adapters like the two above are small and easy to pack away in storage when you’re not needing to use them. Pro Tip is to secure the adapter to your bike rack with one or two Velcro straps like these when it’s in your garage or store. Then it won’t go missing and you’ll have it right where you need it next time you’re taking a trip away.


I love taking the bikes away when we’re driving on vacation, but it can be frustrating if you don’t have the right kit to fit your bikes to your car rack. Luckily there’s an easy solution! Buy one of these excellent crossbar adapters and you’ll be hooked up and ready to go on your next big bike adventure in no time.

Have fun!

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