Subaru Forester Roof Rack Weight Limit: (Updated 2024)

If you have been planning to go on a trip with your Subaru Forester and you have no idea about the limit of the roof rack of this vehicle, I have got the right answer for you.

Subaru Forester Roof Rack Weight Limit (2005- 2022)

No.Subaru Forester ModelsRoof Rack Weight Limit
12005-2013150 LBS (68 KG)
22014-2018165 Pounds (75 KG)
32019-2022176 Pounds (80 KG)

Let’s talk a bit more about the capability of the Subaru Forester and how it can assist you during your camping.

What are the roof rack dimensions of the Subaru Forester?

The roof rack dimensions of the Subaru Forester are 44.49 inches in length (L) and 5.91 inches in width (W) and are good enough to accommodate essential stuff like a bed tent, bikes, etc.

Roof Rack Dimensions

The dimensions of the roof racks of your vehicle are as important as their weight limit because that’ll decide what type of stuff you can load on your vehicle and what you should avoid.

Subaru Forester is a huge SUV and is equal in size when compared to its competitors like Toyota RAV4, and Hyundai Tucson and these vehicles have huge dimensions on their roof racks.

The roof rack of the Subaru Forester is good enough to carry huge roof boxes, bikes, Kayaks, surfboards, and much more. Just make sure that both your luggage and the dimensions of your vehicle are aligned with each other.

Loading luggage that is too large than the actual dimension of the Subaru Forester might put you in a lot of trouble which isn’t good for your trip or camping.

Recommended Read: Know the Roof Rack Limit of Subaru Outback

Subaru Forester Payload Capacity

The payload capacity of the Subaru Forester is 1050 LBS or 476 KG at maximum.

Car Payload capacity

A lot of you might not be aware of what a Payload capacity but don’t worry I’ll try to explain it in a simple way for you.

“Payload Capacity is the weight a vehicle like a truck or a car can handle safely while moving in all of its storage areas such as Roofs, Cargo, etc”.

Don’t get confused between towing capacity and Payload Capacity because it counts only the weights that your vehicle handles. This includes passengers, loads in the boot as well as roof racks.

Payload capacity is mostly used on trucks but it is always good to know about your car too because this will help you decide how much stuff you can bring on your Subaru Forester If you are planning to go camping anywhere.

If you would like to know more about Payload Capacity, I would suggest you watch this video.

Video Credits: Bumper

Can you put a rooftop tent on Subaru Forester?

Absolutely, you can easily put a rooftop tent on your Subaru Forester and have a good time while camping with your friends or family.

Roof Top Tent

You may ask how is it even possible to install a rooftop tent on a Subaru Forester when it maximum roof rack limit of this vehicle is only about 176 lbs.

The answer to this question is pretty simple.

The roof rack limit which I have mentioned above is the dynamic one and the static limit of this vehicle is 700 lbs (317 lbs). The static limit of a vehicle means how much weight it can handle when it is parked in one place.

Now that, you know it is possible to use a rooftop tent on your Subaru Forester much like RAV4 and If you are looking for a decent option, you can take a look at the Smittybilt Overlander Tent which is slightly expensive but is packed with a lot of useful features.

Recommended for you: Learn How much weight the Roof Rack of the Subaru Crosstrek can handle

Things to keep in mind before loading anything on the Subaru Forester roof

Some of the important things you must keep in mind before you load anything on Subaru Forester are,

  • Balance of the luggage.
  • Height.
  • Weight.
  • Condition of the racks.
  • Quality of the racks.

Balance of the luggage:

Roof Rack Balance

Whether you load a bike, kayak, or any other thing on the roof of your Subaru Forester, you must place everything in a balance area or there is a high probability that you’ll have a hard time while corning your vehicle.

Let’s say, you have put all of your luggage on only one side of the rack, its weight may affect that side alone and your vehicle may slip for the same reason. In the worst-case scenario, you may get injured which isn’t at all a good thing.

What you need to do in order to avoid situations like this is, put all of your stuff in the right order so that everything is balanced properly and then you’ll have no issues while driving.


Subaru Forester Height

Another thing you must consider while traveling on your Subaru Forester is the height of the luggage you are going to load on the roof racks.

Some of the most common luggage people load on their roof racks are bikes, kayaks, mattresses, rooftop tents, etc If you happen to carry these types of stuff on your vehicle, you must keep in mind their heights.

This is especially important when you pass in areas such as under-pass bridges because the rooftop of your vehicle may touch with that and eventually, your luggage may fall down.

Different states in the US have their own rules regarding the height of the luggage you can carry in your vehicle and I would suggest you get in touch with the concerned department to know the rules of your current state.

In case you break the rules of your state, you may have to pay a hefty fine for your action.


The weight of the luggage you have loaded on the roof plays an important part while you are traveling with your vehicle and Suburu Forester is no exception.

As I have already discussed above, the roof rack weight limit of the Subaru Forester is anywhere between 150 lbs and 176 lbs depending upon the model you have with you.

You must load the luggage on the roof of the Subaru Forester by keeping this limit in your mind and don’t cross this limit in any case.

Apart from that, you should also get to know about the limit set by your local state to avoid any kind of issues while traveling.

Condition of the racks:

If you have been using the old roof rack of your Subaru Forester for a long time, chances are it may have got weak or damaged.

You should take a look to check if the racks are in good condition or not. You may not need to replace the racks it is in working condition.

In case, if the condition of the roof racks is poor, you should get new racks that’ll assist you to load the luggage on your Forester.

MaxxHaul 70115 Steel Roof Rack is a perfect choice for your Subaru Forester that’ll cost you a little over $100 but it is worth investing in as the quality of this rack is extremely high to load medium or heavy luggage.

Quality of the racks:

If the condition of the roof racks seems fine, you shouldn’t ignore the quality part.

The quality of the roof racks is as important as the condition of the racks. If you have installed racks from a poor brand, it’ll break in just a couple of months and investment on this one won’t be worth it.

That’s why I always recommended you get the roof racks for your vehicle only from a reliable brand. In the coming days, I’ll share a list of racks you should consider getting for your Subaru Forester. Stay tuned for that.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. How much weight can a Subaru Forester carry on the roof?

The Subaru Forester can carry 176 lbs on its roof while it is in a dynamic condition and when it is parked it can easily carry around 700 lbs.

It is better to know the roof limit of your vehicle in both situations and that’s why I have mentioned both of them here.

2. Can you put a roof rack on a Subaru Forester?

Yes, you can put roof racks on a Subaru Forester.

A lot of people like to go camping on Subaru Forester and with this in mind, Subaru has offered the ability to install roof racks on their Subaru Forester.

3. What happens if you put too much weight on a roof rack?

If you put too much weight on a roof rack, it’ll become hard for the driver to drive properly and the chances of meeting an accident are pretty.

Always put the luggage on the roof rack of your vehicle by keeping its limit in mind so that you have a stress-free and safe trip.

4. How far apart should crossbars be on Subaru Forester?

The crossbars of the Subaru Foresters should be at least 24 and 36 inches apart so that it doesn’t get into any kind of trouble.

5. How long is a Subaru Forester?

The 2022 model of the Subaru Forester is 182.7 inches in length and 71.5 inches wide.

The Subaru Forester is a big SUV that can easily accommodate 5 people and planning a long trip with this vehicle won’t be an issue as it offers great comfort as well as features.

6. How much does roof rack installation cost?

The installation fee of the roof racks starts at $150 and the price goes way up to $500 depending upon the model of the racks you have.

There is no straightforward answer to this question because it depends on the model of the roof rack you own. To install a used or basic roof rack, you’ll be charged around $150 and for the heavy and expensive, it’ll go up to $500 or even more.

Final Words:

I don’t want to bore you with all the details again but I just want you to know that whenever you plan a trip on your Subaru Forester, you must keep the capacity of the roof racks.

The Subaru Forester Roof Rack Weight Limit is 176 lbs (80 kg) however the number may slightly differ depending upon the model you own. If you have any other questions to ask, do let me know in the comments and I’ll get back to you ASAP. Cheers!

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