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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Automotive/Car Talk › Roof rack crossbar noise: VW (aero) vs. Yakima (round)?
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Roof rack crossbar noise: VW (aero) vs. Yakima (round)?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Here's a random question: has anyone had a chance to compare wind noise from VW's OEM aero bars with Yakima's round bars? If so, is there enough difference to warrant changing racks? For reference, VW's crossbars have an oval cross section and resemble some Thule aero bars I've seen, and might even be made by Thule.

Background:

I bought VW's base rack when I bought my Rabbit in 2009. It's got aero bars (oval cross section) which are thunderously loud going at any speed, especially with the sunroof open. The sound's a little better with the cargo box on, but that's only in winter. I leave the bars on year round to carry large items that don't easily fit inside the car.

But I'd heard that Yakima's round bars make less noise, so when I stumbled on a great price on Yakima Q towers and crossbars last winter I snapped them up. I never got to installing them, though, and since I'm cleaning out the storeroom it's time to either switch roof racks or sell the Yakima gear.

So, opinions? Advice? And no, buying an SUV isn't an option... duck.gif
post #2 of 7
I went to a hitch mount rack for bikes partly for this reason. When I had a car with a louder interior it didn't matter, but since getting a quieter car a couple years ago it really bugged me. I know. Doesn't help either of us in winter. Just expressing solidarity with your first world problem.
post #3 of 7
+1 for the aero bars. Went from Yakima round bars to Yakima whisbars. Made a huge difference for me and my soports wagon.
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by plai View Post

+1 for the aero bars. Went from Yakima round bars to Yakima whisbars. Made a huge difference for me and my soports wagon.

Maybe I'll look into the whisbars. My aeros are the opposite of quiet! Maybe the difference is something like the shape or length of the car's roof?
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by litterbug View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by plai View Post

+1 for the aero bars. Went from Yakima round bars to Yakima whisbars. Made a huge difference for me and my soports wagon.

Maybe I'll look into the whisbars. My aeros are the opposite of quiet! Maybe the difference is something like the shape or length of the car's roof?

ETA: I just checked the whispbar website, and the shape is completely different: the whispbar is teardrop shaped like the wing of an airplane, and my bars are oval with a flattened top and bottom.
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Here's Whispbar's graphic; check out the difference between it and the Thule aero bar.

post #7 of 7

The Whispbars are VERY quiet.

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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Automotive/Car Talk › Roof rack crossbar noise: VW (aero) vs. Yakima (round)?