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We need to get a bike rack for our car (4 door sedan, Mercury Milan). Ideally it could hold 4 bikes. I understand we need to first get a tow hitch. But any recommendations for the kind of bike rack to look for?

 

I'm not mechanically inclined, so would like something that I could get in and out of the trunk with jt on-- and not have to get the whole thing set up every time we bike. Also, I'm not one to want to lift the bikes onto the top of the car. So something that would be in the back would be great. Not for long distances really, but to drive to parks etc. relatively close by (w/in an hour or so).

 

Also I really apologize b/c I posted sometime last year about something like this and just CAN'T find my previous thread. But we really need to get something set up now.

 

Thank you so much!

 

Amy

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When my van was less than a year old, I contacted my Honda service department to ask how much it would cost to add a trailer hitch to my van so I could use my bike rack (like you, just to go to the park, etc.).

 

They quoted me close to $2,000 because the concern wasn't the trailer hitch, it was so that I could pull a boat, etc. if I wanted to. They also told me that if I went to a secondary market to have one installed, then it would invalidate my warranty.

 

I just wanted to go for longer bike rides with our children and not have to swap out with my husband's truck that has a hitch. That was years ago and it still makes me mad.

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When my van was less than a year old, I contacted my Honda service department to ask how much it would cost to add a trailer hitch to my van so I could use my bike rack (like you, just to go to the park, etc.).

 

They quoted me close to $2,000 because the concern wasn't the trailer hitch, it was so that I could pull a boat, etc. if I wanted to. They also told me that if I went to a secondary market to have one installed, then it would invalidate my warranty.

 

I just wanted to go for longer bike rides with our children and not have to swap out with my husband's truck that has a hitch. That was years ago and it still makes me mad.

 

 

That's pretty much what Honda told me too. But, our van was a lot older. They wanted nearly $1000 for the hitch and bike rack.

 

I got the hitch installed at a friend's garage for $300, including the cost of the hitch and bought a 5-bike rack at Walmart for $100.

 

To the OP - check out amazon and walmart for Allan bike racks. Mine works perfectly and I didn't pay the huge prices for a Thule or Yakima rack.

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For hitches and accessories, go to www.etrailer.com

 

I would think Honda would have to prove that you towed a boat or something else heavier than the rated capacity of the van before they could deny your warranty.

 

I have two different Saris bike racks, and they've both been great. We have a hitch-mount Saris Bat Rack we use on our Honda Odyssey. Unfortunately, Saris no longer makes that particular rack.

 

I also have a Saris Bones 2-bike rack I use on my Camry.

 

I've gotten great customer service from Saris as well. A small part broke on Bat Rack. I called Saris to get a replacement. They sent me a whole brand new assembly, free of charge, that included the small piece that was broken.

 

Thule, Yakima and Allen also make good bike racks. Be forewarned that just like good bikes, good bike racks can be expensive.

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We bought a Thule Apex 4-bike hitch rack at REI during a sale, and we're pleased with it.

 

As part of this project, we also had a hitch installed on our vehicle by a local mechanic we know. I think we paid about $200.

 

You might find that you also need a crossbar to fit onto your bike(s), depending on what type they are.

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