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Old 03-03-2017, 11:39 AM   #1
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Rust Potential from Rail Clamps?

Looking for input from folks who have a "full time" installation of a rack on their Ford vans and whether you've experienced any introduction of rust or damage from the clamps on the inside of the gutter.

As I save for the funds to afford an Aluminess or similar roof rack, I'm considering keeping my Yakima system up there full time. When I last removed it, I noticed the pressure from those clamps seemed to be really pushing down hard on what seems to be a fragile area inside those gutter rails. It looked to me like it wouldn't take long for those clamps to break the paint and then the seal.

Am I being paranoid about this? Or, have any of you experienced a breakdown of the weatherproof-ness of the gutter from using clamps full time up there?

Appreciate your insights.






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Old 03-03-2017, 12:04 PM   #2
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I have seen rust in that area on old contractor vans where the rack has been on for many years. Not sure how long it would take to get to that point.
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Old 03-03-2017, 08:38 PM   #3
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No rust on mine. I had a home-built rack with Yakima clamps for the first 4 years off and on as needed,(and it was on another van before that) and my current roof rack has been on permanently since 2009. No rust.

I think the real reason the paint wears is because a loose install lets the rack move. Keep it snug and tight, and that should be minimized.
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Old 03-04-2017, 07:36 AM   #4
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I've always worried about it too and had racks dig in pretty good into the seam sealer but no rust. I think you'll see the usual rust along the inside edge of the rail before you see it under the rack. I have yet to see a van that didn't have rust starting on the inside of the gutter edge.
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Old 03-04-2017, 07:43 AM   #5
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When I had a rack I was also concerned about damaging the paint and sealer in the gutter area. I took vacuum hose, slit it (its tough) and used pieces of it to isolated the roof rack clamps from the gutter.
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Old 03-04-2017, 12:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LenS View Post
When I had a rack I was also concerned about damaging the paint and sealer in the gutter area. I took vacuum hose, slit it (its tough) and used pieces of it to isolated the roof rack clamps from the gutter.
I was thinking something similar, Len. I have a bunch of extra sheet rubber from a pond I built and was considering using that. But vacuum hose might be better, certainly thicker.
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Old 03-06-2017, 10:31 AM   #7
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Thanks everybody for your input.
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