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Roof Top Tents - Things to Know

Roof Top Tents
With the overlanding and off-road community taking a bullish ride to mainstream status, a lot of people have a lot of questions about Roof Top Tents. In this article, BillieBars will explain what roof top tents are, why you need one, how they attach, and more.

What are Roof Top Tents?
The name Roof Top Tent can be a little misleading. While Roof Top Tents (we’ll refer to them as RTT’s moving forward) can mount to your roof, they can also mount to a bed rack or bed bars. When it’s all said and done, the inside of an RTT is the same as a normal tent, but it also includes an added structural foundation (usually a base made of aluminum), as well as a built-in mattress. The base of the RTT rests on your bed rack, bed bars, or roof rack. Picture your normal tent that is gathering cobwebs in the basement, then add your next door neighbors kids erector set to the bottom, and you’ve got an RTT! So no Mom, you won’t fall through the bottom!

Why do you need an RTT?
Well if you’re into outdoor adventure, camping and/or overlanding, it’s a must. Why not spend the night tucked comfortably away in an insulated, waterproof system that only takes a few minutes to open or close? It’s a pure gold moment when your buddy watches you make camp in 14 seconds, while he’s pounding away on the stakes!

How they attach and more!
We get a lot of questions about how a specific RTT will mount to our bars. We personally sell RTT Mounting Clamps that have some universal qualities. Most tent companies will provide hardware to attach to a bed rack, or bed bars - you should be mindful of what the dimensions of these are, as well as the dimensions of the bar you plan on mounting it to.

You’ll also want to take a look at your mounting surface and the footprint of the base of the RTT, itself. Most tent companies recommend mounting it on a front to back bar spacing of about 30 inches. The tent is recommended to be center and square on the crossbars.

So how much do these RTT’s weigh - well they can range in 100 to 300 lbs depending on the size. You’ll want to take a look at the static and dynamic load ratings of anything you plan to mount your RTT to, and definitely consider who will be joining you in the RTT - Fido, you’re always welcome bud!

And the cost? Well, RTT’s aren’t exactly cheap but the good news is that the marketplace is pretty well covered, so you’ll have the choice of the litter. They range in price from the $600 mark, all the way up to a few thousand bucks! If you’re just getting started, it may be smart to buy something on the budget end - oh but what the hell, you know you’re going to love it! Do your research and find something that will last, and that you’ll enjoy for years to come!

Feel free to reach out to us today at if you’re considering BillieBars as the mounting solution for your Roof Top Tent. We’d love to help you make sure you’re making the right decision!