How to Pick a Roof Rack Lock: A Comprehensive Guide

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Picking a Thule car roof rack lock can be a daunting task. If you're not familiar with the process, it can be challenging to know where to start. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the steps involved in picking a roof rack lock. 

I'll also provide some tips on making the process easier and faster. So whether you're trying to do it yourself or hiring a professional, this guide will help you get the job done right!

Most of today's roof racks come with locks to ensure they are not easily stolen. However, you may lose your locks keys and need to open the lock for the roof rack. Some car owners may decide to drill the key lock and get a brand-new lock, while some will pick it. Picking a roof rack lock is never easy, but you will learn how to do it effectively from this article. All you need is a few materials and some knowledge.

How to pick a roof rack lock

There are several ways you can pick a Thule car roof rack lock. A good practice is to pick it by yourself. However, it's a challenging task to do, and you'll need a lot of time. So instead of doing this, you might consider getting a locksmith to do the job for you. He'll just have to press a button, and the lock will pop off in no time.

However, if you are confident enough to unlock your locks and don't have time for a locksmith in an emergency, then there are other ways to pick a car roof rack lock.

An ideal way is by using your key. You can use your car keys to open up your hitch receiver lock. It might take some practice, but once you get the hang of it, you will be able to open it easily without any problem whatsoever. When using your key or another steel tool like a screwdriver on the mounting pin's shaft inside, it may get stuck. However, you have to rotate it in some directions to unstuck it.

How to open the Thule rack

How to open the Thule rack

There are several things you should remember when opening your Thule roof rack

Use Screwdriver

You first need to put a screwdriver or any other small metal object with a sharp tip on the lock's pin and try scratching its pin shaft. That will loosen up the lock's shaft and make it easier for you to open the Thule rack later on. But, without scratching the shaft or causing any damage, you mustn't try moving the lock because that might permanently break your hitch receiver pin locking mechanism and prevent you from re-using it.

Using A Thin Pin

If your hitch receiver pins get stuck in their respective holes, there are several ways to release them from their housing. One way is by using a thin pin or strong wire and gently prying off the cover of its threaded hole; then, the shaft can be moved once you get it off.

Pull Out the Lock's Pin

To open the Thule rack, you will have to pull out the lock's pin and lift it. That might require that you apply a lot of force if your hitch pins are stuck inside their housing - which is normal. After this step, you will have safely removed your hitch receiver pins.

As long as your hitch receiver pins are appropriately pulled out, you can carefully rotate them out of their housing to open the Thule rack. To do so, however, there is one thing that must be done first. You will have to separate the two parts which make up your Thule rack - one part goes under the vehicle and holds on to the car, while another part goes into the back of it and holds on to the roof rack with a couple of little "L"-shaped hooks; these hooks are called "Clips." Open one clip as well as you can for your Thule rack (and hitch receiver pins) to move freely and open out.

Open your Thule Rack.

After separating the two parts, you can now safely open your Thule rack. Be careful, though, because it may seem like a good idea to leave stranded hitch pins out on the top of your car, but if you do so, they will get loose over time and make contact with the vehicle's metal body leading to permanent damage. If they are stuck due to corrosion, don't worry; give them a proper cleaning with some isopropyl alcohol - make sure they don't get too hot by touching them.

To do so, you can use small needle-nose pliers, with which you will grasp the pin and pull it out of its socket. Of course, if you have a new rack, it will be easier for the pins to come out already - but if you don't, it's simple to open the hitch receiver later on when you are ready to install your rack.

Once you've removed all of the hitch pins, you'll be able to install your rack on top of your hitch receiver. Be careful with the holes in the plate because they're not ideally round. There's usually an indentation left from the last pins, but if it's too tight for your bolts, just make sure that you adjust your rack holes for width when you are ready to mount them.

Final Thoughts

Losing your keys is not uncommon today. You need to know a few hacks on what to do in such situations. You could practice the knowledge shared in the article such that you will be sorted any time you cannot find your car roof rack lock keys.

About the author 

Vieira Babeker

Hi! I'm Vieira. I've always been interested in different Auto Accessories

My passion here at is to provide helpful straight forward clear advice and tips for Automotive Accessories.

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