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Discussion Starter #1
I'm thinking about relocating the spare from the rear cargo area to resting on top of the vehicle.
Couple reasons being front/rear balance as well as creating extra inside storage space in the cargo area.
Does anyone have a roof rack on their rails/cross bars? Would like to know how the rav4 drives with the spare on top.
 

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Having the spare on top would make the vehicle somewhat more top-heavy, likely of little consequence if driving is mostly on relatively straight line highways. However, the spare would need to be very strongly secured to prevent it becoming a missile in collisions and hard stops, and also to prevent theft.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Having the spare on top would make the vehicle somewhat more top-heavy, likely of little consequence if driving is mostly on relatively straight line highways. However, the spare would need to be very strongly secured to prevent it becoming a missile in collisions and hard stops, and also to prevent theft.
I grew up in africa where all vehicles were 4wd landrovers/landcruisers.
The preferred storage of spare was on top or on a rack mounted on the hood. Some were also mounted behind the rear door.
The latter option is not viable for rav4 '16 model since the door opens upward.
Never seen any problems offroad with spare on top or on hood.

Freeways might be different driving wise.
 

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I expect a roof mounted tire would have a significant negative effect on your 39.1 MPG, especially at CA freeway speeds. I'd say 5-7 MPG at least.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I expect a roof mounted tire would have a significant negative effect on your 39.1 MPG, especially at CA freeway speeds. I'd say 5-7 MPG at least.
I did wonder about that. The spare would create more drag for sure.
What about this aerodynamic rack?
https://www.amazon.com/ARKSEN©-Universal-Extension-Luggage-Carrier/dp/B013COCXDC/ref=pd_sbs_263_3?ie=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B013COCXDC&pd_rd_r=B8Z5H9EXRAVJ8RHD38CA&pd_rd_w=Zts6K&pd_rd_wg=2n7t5&psc=1&refRID=B8Z5H9EXRAVJ8RHD38CA
 

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I grew up in africa where all vehicles were 4wd landrovers/landcruisers.
The preferred storage of spare was on top or on a rack mounted on the hood. Some were also mounted behind the rear door.
The latter option is not viable for rav4 '16 model since the door opens upward.
Never seen any problems offroad with spare on top or on hood.

Freeways might be different driving wise.
There would be quite a difference between having to make a panic stop or having a collision at freeway speeds and having a similar problem at most off-road or bad road speeds. People have been seriously injured or even killed in quick-stop situations at highway speeds from comparatively much lighter items which they had on the rear shelves of sedans, so one can easily imagine what could take place with a rather unsecured spare wheel mounted on a roof. The probable recipient would be whatever vehicle and occupant(s) one collided with or caused one to stop quickly, or even someone in an uninvolved vehicle, on a bike or motorcycle, or even a pedestrian. Besides possible injury and death claims the California lawyers would have a field day.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
There would be quite a difference between having to make a panic stop or having a collision at freeway speeds and having a similar problem at most off-road or bad road speeds. People have been seriously injured or even killed in quick-stop situations at highway speeds from comparatively much lighter items which they had on the rear shelves of sedans, so one can easily imagine what could take place with a rather unsecured spare wheel mounted on a roof. The probable recipient would be whatever vehicle and occupant(s) one collided with or caused one to stop quickly, or even someone in an uninvolved vehicle, on a bike or motorcycle, or even a pedestrian. Besides possible injury and death claims the California lawyers would have a field day.
sorry i asked... :surprise
 

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I'm sure just a round tire flat on the roof would create less drag than that square-front carrier.

And both Blogson and I ARE GLAD you asked. As he said slow speeds in open areas off-road and freeway speeds in near bumper-to-bumper CA traffic are totally different danger-wise. To secure a tire safely I'm thinking it would have to be literally bolted to the roof. Even securely fastening it to a roof rack that's held on with some sheet metal screws wouldn't be safe as the whole rig potentially goes flying off.
Putting the spare on the roof for the interior space savings is a nice idea but I kinda doubt drilling holes thru your roof is a desirable tradeoff.
 

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As Dr. Dyno said, we both are pleased that you asked. And we provided answers based upon experience and having been around for a while - that's one of the reasons for having forums such as this. As for roof mounting the spare, as he mentioned it would need to be securely bolted to the roof, and also since the roof metal isn't thick-gauged it also would need to have some sort of reinforcing done. It would appear that the spare wheel is best left in the OEM location.
 

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Why not just leave the spare home? Blowouts are rare on good paved roads ALA the tires are good. And with TPMS your should get plenty of warning of a puncture leak. A can of flat fix will get you home in that case.
 

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Are you still in Africa? Why would this be necessary?
 

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Fair enough. Perhaps you should have purchased a larger vehicle if space is that lacking.
 

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I can find a lot of more useful things to do with the extra space in the cargo area.
Things that are worth a lot more money than a spare.
So, unless you're going way out in the boonies, leave the spare at home and have your space.
 

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LOL - We 4.2 and 4.3 owners with the rear mounted spare have no such problems! :wink
 

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I can find a lot of more useful things to do with the extra space in the cargo area.
Things that are worth a lot more money than a spare.
Or better yet since you're stuck with a 4.4, fill up your cargo area until you run out of space then take the spare out and leave it home.
 
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