Rhino Rack Fairing

My Rhino Rack Vortex 2500 RS is a very quiet rack. Still, I had to know if it could be even quieter with a fairing, particularly with my ShowCase cargo box mounted. My only concern was whether the fairing’s mounting hardware would interfere with the proper seating of the ShowCase. I also wondered if the fairing’s “landing pads” along its leading edge would mar the paint. Unfortunately, the fairing produced more noise than just a naked rack. Even worse, at least one of the fairing’s landing pads vibrated against the paint as speeds exceeded 75 mph. I don’t drive that fast very often, but there still was no way I was going to risk paint damage from a fairing that does nothing to reduce noise. Therefore, I didn’t even bother to test it with the ShowCase.

As mentioned in my Vortex 2500 RS entry, the naked bars are almost silent… almost. I can hear a change in pitch as wind flows over the car, but there is no measurable difference in the sound level. I measured 68-dBA with and without the rack at 60 mph. Then I added the fairing. I’m not sure if the wind was blowing in a different direction and skewed my results, but I could tell right away that something was different. On the highway, it was nearly as loud as having a cargo box on top of the car, measuring 70 dBA at 60 mph (compared to 71 dBA with the box). It was even louder at higher speeds. I thought about keeping it just a little longer for more testing, but rain was coming and it was time to prepare for BugOut. Instead, I decided to just send it back since I knew I didn’t want it on my car.

I bought the fairing through Amazon, so returning it was fast and easy. In fact, the fairing was in my possession for less than 48 hours. I didn’t even leave it installed long enough to take good photographs (these are phone pics). To summarize, the Rhino Rack Vortex 2500 RS is better without the fairing by far.

Less is More,


About Scott

I grew up near Houston, TX and served in the U. S. Coast Guard for over 30 years. I have an electronics background and continue to work in the electronics engineering field. I taught myself the basics about automotive systems as well as how to perform some of my own maintenance (cars and bicycles). I became involved with Amateur Radio and computers in 1995. The explosion of technology has made my job and several of my hobbies quite interesting. My hobbies include Volkswagens, bicycling, photography, electronics, amateur radio, web management, and reptiles. Visit my websites to learn more.
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2 Responses to Rhino Rack Fairing

  1. Bran says:

    Hey Scott!

    Recently picked up kayaking, however the car that I usually throw the kayak in is no longer functional. Stumbled onto your Youtube page when I was looking at roof racks for my 18 GTI. I decided to go with the Rhino Rack due to the low profile (ordering soon).

    I see that wind noise was increase when the Rhino Rack wind fairing was added and it advised against. Is there any wind fairing that you can recommend? Personally I like the look that the fairing contributes, was considering the Inno fairing but unsure if it’ll fit.

    Looking forward to your reply!

    Thank you,

    • Scott says:

      Bran – Thanks for writing. The fairing problems I had emerge at high speeds, perhaps at 75mph and higher. I’m sure I wouldn’t drive so fast if I had a kayak on top. HAHA! Stay tuned for an upcoming Yakima rack video. I now have both. I MAY try out Yakima’s fairing. Looking at the size Yakima recommends, it’s possible that I chose too large of a fairing for my Rhino Rack. Then again, plenty of other Amazon reviewers noted the extra noise (ironic) and vibration. Back to Yakima, their fairings come with small vinyl stickers to protect the paint, which tells me that their fairing vibrates, too. Regardless, the cargo generates its own noise. So, having a fairing is almost completely a fashion statement. What to do? HAHA!

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