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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm about to take possession of a 2021 Pilot, very excited for my first Pilot!

The dealer can install OEM crossbars for $284, aftermarket Yakima bars are $456 with my 20% REI coupon. I like Yakima over Thule because Yakima is made near where I live and their gear has always held up very well for me, but Thule bars look nice too.

I plan to use the crossbars for a Yakima Skybox for trips or to carry a couple of paddleboards.

I lean towards the OEM bars as they are cheaper and seem like they'll look cleaner. But the aftermarket bars seem stronger and have a little more lift over the roof and may be easier to completely remove when not needed.

Wondering if anyone has experience that would argue for aftermarket instead of OEM bars?

Thanks!
 

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2016 CRV Touring AWD, 2005 Pilot RIP.
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Go with the style and brand you like best. If that’s the Yakima, it’s worth the three tanks of gas, instead of the buyers remorse of getting the Honda ones only to find it’s not for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I think I like the OEM style better, and it seems like they are sturdy enough to hold a roof box full of skis or two paddleboards.

Maybe my question should have been anyone have trouble with roof boxes and OEM bars?

Or, if you only need crossbars 15 times a year, would you want to remove your crossbars for noise when not in use?
 

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I think I like the OEM style better, and it seems like they are sturdy enough to hold a roof box full of skis or two paddleboards.

Maybe my question should have been anyone have trouble with roof boxes and OEM bars?

Or, if you only need crossbars 15 times a year, would you want to remove your crossbars for noise when not in use?
I don’t think it’s good to remove the crossbars when not in use and then install them for use, as bolts might get stripped. I and many suv/truck owners just leave them on permanently.

On my OEM crossbars, I honestly don’t hear noise as I’m either listening to music, hearing my kid talking nonstop, or the wife yelling at me for driving too fast.

No issues with taking my Skybox Carbonite 21 off and on when I need to. It’s usually full with a stroller and lightweight essential items.

I don’t have paddleboards, so I can’t help with answering that part of the question. But you might want to check your weight limits.
 

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2018 Honda Pilot Elite
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I just ordered these Amazon Roof Bars. I had similar ones on my CRV and never had any issues. I have the Skybox too and it carried it from NY to Florida and Maine loaded with carriages, golf clubs and luggage with ease. But it all depends on your preference.
 

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I don’t have paddleboards, so I can’t help with answering that part of the question. But you might want to check your weight limits.
Agreed....besides the OEM vs aftermarket considerations the weight limits for static vs dynamic are sometimes overlooked
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the good information. I think my use is probably pretty close to @EFICTION, I doubt I'll hear any noise either with family and music LOL...

Paddleboards are lighter than the box of gear, neither will exceed the 165 pound limit. So I'll probably go with the cleaner looking OEM bars and leave them on.

Thanks!
 

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I'm about to take possession of a 2021 Pilot, very excited for my first Pilot!

The dealer can install OEM crossbars for $284, aftermarket Yakima bars are $456 with my 20% REI coupon. I like Yakima over Thule because Yakima is made near where I live and their gear has always held up very well for me, but Thule bars look nice too.

I plan to use the crossbars for a Yakima Skybox for trips or to carry a couple of paddleboards.

I lean towards the OEM bars as they are cheaper and seem like they'll look cleaner. But the aftermarket bars seem stronger and have a little more lift over the roof and may be easier to completely remove when not needed.

Wondering if anyone has experience that would argue for aftermarket instead of OEM bars?

Thanks!
What did you end up getting?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just had the OEM bars installed this week. Was waiting for a long time for the kick sensor adapter to arrive for the factory trailer hitch, so didn't get back to the dealer for bars until hitch was ready.

I'm happy with the OEM bars. Feel sturdy, look unobtrusive, no noticeable highway noise. Haven't strapped anything on the roof yet, but I'm confident they'll hold my SUPs and Skybox for summer fun!
 

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Just had the OEM bars installed this week. Was waiting for a long time for the kick sensor adapter to arrive for the factory trailer hitch, so didn't get back to the dealer for bars until hitch was ready.

I'm happy with the OEM bars. Feel sturdy, look unobtrusive, no noticeable highway noise. Haven't strapped anything on the roof yet, but I'm confident they'll hold my SUPs and Skybox for summer fun!
That's great, we just got the bars installed when we got the hitch and cooler installed as well! They look great. I am not sure how we will safely put our roof box up there yet, but when we need to we will work it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm also thinking about how I'm going to safely install the roof box. Safely as in not scratch the heck out of my new car, no worries about it being securely mounted once it's up there. Our old Subaru was a lot lower, cheaper, and didn't have a moon roof I was worried about scratching.

I tend to install and remove my cargo box about 2-3 times a year, depending on road trips and ski season. Thinking I'll buy a moving blanket to dedicate to this process and will need to use a couple of ladders. Cut some slits in the sides for the bars, drop the blanket on the roof before installation, store in the box when not in use. Maybe this is another thread 'how to install/remove your cargobox without trashing your roof'...
 

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I'm also thinking about how I'm going to safely install the roof box. Safely as in not scratch the heck out of my new car, no worries about it being securely mounted once it's up there. Our old Subaru was a lot lower, cheaper, and didn't have a moon roof I was worried about scratching.

I tend to install and remove my cargo box about 2-3 times a year, depending on road trips and ski season. Thinking I'll buy a moving blanket to dedicate to this process and will need to use a couple of ladders. Cut some slits in the sides for the bars, drop the blanket on the roof before installation, store in the box when not in use. Maybe this is another thread 'how to install/remove your cargobox without trashing your roof'...
Let me know if you figure something good out! Same thing with our car before. We had bought it used and no moonroof and yes lower!
 

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2019 Pilot EX-L AWD, 265-60-18 Defender LTX M/S
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Never had an issue with the roof getting trashed on the Sequoia that was higher than Pilot. I drafted either my son or my wife to help load it on. Normal use did scratch up the bars some by clamps. A piece of innertube should prevent that, wrapped around and taped. Only put the box on Pilot 2-3 times as it's too big and keeps tailgate from opening but it's an old Thule. The lack of adjustment on cross bars keeps this one from clearing. Other don't have that issue.

I found the OEM bars do not seem to add much noise. Multiple cars that I had Thule bars clamped on added significant wind noise. I also found that if I took them off, the next day I needed them while shopping and needed to put something bigger in/on the truck.

The Thule and Yakima bars DO allow you spread them apart some based on where you clamp them on, OEM doesn't move, fixed distance. That may provide extra stability for larger items. If I drill holes into my Thule box to move up further for hatch clearance there will be a LARGE basically unsupported area of the box right over the sunroof. It does have metal bracing but still flexes a bunch then.

Instead of ladder, consider a folding work platform like this, you can get cheaper and fixed height of about 20". Also works great when washing the truck. If your garage door is tall enough to fit with box, they make hoists to store on your ceiling and easy drop down to truck. Depends on your house.

I have an ugly pink waffle yoga mat inside the box to keep stuff from sliding around as easy also.
 
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