What is the best way to get a roof top tent on your car?

Roof Top Tents (RTT) are often kept on top of vehicles and there is a good reason for doing this. These tents weight usually in access of 40 kg, and you don’t want to lift this on and off the car too often. Our RTT is a beauty, but she is heavy (61 kg) and there is no way we can lift this on top of the canopy of our ute, even if we wanted to.

Our alternative was to leave the tent on top of the car full year around or come up with something else. It had to be something else since the car does not fit in the garage at work with the tent on top of it. After we inspected the ceiling of our garage, or better said the structure behind the plasterboard, we came up with the solution for a hoister system. You  can create such a system yourself, but we opted for an off the shelf system, the Harken Hoister.

2016-07-25 12.23.57
Hoister system in our garage to lift RTT

Below are a few things we found handy to know when installing the hoister system

  • Since we didn’t have any exposed rafters, we installed mounting boards to the rafters. If you have your rafters exposed, forget about installing these mounting boards since the hoister system can be installed straight on rafters.
  • Position the hoister directly above object to be lifted and make sure that the distance between mounting board centres matches the distance between the object’s lifting points, to ensure it is lifted up horizontally.
  • Make sure that the distance 2 is equal or better larger than the distance in 1, see schematic. If this is not the case you cannot lift your tent close to the ceiling.


The installation of a hoister system is not difficult at all; we managed to do it without any help. And once it is up you will be laughing, what a breeze to get the RTT on and off the car.


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