Made from aluminium, traditional roof rack bars are both lightweight and strong, with most having a carrying capacity in the neighborhood of 200 lbs (which isn't really limited by the bars, but rather the actual load capacity of the structural roof). Roof rack bars like provide an easy and adjustable way to carry larger items such as such bikes, skis, canoes, ladders and cargo boxes. All of these longer items can simply be laid in place and strapped down to keep them secure. A conventional crossbar roof rack is a straightforward install that won’t require any drilling or other body modifications; they will either install to the Tacoma’s factory rails or for models without the OEM rails, a door channel clip-on system can be used instead.
In terms of adjustability, some Tacoma roof rack systems are built upon a grooved rail, allowing the bars to be easily slid up and down the roof to create the necessary amount of spacing between bars in order to accommodate the dimensions of the intended cargo. A more basic roof rack system will require each bar to be removed and manually relocated, which, while more time consuming, will overall have a lower purchase price.
For smaller items that might shift more easily in transit, consider a rooftop basket. Around the $300-mark, baskets, thanks to their raised edges, add an extra layer of protection, reducing the likelihood of shifting or flyaway cargo while in transit. Combined with a cargo net and/or tie-down straps, a basket can easily accommodate things like a jerry can with extra gas or water, a spare tire or shovel secure up top, freeing up space in your Tacoma’s bed for other larger items.
In terms of installation, there are two ways to mount a basket atop your Tacoma. If you already have a roof rack bar system, the basket can be secured to the crossbars. If not, you will either need to add a rack mounting system (clip-on supports would be the easiest) or drill and mount tracks into the roof yourself.