The Best Roof Tents: Top Picks 2022

Hailey Abbott By, Hailey Abbott
Updated
Yescom 7.6'x8.2' UV50+ Car Side Awning Rooftop Pull Out Tent
Image credit: Amazon.com

The Rundown

1. Best Overall: Yescom 7.6'x8.2' UV50+ Car Side Awning Rooftop Pull Out Tent

"The Yescom 7.6'x8.2' UV50+ Car Side Awning Rooftop Pull Out Tent is one of the most popular outdoor tents in the market with the highest quality and affordable price. With its UV50+ protection and water resistance, this outdoor tent is suitable for all outdoor activities such as camping, picnicking, beach activities, fishing and so on." Read Review

2. Best Bang For The Buck: Smittybilt Overlander Tent

"The Smittybilt Overlander Tent is a two-person, two-room tent developed for those on the move. Featuring a standard size frame and high-density 92" x 55" foam double/full mattress, this tent sleeps two to three people comfortably. The tent also has a 661 lb. max load capacity and can be set up in under five minutes with no tools required." Read Review

3. Best Choice: DANCHEL OUTDOOR Waterproof Rooftop Tent

"If you're looking for a great tent to keep your family and friends dry on their next adventure, look no further than the DanCheel Outdoor Waterproof Rooftop Tent. This tent is perfect for camping or backpacking because of its waterproof fabric and air-ventilated design. The aluminum frame has been made to be durable so you don't have to worry about it rusting in damp conditions. Easy setup is just one or two people!" Read Review

4. Best Convenient: Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic 3 Extended Rooftop Tent RTT

"The Nomadic 3 Extended Rooftop Tent by Overland Vehicle Systems is the perfect way to go nomadic. This tent can be installed on virtually any vehicle with a factory or aftermarket roof rack. It features a heavy duty steel frame, reinforced fiberglass poles and rainfly, and includes all the necessary hardware." Read Review

Sleeping under the stars has an almost magical quality. It’s a great way to get lost in nature and forget about everything else. Luckily, with a little bit of know-how and some basic equipment, you can do it just about anywhere.

Roof tents are one of the most convenient ways to camp without having to build something from scratch; they take minutes to set up instead of hours, and can be stored when not in use—which is why they’re perfect for car camping. To choose the best roof tent for your needs, read on to see our top picks for this piece of equipment—from budget options to premium models that will last you many camping trips.

You can count on our team of experts who have spent over 16 hours conducting surveys through 4,871 real customer reviews. Because of this, we came to the conclusion that the best-reviewed product is Yescom 7.6'x8.2' UV50+ Car Side Awning Rooftop Pull Out Tent. And Smittybilt Overlander Tent is another choice for you while keeping the product's quality and functionality.

Our Top Picks

  • [62 sq.ft Large Shade Beside Whenever Your Vehicle Go]: Installed on the vehicle rooftop rail to provide 62 sq.ft shade, easily cover area to shield from sun, rain, and wind; Suitable for camping, picnics, car travel and other outdoor activities
  • [Easy to Transport and Storage]: Can be retracted, saving space; Waterproof carry bag for easy transport and storage
  • [UV50+ Protection & Stable Aluminum Alloy Support]: Made of 420D oxford fabric with 2000mm PU coating, UV50+ protection and water resistance; Stable aluminum alloy structure, rust resistant and standing in calm conditions
TOP Choice #2 Smittybilt Overlander Tent
Our Score:
9.6
Smittybilt
  • Easy to set up and take down; heavy duty PVC cover keeps tent dry and free from UV rays when not in use
  • 600D heavy-duty waterproof top and rain fly; sunroof; side windows with mosquito netting; anodized aluminum tent frame poles; telescopic ladder; interior LED strips and many more features
TOP Choice #3 DANCHEL OUTDOOR Waterproof Rooftop Tent
Our Score:
9.4
DANCHEL OUTDOOR
  • πŸ”Έπ•π„π‡πˆπ‚π‹π„ π€π–ππˆππ† π’πˆπ™π„: 8.2ft(attached to car side)*8.2ft(extension from car); Provide 67.24 sq.ft shade. Different sizes to fit different vehicles. Narrower sizes will fit small SUVs. Wider vehicle awnings can span the entire width of van. Our own hardwares are not suitable for all roof rack models, if they cannot be mounting, please order extra hardwares.
  • πŸ”Έπ„π€π’π˜ 𝐒𝐄𝐓 𝐔𝐏: Set up in minutes by 1 or 2 persons. Complete mounting parts with stakes,ropes and waterproof black PVC bag. The front&side also allow you to attach exterior canopy side wall.
  • πŸ”Έπ–π„π‹π‹ π•π„ππ“πˆπ‹π€π“πˆπŽπ: Provide nice and wide viewing for outdoor because three sides are unimpeded. Enjoy the cool winds under the awning in hot days.
4 Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic 3 Extended Rooftop Tent RTT
Our Score:
9.2
Overland Vehicle Systems
  • Tent Bonus Pack: Memory Foam Pillows, Lap Table & Mini Broom and Dust Pan
  • Fitment: Anything with a factory or aftermarket roof rack. Please confirm rack weight capacity prior if you’re unsure.
  • Tent fabric is UV resistant and withstands the elements of any season
  • Mesh panels offer plenty of ventilation and open for more airflow
6 Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic 2 Extended Roof Top Tent
Our Score:
8.9
Overland Vehicle Systems
  • Fitment: Anything with a factory or aftermarket roof rack. Please confirm rack weight capacity prior if you’re unsure.
  • Features: Marine Grade 600D Rip-Stop Polyester Cotton Canvas Water Proof Body, 420D Polyester Oxford Waterproof Rain Fly, 110g Fade-less Gaze Breathable Windows, 3" High Density Foam Mattress with Quilted Cotton Cover, Insulated Base, Marine Grade Stainless Steel Hardware, 1000g Transportation Cover, Tubular Telescoping Ladder, Six Built In Storage Pockets, Storage Loft, Power Bank Pouch, Hand Held LED Light, LED Velcro Strip & Bonus Pack
  • Installation: Requires no drilling or modification to your vehicle if equipped with factory or aftermarket roof rack.
7 Overland Vehicle Systems Nomadic 4 Extended Roof Top Tent
Our Score:
8.7
Overland Vehicle Systems
  • Features: Marine Grade 600D Rip-Stop Polyester Cotton Canvas Water Proof Body, 420D Polyester Oxford Waterproof Rain Fly, 110g Fade-less Gaze Breathable Windows, 3" High Density Foam Mattress with Quilted Cotton Cover, Insulated Base, Marine Grade Stainless Steel Hardware, 1000g Transportation Cover, Tubular Telescoping Ladder, Six Built In Storage Pockets, Storage Loft, Power Bank Pouch, Hand Held LED Light, LED Velcro Strip & Bonus Pack
  • Tent Bonus Pack: Memory Foam Pillows, Lap Table & Mini Broom and Dust Pan
  • Fitment: Anything with a factory or aftermarket roof rack. Please confirm rack weight capacity prior if you’re unsure.
  • Includes a door and two windows complete with mesh netting to protect against mosquitos
  • Easily zips onto the bottom of an open rooftop tent (sold separately)
  • [Material]: ABS Hard Shell with stainless steel frame base, Waterproof Oxford farbic with PU coating,7.2ft Aluminum telescopic ladder and 2 inch mattress
  • [Capacity]: It can fit 2~3 person, 700 pound maximun load, GW 150 pound
  • [Equipment]: Build in zippered mosquito screens, breathable mosquito net, three rooftop cross bars
  • Protects your rooftop tent from inclement weather
  • Package Weight: 8.3 pounds
Product Images, Product Titles, Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

What to Look For in a best roof tents?

The best roof tents is influenced by a multitude of factors, including all those stated below. Depending on the sort of product, the learning process differs. We'll be ready to aid you and propose solutions since we're here to support you.

It's necessary to remember the following ones before selecting best roof tents:

Size

The top-of-the-line tents can be heavy. Some tents weigh less than 100 pounds, while others can weight up to 300. Make sure that your vehicle can carry the weight of the tent and the tent will work with it. These ratings tell you the weight of your tent. You'll see a decrease in gas mileage if your tent is heavier than the vehicle. You should also ensure that your taller car fits under bridges, and in public places you wish to visit.

Rooftop tents can be so heavy that you might feel tempted to keep the tent in your car while you aren't camping. It doesn't matter if your vehicle is covered, garaged or stored in an area where it is protected. If not, the tent will be more susceptible to sun and moisture damage.

Hard-Shell Vs. Soft-Shell Tents

There are pros and cons for both hard and soft rooftop tents. You should consider the travel type you are doing, and what you feel most at home with.

The Hard-Shell Tents are made from an aluminum, plastic or fiberglass shell which surrounds the fabric tent canopy. These tents have a greater lifespan and provide better protection inside. They also make it easy to set up and tear down. The advantages of hard-shell tents include being waterproof and windproof. The shell can be used to store bikes, paddle boards and solar panels. This tent is also more spacious and offers a comfortable mattress. A hard-shell tent is a great option if you are constantly moving and packing. There are downsides to tenting, such as the price and weight.
Soft Shell Tents: A soft shell tent is the best option for those looking for an affordable roof tent. This tent has the biggest benefit: it's affordable. The price of hard-shell tents is often two- to three-times more than those made from soft shell tents. The larger floor plans are another advantage. The soft-shell roof camping tents can be folded outwards from your car's roof and are available in many layouts that allow for additions such as awnings. They are more susceptible to mold and moisture, which can reduce their lifespan. Also, they make more noise when it's windy. Although hard-shell tents can be set up quickly, setting up soft-shell tents is much more difficult than setting up backpacking tents.

Space / Capacity

Some tents can hold two persons while others are designed to accommodate five people. The floor area, mattress size, and peak height are more important than how many people it can accommodate. These numbers can help ensure that you are comfortable.

Ease Of Installation

Car tents usually require two persons to transport and set up. While some tents are very user-friendly, others can be more difficult and require some assistance from a hardware shop. You may find someone at the hardware or gear store who will help you with installation. It's important to ensure that the process of installing the tent is smooth if you plan on using it often.

Mattress

Some people enjoy sleeping on the ground in a simple sleeping bag, but that is no longer possible when you purchase a roof tent. It will come with a mattress. Thickness will determine the comfort level of your integrated mattress. You may find premium mattresses that have a memory foam or gel topper. You can purchase an after-market mattress if you aren't satisfied with the tent you have chosen. Make sure the mattress will fit into your tent.

You will need an anti-condensation pad and a mattress cover if the mattress does not include these. You will need a cover that is breathable, waterproof and washable. Your mattress should be allowed to breathe between each trip, even if you have an anti-condensation pad.

Weather-Resistance

Car top tents are built for inclement weather. Make sure that your tent has full coverage to keep rain out. You might consider purchasing additional insulation if you plan to use the tent during colder months or higher elevations.

FAQs

Why Are Rooftop Tents So Expensive?

Because of their materials, engineering, design and other accessories, rooftop tents can be more costly than ground staked tents. To create a platform, rooftop tents can flip to place a tent above your vehicle. This is a lot harder than creating a structure that has a fabric floor and then placing it on the ground.
You can also add a ladder and a mattress to make rooftop tents more expensive.

What Is The Benefit Of A Rooftop Tent?

You can enjoy a spectacular view from a rooftop tent. They provide much more airflow than tents on the ground, and in most cases they are better for your comfort.
Your tent will be on top of your car, away from dirt and other creepy crawlies. A rooftop tent feels more secure.
Rooftop tents can be set up in minutes. Your tent can be placed on the roof and you have it with you all day, which can lead to some amazing spontaneous adventures.
Many rooftop tents can accommodate bedding and a mattress, and not only inflatable or sleeping pads. Many allow you to leave your bedding in the tent after you have packed up.

Can A Rooftop Tent Be Installed On Any Car?

Although a rooftop tent is technically possible to install on any vehicle, it doesn't necessarily mean that it must. Each rooftop tent is limited in its maximum weight, just like each roof. The car's suspension or roof could be damaged if the roof's maximum weight is exceeded by either the roof tent or campers. It is expensive to fix this type of damage and puts your safety and that of the passengers at stake. Before installing a roof tent, make sure to check the weight limit of your vehicle.

How Fast Can You Drive With A Roof Top Tent?

When driving with a tent roof, it is best to keep your speed under 70 MPH. High speeds can impact the dynamic weight of your vehicle, which will cause additional strain on your braking system and engine. It may take you a bit longer to reach your campsite.

Are Rooftop Tents Sturdy?

Rooftop tents from reputable companies are strong if they're properly set up and attached. Rooftop tents should be attached to the car's roof rack. The setup of the tent will depend on the model, however, it is important to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Not only does every tent have a maximum weight limit, each roof has one. You risk damaging the tent or compromising the structure's sturdiness.

Are Rooftop Tents Worth It?

You are the only one who can determine if you think a roof tent is worthwhile. Your decision should not be based on the frequency you plan to use it but on whether you value its unique features. Do you think it is important that your camping set-up be elevated above the ground? A rooftop tent may be a good idea. Different rooftop tents have different prices. You decide what features and cost you are willing to pay for a roof tent.

Overall, we will research and update new info for the list of best roof tents regularly. On a frequent basis, please check our websites for the latest changes and updates.

Aside from best roof tents, we can bail you up. If you want further support, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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About Hailey Abbott

Hailey Abbott

Hailey Abbott is an outdoor enthusiast and freelance writer for CampfireUSA. She has a passion for hunting and fishing, which she often enjoys with her family and friends. Hailey also enjoys staying active through sports such as golf, basketball, and softball. Hailey has worked as an editor for several years, providing content that is both accurate and engaging. She has also had the opportunity to interview numerous experts in various fields. This wealth of experience gives her a unique perspective when writing about the outdoors and other topics.

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