Video Index

Below is a list of video content available from Softride, and a brief description of what each video includes. To search for a term on this page, use Ctrl+F (on Windows OS), or Command+F (on Mac OS X),


Rack Products:


Alumina 3 Bike Rack:

Alumina 3 Rack Intro: This video provides basic information about this lightweight aluminum hitch-mounted three-bike carrier with the trademark Softride parallelogram action that lowers the rack away from the vehicle, allowing access to the trunk or hatch area, while bikes stay loaded. Arms are removable, adjustable, and able to be lowered down to stow when no bikes are loaded on rack. See the Alumina 3 rack new out of the box before installation.

Alumina 3 Rack Installed: This video shows the rack fully installed on a hitch, and demonstrates the trademark parallelogram action lowering the rack away from the rear of the vehicle. See Softride’s lightweight three-bike carrier that works for 1.25” or 2” hitch receivers. This rack includes a hitch lock, cable lock, and anti-sway cradles. The rack arms can be adjusted to varying widths, removed entirely, or folded down for stowage. Like all Softride hitch mounted bike racks, the parallelogram design allows you to open and access the rear of your vehicle while bikes are still loaded on the rack. See the Alumina 3 rack online.

Alumina Safety Latch: Unlike other Softride bike racks, the Alumina 3 bike carrier features a safety latch which must be lifted to allow the pull pin to be released to lower the rack. See how the latch works in this video. See the Alumina 3 rack online.

Dura 4 Bike Rack:

Dura 4 Bike Rack Unboxing: Watch this video to see all the contents of a new Dura 4 Bike Rack come out of the box for installation.

Dura 4 Bike Rack Overview: Watch this video for a general product overview of the top-selling Dura 4 bike rack. See the rack driving around in the sunshine rather than cooped up in the Softride video cave.

How to Install the Top Plate on a Dura Bike Rack: Watch this video to see how to install the top plate on either a Dura or Dura Assist 4 Bike Rack. These instructions walk you through attaching the top plate to the upright mast of either a Dura or Dura Assist Four Bicycle Carrier.

Dura Assist 4 Bike Rack:

Dura Assist 4 Bike Rack Unboxing: Watch this video to see all the contents of a new Dura Hydraulic Assist 4 Bike Rack come out of the box for installation.

How to Disengage the Hydraulic Assist on a Dura Assist Bike Rack: The Dura Assist bicycle carrier is a car rack for bikes that includes a hydraulic assist feature to make it easier to lower and raise the rack away from and toward the vehicle. In some instances, it helps to disengage the hydraulic assist so that the rack operates without it. This video shows how to temporarily remove the assist feature. This is helpful when the rack is empty and not carrying any bikes.

Element 4 Bike Rack:

Element 4 Bike Rack - How to Adjust Arms: How to install the Element 4 bike rack arms to the rack in various positions: removable arms can be installed in upright position to carry bikes, or in lowered position when not carrying bikes. How to lower the Element bike rack away from the vehicle to create space for access to rear of vehicle, whether or not bikes are loaded on rack. How to adjust arm width (narrow position of 7 inches wide, or wide position of 9 inches wide), to accommodate bikes with varying size front triangles. This width adjustability allows you to carry bikes with small front triangles as well as rear suspension systems that are built into the front triangle. This information also pertains to the Alumina 3 bike rack style of arms, which raise/lower, remove, and adjust for width in a similar fashion. See more about the Element 4 bike rack.

Element Bike Rack - Two-Bike Arm Set Option: The Element 4 Bike Rack comes by default ready to hold up to four bikes (hence the name). But if you routinely only carry one or two bikes, and you'd like a shorter arm set, watch this video about our two-bike arm set available as an accessory for the Element Bike Rack.

Element 4 Bike Rack Unboxing: Watch this video to see all the contents of a new Element 4 Bike Rack come out of the box for installation.

Hang5 Bike Rack:

How to install a Hang5 Bike Rack: Walk through the Installation steps to assemble a new rack out of the box. See the Hang5 rack and instructions online.

Hang5 detent pin goes here: Briefly shows where to attach the detent pin on a Hang5 rack.

Where to find Hang5 parts: When preparing to install a Hang5 bike rack, look for a parts bag (containing the instructions, straps, and hitch bolt and lock) within a cardboard tube in the box. See what to look for and where to find it in this video. If you're looking for the instructions to install your new Hang5 bike rack, this shows you where to find them. See the Hang5 rack and instructions online.

Hang5 In Action: See a demonstration in the field of a loaded Hang5 rack on a shuttle run.


Shuttle Pad:

Shuttle Pad - Unboxing: Watch this video to see all the contents of a new Shuttle Pad come out of the box for installation. This truck tailgate pad allows you to carry bikes or other cargo secured to your pickup's tailgate.

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Accessories:


Anti-sway Cradle and Strap Kit:

Anti-sway Cradle and Strap Kit: This kit contains two pieces (one anti-sway cradle and one strap), which consist of three parts: the rigid anti-sway cradle, the attached soft pad that interfaces with the bicycle, and the rubber strap. This accessory is a great upgrade for Element and HD bike racks; it comes standard on Alumina, Dura, and Dura Assist racks, and is a replacement part for those racks.

How to Install Anti-Sway Cradle Kit with Rack Arm Attached: See how to attach the anti-sway cradle and strap kit to bike blocks still attached to the rack. This video shows another method of installing the anti-sway cradle kit (by snapping the part onto the bike block while the rack arm is fully installed). Purchasing this accessory is a great upgrade to an Element bike rack (shown in the video) or HD rack, or as a replacement part for a rack that includes these components (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist). See the Anti Sway Cradle Kit online.

How to Install Anti-Sway Cradle Kit with Rack Arm Removed: This video shows one method of installing the anti-sway cradle kit (by removing the parts from the rack arms, attaching the kit then reassembling). Purchasing this accessory is a great upgrade to an Element bike rack or HD rack, or as a replacement part for a rack that includes these components. This video shows how to remove the rack arm from the rack, remove the bike blocks and spacers, attach the anti-sway cradle, and reassemble the rack arm. Install this kit on alternating positions so that each bike mounted on the rack has one anti-sway cradle holding it stable. Orient the curve of the anti-sway cradle facing away from the center line, so that it interacts with the curved seat tube of the mounted bicycle. See the Anti Sway Cradle Kit online. Shown in the video is the HD rack; the arms of the Dura and Dura Assist racks remove in a similar fashion; Alumina and Element rack arms remove differently (as shown in other Softride videos) but the blocks and spacers are similarly modular and removable.

Bike Bumper:

Bike Bumper Basics: Watch an introduction to this versatile accessory for your bike rack - use it to protect your bikes, your bike rack, and your vehicle's rear hatch using a handy trick we show you in another video.
See the Bike Bumper online.

How to install a Bike Bumper Forward or Rear Facing: In this video, see how to secure a Softride Bike Bumper to the upright mast of a bike rack. This accessory may be used on any brand of bike rack to protect the rack and bicycles from each other, or mounted facing the vehicle to protect against accidental opening of the vehicle rear hatch or trunk and hitting the rack. See the Bike Bumper online.

Extended Hitch Bar:

Extended Hitch Bar: Intended for 2” receiver hitches and only to be used with Softride bicycle racks. Note this is not an additional receiver hitch extension, but rather a longer replacement for the existing hitch bar on a Softride bicycle rack. On a Dura 4, Dura 4 Assist, and HD bike rack, this will add 4” of clearance from the vehicle. On Alumina 3, Element 4, and Hang2 bike racks, this will add 5” of clearance from the vehicle. This piece completely replaces the existing hitch bar that comes with a Softride bike rack; it is not to be attached as an additional extender to the original rack’s hitch bar. See the Extended Hitch Bar.

Hitch Bolt and Lock Set:

Hitch Bolt and Lock Set:This video is a brief introduction to the Hitch Bolt and Lock set, which is a recommended upgrade part for the Element and Hang2 bike racks, and comes standard on all other Softride hitch-mounted bike racks.

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Nut Holder:

Replacement Nut Holder: This part is compatible with our bike rack products as well as our towing products. This holds the nut in place within the hitch bar. This is an acceptable replacement for the bike rack hitch bar nut holder that holds two nuts.See the Replacement Nut Holder.

How to Install and Align a Hitch Bar Nut Holder: Most Softride racks come with this part pre-installed, but with an Alumina rack, it comes in the parts kit in the box. This video shows the correct orientation for placing the nuts in the nut holder, and then installing it into the hitch bar correctly. Tips: Check that the nuts have the flat side facing up and visible, and the curved edge is facing down into the nut holder. Use a flathead screwdriver to adjust it to align with the appropriate hitch bar holes. This information also pertains to other hitch-mounted bike racks that come with the hitch bar nut holder pre-installed, in case the nut holder has shifted inside the hitch bar tube during shipping, and shows how to adjust the nut holder within the hitch bar so the nuts align with the bolt holes (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, Hang2, Hang5).

Rubber Straps:

Standard Straps: This provides a quick overview of our shorter straps, made of TPR (thermo plastic rubber) and sold in a four-pack. If you purchased your rack in 2012 or more recently, these are acceptable replacement straps on Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, or Element racks. See Replacement Straps. For racks purchased prior to 2012, replace straps with our Super Straps.

Super Straps: This provides a quick overview of our two-pack of longer Super Straps, which are 20" long. This is the best replacement strap for racks purchased prior to 2012. See how to create a loop with this strap, and how to create a longer strap by attaching them together to create one strap nearly twice the length of a single strap.

Strap Comparison - Which Strap Do I Need? Not sure which replacement strap you need for your Softride bike rack? This video compares the two types of straps currently offered by Softride, discussing the features of each and which strap is compatible with which rack. See also how to cut the longer strap to adjust the length as desired. See standard straps here and Super straps here.

How to Attach the Straps to the Arms of a Softride Bike Rack: See how to attach the rubber straps to the bicycle rack arms, prior to loading bikes on the rack. Watch how to put one end of strap over the knob on the bike block, hold it with one hand and gently attach it with the other hand. Tip: On an Element rack, for the bike block nearest the rear yellow bail, it helps to first attach the strap to the knob nearest the yellow bail, making it easier to attach the strap’s second end later when the bikes are loaded. Tip: Attach arms to the rack first so you have a sturdy, convenient platform to work with when attaching straps. Tip: Give a gentle stretch to brand new straps prior to attaching to bike blocks. This information pertains to all Softride bike racks where bikes are loaded into bike blocks on rack arms and secured with rubber straps (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, HD). See replacement straps online: Standard or Super.

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SoftWraps:

SoftWrap overview and Yoga Mat Trick: Watch to learn about the different colors, widths, and lengths available in SoftWraps, and see one creative use of these hook and loop straps beyond bike accessories. See how to make your own yoga mat carrier with just a few SoftWraps.

Top Tube Adapter:

Top Tube Adapter Intro: Learn how to use this accessory that attaches to seat post and stem to create a flat top tube to make bikes compatible with most mast-style hitch mounted bike racks. This is a great way to create a flat top tube for children's bikes, women's bikes, step-through frames, or mountain bikes with small front triangles. Adjustable length fits bikes with stem-to-seat-post distance between 15" and 21". Compatible with many types of bikes and many brands of bike racks. See the Top Tube Adapter online.

How to Install a Top Tube Adapter: See how to attach this accessory onto a bike. Load the handlebar end first, then extend the bar to fit onto the seat post and secure in place. Learn how to use this accessory that attaches to seat post and stem to create a flat top tube to make bikes without a standard top tube compatible with most mast-style hitch mounted bike racks. See the Top Tube Adapter online.

How to Load a Bike onto a Rack using a Top Tube Adapter: See how to attach the top tube adapter to a bike, and how to then strap the top tube adapter to the arms of a bike rack. Great for bikes with small front triangles, women's bikes, children's bikes, or any bikes with step-through frames. Tip: Remember the vital step of checking that the stem and seat post are secured prior to using the top tube adapter. See the Top Tube Adapter online.

Universal Hitch Bar Kit:

Universal Hitch Bar Kit Unboxing: Watch this video to see all the contents of a new Universal Hitch Bar Kit come out of the box for installation. This kit contains all the hardware to convert a Softride rack for use on either a 1.25" or 2" hitch receiver. Watch to see basic installation instructions.

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Tips:


How to Attach the Straps to the Arms of a Softride Bike Rack: See how to attach the rubber straps to the bicycle rack arms, prior to loading bikes on the rack. Watch how to put one end of strap over the knob on the bike block, hold it with one hand and gently attach it with the other hand. Tip: On an Element rack, for the bike block nearest the rear yellow bail, it helps to first attach the strap to the knob nearest the yellow bail, making it easier to attach the strap’s second end later when the bikes are loaded. Tip: Attach arms to the rack first so you have a sturdy, convenient platform to work with when attaching straps. Tip: Give a gentle stretch to brand new straps prior to attaching to bike blocks. This information pertains to all Softride bike racks where bikes are loaded into bike blocks on rack arms and secured with rubber straps (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, HD). See replacement straps online: Standard or Super.

How to Ease Pin Tension to Lower a Softride Rack: See how to make it easier to lower the bike rack away from the vehicle when bikes are loaded, if it feels stiff or stuck. Friction at the spring-loaded pull pin when bikes are fully loaded can make it difficult to pull the pin. Resolve this by applying a bit of force to the bike rack to move the rack toward the vehicle (push or lean on the rack slightly). This removes the friction on the pull pin and allows the pin to be easily pulled so the rack can be lowered. Related to all hitch mounted racks with the parallelogram lowering ability (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, Hang2, Hang5, HD).

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How to Install a 1.25-inch Hitch Bar Adapter: Instructions on how to assemble and install the adapter kit to convert a 2” hitch mount bike rack to fit a 1.25” hitch receiver. This process applies to all Softride hitch mounted bike carriers that are designed for universal compatibility for use with both an inch-and-a-quarter and a two-inch hitch receiver. Please refer to product and vehicle specifications to confirm appropriate hitch size. Follow along with the instructions for your rack; online versions are on the product pages if you’ve lost your paper copy. Relates to: Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, and Hang2 racks.
Tip: The 1.25” hitch bar adapter pieces are all in a small box within the main rack box, except the hitch bolt which will be with the lock. Set aside the 2” hitch bolt and nut holder for future use.

How to install a Bike Bumper Forward or Rear Facing: In this video, see how to secure a Softride Bike Bumper to the upright mast of a bike rack. This accessory may be used on any brand of bike rack to protect the rack and bicycles from each other, or mounted facing the vehicle to protect against accidental opening of the vehicle rear hatch or trunk and hitting the rack. See the Bike Bumper online.

How to Install Anti-Sway Cradle Kit with Rack Arm Attached: See how to attach the anti-sway cradle and strap kit to bike blocks still attached to the rack. This video shows another method of installing the anti-sway cradle kit (by snapping the part onto the bike block while the rack arm is fully installed). Purchasing this accessory is a great upgrade to an Element bike rack (shown in the video) or HD rack, or as a replacement part for a rack that includes these components (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist). See the Anti Sway Cradle Kit online.

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How to Install Anti-Sway Cradle Kit with Rack Arm Removed: This video shows one method of installing the anti-sway cradle kit (by removing the parts from the rack arms, attaching the kit then reassembling). Purchasing this accessory is a great upgrade to an Element bike rack or HD rack, or as a replacement part for a rack that includes these components. This video shows how to remove the rack arm from the rack, remove the bike blocks and spacers, attach the anti-sway cradle, and reassemble the rack arm. Install this kit on alternating positions so that each bike mounted on the rack has one anti-sway cradle holding it stable. Orient the curve of the anti-sway cradle facing away from the center line, so that it interacts with the curved seat tube of the mounted bicycle. See the Anti Sway Cradle Kit online. Shown in the video is the HD rack; the arms of the Dura and Dura Assist racks remove in a similar fashion; Alumina and Element rack arms remove differently (as shown in other Softride videos) but the blocks and spacers are similarly modular and removable.

How to Load a Bike onto a Rack using a Top Tube Adapter: See how to attach the top tube adapter to a bike, and how to then strap the top tube adapter to the arms of a bike rack. Great for bikes with small front triangles, women's bikes, children's bikes, or any bikes with step-through frames. Tip: Remember the vital step of checking that the stem and seat post are secured prior to using the top tube adapter. See the Top Tube Adapter online.

How to Lower A Softride Bike Rack: Softride Access Bike Racks – Lower Away from Vehicle While Bikes Stay Loaded. How to use the patented parallelogram action to lower the hitch-mounted bike rack away from the vehicle with a simple spring-loaded pull pin, allowing access to the back of your vehicle with the loaded bikes staying level, and then push the rack back to vertical to lock into place. The rack appearing in this video is the older HD model, but the information applies to all of Softride’s hitch-mounted bike racks. (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, Hang2, Hang5, HD).

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How to Rearrange Spacers and Blocks on Bike Rack Arms: See how to remove spacers and move modular bike blocks on bike rack arms. Use this little-known feature to remove the spacers without removing the rack arms. Once the spacers are removed, you may slide the bike blocks around so they best support your configuration, then replace the spacers once you have the blocks where you want them. This helps, for example, to group adults bikes together and leave greater space for a child’s bike. This applies to all Softride racks with two arms (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, and HD racks).

How to Remove Rack Arms (Dura, HD): How to remove the arms from the rack, and remove the modular blocks and spacers from the arms. Pull the thumb trigger on the top plate (side of the top plate nearest the vehicle), and slide out the steel arm. Replace it by sliding the arm into place until it clicks into locked position. The video shows an HD rack, but this applies to the Dura, Dura Assist, Elite, and HD racks.

How to Remove the Nut Holder from the Hitch Bar: How to remove the nut holder from the 2” hitch bar in order to install the 1.25” adapter. This video shows how to use a screwdriver to gently pry the nut holder out of the hitch bar. Hack Your Rack tip: try putting a small piece of tape on the screwdriver like we did if you’re concerned about scratching your rack’s finish in this process. Related to all hitch mounted racks - (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, Hang2, Hang5, HD).

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How to Tighten the Hitch Bolt on a Bike Rack: This video shows you how to check the tension on your hitch bolt and how to periodically tighten the bolt if you keep the rack mounted on your vehicle over time. See how to remove the hitch lock with the key then use a ratcheting box wrench to tighten the hitch bolt and replace it. Tip: Separate your keys –keep one in your vehicle and one in a safe place at home. Tip: keep a 7/8” ratcheting box wrench in your vehicle ready to use when you’re out and about without impacting your regular tool set. Related to all hitch mounted racks (Alumina, Dura, Dura Assist, Element, Hang2, Hang5, HD).

Strap Comparison - Which Strap Do I Need? Not sure which replacement strap you need for your Softride bike rack? This video compares the two types of straps currently offered by Softride, discussing the features of each and which strap is compatible with which rack. See also how to cut the longer strap to adjust the length as desired. See standard straps here and Super straps here.

Where to Find Parts in Hang5 Box: When preparing to install a Hang5 bike rack, look for a parts bag (containing the instructions, straps, and hitch bolt and lock) within a cardboard tube in the box. See what to look for and where to find it in this video. If you're looking for the instructions to install your new Hang5 bike rack, this shows you where to find them. See the Hang5 rack and instructions online.

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Towing Products:


Tightening Hitch Pin with Lock: The Anti-Rattle Tightening Hitch Pin is intended for towing applications with 2” receiver hitches. The set includes (1) a nut holder which adjusts for variances in ball mount wall thicknesses for a snug fit inside the ball mount; (2) a threaded locking pin (which removes the typical clank sound by tightening the ball mount over to one side of the receiver hitch); (3) a 5/8” diameter lock washer that must be used; (4) a lock with a protective dust cover; and (5) two keys. Hack Your Rack Tip: separate your two keys, keeping one with your vehicle and one in a secure place at home. See the Tightening Hitch Pin and Lock.