How should I secure my bike?

Bike thefts are a common occurrence, but can be easily avoided if you follow these simple tips to choosing the right bike lock.

Choose your location

Time spent finding a secure object to lock your bike to is time well spent. Avoid objects that can be easily broken, moved or lifted off.

To further deter thieves choose an area that is well-lit, preferably with CCTV cameras in place, and where there is a lot of foot traffic or other bikes.

Buy the best bike lock

There are two main types of bike locks, U-locks and chain locks.

A U-lock with a hardened steel shackle provides the greatest security, medium security is provided by a keyed chain lock, while combination chain locks are suitable for lower risk environments.

Look for a bike lock that has a protective covering on the U-shackle or cable to shield the material from the elements. The added benefit is your bike won’t get scratched when putting the lock on or taking it off.

Use your lock effectively

The most effective way to lock your bike is to secure the frame and both wheels to a fixed object. Make sure the U-lock or chain is tightly fastened so it does not hang loose between the bike and the object you have locked it to; is a good distance above the ground to make it harder to lever open; and the keyway is facing down so thieves cannot spray liquid into it.

Use two different bike locks

Using two different bike locks will mean thieves need two types of tool to remove them. They are unlikely to be carrying both. A U-lock and chain lock combination is one option.

Remove all accessories

A bike is much less attractive without lights, the seat post and so on, so remove these if you can carry them with you.