When a bike gets stolen, it can make you feel like your home has been broken into. Whether it’s your brand-new racing bike or a hand-me-down mountain bike, the loss can be just as frustrating. We have searched the web for information in order to bring you the most comprehensive guide to protecting your bicycle from being stolen. Unfortunately, there are no completely fool-proof ways to prevent bike theft; however, there are plenty of steps you can take to make a would-be thief think twice about stealing your ride. Let’s learn the best tips and ways to keep your bicycle safe for the warmer season.
Steps you can take to keep your bicycle safe
There’s a lot you can do to keep your bicycle safe on your property so that you don’t have to worry about making a claim, such as:
1. Register your bike
529 Garage has developed a free registration project designed to help people register the serial number and can report missing bikes through working with law enforcement and the community.
2. Save the serial number
Even once it is registered, it’s a good idea to hold onto your serial number. Having it on record can be beneficial in the event of a police report or claim.
FYI: Ensuring you’re covered by the best bicycle insurance will help you recoup the costs should the worst happen.
3. Lock your bike when not in use
When parking your bicycle, select a secure, well-lit area. If you can, bring your bike indoors, whenever possible. Whenever you are not riding your bike, it should be locked, even when it’s in your garage or backyard shed. Make sure that your bike is locked to a solid fixture, preferably metal, and secured to the ground. Wood can be cut through very easily. Be sure that the entire fixture cannot be lifted and taken away with your bike. Tug on whatever you’re about to lock to make sure it can’t be easily removed. Signposts in particular can be easily removed by unbolting them, and some are already unattached. Be sure to secure the body of your bike, as well as the back tire. Avoid older bike racks that only hold the bottom of your wheel in place.
Use a smart lock! A smart lock can alert you when your bike is in motion and allow you to track its location. Some models even emit noise when tampered with.
- Try to fill the space inside of your lock as much as possible. This makes it hard for thieves to insert tools to pry open the lock.
- Be sure to lock up both wheels, as well as the frame. Try to use a cable lock to secure the tire, as well.
- Don’t make it convenient to steal your bike. If possible, use two different types of locks at the same time (e.g. a cable lock and a U-lock). Most thieves want to make a quick getaway. They may not have the time or the tools to break two kinds of locks in a short time.
To learn more about some of the best bicycle locks, click here.
4. Use a seat that requires keys
Along with wheels, many thieves will steal the seat. The common quick-release mechanism makes it more vulnerable to theft. Consider investing in switching any quick-release wheel or seat skewers for ones that require keys to unlock.
5. Get personal
Make your ride unique and personalize with personal elements, such as a custom paint job, distinctive decals or accessories. It can help deter thieves because it will be harder to sell if it has a distinct style compared to a more generic one.
6. Look for any flat tires or markings
If you notice you have any damages or flat tires when you return your bike, avoid leaving it unattended because thieves may have done it on purpose and are planning to come back and cut locks later.
7. Don’t rely on foot traffic to keep your bike safe
Years of reports have taught us that many thefts, particularly those involving cutting cable locks, occur under the cover of crowd activity or in front of bustling cafés or restaurants.
8. Don’t rely on the presence of cameras to keep your bike secure
Security footage is rarely of much use once a bike is gone, and thieves know this.
We hope that these tips come in handy to help keep your bicycle safe. If you have any questions about bicycle insurance or about special article endorsements to specifically protect your ride, contact one of our isure representatives today.