The first and best line of defence is to stop a thief getting into the garage or shed in the first place, but if the worst should happen, having your bikes securely locked down may stop them being rolled out into the night and off to the dodgy second hand market, or sold for parts.
One thing that will make the thieves job easier is having tools to hand. There’s no point in having secure locks if you’ve got crowbars, saws and screwdrivers in reach. Make sure any tools you do have are either locked securely away in the shed or stored in a different location. Apart from anything else, you don’t want them going missing either.
While these measures will help prevent a thief making off with your frame, the parts on your bike are another story. Working undisturbed, some thieves will strip down a locked bike, removing things like dropper seat posts, handlebars and even brakes and gears. Data tagging these valuable individual parts can help by dissuading thieves from making an attempt on parts if they see the label, or by helping recover stolen parts.
1. Choose how to store your bike safely using Fire and Security Lancashire
Are you going to be storing your bikes hanging up or standing? This will be partly determined by the space you have to store them in, but is important as this will also determine how long your cables and locks need to be to keep everything locked down.
There are 4 options here;
Lean your bike against wall: The easy option, but the bike takes up valuable space and can be knocked over easily.
Use a wheel rack to hold bike up: Bike takes up just as much space, but isn’t as easy to knock over.
Hang from a hook horizontally: This frees up floor space but, depending on the height of the shed, you may only be able to fit one bike per wall. You can also buy ‘horizontal’ racks to use in the home.
Hang from a hook vertically: This frees up more space than any of the other options, as long as your shed is high enough
Our buyer’s guide to indoor bike storage systems will help you work out which one works best for the storage space you have.
2. Choose your lock
Once you’ve got your storage sorted it’s time to buy some decent heavy-duty locks and ground anchors. You’ll need to make sure each chain is long enough to secure your bike(s) with but not so long that it’s easy for thieves to use cutting tools on. For more tips see our Buyer’s Guide To Bike Locks.
D-Locks (also known as U-Locks) are great for locking up your bike when you’re out and about because they’re relatively small and light. When it comes to shed security, weight doesn’t matter, so it’s a good idea to invest in a heavy-duty motorbike-style chain lock instead. Some of the best ones even come with a scaled down D-Lock instead of a padlock.
The best bike locks and chains
For ultimate toughness, look for a Sold Secure rating. Sold Secure is an independent organisation administered by the Master Locksmiths Association. To achieve a top Gold rating, a lock must hold out for five minutes against a sophisticated array of tools.
3. Lock it to something secure and immoveable
There’s no good having an expensive lock if there’s nothing to lock your bike to. Unless it’s fixed to an immovable object, it will be easy for thieves to steal and may not be covered by insurance.
The solution, particularly for garages and sheds, is to fit a lock anchor. The best option is a heavy-duty floor anchor bolted into concrete, but even a wall anchor screwed into a wooden shed panel or fencepost will provide some extra security. Head to your local hardware store to pick one up.