How To Choose The Best Bike Lock – 7 Important Things To Consider
As a bike owner, one thing you simply cannot afford is to compromise on the security of your ride. It therefore goes without saying that after getting the bike and all your safety gear, the next thing you should set your eyes on is the right bike lock. The greatest challenge that you might face in this case is figuring out how to choose the best bike lock for you. Below are a few tips and guidelines that should help ensure that you settle for the best model that suits all your bike security needs without breaking your bank. Without further ado, below are 7 important things to consider while shopping for a bike lock.
1. Type of bike lock design
There are five main bike lock designs which include the U lock, chain locks, cable locks, folding locks and pit locks. They have very distinct designs and all have their fair share of pros and cons. In order to choose the best lock, it is important to understand what each lock design has to offer and which the best models under each category are. This information will help you to figure out how to choose the best bike lock for you.
2. The security threat in your area
How safe is the area where you intend to leave your bike? As far as choosing the best bike lock is concerned, this is one of the most important questions to answer. This is because it will determine everything from which bike lock design you settle for to the brand and product specifications. It goes without saying that high crime rate areas would require for you to consider high security locks. In this case, U locks, folding locks and chain locks are the best options. If you plan on parking the bike in a busy or secure area, simple chain locks and cable locks would be sufficient.
3. Material used to make the lock
As far as bike lock, the type of material used to make the lock is a very important factor to consider. The material determines several aspects of the lock including aesthetic appeal, durability and most importantly, the level of security offered by the lock. High quality locks made from hardened stainless steel. The material may also determine the price of the lock, with titanium and silver locks being among the most expensive.
4. Lock dimensions
This is a very important factor to consider especially with chain locks and U locks. This is because the chain length in chain locks and the space within the U bend of the shack in U locks determine which objects you can fasten the bike around. It goes without saying that locks with a more U space or those that are longer offer more variety in this case. However, long chains and U shackles are more vulnerable to attack using bolt cutters and saws. It is therefore a great idea to find moderate dimensions that will allow you to lock your bike to a variety of objects without leaving it vulnerable to theft.
5. Security reinforcement features
Another important thing to consider when choosing the best lock is reinforcement specifications. This can come in the form of rubber casings, polycarbon covers and even tough fiber sheaths as seen with chain locks. These extra features boost the security offered by hindering access to the main lock unit thus ensuring that your bike is safe while you are away.
6. Cost vs Budget
While shopping for bike locks, as with all other purchases, it is always important to have your budget in mind. To be sure you get the best product within your price range, you will have to do a lot of research. That way, you will have an idea of which locks on your market meet your needs and specifications and which of these are within your budget.
7. Customer reviews and ratings
Finally, when trying to figure out how to choose the best bike lock, it is important to look into customer reviews and ratings. This works best when you have a few models shortlisted and you want more firsthand information about them. The best thing about these reviews is the fact you get to see the good, the bad and the ugly giving you a clearer idea of exactly what to expect from the bike locks you have your eye on.
With all this information, it is safe to say that you now know how to choose the best bike lock. In a nutshell, all you need to do is to figure out what you need, what you want and most importantly what you can afford. With this in mind and a little market research to find out what is out there, you can rest assured that you will make the best decision. That way, whether you want a simple bike lock for your secure school bike rack or a high security option for your dodgy neighborhood street, you will settle on a bike lock that will give you full value for your money and then some.