The 8 best locks for e-bikes of 2021
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Electric bikes are more and more popular and more affordable. But they still represent a substantial financial investment for most people. Once you’ve found your perfect electric bike, dropping some extra green on a high-quality bike lock (or two) is one of the best ways to protect your purchase.
Spending about 10 percent of your bike’s value on a locking system is standard advice. So if you have a $ 1,000 electric bike, you’ll want to shell out around $ 100 for a protective lock system. You’ll want to spend around $ 200 to protect a $ 2,000 electric bike, etc. But, really, consider spending as much as possible on a reliable lock (or locking system).
But how do you choose? There are three higher security options: chain locks, U-locks, and folding locks.
Chain locks are bulky and heavy, but what they lack in portability makes up for in versatility. You can lock them onto just about any stationary object. U-locks are less bulky and more portable than chain locks, but can limit locking options. Folding locks tend to fit nicely into backpacks or saddlebags so they can be easily carried. They also offer more flexibility than U-Locks.
Here’s the truth about some of the best e-bike locks in each category.
No matter what type of bike you own, it’s always a good idea to lock it with several different types of padlocks, even when your bike is inside or in your garage. (Many bicycle thefts occur when the bikes are in home garages). If you’re looking for portability and security on a budget, choose a U-Lock like the OnGuard Brute Mini (see at Walmart) or Kryptonite Evolution Mini Lock (see at Walmart). You can pair it with a chain lock for sturdy protection like Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit (see at Walmart) or the ABUS Bordo Granit X Plus 6500 plus portable folding padlock (see REI). These locking styles allow you to chain together different objects beyond a bike rack or bike rack. Or you can weave them between your frame and your wheels while using the U-Lock to attach your bike frame to an object.
What to consider when buying an electric bike lock
Locking an electric bike is pretty much the same as locking any bike, but there are a few important factors to consider. Take the locking length. E-bikes usually have a larger frame, so you should measure the width of your bike’s frame and tires before you start shopping. You’ll also want to factor in the width of anything you’ll be locking your bike on. (Don’t forget to lock your E-Bike at home!)
You always want a lock that fits all of your bike’s important components, frame, and attachment structure snugly so that thieves can’t have so much weight against it. So you have to think like Goldilocks and find a “right” lock for your electric bike.
What should I lock my bike to?
If you cannot take your e-bike indoors, look for an object that is stationary, secure, fixed to the ground, and difficult to cut, such as a bicycle rack, a lamppost, a sturdy traffic sign, or a tree in a busy well. . -lit area. Make sure that whatever you attach your bike to is thicker than your lock and not something your bike can be lifted on. Even better if there are security cameras.
On a bike rack, chain in the middle of the rack or next to better bikes, so your bike doesn’t stand out as the most expensive bike in the crowd. Another way to integrate your bike is to remove the battery to make your e-bike look like a regular bike.
You can also choose a place to lock your bike a certain distance from where you are going: watch a movie? Do not park in front of the theater. This is a clue to thieves that your bike will be exposed for a few hours.
Where should I place the lock on my bike?
Once you’ve found your spot to chain, start by locking the frame at the top near the down tube or seat tube to the chosen stationary object. Why? The frame is usually where the most expensive parts of e-bikes are located. It is also the most expensive part of a bicycle, followed by the rear wheel and the front wheel.
If you have a quick-release front wheel, be sure to take it with you or remove it and lock it to your frame with your lock.
If you have a foldable chain or lock, you can wrap it around multiple parts of your bike for extra protection. Pair one of these locks with a U-lock or other extra lock so your bike is more difficult for thieves to steal than those parked next to it who may have only one lock. (More is more in this case!)
Keep your lock off the ground so that it is not easily accessible with a hammer or bolt cutters.
Are lighter locks always secure?
Thin wire combination padlocks can be easy to stow in your pocket or around your waist and can come in handy for quick locking situations, like running into a cafe for a cup of java.
But they’re not a good option for securing your bike for long periods of time or overnight. This is because lightweight locks tend to be easy to clip in with tin snips, tin snips, or other cutting tool.
Some additional safety tips
Write down the serial number of your bike and register it with the local police department. Some bike lock companies also offer insurance, this information is usually included with the purchase. For added security, consider purchasing bike insurance from a company like Veloinsurance.
Finally, attaching a GPS tracker to your bike can help you recover it in the event of theft.
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Author Heidi Wachter has been writing about travel and adventure for over a decade. When she’s not writing, you’ll likely find her on one of her six bikes, even in winter.