Are you afraid to take your bike out because it might get stolen? Do you want to get back out there and enjoy a nice ride? If you are wondering how to protect your bike from the many experienced thieves out there, you came to the right place. We all know how difficult it can be to find the best bike lock nowadays!
Thieves are more creative these days and they improve their techniques using modern tools. And no one would want to see their super-expensive bike gone while they were focusing on something else.
However, before choosing a product, you will have to think about how much money you can afford spending on this. Of course, the challenge increases with the price of the bike – thieves will always be more attracted to more expensive ones. Also, if you hardly ever use your bike, then you’re probably safe with a $2 lock.
You are now going to get more educated about bike locks, their features and more! You will see reviews of the best bike locks on the market, too! Now, let’s dig in!
|Product name||Model year||Dimensions||Color||Features||Price|
|Kryptonite New York||2015||8 x 4 inches||Black and yellow||Steel shackle, double deadbolt||Check price on Amazon|
|Hiplok Lite||2015||8 x 6 x 3 inches||Black||Light, easy to use||Check price on Amazon|
|Kryptonite Kryptolok||2017||1 x 4 x 9 inches||Black||Steel shackle, mounts easily||Check price on Amazon|
|OnGuard Bulldog||2015||11.6 x 7.8 x 2.2 inches||Black and yellow||4 in cinch cable, extra locking options||Check price on Amazon|
|Kyptonite Kryptoflex||2015||2 x 5.25 x 9 inches||Black||Braided steel cable, cut resistant||Check price on Amazon|
|OnGuard Aktia||2012||1.5 x 5.5 x 11.5 inches||Black and yellow||Resets, comes with cable||Check price on Amazon|
|Ardent Self Coiling||2017||5.6 x 0.38 inches||Black||Resets, ABS coating||Check price on Amazon|
|Kyptonite Evolution||2016||2.4 x 2.5 x 5.75 inches||Black and orange||Dust cover, drill resistant||Check price on Amazon|
|Bell Catalyst||2016||1 x 4.6 x 7.8 inches||Black and silver||Small, light, affordable||Check price on Amazon|
|Illumilock||2017||11.5 x 6 x 3 inches||Black||Pick proof, drill proof||Check price on Amazon|
Features to Consider Before Buying
There are a lot of options on the market and you have to be careful with the choice you make. I mean, the immediate consequence is your bike being stolen. So you should ask yourself 2 questions before buying a lock:
- What level of security is best suited for my bike?
- What type of lock is better for me and my bike?
These questions will help you since every brand will have something different to offer. Also, you have to decide on how quickly you need to unlock your bike. A complicated system, even though more secure, may take you several minutes. And when you’re in a hurry, you don’t have these extra minutes, so you might get frustrated by your own security system.
The least effective method is the cable lock because anyone can cut them very easily using bolt cutters and it only takes a few seconds. On the other hand, the most secure bike locks you can find on the market are the chains and the U-locks.
They are usually designed out of strong and uncuttable metal like hardened steel for example. The cheaper ones are made from softer alloys and are not hard to cut using a bolt cutter or a hacksaw. I’m not saying that the other ones are invincible because unfortunately a thief can use an angle grinder, but they make a lot of noise so they are not used in opened space where there are a lot of people around.
Also the most secure lock in the world will not protect your bike if you do not use it properly. For example, securing a wheel to the frame – it’s not like the thief couldn’t just pick it up and leave with it. Just has to figure out how to break the lock later with very much time and privacy on his side.
A very important thing to have in mind is the weight of the lock. The more secure and better the bike lock is, the heavier it will be.
Many have brackets so you can secure them to the bike, others have an interesting design and you can wear them as a belt, but one thing is for sure – The best lock in the world won’t help you if you decide is too heavy and you won’t take it with you.
Also, you have to see if it’s waterproof. This is valid, especially if you live in an area where it rains all the time. Maybe the lock will not be sealed around every opening, but the most important part is the key barrel. If this part isn’t protected from the rain or whatever other cause that would make the moisture get inside, your lock will soon get all corroded and become useless.
Many people have complained that they couldn’t use their bike locks anymore because of the rust and this is something you should really pay attention to.
You will want to find something that is very sturdy, such as something made of military grade steel. Not only that it is drill proof, but you can’t pick it either.
However, you also want a lock that is both durable and perhaps covered with some softer material like rubber. You don’t want a model that will scratch your bike’s paint, and will last over time, don’t you?
You shouldn’t have to pay too much to get a quality lock, but still, you should bear in mind the price. Those that are cheaper in cost are going to be cheaper in quality. Therefore, getting the cheapest one might not be such a smart idea as it will only act as a thief magnet.
Go for the medium price range. You’re not going to get a lock for a few dollars that will last a lifetime, but still, you’ll be getting something that is going to work for a shorter period, and not that easy to break.
Top Products on Today’s Market
In this list the products are not ranked by a numeric countdown. The one in the first place is just as good as the one at number 10. Is just up to you how you rank them. Also, we’re waiting for your opinion in the comments – tell us what you liked most and what are you willing to try.
Price: Approx $72
Dimensions: 8 x 4 inches
Specific features: Black and yellow color, steel shackle, resists bolt cutters
Best use: City use
Description: If you want a lock that can’t be defeated by the bolt cutter or by the leverage attacks, the Kryptonite New-York Standard U-Lock is the best for you. It has 0,06 inch, hardened steel shackle, double deadbolt for more holding power, high security disc-style cylinder, 3 keys – one of which is lighted by a high intensity bulb, and you also can replace the batteries.
Also, it has Transit Flex Frame Bracket so you can mount it easier to the frame tubing that has 0,09 to 0.3 inches, whatever form it has: round, oval, triangular or square. It also has 360 degree rotation so it fits and aligns better with any specific bike frame geometry, and, it’s large enough so you can put it around the wheel, bike frame and bike rack.
This lock model one of the most secure bike locks that will protect your bike. In other words, this U-lock is the thief’s kryptonite.
- Resists bolt cutters
- Double deadbolt locking
- Vinyl coating
- Seems short
- No security warranty
Related: You can consider a looped cable for this lock, such as the Kryptonite Kryptoflex Looped Cables. It has braided steel and is double looped.
Price: Approx $65
Dimensions: 8 x 6 x 3 inches
Specific features: All black, one size fits all, resistant to bolt cutters
Best use: Day or night use
Description: If you want a bike lock that will keep your bike safe without being too big and heavy to transport, the Hiplok Lite Lock comes into your help. It has a 0,30 inch, hardened steel chain, which is 2 feet long and has a nylon sheath that goes around it.
It also has quite an unbreakable padlock with a metal bar that serves as a buckle. The buckle has a swath of Velcro that goes through it and then comes back on itself so you can have an adjustable and comfortable bike chain that you can wear as a low belt.
This is actually the first bike lock that can be worn on the body. You don’t have to attach or hang it on your bike, so it does not scratch the bicycle at all. Overall, this is nearly a perfect bike lock that will last you for a long time.
- Nice design
- Easy to use
- Can be worn on the body
Related: Be safe, no matter where you bike, with the Schwinn Thrasher Helmet. It’s under $25 and has many flow vents. It also has a built in visor.
Price: Approx $45
Dimensions: 1 x 4 x 9 inches
Specific features: Resists cutting, steel shackle, high security
Best use: High theft areas
Description: This is another good bike lock. It comes equipped with a 0.05 inch hardened steel shackle, resistant to cutting or leverage attacks, a high security disc cylinder and 2 “I” keys so it’s easy to use and prevents breaking or bending.
Just like the Kryptonite New York model, the Kryptonite Kryptolok Series 2 STD U Lock also has the Transit Flex Frame Bracket so you can mount it easier to the frame tubing. Even more, it also has 360 degree rotation so it fits better with any specific bike frame geometry.
We found the anti rattle bumpers that are put in place to keep the noise down while you are toting it around with you to be quite useful. The vinyl coating protects the lock and your bike from chipping and deterioration. Also, the reinforced hardened cross bar that adds more protection to the lock is quite a nice feature.
Overall, this is a great lock that you will enjoy for many years.
Related: If you bike at night, you should have some lights on your bike so that others around you know you are on the road. The BV Bicycle Light Set has a light for your bicycle’s rear and also a bright LED light from the headlight.
Price: Approx $45
Dimensions: 11.6 x 7.8 x 2.2 inches
Specific features: Medium security rating, braided steel cable, easy to use
Best use: Any use, from a parking meter to tree
Description: With the OnGuard Bulldog DT U Lock, you have extra locking options. You get the U-lock and a 4 inch cinch loop cable that is braided with steel. It also has 5 laser cut keys, one micro-light key that projects a white ray, and 4 extra grip keys. As an extra, you get a Z-cylinder that can’t be defeated by pulling, drilling or picking.
One of the best, if not the best part about the Bulldog Lock, is that a thief has to break two different locks to get to your bike; two locks that won’t go easy on him, and this is the main reason why most thieves give up on this model.
This lock also includes a 9 inch shackle and has a medium security rating of 65 out of 100. We found this model to be quite durable and useful as it functions well and can fit around small and large posts of any kind.
- Can be mounted
- Cable included
- Cable feels awkward
- Sort of bland to look at
Related: Whether in the city or country, you can experience bike trouble. The 16 in 1 Bike Repair Kit is a tool kit that helps you when you need to repair your bike quickly so you can make it home.
Price: Approx $25
Dimensions: 2 x 5.25 x 9 inches
Specific features: Error free, flexible, resets
Best use: Use around large posts, trees
Description: The Kryptonite KryptoFlex Cable Lock is another amazing product from Kryptonite. This one is built from a 0,04 inch, flexible braided steel cable that is resistant to cuts and has an integrated 4-digit combination lock.
For easy and stable transporting it has a hook-n-loop retention strap and Transit FlexFrame Brackets so you can mount it easier to the frame tubing. It also fits better with any specific bike frame geometry.
We liked the fact that it is so easy to use and take with you, and is also highly durable. The price is just right for this nice lock that users can reset. Another great feature is that the FlexFrame bracket helps with a better fit around whatever you attach your lock to.
Coming in under 2 pounds, this light lock can be used around nearly anything, especially larger posts. Overall, this is a great lock that may have come out in 2015, but is still regarded highly today.
- Secure, versatile
- Great for large tube frames
- The lock can sometimes change the combination on its own somehow
- Numbers wear off
Related: Make some noise with a bell for your bike! The Mirrycle Incredibell Brass Duet Bicycle Bell comes in many colors, is made of brass and comes under $10. It fits to your bike with just a few simple movements.
Price: Approx $20
Dimensions: 1.5 x 5.5 x 11.5 inches
Specific features: Convenient, easy to use, easy to transport
Best use: Low crime areas
Description: The Onguard Aktia Cable Lock is a great choice for low crime areas. It is one of the most lightweight locks out there, and is very easy to use as it features a resettable combo lock.
However, it loses some points in protection because of the combo cable lock which can be broken or smashed quite easily with a hammer or garden sheers. Also, because of the non-coil cable it can be difficult to transport.
Otherwise, this is a decent lock and is easy to transport. You will probably like the steel ball combination lock as well as the price, and the fact that there is enough cord so that it can be wrapped around your bike nicely, so that you can keep it locked up tightly. The Velcro strap is a nice bonus addition.
In the end, this lock is great for use in low crime areas, like schools.
- Can be reset
- Easy to use, operate
- Hard to coil
- Not super secure
Related: Having lights on your bike’s wheels is the newest trend in biking! The Soondar Super Bright Bike Lights are made of 20 LED lights that can be personalized by color for about $10.
Price: Approx $15
Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.38 inches
Specific features: Easy to set and reset, braided steel cable, 30 day guarantee
Best use: Around large posts, anytime use
Description: The Ardent Bike Lock is the ultimate, resettable combination bike cable lock. With over 10.000 different combinations at your disposal, those petty thieves will have a hard time stealing your bike.
Featuring a resettable lock and braiding steel cable, it provides a strong cut resistance. Besides being made to withstand any weather, it also has an ABS coating that prevents scratches to your bike.
Made with a soft grip, you won’t have to feel or hear the steel under the protective vinyl coating. The braided steel helps it to last over time and keep the bike thieves away.
We liked the fact how easy it is to set the combination, and it is a breeze to reset if needed. This lock is made to resist rain, sun, rust, and wind, plus it has a 30 day money back guarantee. This is a highly regarded bike lock that stands up to the test of thieves as well as time.
- Can be reset
- Includes ABS coating
- Cut resistant
- For low crime areas
Related: If you plan to lug cargo, you may need a bike rack. The Acomfort Luggage Rack holds up to 110 lbs and is made of aluminum alloy. It connects right onto the bike simply.
Price: Approx $65
Dimensions: 2.4 x 2.5 x 5.75 inches
Specific features: Comes with 3 keys, high security, durable
Best use: Higher crime areas, day and night use
Description: The Kryptonite Evolution Integrated Chain Bicycle Lock is a highly secure lock due to its disk-style cylinder which is pick and drill resistant, and the hardened 3t manganese steel chains.
Furthermore, it is very durable, and comes with 3 stainless steel keys (one with a LED bulb) a patent-pending sleeve, to protect your bike from scratches, and even a sliding dust cover to keep the dirt out of the key hole.
Also, it is weather resistant, so you don’t have to worry about rust, dust, or any wear and tear from the elements. It also protects the finish on your bike, so you won’t have to retouch the bike’s paint over time. Since it is easy to unlock during the night, you will find that this lock is easy to carry, use, and store.
Overall, even though it’s a bit expensive, it definitely works very well and can be used in any type of environment because it really is a high security lock.
- High security
- Has a sleeve cover
- Large in size
Related: If you prefer a pouch that will strap to the back of your seat, the Roswheel Cycling Saddle Bag is a great choice that comes in many colors for under $10. The wedge shape fits comfortably under your seat.
Price: Approx $13
Dimensions: 1 x 4.6 x 7.8 inches
Specific features: 2 keys, cross bar, bolt lock
Best use: Dry weather, nice areas
Description: Not interested in the big, heavy and expensive high security locks? Just want something to deter wannabe thieves? If this is the case, then the Bell Catalyst Pocket U-lock is your answer.
It’s lightweight and small, and it fits comfortably in your back pocket, so it has bonus points for transporting. And, for its price, it offers reasonable security. The downside, besides the low security, is the small size – it can be challenging to find good spots where to lock it.
However, once you have tried it, you will agree that it is very sturdy and durable, even if the cable isn’t that thick. But, you will need to use it during nice days outdoors, as it is not waterproof and the water can make it rust quickly. Nevertheless, this lock offers an Anti-Theft Protection guarantee in every state, but New York.
Overall, this is definitely a great lock that can be used for a long time if taken care of properly.
- Easy to use
- Fits in your pocket
- Low security
- Hard to lock
- Rusts easily
Related: Keep all of your items in one bag that connects to your bike. The Joy Colorful Bicycle Bag is a bag that has a separate clear area for your cell phone as well as pouch space for anything you need.
Price: Approx $25
Dimensions: 11.5 x 6 x 3 inches
Specific features: Easy to see in the dark, drill resistant, military grade steel
Best use: Night biking, high crime
Description: Have you ever had to introduce your bike lock combination in the dark? It’s not so easy, is it? Well, the Illumilock Cable Bike Lock has you covered! It comes with an LED light for those late nights when you want to park and lock your bike.
Security wise, the military grade steel does the job well, being pick and drill proof. It doesn’t scratch the bike, it’s easy to use and it has a re-settable combination. All these features, make the Illumilock a great choice for purchase. Also, if you buy this lock, you will be offered with a Lifetime Guarantee on the product, so that’s a nice bonus.
Overall, the Illumilock Cable Bike Lock is hard to break, so thieves will stay away from it, and it’s great to use at night. This is definitely one to consider purchasing!
- Has LED light
- Won’t scratch your bike
- Seems cheap
Related: Be safe while biking and use some mirrors to have a better view of your surroundings. The EEEKit Universal Rearview Mirrors is a 2 pack that will easily connect to any bike for under $15.
With the bike rearview mirrors, we have reached the end of your article. At the end, it is good to say that even the best bike lock in the world is not unbreakable. If a thief ”falls in love” with your bike, and has enough time on his hands and the right tools, he will get it. The lock is there to buy you time and of course, the better it is, the more time you will have.
Now that we learned a bit about bike locks here are some tips for you:
Your bike has to have a better security system than the bike next to it. Thieves will go first for the easy prey.
Don’t leave room for the thief to work. The smaller the lock, the better. For example, let’s say you have a tough small U-lock. It will be very difficult to cut it because the thief can’t put it in a comfortable position. Furthermore, if you have an expensive bike and you live in a big city, then it’s better if you use multiple locks.
Well, now you have all you need to know for the next bike lock you will buy. Just think about the area where you will leave your bike parked, and how much weight you want to carry with you. We hope that our article was helpful and that you will give a second look at our best product reviews.
Now that we have seen some types of bike locks, what do you think about them? Have you tried one of these? If the answer is yes, please tell us your story in the comments below. Also, if you have any questions regarding bike locks, feel free to ask and we will be more than happy to provide you the best possible answer. Thanks for reading!