You love your e-bike, right? Unfortunately, so do thieves; bikes of all kinds are an attractive prospect for them, as they're relatively lightweight and easy to move. Protecting your beloved two-wheeler against these unwanted attentions should be a top priority, so read on for our top tips to help keep your e-bike secure.
Invest in a decent lock
You've made a significant investment in buying an e-bike, so it is worth making sure that it's well-protected with good-quality, appropriate locks. We went into detail about choosing a lock in our earlier blog, but the main points to remember are:
- Always choose a lock that has an ART or Sold Secure rating; these organizations exist to help consumers with making the best choice of lock and have easily searchable databases.
- Do a bit of research on the lock brand's reputation – check out online reviews, or maybe speak to the staff at your local bike shop to get their expert view.
- A D- or U-type lock is the preferred option over a chain or cable lock, as they are much more of a deterrent against tools such as bolt-cutters. Cables and chains can be great as secondary locks, though – more on that later.
Find a good location
If you need to lock your bike up outside in a public space, it's best to choose a busy area with a lot of people about – this will naturally put off any opportunistic thieves. Even better, public spaces which are covered by CCTV cameras tend to be avoided by camera-shy crooks!
If you have an especially valuable bike, our advice is not to lock it outdoors overnight. Those busy areas that see lots of footfall during the day will likely be much quieter during the night, giving thieves more opportunity to work undisturbed.
When choosing what to lock your bike to, scout out sturdy metal items, ideally a purpose-made bike rack or stand, rather than street sign poles. The perfect scenario is a robust metal tube that loops to two secure anchor points on the ground – this is to ensure that your locked bike cannot be simply lifted off the pole, or that it's locked to something that could simply be stolen along with your bike!
Another aspect to consider is minimizing the amount of space between the lock, your bike, and the object it's locked to. Keeping as tight a fit as possible is another good way to deter a thief, as it means there is no leeway for them to try to get some leverage.
Multiply your locks
Why use more than one lock? There are a few reasons this is a good idea, especially with an e-bike where the relatively expensive battery and motor can draw unwanted attention from bike thieves. Combining a D- or U-lock with a cable lock, for instance, means you can weave the cable around the frame and wheels and secure with the heavy-duty lock, making your bike more of a hassle to potential thieves.
Similarly, having two or more different types of locks with differing mechanisms such as combination and key locks can present extra hurdles to thieves, and be more likely to put them off altogether.
If you need to leave your bike locked for a long time, we advise using multiple locks and deploying them in descending order of the value of the bike's parts. The frame comes at the top, followed by the rear wheel, then the front wheel.
Extra security tips
There are a few simple hacks you can do to make your bike even less of an attraction to potential thieves. Most bikes and e-bikes come with standard nut-and-bolt sets at the adjustable parts around the wheels, saddle, and handlebar, which means these components can be relatively easily removed. Investing in a security set of nuts and bolts, which need special tools to adjust, can act as the first line of defence in protecting your bike.
Removing attractive or portable items such as lights from your bike when locking up helps to make it less of a target. If your e-bike has a removable battery, taking that with you is the ideal way to make your bike useless to a thief. Also, taking steps such as setting up password protection on your e-bike's display/controller puts another hurdle in the way of thieves.
Greater peace of mind can be found by fitting a GPS tracking tool to your bike, such as an Apple Airtag. If you're a Tenwayer already riding a TENWAYS CGO600 or CGO800S, this can be easily hidden away inside the frame. This way, should the worst happen and a thief succeeds in stealing your bike, you can use the tool's tracking function to help locate it. Always remember to seek the help of the police or other authorities in this scenario – your safety is the first priority!
What NOT to do
You want to make it as difficult as possible for an opportunistic thief to steal your e-bike – or parts of it. With this in mind, remember a few simple “don'ts”:
- Don't lock your bike only at the front wheel – a thief could relatively easily release the wheel from the frame, and make off with the rest of it.
- Don't only lock the bike's frame – this leaves the wheels vulnerable to theft.
- Don't only lock your bike to another bike. If you and a friend are out and locking your bikes at the same spot, either lock them separately or both to a secure bike rack.
- Don't forget to double-check that all your locks are secure before you leave.
Sharing is caring
This advice has been created with the input of TENWAYS team members, based on their own experiences and habits. If you have your own great ideas for keeping your bike secure, share them with us in the TENWAYS Facebook Community Group!