Best Bike Locks

best bike locks reviews

Every bike owner knows (or ought to know) about the very real danger of bike theft today and about the importance of using the best bike lock. The stats on this particular type of property crime are quite disheartening for bike owners:

  • In the US, more than 1.5 million bikes are stolen every year.
  • In college campuses, more than half of property crimes are bike thefts.
  • About half of all current bike owners have suffered a theft of their bike. Some have been victims more than once.
  • Only 2.4% of all stolen bikes have been recovered.

So what all these mean is that you also need to buy a good lock for your bike. You may as well get the best road bike lock you can afford, since the cost of one won’t match the cost of a bike.

What are the best bike locks on the market?

Onguard Bulldog LS U-Lock


Onguard Bulldog LS U-Lock

This is a U-type lock that you open with a key. It’s quite long, so you have lots of options regarding how you use it to secure your bike frame to a rack.It also comes with a small mount that clamps on your bike frame. It may be heavy, but it shouldn’t be a problem to bring along with your on your bike.

Highlighted Features:

  • On the inside, it measures 11.5 inches long at the curved end and 4.5 inches wide.
  • You get 5 keys, so you can have each member of the family get a copy of the key. One of the keys project a bright light so you can use it easily at night or in the dark.
  • It uses a double bolt mechanism.
  • The shackles are thick at 13 mm long.
  • The lock core is hard to pick.

Master Lock 8143d


Master Lock 8143d

This is a cable lock that uses a number combination to open. This is a bestselling lock, but that’s probably because it’s very affordable.
If you care about the look of the lock, you also have 2 color options. You can get it in either back or pink.

Highlighted Features:

  • It is 4 feet long.
  • It uses braided steel with a diameter of 8 mm (5/16 of an inch).
  • It’s covered by a protective vinyl coating, so it’s protected from scratches and moisture.
  • It only comes with a preset combination. With 4 digits in the combination, it will take a while to try out each number combination.
  • You can also use it to secure other items, like ladders and toolboxes.
  • It is very light, as it weighs 1.6 ounces.

 Kryptonite Kryptolok Series 2


Onguard Bulldog LS U-Lock

This is a midsize U-lock that measures 9 by 4 inches on the inside. That's pretty good,, as you can use it to lock two bikes together.
This lock is what you get when you don’t live in a high crime area where thieves use tools to steal bikes. This is designed to prevent opportunistic thieves who will be tempted to steal an unsecured bike.

Highlighted Features:

  • It uses a 13mm shackle made from hardened steel.
  • It comes with 2 keys, with the “I” design so it’s easier to use.
  • You have a bracket so you can attach this lock securely to your frame tubing.
  • The weight isn’t much either. It’s about 3.6 pounds.

Cocoweb Heavy Duty Bike Locks


This is a long U-lock that offer ample space inside the shackles. There’s an option for you to get it with the security cable, if you already don’t have your own cable lock yet.

The vast majority of reviewers like this lock. It’s easy to use and the quality is very solid.

Highlighted Features:

  • It uses a 16mm maximum performance hardened steel shackles.
  • The locking mechanism is very powerful.
  • You get 3 keys, and one of them is a battery-operated key with a light.
  • It also comes with a bracket for easier mounting.

Kryptonite New York Std U-Lock


kryptonitenewyork

What if you do live in a high crime area or you’re a college student? Then you get this Kryptonite bike lock, which many feel is the best bike lock for these situations.

The shackle is thicker and the disc-style cylinder offers better security. With this, you can feel much safer when you’re in class and your bike is parked outside.

It’s not that thieves won’t be able to defeat this lock eventually. It’s that it will take them some time and they’ll need powerful tools.

Most of these thieves will probably skip your bike and move to other easier targets. So if you’re going to go out on your bike, take this along with you.

Highlighted Features:

  • It uses a 16mm maximum performance hardened steel shackles.
  • The locking mechanism is very powerful.
  • You get 3 keys, and one of them is a battery-operated key with a light.
  • It also comes with a bracket for easier mounting.

UShake Bike Lock


This is a cable lock with a 4-digit number combination. It’s light, easy to use, and great when you want to secure your bike for just a short time.It’s very versatile too. Plenty of people also use this for other purposes.

It can be used to secure gates and to lock up toolboxes and ladders.Plenty of people like the low price too. If you don’t want to tempt people from riding away with your bike, get this.

Highlighted Features:

  • It’s 4 feet long.
  • The cable is wrapped in a protective coating to keep it from scratching your bike frame.
  • The number lock is re-settable, so you can set it to a number you can easily memorize.
  • The customer support is very helpful.

Abus Granit X Plus 540



If you have a very expensive bike, you really need to be very careful about theft. Your best bet is to keep it indoors, but of that’s not possible then you can use this Abus lock.This is by far the most expensive lock on this list. But if you’ve already spent lots of money on your bike,

it doesn’t make sense to go with a cheap lock.If price isn’t a consideration for you, then this is the best road bike lock for your expensive bike. Besides, with this extremely power lock you do get your money’s worth.

Highlighted Features:

  • It uses 13 mm hardened steel shackles. But this time it’s in a square parabolic design.
  • The shackle is double bolted in the lock body.
  • It offers effective protection against pulling and hitting attacks.
  • Even bolt cutters won’t work easily with this lock.
  • Special hardened steel is used not just for the shackle but also for the case and supporting elements.
  • It’s virtually impossible to pick.
  • The keyhole cover protects against corrosion and dirt.
  • You get two keys, one of which has an LED light.

On-Guard Brute Std-8001


This is another highly regarded bike lock. Online, most of the customer reviews give it perfect or high marks.

This is a very formidable-looking lock indeed. Although it really is effective, the look of this lock will probably be enough to deter most thieves.

In addition, the price is more than reasonable too.

Highlighted Features:

  • The locking mechanism locks the shackles on 4 sides.
  • The shackle is extremely thick at 16.8 mm. That’s about two-thirds of an inch in diameter.
  • It has a molded crossbar cover and a double rubber shackle coating. This will protect your bike frame finishes.
  • You get 5 laser cut keys, and 1 of them has an LED light.
  • It’s so durable that it even comes with a lifetime warranty.

Bell Watchdog 600


Again, this is a bike lock that has received lots of rave reviews from satisfied customers. It’s very affordable yet the features are great.

It’s a cable lock with a 4-digit number combination. The number combination can even be reset to a number that you can remember more easily.

It looks nice and it’s very easy to use. Just use this to secure your wheels.

Highlighted Features:

  • It’s 5 feet long, so it’s more useful and more versatile than your average 4-foot cable lock.
  • The braided steel cable is 12 mm in diameter.
  • It coils nicely on the bike for easy transport.
  • The number dials are easy to rotate.


How to Choose the Best Bike Locks

What is the best bike locks on the market?

Here are some factors you need to consider:

  • Type of lock. Most of the time, you can put bike locks into one of two categories: padlock-type shackles and cable locks. Each type of road bike lock has its own pros and cons.

However, in general a bike owner may opt for a U-type padlock to secure the bike frame to the bike rack. The cable lock is usually used to keep the parts such as the wheels secure.

  • There’s a wide range of prices for bike locks, although on average the cable locks are usually more affordable. You can buy a good one for less than $6. On the other hand, premium U-type locks can go for more than a hundred dollars.
  • Ease of Use. More precisely, it’s about how easy to lock and to open. The best bike locks should be too complicated to use.

For example, an inferior lock (at least in regards to this factor) may need you to use two hands to lock it securely. That can be annoying if you need a hand to keep your bike in the proper position.

Other locks may have dials or keyholes that don’t turn properly. When you’re usually running late, this waste of time can be infuriating.

  • Of course, you also need to keep the lock with you when you use your bike. So you need an easy way to keep bring it along.

A road bike lock should be designed to somehow attach securely to your bike. It shouldn’t juggle or move around as your bike travels, and it shouldn’t hamper your position or pedaling.

  • Weather-resistance. It’s meant to be used outdoors. So it should be able to stand the midday heat of direct sunlight as well as snow and rainwater.

Many inferior locks can’t stand getting wet. When water gets into the keyhole or combination mechanism, the keys may not turn smoothly afterwards.

  • Security rating. The most trustworthy ratings are those offered by reputable 3rd party security organizations. These use a battery of tests conducted by experts

These include the Art ratings given by the Dutch government. The Britain’s Master Locksmiths Association has Sold Secure, which tests lots of locks sold in the US and UK.

Basically, you want a good combination of affordability, security, and practicality. In other words, the ideal lock is cheap, effective, and easy to use.

Final Tips

Don’t forget: get 2 locks. One U-lock is needed to secure the bike frame to a firm rack, while cable locks are needed so that you don’t end up missing your wheels.

Pick any of the locks here on this list, and you’re well on your way to reducing the chances of having your bike stolen. While none of them will protect your bike when you leave it out overnight, for an hour or 2 these locks will deter all but the most determined of thieves.

So get the best bike lock you can find. You should be able to use it easily and it should keep thieves from just pedaling away with your bike!

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