What gets stolen? The list is never ending… but there is one thing that seems to be thieves’ favourite – bicycles. So the question is how can you protect your bike from being stolen and what to do if this unfortunately happens?
Bicycle is one of the most popular means of transport that we have been using for many years. Some of us cycle to school or work, some do it recreationally, other professionally by taking part in competitions. When the bike season is on, many people start looking for a perfect bike. They may vary in equipment, type and style but first of all they differ in price. Although there are models that cost more than 10.000 pounds, everybody can have a bike they can afford. But bike itself is not the only thing that you need!
Except for essential accessories like bell, mirror or water bottle each cyclist should invest in suitable security features that protect the cycling gear from being stolen. Police statistics from January to July last year clearly show that bicycle constitute very attractive loot for thieves with no scruple. Bikes get stolen from city centres, properties or staircases, what can you do?
1. Mark your bike
First step after buying a new or used vehicle should be marking it. If the second hand bike has already been marked, you should take from the seller a receipt or other document stating that it comes from a legal source. If it has not been marked yet, it can be done online on the www.bikeregister.com platform. You add your bike details to the National Police-approved database for free, mark and protect it with one of their security marking kits and even apply warning label to reduce the risk of theft by warning thieves that you use BikeRegister.
2. Security locks
The most popular way to secure your bike is using a cable lock, chain or u-lock that can be attached to a rack. There is plenty of products to choose from, but you need to be aware that this gear may not be effective. Thieves who steal bikes may be equipped with special tools that can easily cut through such securities. It is advisable to spend more money to be sure that the lock you bought is solid and of good quality. Watch the video below to see a comparison of a few security locks.
In some bikes, especially city models, in rear wheel there are originally mounted security locks that you lock with a key. When it is closed thief is not able to cycle it but if you lose the key you may be in serious trouble. This is a good solution but should not be the only one.
3. Saddles and wheels
Bike is built of frame and components such as breaks, saddle, wheels, gears and so on. Thus many people decide to assemble one on their own. In such case wheels may be much more expensive than the frame. Thieves specializing in bikes usually know a lot about cycling gear and when they see an expensive saddle or wheels they go for them instead of taking the whole vehicle. How to prevent such situations from taking place? You should resign from easily regulated bike saddle and wheels mountings. They should be replaced with screws that can be unscrewed only using a dedicated spanner. What else can you do? If you have a saddle seatpost mounted using a butterfly screw you can take it out with you. Bike with no saddle is certainly less attractive for a potential thief.
4. GPS monitoring
Even the best secured bike can be stolen by a crafty or very determined thief. Here succours cutting edge technology that can be used not only to protect cars or houses, but also bikes. It is a perfect solution for those who want to monitor their beloved bikes. There are for example special GPS transmitters hidden in back lights. Thanks to them you can check location of your bike and what is going on with it in a given moment. GPS device is also great for parents whose children often go on long cycling trips. Additional functions of these devices allow for setting security zones, if they are crossed you receive a text message from the transmitter. More information can be found on the website: gps-do-roweru.sklep.pl.
5. My bike was stolen, what next?
It can happen to everyone, so if your bike gets stolen, report this to the police immediately. They often catch the thieves red-handed and find places where the loot is stored. If your bike is marked, when found it will be returned back to you. If you live in a big city, go to the nearby markets as thieves may want to sell your gear there. If you see your bike, call the police straightway.
Bikes have always been popular and more and more people are becoming enthusiastic cyclists. Autumn and winter periods, when the weather is not too good, are perfect for buying new equipment, exchanging the old one and also purchasing useful gadgets that help you get ready for the cycling season. Security matters should be of priority, as you want to enjoy your cycling gear as long as possible, don’t you?