Which Bike Locks are the Best?

We know a bike isn’t just a bike. It’s your bike. Whether that bike cost you thousands or was a bargain buy from a second-hand bike shop. So, it’s important to keep it safe.

Any bike lock is better than no bike lock. But when it comes to which bike lock is best, there are a few things to consider:

  • Where you’re locking your bike
  • How long you’re leaving your bike for
  • The Sold Secure rating of the bike lock
  • The type of bike lock

Check out the different types of lock available to help you find the best bicycle lock for you.

D1000 locking up a cargo bike
Hiplok D1000 locking up a cargo bike

Strongest Bike Lock

Most UK bike locks have a Sold Secure rating – Diamond, Gold, Silver or Bronze. Diamond is the highest level of security under the Sold Secure Pedal Cycle category.

However, the Hiplok D1000, our ground-breaking anti-angle grinder lock, was the first bike lock to be certified as Sold Secure Powered Cycle Diamond.

Using an advance carbon composite material, never previously used in bicycle locks, it aims to tackle cordless angle grinder attacks by bike thieves, which is on the rise.

The D1000 was the first bike lock of its kind, and the first to gain Sold Secure Powered Cycle Diamond accreditation. To achieve this, bike locks must withstand at least 90 seconds of angle grinder attack.

In fact, the Hiplok D1000 far surpassed this time limit, withstanding up to 20 minutes under a sustained angle grinder attack. As a result, the D1000 has earned it its stripes as one of the strongest bike locks around.

Following the launch of the D1000, we have released an extended range of security products with the same level of anti-angle grinder protection – the 1000 Series. This now features the DX1000, a larger version of the D1000 – optimised for larger E-bikes and motorcycles.

Best Chain Lock

Chain locks are some of the best rated bicycle locks by consumers. They have a number of benefits to using them.

For instance, they are usually very easy to spot. Just the sight of them will deter many opportunist thieves. They are also more flexible than a D-lock and will often allow you to lock up multiple bikes. This makes them a great option for at-home bike security, when combined with a wall or ground anchor, such as the Hiplok ANKR.

Another thing to bear in mind, is the security rating. Chain locks will often have a Sold Secure rating depending on its level of security.

One of our favourite bike locks is the Hiplok ORIGINAL – the first wearable bike lock. It is designed to be worn around your waist when you ride. This makes it easier to take a tough bike lock with you.

Plus, with a Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Silver rating, it offers a decent level of security too.

Best D Lock

The most secure bike locks usually fall within the D Lock category.

They are usually smaller and more compact that a chain lock. This usually makes them lighter to carry around.

The compact nature of the lock also makes it more difficult for bike thieves to attack with tools.

D locks generally perform better against standard theft tools such as bolt croppers. This is because the shackle on the D lock is made of thicker steel than then links of a chain.

So the best D lock for you will come down to security level and usability.

The Hiplok DX offers Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Diamond level protection. Plus it features Hiplok’s patented Clip + Ride design, allowing you to clip the bike lock onto belt straps or bags. But if you’re looking for the most secure bike lock, your best bet is the Hiplok D1000.

Most affordable bike lock

As we’ve said before, any bike lock is better than none at all. And an affordable bike lock can still be a good bike lock. It goes without saying that the lower the price, the lower the level of security. But that might be all you need for your bike.

The Hiplok Z LOK is a lightweight and robust security tie. And at £9.99 it falls within the ‘affordable’ category. Whilst not the most secure bike lock by any means, it is still surprisingly tough.

It’s great if you don’t lock your bike for a long time. Think café stops and quick pit stops. It’ll stop the opportunist from taking your pride and joy whilst you’re ordering your flat white.

However, if you want a bit more peace of mind, the Hiplok SPIN chain lock, is also a more affordable option. It features a 6mm hardened steel chain. Plus, the integrated 4-digit combination lock give SPIN gives the added value of convenience.

Best Lightweight Bike Lock 

A good bike lock will also factor in usability too. How easy is the lock to use and carry with you? Just two of the key questions the Hiplok design team ask when creating new products.

Some of the best lightweight bike locks are folding locks. They also have an added space-saving benefit. Hiplok SWITCH folding lock is lightweight yet secure and convenient.

When looking for a lightweight bike lock, you don’t necessarily want to forgo security level. At just over 1kg, you’d be right is saying there are lighter bike locks out there – such as the Z LOK or SPIN mentioned above.

But the SWITCH comes with a frame bracket, to carry the lock on the bike. So you don’t notice the weight at all. Unlike lighter options, this folding lock is rated Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Bronze.

Best Home Bike Security

In the UK, over 60% of bike thefts occur from or near the victim’s home. So don’t forget to lock up at home, too. Whether you store your bike in the house or in a garage or shed, there are various options available to lock up your ride.

The first thing to bear in mind, is that your bike lock is only as strong as what you lock it to. The Hiplok 1000 Series was designed with this in mind.

The range includes the DX1000 D lock and AX1000 anchor. Armed with these, you can create the ultimate locking set up at home. The modular design also means you can take the D lock with you when you’re out and about.

Each product within the 1000 Series range incorporates anti-angle grinder technology. So you’ve got the strongest bike security at home and on the move.

Sold Secure Rated Bike Locks

We’ve talked a lot about Sold Secure ratings. But why is this important? A bike lock’s Sold Secure rating indicates that it offers a certain level of protection.

Sold Secure are an independent testing body. It conducts a variety of tests to recreate real life bike theft attacks. The rating your bike lock earns indicates how well it holds up against these attacks.

Sold Secure Diamond Bike Locks

Pedal Cycle Diamond is the highest rating Sold Secure use for bicycles. Locks with this rating are aimed at protecting e-bikes and bicycles of high value.

All locks in this category will be able to withstand a 5-minute attack, using a full range of attack tools. This includes drilling with high-speed steel drill bits.

Following the introduction of this higher-level rating a few years ago, a number of Hiplok products were already Diamond standard. This includes the Hiplok DX D lock and the AIRLOK wall mounted bike hanger.

But as mentioned, some bike locks now surpass the Pedal Cycle ratings. The recently released 1000 Series, achieves a rating usually reserved for motorcycle locks: Sold Secure Powered Cycle Diamond.

Sold Secure Gold Bike Lock

A Sold Secure Gold bicycle lock is often the minimum requirement for bike insurance companies. Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Gold locks still offer a high level of security. They’re able to withstand a 5 minute attack test from a wide range of tools. They are therefore suitable for mid-high value bicycles.

The Hiplok GOLD chain lock is a great Sold Secure Gold option. Plus its wearable design means you can easily carry the lock with you when you ride.

Sold Secure Silver Bike Lock

As you’d expect, Sold Secure Silver bike locks withstand an attack for slightly less time – 3 minutes, using fewer attack tools.

That said, if you don’t plan on leaving your bike for an extended period, then it is a good bike lock for your needs.

Lower rated locks normally cost less. Therefore, this is something to factor into your decision making.

Sold Secure Bronze Bike Lock

Whilst still offering a good security level, Sold Secure Bronze bike locks are inevitably less robust. But as a result, you’ll often find the more lightweight bike locks sit within this category. Bronze locks aim to protect your bike from the opportunist thieves. They are able to withstand a 1-minute attack test using basic tools, such as a screwdriver or hammer.

Sold Secure Bronze locks may be perfectly good if you only leave your bike for short periods. Or in high-footfall areas where thieves are less likely to operate. In such cases, the Hiplok LITE is great bike lock for your needs.  

Things to consider

When considering which bike lock is best for you, the security level is key to bear in mind. But what dictates the security level you need?

The primary thing to consider is the value of your bicycle. Your bike may have cost you several thousand pounds or dollars.

Similarly, we know a bike’s value isn’t simply financial. It may hold sentimental value, it may be fundamental to your daily life – your transportation or even your mental health.

Whatever value you place on your bike, financial or otherwise, it should be reflected in your bike lock.

Locking Location

Consider where you are locking your bike and for how long. If you are leaving your bike on the street, out of sight, for several hours, you’ll want to opt for the strongest bike lock you can.

On the other hand, if you rarely leave your bike for more than a few minutes, a less robust bike lock will be more than suitable.

Z LOK café lock
A simple café lock may be more than suitable for your needs

Insurance Requirements

If you currently insure your bike it would be worth check the security requirements in your policy. Many bike insurers require a good bike lock. They will also often dictate a certain security level.

Types of Lock

Bike locks come in all shapes and sizes, with pros and cons for each type.

Think about:

  • How large your bike frame is
  • How many bikes you need to lock up
  • How long you are leaving your bike unattended

In most cases, the more compact the bike lock is the better, as it makes it harder for the bike thief to access.

However, you may need something longer and more flexible if you’ve got a large E-bike, cargo bike, or multiple bikes. In which case, a chain lock would be ideal.

In some cases a combination of two locks is best. For instance, with the Hiplok E-DX, you get the benefits of a compact D-lock, with the flexibility of a loop end chain.

Layer Your Security

As suggested above, quite often a combination of locks are the best. Good bike security practice is all about layers. 2 locks are better than 1. 3 locks are better than 2. You get the idea. For example, you might lock the frame with a strong bike lock and use a secondary cable lock to secure the wheels.

Use multiple bike locks
Good bike security is all about layers. Use more than one bike lock if you can.

The aim with any bike lock is to make it as difficult for the bike thief as possible. As such, any bike lock is better than no bike lock. But hopefully the advice above helps you choose the best bike lock for you.

Happy riding!

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