Electric bikes are by no means cheap, and thieves notice this too, choosing to steal the most opportunistic ones when their owners aren't around, so to save yourself money in the long run, investing in a bike lock is important.
Your electric bike is only as secure as the type of lock you choose, you want to deter a bike thief, but also not waste time undoing a difficult lock or chain-link every time you want to ride.
To help you pick the best type of bike lock for your e-bike, we've rounded up some of the best secure bike lock options below and reviewed them one by one, to protect your bike when you're not around.
Let's get into the reviews.
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If you're looking for U lock design in your high-quality locks choice, the via velo lock could be worth checking, featuring a 15mm x 7.5-inch size and a 10mm x 120cm cable, the U-bar lock is simple to fit.
Main specs of this top-rated locks design are its thick 15mm casing for protection in all weather and double bolt crossbar. The shackle has a 65.5 kN rating and is pick, pull and drill resistant and comes with three different keys in case you lose yours.
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This type of lock can also be mounted via its bracket when not in use, meaning you don't have to carry the cable lock separately. Its cable lock design is long enough to loop around two bikes if needed.
Not only is the lock rust-resistant, but its design allows you to enter a unique code to open the lock if your keys go missing, this can be registered online upon buying the lock.
Overall, we rate the via velo Bike U lock as one of the best locks on our list, its spare keys allow you to have a backup in case you lose any and the larger size allows you to lock not just one but two bikes at the same time.
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Downfalls of this strong lock are its extra weight which can be heavy to carry around, the lock is also said to freeze in very cold conditions.
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The Yale security chain bike lock comes with an 1800mm chain and is an excellent choice of security locks if you are on a budget.
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For the material the chain is made from titanium hardened steel, the lock itself has a four-point locking system for pull protection and is pick, pull, bump and drill resistant for a high level of security.
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This Yale lock has a gold standard-rated level of protection and is covered with a double rubber bumper to keep it protected from scratches. Four spare keys come with the cable lock for backup and one microlight is included for using the lock in the dark.
To conclude, this Yale security chain bike lock is one of the strongest bike locks on our list, having a gold rating and a large chain size for wrapping.
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We also like this lock due to its cover too which protects the bike material from scratches.
Drawbacks of this Yale chain lock are its durability, the lock has been reported by numerous people to lock up after a few months of usage. Do be aware the chain lock is quite heavy too.
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For people who want a mini secure lock, this Kryptonite u lock could be used as a main or secondary lock for extra protection for your bike, it's also one of the lightest lock options on our list.
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This 13mm steel shackle has a patent-pending double bolt design as well as a sliding dust cover to prevent it from getting debris inside. Its cylinder design picks and is pull-resistant from thieves.
Overall, we rate this Kryptonite evolution as a good lock choice if you are after a lock which is small, discreet and easy to carry around.
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The portable lock is also one of the most affordable u-locks on our list.
Negatives of this mini-bicycle u lock are its strength of the design, the lock can be cut through as multiple people have reported so might be best off used as a secondary lock.
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If you are looking for a gold rating heavy-duty lock with a D lock design, this Master Lock model could be a great choice for securing your e-bike when left alone.
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Main specs of the D lock are its hardened steel material which is resistant to any kind of prying or cutting, it also has three certifications, one including police approval for confidence. The universal D lock can be used on any kind of bike, from folding bikes to mountain types.
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The shackle is rated to be able to withstand two tons of force and its design has a weatherproof grip. The lock weighs around 1.3kg and has a mounting bracket for all kinds of bike types.
Four keys are included with the D lock as spares and the sliding dust cover prevents the D lock from dust and debris. Total measurements of the lock are 1.4 x 21 x 10.4 cm.
The Master Lock D lock is overall a great type of lock to choose if you're on a budget and want a heavy-duty gold secure rating lock.
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This lock is also simple to put together, simply sliding in which reduces the time of locking and unlocking your e-bike.
Negatives of this Master Lock D lock are its cable which is said to be a very tight fit, the material of the lock is also mainly made out of plastic which reduces its quality.
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This Yale security bike lock is an ultra hardened shackle which has a four-point locking crossbar and is pick, pulls and bump resistant.
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The 1200mm vinyl coated cable makes the level of security on the lock higher and its level of protection is gold rated. Four spare keys are included with the security bike lock in case you lose one and a micro light for unlocking your u-bar lock in the dark.
To conclude, the Yale security lock is one of the most affordable locks on our list, the bike chain locks are rated gold secure and we like this model in particular thanks to its rubber coating too which stops it from scratching the bike.
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Downfalls of this Yale bike lock are the locking process which requires you to detach the head when locking, this can take a lot of time. The security locks model has also been reported by a few people to seize up.
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To conclude our best lock reviews, our favourite high-security lock for keeping your e-bike safe is the via velo Bike U Lock, this U-lock model 65.5 kN rating, easy mounting and is rust-resistant, making it an excellent choice for locking one or two e-bikes securely.
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As a second choice, we also suggested the Yale YCL3/10/180/1 Maximum Security Chain Bike Lock. This Yale lock is gold rated and a great option if you're looking for a chain style lock rather than a U-lock.
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After reviewing the top-rated e-bike locks to help keep your bike secure, we can now move on to our buying guide which will cover the different types of bike locks on the market, what to look for in your bike lock, tips for locking up your e-bike and how to protect your electric bike from theft.
Having a level of protection for your electric bike is more important than ever at the moment, e-bike theft is on the rise, especially after the pandemic, when more people took to getting electric bikes.
On average, around 113,000 bikes have been stolen in the UK over the last year, the actual risk level is much higher for e-bikes, being 3x more likely to be stolen than a standard bike. It's not just the e-bikes themselves which are getting stolen, but also components such as the motor, battery and GPS.
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Electric bike thieves can be split into two types, opportunist and professional, the latter typically carry around tools such as cable cutters and hydraulic jacks. Typically, your e-bike will often be targeted if it has a cheap bike lock, like a combination lock since they are easier to get into.
This is why choosing the best lock is important.
So as you can know what you need to be protecting your e-bike against, we've listed the main ways and tools that thieves commonly use to steal e-bikes below.
Hydraulic jacks are powerful enough to lift a car off the ground, which also means they are powerful enough to snap a bike lock, they are used less commonly however since they are bulky to carry around, these would mostly be used by professional thieves.
The best way to avoid this theft is by using a smaller shackle so that the jack cannot fit through the space.
Cable cutters are a very common form of bike theft tool due to their miniature size which can fit easily into your pocket, this allows thieves to get through cable locks with ease. To avoid this type of theft happening to you, use a metal lock which a cable lock will prove useless against.
Freezing bike locks is very uncommon, but it is a way to shatter locks and steel electric bikes, freezing locks to cold enough temperatures. Most of the top types of locks will be resistant to extreme temperatures, so freezing them will not work. Also, keep the lock further from the ground so striking it will be harder.
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Portable grinders are a tool which can get through nearly any kind of bike lock, they are not used often however since they can make a lot of noise during the grinding process.
There is no lock on the market which can prevent being opened by an angle grinder, the best you can do to prevent your bike from these tools is by using a very thick lock so that it can take longer to grind through, securing the bike with two not just one lock will always deter thieves too since it's more time-consuming.
Hacksaws are cheap and easy to use, whether they are kept in your pocket or a backpack, they are a common tool for bike thieves. A hacksaw with multiple teeth could get through a bike lock cable with ease, hardened steel locks will make this harder.
Bolt cutters can be miniature, with some being just 6-inches in size, making them a popular tool for bike thieves. They can get through cable locks and D-locks with ease. For cable locks, try to get one with a thickness over 16mm as this will make it more resistant, hardened steel locks are also a better choice.
Avoid unbranded cheap locks, believe it or not, these can be pulled apart with your hands if there is enough tension. Ensure you are choosing a sold secure type of lock with a gold rating or silver rating to avoid this possibility.
Hammers can be used to break open cheap bike locks with enough blows, keeping your lock far from the ground can help with this. Crowbars can also be used for twisting locks, making sure the shackle is full on your lock will help to prevent this.
Moreover, we have also written an article about the best 3000 watts electric bike conversion kits in 2022.
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Now we know the types of thieves and what they will be using to try and open your electric bike locks, we dive into looking at the different types of e-bike locks and their pros and cons.
D-locks are also known as U-locks, they are one of the most common kinds of bike locks on the market and work by having a u-shaped bar connected to a locking mechanism.
These kinds of locks can be large enough to loop through to a bike rack or inserted through the bike's tire or rear wheel and frame to stop it from rolling.
The pros of D-locks and U-locks are that they are very tough, and they also do not tend to weigh much which makes them portable. These top-rated locks can be difficult to loop through bike frames however and some can be very heavy, making them harder to carry.
Cable locks typically come in both combination and key varieties, they are designed with a locking mechanism in between two cable ends. You can typically find cable locks designed with either steel cable twisted together or armoured shells over wires.
These types of basic bike locks are very lightweight and easy to carry but offer the least security since they are easy to cut through with cable cutters. We would suggest using this basic lock as more of a secondary lock.
Chain locks are made with metal links and a lock, they do provide decent security as budget locks but this does depend on the size of the chain links, with a bulky chain lock weighing a lot.
Another benefit of chain locks is that they can be looped around nearly any kind of electric bike, you just need to consider how you will carry the lock.
Folding locks are newer designs of lock and are made from unfolding metal bars, decent quality folding locks are as secure as D locks and have a lightweight, you can also secure them to multiple points on your electric bike.
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After learning about all the different types of electric bikes, we can move on to looking at the key features your best electric bike lock should have.
We've listed the essentials to consider in your lock below for a high level of security.
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Even if you buy the best top-end model lock, you still need to know the best way to lock up your bike to protect it from a potential thief.
We've listed some tips for locking below.
As we all know, having a decent bike lock for your electric bike is important to make it unattractive to thieves and protect your bike, but there is some other worth knowing tips to help prevent your electric bike from getting stolen.
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How often are electric bikes stolen?
Electric bikes are stolen often due to them being so expensive and easy to grab for opportunistic thieves, although it has been said the number of bicycle thefts in the UK has fallen slightly after covid.
Which bike locks cannot be cut?
Hardened steel locks are the best kind of bike lock to choose if you want to avoid your lock being cut, however, they are still not entirely unbreakable, the best type to look out for is a diamond secure rating lock but be prepared to pay more.
How does a thief cut a bike lock?
For cutting cable bike locks, most thieves will simply just use a standard cable cutter to get the job done in seconds. Some can also simply smash the lock against the ground to shatter it.
How expensive are diamond secure bike locks?
Diamond secure bike locks are the best security a bike lock can offer, most tend to cost around £60 and above, but this does change according to the size and the type.
What do sold secure bike locks mean?
Sold secure are police and government-approved testing company for locks, they use all kinds of picking and force methods to test the durability of different locks, proving how secure they can be and then assigning them a rating of either bronze, gold, or silver or diamond.
Are bike locks heavy?
This depends on the type, most chain locks can be pretty heavy, since the better the chain, the heavier the weight. Always check the weight beforehand since you will need to ensure they are portable enough to carry around on your bike.
How do I secure my electric bike's battery?
You can buy some locking devices for electric bike batteries which helps to keep them secure, or if they are removable and not too heavy simply take the battery with you, they are one of the most expensive parts of your electric bike.
Our number one lock for protecting your electric bike is the via velo Bike U Lock, the bike lock has a 65.5 kN rating and is resistant to most methods of theft such as picking and force, we also like the 15mm casing for this e-bike which protects it from weather and scratches.
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As a second choice, we also suggested the Yale YCL3/10/180/1 Maximum Security Chain Bike Lock if you are after a chain type of lock, this lock is also rated as gold secure.
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