How protect your motorcycle from thieves away from home

Motorcycle theft is an increasing problem. But becoming a victim to it isn’t just down to being in the wrong place at the wrong time. There are many steps you can take to increase the security of your bike. Which in turn, will decrease the likelihood of it being stolen – even in major cities.

When you’re out and about, it might be impractical to carry around lots of bulky security devices. But there are plenty of alternatives to heavy-duty products that don’t have the same amount of weight and bulk. Some of them don’t need carrying at all!

Follow these steps to make sure your motorbike is safe away from home. Also see the infographic summarizing the steps below the article.

Park in a secure location

First of all, find a place to leave your motorbike that might make thieves think twice. A car park with CCTV and security is an obvious choice. Though anywhere with security measures, or at least plenty of onlookers will put off most opportunist thieves.

If you’re commuting in London or regularly visiting it on a bike, this London motorbike bay map can help you find the safest parking spots. It’s a recently launched service listing all bike parking bays in the city.

Engage the steering lock

Almost every bike has a steering lock, and it’s the easiest security measure to apply when you park up. However, it’s not the hardest thing for a thief to break so don’t rely solely on this for your bike’s security. At best, it’s a decent deterrent to any would-be thieves.

Fit a disc lock

A simple lightweight disc lock fits in your jacket pocket or in most cases under the seat. The brightly coloured cable lashed to the handlebars is a clear visual deterrent to thieves. Plus, it’s a good reminder for you to not ride away with the lock still attached! (We’ve all done it…). You can pick one up from as little as £20. There are also motion-sensitive alarmed versions available for that next-level of security.

Lock and chain through the rear wheel

Bolt croppers will make light work of a cable type lock, so you need a chain and padlock. Buying the heaviest duty chain you can find sounds like a good idea, and the same goes for the lock. But in reality, carrying something as substantial as that is so impractical you may find yourself leaving it at home.

Get a chain with 10-12mm links and you’ll have the best strength-to-weight ratio. You can pick one up for as little as £30, but prices can run into the hundreds

Loop it through the back wheel and attach it to the sturdiest piece of metal you can find (lamppost, railings etc.). Make sure to keep the chain off the floor too. Thieves can use the ground for leverage with bolt croppers or use a sledgehammer to smash the links/lock.

Fit an alarm system – and don’t forget to set it!

Motorbike thieves are quick. Very quick. So an alarm on it’s own isn’t that much of a deterrent for them. Though when coupled with other security measures, the time it’ll take a thief to get away with your bike is drastically increased. That’s when a noisy alarm really becomes effective.

Get a Thatcham approved alarm and have it fitted by a professional. Then it’ll both increase your motorbike security and reduce your insurance premium!

And if the worst should happen…

Even with all the previous security measures, a determined thief will still find a way to steal the motorbike. So the best measure you can take to help with recovering the bike is to fit a GPS tracker. GPS trackers deliver real time coordinates of your bike to your phone, whether it’s stationary or on the move. This means that you’re able to work with the police and quickly track down and recover your motorcycle before it becomes another victim to the black market. Just like Colin did when his BMW R1200GS was stolen in London.

How to protect your motorcycle – in a nutshell:

6 security tips that will help you protect you motorcycle from thieves

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