Best Bike Locks 2024 – Secure Locks to Keep Your Bike Safe


Love cruising around town on your bike? That feeling of freedom, the fresh air… the sinking dread when you realise your bike’s been stolen. We get it – bike theft is a major bummer. That’s why we’ve gone deep, testing tons of bike locks to find the best combo of security, convenience, and price to keep your wheels safe.

Whether you’ve got a fancy road bike or just need a lock for a quick coffee run, we’ve got you covered. From lightweight options you can toss in your bag to heavy-duty protection that can stand up to determined thieves, we’ll help you find the perfect lock for your riding style. Let’s go!

Quick list


U-locks remain a top choice for portable security. We evaluated locks across price ranges that balance convenience and protection.

Litelok X1

The Litelock X1

The Litelok X1 hits the sweet spot between security, portability, and price. While not the absolute strongest lock, it does offer next-level protection to keep your bike safe.

  • Solid Secure Diamond rated lock with dual locking shackle
  • Includes mount for carrying on bike frames
  • 15.8mm shackle with hardened steel and ceramic core
  • No insurance offer
  • Shackle not completely impervious to large angle grinders

Overall the Litelok X1 gives peace of mind for most areas with nice design details like the frame mount, silicone weather sealing, and coated shackle to protect bike paint. For the price, it’s one of the most secure and usable U-locks available today. For these reasons, this u lock comes out as the best lock on the market.

Hiplok D1000

If you demand the strongest U-lock protection available, the Hiplok D1000 is unmatched.

  • Features hardened steel shackle reinforced with graphene
  • 20mm thick shackle requires over 4 minutes to cut through
  • Double locking design needs two cuts to open
  • Soft rubber coating won’t scratch frames
  • Very heavy at over 4 pounds
  • Small interior opening
  • Expensive price tag
  • No mounting bracket included

While heavy and costly, the D1000, a quality lock, sets a new standard for portable bike security. The unique shackle construction thwarts even large angle grinders. If you ride an expensive ebike or leave your bike in a high theft area, it brings essential peace of mind. Just be prepared to carry the hefty lock weight.

Onguard Pitbull STD U-Lock

The Onguard Pitbull

The Onguard Pitbull hits a nice balance between price, security, and convenience.

  • 14mm dual-locking shackle
  • Includes 5 keys and carrying bracket
  • Offers optional registration & insurance
  • Resists bolt cutters and hacksaws
  • This type of lock is not highly resistant to angle grinder attacks.
  • Lock mechanism can get sticky over time

While not the strongest lock around, the Pitbull does well covering mid-level security needs at a budget-friendly price. Between the thick steel and double locking design, it takes some work to cut through. For the cost, nice touches like the bracket, multiple keys, and insurance registration make this our top value pick.

Abus Mini 410

the Abus Mini U-lock

Sometimes you just need a convenient U-lock without breaking the bank. That’s where the Abus Mini 410 delivers.

  • Compact 12mm U-lock with double bolting
  • Lightweight under 1 kg / 2.2 lbs
  • Silicone coating protects bike paint
  • Small interior opening
  • Only medium security rating

The Abus Mini 410 works well if you need portable security without weighing you down. While it only offers a moderate security level, the dual bolting still requires two cuts to remove. If you need a lock for quick coffee shop stops or secondary locking, this lock provides usable protection without too much bulk.

Folding Locks

Folding locks trade off some security for supreme portability and flexibility locking up. We found options spanning price ranges and protection levels including gold rated folding locks. Our top security folding lock choices are;

Abus Bordo Granit 6500 Folding Lock

The Abus Bordo folding bike lock

The Abus Bordo 6500 takes our top spot for all-around performance. It sets the standard for high security folding lock protection thanks to the 5.5mm thick boron alloy steel bars.

  • Gold rated by Sold Secure testing
  • Bars feature ABUS Powercell tech to resist cutting
  • Convenient holster for carrying while riding
  • Hinge system still vulnerable to attacks
  • Lock cylinder exposed to elements

If you want security but don’t love U-locks, the Bordo 6500 is a strong folding option. The robust locking mechanism and coated bars tolerate real abuse. It’s easier than a chain giving nearly equivalent protection, stopping people from walking away with your bike. Just avoid leaving it outside long-term in wet weather.

Abus Bordo 6500A SmartX

The Abus Bordo SmartX

The Abus Bordo SmartX takes a lock that’s already great and adds smart features. Let’s take a look at the best smart lock.

  • Retains the Gold rated 5.5mm boron alloy steel
  • Unlocks via Bluetooth app or keypad
  • Alerts anytime lock is moved
  • Very expensive
  • Lacks manual key override

If you want next-gen convenience, this smart lock is for you. With automatic unlocking as you walk up to your bike, there’s no fussing with keys. It also keeps tabs on your bike’s location and movement. While pricey, it brings useful technology to the vital task of securing your wheels. 

Kryptonite KryptoLok 610

The Kryptonite Kryptolock 610

Sometimes Grade A protection gets expensive. That’s where the Kryptonite KryptoLok 610 saves money with only a small security trade-off, meaning you’re able to lock your bike with peace of mind.

  • 5mm dual-stage boron alloy folding design
  • Lighter than most folding locks
  • Includes $1750 anti-theft protection
  • Bars and links vulnerable to large bolt cutters
  • Basic mechanical push-to-lock mechanism

As long as you avoid high-theft zones, this lock would resist smash-and-grab attempts. The lighter design with dual-stage locking still needs multiple cuts to remove. While it costs less than other chain locks and folding locks, you still get useful features like insurance registration and carrying holster.

Hiplok Z Lok Combo

Sometimes you just need to deter walk-away theft without adding much weight. The Hiplok Z Lok uses a thin steel cable but ditches keys to keep things light. That being said, this lock is easy to get through for the determined.

  • Compact coiling cable lock with combination dial
  • Tiny pack size under 2.5″ x 1.5″
  • Steel cable covered in tough nylon
  • Offers minimal security
  • Easily cut by hand tools

While this lock offers only basic protection, the Z Lok stows easily in jersey pockets or packs while weighing next to nothing. For cafe stops or kid bikes, it conveniently deters snatch and grab thieves. Just don’t expect it to stop bolt cutters or saws and definitely don’t use this lock to secure your wheels in high risk areas.

Chain Locks

While heavy, chains offer flexibility to lock up in non-standard situations. We found great options providing both portable and stationary security. If you need to lock a bike in a high risk area and bike theft is a real concern, chains provide much needed security.

Hiplok Gold

The Hiplock Gold Chain

If you want serious chain protection with maximum portability, this is your lock. The Hiplok Gold packs 10mm security in a wearable design.

  • Kryptonite Evolution is a gold-rated chain with hardened manganese steel links.
  • Fits waists up to 44″ without needing to lock
  • Includes pads to prevent frame damage
  • Quite a heavy lock at over 2kg / 5 pounds
  • On the expensive end

The Hiplok Gold makes chains usable for daily carry. Tuck the fat links inside the fabric sleeve when riding, then lock up frames and anchors as needed. While heavy, it lets you bring robust protection without worrying about storage. The lock collar and gold security rating also indicate serious resistance against attacks. Just be wary of the bulk and cost compared to some other chain options.

Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit Chain

The Kryptonite Fahgettaboudit chain lock

Sometimes you need a maximum security lock to use long-term. That’s exactly what the Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit Chain delivers.

  • Massive 14mm six-sided chain links
  • Resists all portable hand tools
  • Vinyl coating avoids frame damage
  • Includes high security NY disc lock
  • Very heavy at over 15 lbs/7 kg
  • Tricky to transport

With the New York name, you know this chain means businesses. The burly links stand up to attacks while the included disc lock secures wheels in place. While obnoxiously heavy, this heavy lock gives total peace of mind to lock up prized rides indefinitely. Use this when only hardcore protection will do. Kryptonite locks tend to have a reputation among thieves, this is a New York lock you can trust to work in any major city.

Kryptonite Keeper 785

The Kryptonite Keeper 785 Chain lock

If that New York chain feels overkill, Kryptonite Keeper 785 saves your back and wallet.

  • 7mm four-sided chain links
  • Includes $500 anti-theft protection
  • Lighter security chain without costing a fortune
  • Provides basic protection only
  • Vulnerable to 24″ bolt cutters

The Keeper 785 hits a nice price and protection balance. While the links seem small for a chain, the square design does thwart hacksaws and smaller cutters. Just don’t expect the same level of security as pricier options. But for low-risk areas or secondary locking, it lets you add chain flexibility without big cost or carrying pains.

How to Choose a Lock

With so many lock types and brands available, choosing what to buy can feel overwhelming. But paying attention to a few key factors makes the decision easier. All locks can be defeated, but some locks are less secure than others. Here’s what matters most when choosing the right protection.

How Are Bikes Being Stolen?

To defend against bike thieves, it helps to understand their methods. While techniques change over time, these are the most common tools used to steal locked bikes.

  • Bolt Cutters: Simple but very effective at snipping thinner lock shackles, these are often used to cut through the locks on thinner models and wires. Quality U-locks resist most models.
  • Portable Angle Grinders: Powerful but loud battery grinders can cut get through any bike lock, many in seconds. Thicker, harder locks withstand them longer.
  • Hacksaws & Power Tools: Sawing through a lock takes time but longer chains and folding locks are vulnerable. Locks under 10mm thickness are also at risk.
  • Hammer Attacks: Thieves use hammers and pry bars to stress and pop open vulnerable folding locks. High-end folding locks prevent this technique.
  • Picking: While dramatic, picking bike locks actually makes up a tiny share of bike thefts. But high precision cylinders do increase pick resistance.

The trend shows that cheap battery angle grinders are behind a growing share of bike thefts. Prioritising portable locks over 15mm thick will give you the best protection. Chains still deter grinders somewhat by not giving flat spaces to cut. But no lock can claim to be grinder proof– just resistant based on thickness and material hardness.

What Is the Right Type of Bike Lock?

With bike thief lock picking tools in mind, next decide which type of lock suits your particular needs.

  • U-Locks excel at portable security with their small size to contain anchors and resist leverage attacks. Just note frame fit and thicknesses.
  • Folding Locks pack down smaller and flex to reach non-standard racks. But they also have more vulnerability to hand tools attacking exposed hinges.
  • Chains provide flexibility for odd anchor points and frames. But they require heavy duty links to equal U-locks, along with bids and straps to transport.

There’s no universally “best” lock style– each has pros and cons. Think about your typical parking situations, ride locations, and storage options to choose what works for you, do you need to lock your bike to something? Also consider supplementing your main lock with a lightweight secondary deterrent. Two locks are better than one! 

How Are Bike Locks Rated?

Independent agencies like Sold Secure in the UK and ART Foundation in the Netherlands test locks at various tools and techniques. Brands then display rating levels like Gold, Silver, Bronze (or diamond, platinum, etc) so you know what bike security protection you’re getting.

While not foolproof, these ratings let you comparison shop for security confidence. Look for Gold or Diamond ratings on mid-range or expensive locks. Cheaper ones often score only Bronze but still deter casual grabs.

What Type of Lock is Most Secure?

With portable angle grinders posing the biggest theft threat nowadays, the most impervious locks use thicker, hardened steel shackles and chains. But every lock still has vulnerabilities, so using multiple deterrents boosts security.

U-locks focus their bulk into compact, tamper-resistant packages around 15mm or thicker and often require thieves to attack the locks on both sides. Chains achieve similar strength through their flexible links interlacing with each other and the bike. Quality locks in both styles force thieves to make multiple noisy cuts while resisting prying and pulling.

If your main priority is keeping your expensive bike safe, lean towards the most formidable U-locks and chains rated Sold Secure Gold or Diamond. Brands like Kryptonite, Abus, Hiplok, OnGuard and Litelok lead the top-end security pack. The New York Fahgettaboudit line exemplifies the hardcore high-security approach using a burly 16mm shackle and titanium reinforcement.

Folding locks compromise somewhat with more vulnerable hinge points but compensate with convenience. High-end folding locks like the Abus Bordo 6500 still require power tools for multiple cuts to remove them. For secondary deterrence, lighter folding locks, and even cables lock may thwart thieves looking for easier targets.

How to Secure Your Bike In Public

Out in the world with your bike, what’s the best way to secure your bike and gear? Using the strongest individual lock you can is a start, but just as crucial is how you lock up.

First, what will you lock to? Seek out legitimate rack poles firmly fixed in concrete whenever possible rather than flimsy sign posts. Scoping out regular parking spots helps since you can’t always lug the heaviest locks everywhere.

Check clearance around potential poles and bike mounts to thread locks and frames. Keep the lock snug to limit wiggle room for hand tool attacks. Experts also recommend locking a wheel along with the frame whenever feasible to deter rollovers.

Think too whether one lock may suffice or if a second lock adds protection given parking duration and risk profile. Remember, more separate cuts needed thwarts thieves after easy grabs. A U-lock on the rear wheel and frame plus a lighter front wheel lock can dissuade banditry.

Finally, position locks high off the ground. Ground clearance removes solid leverage support for bigger cutters. Choosing spots with decent foot and vehicle traffic and lighting safeguards you as well against shady tampering.

Stopping Thieves Targeting Special Bikes

For many bikes like e-bikes and high-end road bikes, their expensive parts pose tempting targets for thieves. Protecting your prized ride takes careful prep since casual locking usually won’t suffice. How can you defend these bikes against determined attacks to pilfer components?

Begin with the beefiest U or chain lock budget allows, as close to 20mm thickness as possible. Prioritize Sold Secure Gold or Diamond ratings for assurance. Hardened locking bolts that secure wheels can replace quick releases, needing a socket wrench to remove.

When locking up, pay mind to thread bulky locks through harder-to-access sections of the frame. This frustrates attempts to insert pry bars or cable cutters to defeat locks.

Armored gear cables add a disincentive against snipping brake lines or derailleurs. Proper registration stickers also signal the bike is well-tracked in case stolen.

While no lock fully prevents a determined thief willing to publicly attack your bike with power tools, every deterrent and hassle lock slows them down. This buys critical time for passersby to notice and react.

How Do Thieves Actually Defeat Bike Locks?

From school bike sheds to metro bike corrals, many bikes left locked still disappear at alarming rates. So how do clever thieves cut through locks despite makers’ continually improving defenses?

The most common and effective technique nowadays uses easily concealed portable angle grinders. These battery powered discs make short work of thinner or softer bike locks not exceeding 15mm thickness. A seasoned bike thief carries multiple charged packs and spare cut-off wheels to slice through tougher U-locks. Locking both shackles doesn’t slow them much either.

Top-end locks now incorporate solid discs or laminate layers to abrade grinding wheels. Squaring off shackles instead of round tubes also somewhat hinders cutting. But given time, battery grinders still prevail.

For other attacks, pliers or handheld hydraulic shears make quiet work of lower security cable locks. Lock picking receives dramatic hype but proves rare for bicycles due to unpredictable snap tensions.

Hammers and length pipe levers expertly applied pop open certain grade folding locks. Cheaper U-locks also surrender to these brute prying methods. But again, grinder-wielding pros focus their quick, mobile attacks on locks under 15mm thick. This is where to invest in the best portable security currently possible.

What Is the Difference Between a U-Lock and a D-Lock?

You’ll often see the terms U-lock and D-lock used interchangeably. They refer to the same style lock shaped like the letter U. With the locking bar attached, these locks form a D shape. In the US the term U-lock is more common, while the UK and Europe refer to them as D-locks more often. But wherever you live, they mean the identical portable lock style.

Why Is There No Cable Lock on This List?

We left cable locks off our recommendations for a simple reason: they don’t provide meaningful protection against any bike thief. Common tools snip through cable locks in just seconds while making minimal noise. Based on feedback from cyclists who’ve had bikes stolen, cables most often failed them even in quick stops.

That said, super lightweight cables do serve a purpose for low-risk public spots or kid bikes. They provide psychological deterrence when you remain within eyesight of the bike. But don’t trust them to defend your prized ride overnight! Spend a few bucks more on a U-lock or chain for reliable security.

Are Key or Combination Bike Lock Mechanisms Better?

Locks typically feature either key or combination dial operation. Which works better comes down to personal preference, but both have minor security implications.

Keys feel most secure and you can’t reveal a pattern accidentally. But losing them means replacing the cylinder. Combos let you share access or reset without new keys yet prying eyes may steal your code.

In dry conditions, quality key and combo locks work equally well. Keep clean, lubed, and inspect them periodically for sticky operation. Choose what suits your habits and budget best.

How to Lock Your Bike

No matter how strong your new lock, proper locking technique increases security. Follow this advice to best deter bike thieves:

  • Whenever possible, lock to an immovable object like a bike rack, pole or fence rather than basic signs that can snap off.
  • Keep your lock off the ground. Thieves use the surface for leverage and shelter from view.
  • Eliminate extra space inside the lock to prevent pry attacks.
  • Add a quality secondary deterrent like a folding lock even for quick stops. More metal makes stealing slower and riskier.
  • Lock both wheels and frame together if you’ll be away from your bike.
  • Register your bike and record serial numbers in case the worst happens. This improves chances for the police to locate it.

What About Insurance?

Some locks include offers for anti-theft registration or insurance in case your locked bike gets stolen. Registering your purchase also helps police positively identify recovered bikes. While claims often prove tricky, it adds peace of mind to start the process when buying the lock.

Make Sure You Register Your Bike

Along with insurance paperwork, register your bike’s serial number in one of the global registry databases like Bike Index. This improves the chance of getting your ride back if recovered after theft. Recording your contact info, photos of the bike, and unique characteristics also helps. Registering useful proof for insurance claims as well.

Consider a Bike Tracker

For extra bike security, installing a GPS tracking device alerts you if someone moves your bike. Trackers range from Apple AirTags to handlebar-mounted cellular locators with bike-specific vibration alerts. Tracking adds stress after the fact but may help authorities recover it faster.

How We Tested the Best Bike Locks

To provide a guide to secure your bike, we researched over 50 bike lock models from major brands. We evaluated real-world performance and specs, then compiled testing data and customer reviews across various publications. Locks with top ratings for long-term durability, design, convenience, and of course security ratings rose to the top of our selections in each style. Whenever possible we include hands-on test notes and photos as well.

Knowing that no lock suits every rider perfectly, we aimed to highlight top choices across a wide span of price and protection levels. Every bike and ride scenario differs, so no matter how or where you roll, you can lock smart. We break down how to match security to your typical parking situations. Now get out and ride with confidence you’ve got the right lock defending

FAQ About Commuter Bike Locks

Q: What are the best bike locks of 2024?

A: The best bike locks of 2024 offer high security and reliable lock mechanisms to protect your bicycle. any of the picks from the list above will do a great job depending on your requirements.

Q: What is a lightweight lock and why is it important?

A: A lightweight lock is a lock that provides security without adding excessive weight to your bike. It is important for cyclists who prioritise portability and ease of use.

Q: What is the most secure type of bike lock?

A: The most secure type of bike lock is often considered to be a sturdy U-lock, as it offers excellent protection against theft and can be challenging for thieves to break.

Q: What is the Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit lock?

A: The Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit lock is a highly secure and robust bike lock known for its durability and resistance to cutting or picking.

Q: What is the Abus Granit X-Plus 540 and how does it compare to other locks?

A: The Abus Granit X-Plus 540 is a top-rated bike lock with outstanding security features. It is comparable to other high-end locks like the Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit in terms of protection.

Q: Are there locks available for securing bikes with expensive or electric bike models?

A: Yes, there are specially designed locks available to secure expensive or electric bike models, providing robust protection tailored to the specific needs of these bikes.

Q: Why is it recommended to use multiple locks for securing a bike?

A: Using multiple locks, such as a U-lock and a chain lock, adds an extra layer of security and makes it more challenging for potential thieves to bypass the locks and steal the bike.

Q: How can I ensure the security of my bike with the chosen lock?

A: To ensure the security of your bike with the chosen lock, it is important to properly lock both the frame and wheels of the bike, and to secure it to a fixed and sturdy object.

Q: What factors should I consider when buying a bike lock?

A: When buying a bike lock, consider factors like the size and value of your bike, the level of security needed, and the lock’s resistance to cutting and picking, to ensure it meets your specific security requirements.

Q: How can I determine the best bike lock for my needs?

A: To determine the best bike lock for your needs, assess the security features, portability, and ease of use, while matching the lock’s capabilities with the security demands of your particular biking situation.

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