Finding safe and secure bike storage is vital.
Let’s face it – leaving your bike outside isn’t ideal. If it’s outside for a day or two won’t do it too much harm. But leaving it there permanently will make it vulnerable to moisture and mean it’ll probably start to rust – especially in the UK where we have a lot of rain and some snow.
And that’s not to mention thieves! If you leave your bike outside, it’ll be more tempting for people to steal.
According to data from Statista, there were 88,299 bike thefts reported in England and Wales in 2019/20 . While those figures are noticeably lower than 2018/19 (when there were 98,283 bike thefts), they still highlight the need to keep your bike safe.
With this in mind, here are seven ways to ensure you store your bike safely outside:
1. Buy bike garden storage
How do you keep your bike sheltered from rain, wind, snow and other elements and ensure it stays away from prying eyes?
Yes, that’s right – a bike storage shed! As long as you have somewhere outside (like a garden or a yard – preferably at the back of your house), bike sheds can help ensure your bike stays secure and enjoys a longer life.
The best kind of garden bike shed also comes with a range of security features to help ensure that, in case thieves do find it, they’re less likely to get inside. And the prospect of thieves finding the bike shed leads us neatly on to the next tip…
2. Choose the bike shed’s location with care
As we stated earlier, the best place to store your bike is somewhere where thieves can’t see or reach. Ideally, you would place your bike in a back garden or backyard that no-one can see from the road, back lanes, alleys or from other houses nearby.
3. Secure the garden
For secure bike storage, it makes sense to keep the fences or walls surrounding your yard or garden in good condition. Preferably, you should also have high enough fences that thieves find it hard to see in or climb into your garden and reach your bikes.
4. Don’t advertise your bike’s location
If you use an app like Strava, which tracks the route of your rides, you should know that bike thieves now target users .
As a result, it’s sensible to start tracking your ride a good distance from your home; you can also set up a ‘privacy zone’ or keep your profile private and avoid posting your whereabouts on social media.
5. Think about the design of the shed
To further avoid the gaze of thieves, it would be wise to choose dedicated bike garden storage – and not a standard garden shed. Why? Because most (but not all) general-purpose sheds have windows – making the bike visible from the outside (and more tempting to thieves).
If you must have windows on your shed, you may consider something like the Security Apex, which comes with security windows and free security protection bar.
Metal, plastic or wooden bike shed?
You can also choose between a metal, plastic or wooden bike shed. The average metal bike shed is strong but are prone to rust. Plastic sheds don’t need much maintenance, but they tend to suffer from condensation build-up.
Unfortunately, inferior timber products also use OSB or chipboard – which is easy to break and offers little protection for your bike inside.
But by contrast, the best wooden bike sheds or bike stores are well-built with high-quality timber and thick tongue and groove cladding to make them extra-rigid and long-lasting. They also come with double doors for easy access, as well as a lock, key and shoot bolts on the backs of the doors to make them more secure.
6. Fit anti-vandal screws, locks and alarms
At Tiger, we also offer a range of optional extras with each bike shed. These include Kasp Hasp and Staple disk or brass locks, as well as security posts to help lock your bike in place.
In the case of Hasp and Staple locks, the hasp covers and protects the screw fittings – meaning they can’t be unscrewed.
Police advice suggests using two Hasp and Staple locks – one fitted 1/3 up and one fitted 1/3 down the door .
In addition, anti-vandal door-hinge screws – otherwise known as tamper-proof screws – also help make it more difficult for thieves to break in. How? Well, they go all the way through the wood and are fixed on the inside by nuts and bolts – helping to create a secure bike shed.
Extra bike shed security
Some extra security-conscious bike shed owners also choose to fit alarms inside their bike sheds. The best ones contain movement sensors and door triggers that you can arm or disarm using a code or remote-control fob.
7. Anchor your shed to the ground
Anchoring kits are designed for wooden bike sheds (and wooden sheds in general). These help secure the body of the shed to the ground and stop would-be thieves from lifting it up and getting inside.