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How To Choose a Lock For Your E-Bike

So you’ve just bought a new e-bike and are wondering which bike lock you should use. 

Since e-bikes are considerable investments, you’re right to do your research on the best way to secure them. 

To briefly summarise the guide below, you’ll want to consider several things when choosing a bike lock for your e-bike:

  • Where you’ll be locking your e-bike (risk level of area)
  • How much your e-bike cost
  • How long you’ll leave your e-bike unattended for
  • Whether or not you’re going to insure your e-bike
  • The security that the lock provides for your bike
Five different bike locks suitable for e-bikes
Table of Contents
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    Understanding E-bike Security

    As e-bikes cost more than their pedal-powered counterparts, they’re often targeted by thieves looking to make a quick buck. 

    Knowing that your e-bike sits at the top of a thief’s wish list is a horrible thought, and we understand just how draining it is to worry about the security of your bike whilst you’re away from it. 

    Since e-bikes feature multiple expensive components, you’ll want to develop a good understanding of your bike and its components. 

    You’ll want to learn:

    • Which of your e-bike’s components are easily removable
    • Can the battery be locked in place
    • Does your e-bike have any built-in security features
    • What security information the manufacturer of your e-bike provides

    The more you know about your e-bike and its components, the better you’ll be able to protect it and minimise damage should it be targeted by a thief. 

    Once you’ve studied the above, you’ll have a better understanding of what’ll be required when it comes to locking your e-bike.

    Bike Lock Security Ratings for E-Bikes

    Most good-quality bike locks are independently tested and graded on their security by testing houses such as Sold Secure and ART. 

    These security ratings allow us cyclists to understand what different locks are intended for and, ultimately, whether or not they’re suitable for our bikes. 

    Sold Secure are the most well-known and recognised independent security testing organisation in the bicycle security world.

    Their thorough testing procedures expose any weaknesses a lock may have, providing accurate insight into the security a bike lock offers. 

    Once tested, bike locks can receive ratings from two main categories:

    • Sold Secure Pedal Cycle (Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond)
    • Sold Secure Powered Cycle (Gold and Diamond)

    The name of Sold Secure’s rating categories has caused some confusion, as one would imagine “Pedal Cycle” means conventional push bikes.

    However, Sold Secure Pedal-Cycle Diamond and Sold Secure Powered-Cycle Gold overlap, as they subject lock to same testing procedure.

    So, if you ride an E-bike, you’ll want to look for a Sold Secure Pedal-Cycle Diamond bike lock as a minimum.

    However, if you spent a considerable amount of money on your e-bike, a grinder-resistant bike lock could be a better choice since thieves are over three times more likely to target e-bikes. 

    Sold Secure work closely with the UK police force and other crime prevention initiatives, which gives them valuable insight into how thieves operate and most importantly, what methods of attack they’re using to steal bikes and e-bikes.

    So, when buying a lock for an e-bike, you should refine your search to those locks with a Sold Secure Powered Cycle rating.

    Recommended Lock Options for E-Bikes

    There are plenty of options to choose from in the Sold Secure Powered Cycle category, which can be quite confusing. 

    To help get the ball rolling, below, you’ll find a few recommendations and a brief summary of a few great deals and top-performing locks from within this category.

    We recommend, and it’s commonly understood, that cyclists should aim to spend between 10 to 15% of the value of their bike on its security. 

    By following this rule of thumb, your bike is less likely to be targeted by thieves since it’ll be more secure than other bikes locked nearby.

    LITELOK X1

    Angle Grinder & Bolt Cutter Resistant 

    LITELOK X1 Review Uncuttable Bike Lock

    Pros

    Cons

    Security Rating – Sold Secure Powered Cycle Gold & Pedal Cycle Diamond
    Weight – 1.7kg (3.75lb)
    Shackle Width – 10cm (3.94″)
    Shackle Length – 19.2cm (7.56″)
    Shackle Diameter – 17mm Fine Grain Hardened Steel

    With the number of bike thieves using angle grinders and power tools on the rise, getting yourself a bike lock that can disintegrate grinder discs is easily one of the best steps you can take to prevent your e-bike.

    We attended the LITELOK X1 launch event and were very impressed by how this lock performed. 

    Along with several other attendees, we had a go at cutting the shackle with a fresh grinder disc and were amazed by how resistant the Barronium armouring of this lock is. 

    Within seconds, grinder discs are reduced to dust, leaving thieves unable to continue. 

    Read about the X1 in our list of the best uncuttable bike locks

    Oxford Boss Alarm and Chain

    High-Security Chain With a Built-in 100dB Alarm System

    Oxford boss alarm disc lock and chain review

    Pros

    Cons

    Security Rating – Sold Secure Powered Cycle Gold 
    Weight – 1.1kg (2.3lb)
    Chain Length – 150cm (59.1″)
    Shackle Width – 16mm Hardened Steel
    Warranty – 2-Year Warranty

    The Oxford Boss Alarm and Chain are a great combination for securing e-bikes. 

    The 12mm hardened steel chain provides good protection against an extensive toolkit whilst the 100dB alarm is ready and waiting to alert passersby of any disturbances or potential theft attempts.

    Whilst the combination of these two security devices is a heavy load to carry, having a long chain at your disposal gives you the ability to secure both your wheels and frame with ease. 

    You can read our full review of this lock here.

    Seatylock Mason

    A Lightweight, Diamond-Rated U-lock

    Seatylock mason

    Pros

    Cons

    Security Rating – Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Diamond
    Weight – 1.0kg (2.20lb)
    Shackle Width – 8.5cm (3.3″)
    Shackle Length – 14.7cm (5.8″)
    Shackle Diameter – 13.75mm Hardened Steel

    The Seatylock Mason is one of my favourites when it comes to lightweight, high-secuirty bike locks. 

    Weighing a mere 1kg (2.2lb), the mason is highly portable, and its compact size means it’s easy to carry with you wherever you go.

    We tested the Mason against a pair of 42″ bolt cutters and didn’t get far, which was impressive for such a slim-looking U-lock. 

    However, unlike the LITELOK X1, the Mason doesn’t provide much in terms of angle grinder resistance and may, therefore, not be suitable for the highest-value e-bikes. 

    View Every Bike Locks Suitable for Use With E-bikes

    If you want to view all of the best options when it comes to e-bike locks, read our article, which covers the best uncuttable bike locks

    If you want to explore your other options and view all of the e-bike-appropriate bike locks, you can find them using the search function on the Sold Secure website

    Simply select “Powered Cycle (Formerly Motorcycle) Diamond” or “Powered Cycle (Formerly Motorcycle) Gold” and hit search without entering any keywords.  

    The Best Locking Techniques for E-Bike Theft Prevention

    When locking an e-bike, you must prioritise securing the most valuable components.

    These include:

    • The frame of your bike
    • The wheels of your bike (motorised wheels take priority)
    • Your e-bike’s battery
    • Any easily removable components (electric display screens & bike computers, etc.)

    The majority of E-bikes will either use hub motors or mid-drive motors.

    As always with bicycles, the wheels and frame of an e-bike are its most expensive components and should take priority in being secured before any other components. 

    If your bike uses a hub motor, the wheel with the motorised hub should take priority in being secured before the other wheel. 

    If you have the budget for it, we recommend using two bike locks. One to secure your rear wheel and frame and the other to lock your front wheel in place.

    If your e-bike uses a mid-drive motor, your frame and rear wheel take priority in being secured, which can easily be achieved with one lock.

    Correct locking technique for a bicycle
    E-bike or not, locking the rear wheel and frame of your bike at the same is the best way to lock up to discourage thieves from targeting your ride

    If your e-bike uses a removable battery that can’t be locked in place, we advise you to remove it and take it with you when away from your bike. 

    E-bike batteries are expensive and easy for thieves to sell, so they’ll be a prime target if left unsecured. 

    Affordable Ways to Improve the Security of Your E-bike

    There are several affordable ways to improve the security of your e-bike. These include: 

    • Replacing quick-release systems with security skewers and nuts
    • Locking your bike in more secure areas
    • Improving your overall locking technique
    • Registering your bike on an online bike database
    • Customising your bike to make it less re-sellable


    We recently put together an article explaining all of the affordable improvements you can make to improve the security of your bike. 

    Implementing a few of the steps from this guide will ensure your bike stays more secure than those locked nearby, reducing the chances of it being targeted by thieves. 

    Summary - Choosing a Lock for Your E-bike

    It’s not worth cheaping out when buying a new bike lock, especially when securing an e-bike.

    As an e-bike owner, you need to understand that your bike is exactly what thieves are looking for.

    Buying a cheap bike lock that doesn’t offer adequate security for your e-bike will leave it at risk of theft, and you’ll probably be worrying about it whilst you’re away from it during the day.  

    However, the fact that you’re reading this article shows that you care about the security of your bike.

    If you’re able to implement a few of the tips you learned here, your bike will be more secure than the majority of bikes on the street, meaning more peace of mind for you!

    Author of This Post:
    James Grear (Lead Editor)
    James Grear (Lead Editor)

    Understanding how devastating it is to have a bike stolen, I've researched & immersed myself in the world of bicycle security since 2013.

    I then built BikeLockWiki in 2019 to share everything I'd learned with the worldwide cycling community so that cyclists can improve their bike security skills and make informed decisions when purchasing new products and services.

    Learn More about Me & BikeLockWiki here.

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