How To Prevent Motorcycle Theft


You take good care of your ride, but how careful are you when it comes to the threat of motorcycle theft? It is relatively easy to steal a bike, and it only takes a matter of seconds for your beloved ride to be on a truck or in a large van and gone forever. However, you’re not helpless in the face of motorcycle theft either, and you don’t have to keep your bike locked in the garage all summer because of it. Here are some tips to keep your motorcycle out of the hands of thieves.

Think Like A Thief To Prevent Motorcycle Theft

First thing is first, you need to be aware of scenarios that place your bike at risk. If you think like a thief when you park your bike, you may stop and reconsider your surroundings before walking away. Good indicators that you’ve chosen a bad spot include spots that are out of your line of sight, secluded places with no public presence, and places where trucks could easily pull up beside your bike and load it. If you can keep your bike within your vision most of the time, you’re far less likely to worry about it, even when you step out of sight of it for a moment.

Public presence is also a good theft deterrent as it’ll raise an alarm among bystanders when a bunch of guys show up and try to load your bike into a vehicle. Well monitored places with security cameras or guards will deter theft as well. Park your ride in a spot you think it would be hard to steal it in, and you already have a leg up on potential thieves.

Install Anti-Theft Devices

Parking your motorcycle in a relatively safe spot is just the first step. You’ll need to have one or several anti-theft devices installed as a back up measure against motorcycle theft. We’ll look at several theft devices based upon their overall effectiveness.

Bike Cable

One of the most common theft devices come in the form of a bike cable or chain. Similar to a cycling chain, a bike cable loops through the wheel of your bike and attaches to a nearby structure like a lamp post, etc. While this is a basic theft deterrent, this device has two drawbacks. First, there isn’t always something around to hitch your bike to, and a good pair of cable cutters can bypass this measure rather quickly. This item will still slow thieves down, but it’s not the most effective measure out there. One extra note, a very thick chain, although harder to carry on your bike, will be a wise addition if you have to park your bike on the street full time. Most owners who park their bikes on the street full time recommend at least an 18mm chain.

Even thick bike cables can be cut so be weary of using one as you’re only security system.

Disc Locks

Motorcycle disc locks are attached to your wheel and brakes and prevent thieves from wheeling your motorcycle off. Disc locks come in two varieties: alarmed and non-alarmed. Non-alarmed disc locks are meant to be strong point attached to your brake that can’t easily be hammered or clipped off. Alarm versions add sensors to the disc lock so if someone attempts to remove them the alarm sounds. Of course, alarm sensitivity will be an issue as you don’t want it going off constantly. Compared to the bike cable, a disc lock is more effective when you’re out and about, and it can be used anywhere.

Motorcycle Alarm

In addition to or instead of a disc lock alarm, you can opt for a centralized bike alarm. These alarms use sensors to detect any impacts or tilt inflicted on the bike, and even when a thief tampers with the accessories on your bike, the alarm is designed to go off. Again, you need to find the right sensitivity in the alarm as you don’t want it going off all the time, and you’ll want to select an intuitive system that you don’t accidentally set off either.

GPS Tracker

One final added deterrent comes in the GPS tracker. These devices are attached to your bike, and if it is ever stolen, the GPS signature will lead authorities to the location of the bike. A GPS tracker needs to be small and well-hidden on your bike, and any wise thief will find it eventually, so your tracking time is limited. There are also service limits to GPS trackers, and if a thief takes your bike far off the grid, the signal might not show up. Still, a GPS tracker combined with an alarm should give you a good chance of stopping or catching a bike thief.

Insurance Options

Liability insurance for your motorcycle is all that is required in Colorado, but that level of insurance won’t protect your bike from theft. You’ll need to add comprehensive coverage from Square State Insurance to protect yourself from losses associated with bike theft. Talk with your Square State Agent to ensure you have the proper coverage to protect your motorcycle. Anything less and you’ll end up worrying about your bike everywhere you go.



One other coverage note, if you plan to customize or already own a customized bike, be sure to add custom parts and accessories coverage to your bike as certain custom parts may not be covered by a comprehensive coverage plan.

Image one, two and three courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

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