The best motorcycle lock is an absolute necessity for any motorcycle owner. And like so many other accessories for your bike, from phone mounts to covers and everything in between, the choices can be overwhelming.
The motorcycle accessory market is vast since sales of motorcycles continue to increase, and millions of Americans love to hit the open road on a bike. Manufacturers keep up with this demand by providing products to both make our rides safer and more enjoyable. While some accessories are optional, a lock is a necessity. You’ll have complete peace of mind knowing your bike is protected from theft.
An added bonus is that you may be able to get a break from your insurance company just for investing in a high-quality motorcycle security device! Any way you slice it, a motorcycle lock is something you should not go without.
Motorcycle Lock Types
Motorcycles come in a wide variety, so it should be no surprise that motorcycle locks are not a “one size fits all” category either. Four different types of locks are commonly found on the market, and your choice may be dictated not only by personal preference or budget but also by the specific type of motorcycle you ride and the locking system most compatible with its design.
A bar lock—just as it sounds—involves a large piece of hardened steel. Installed through alloy motorcycle rims, the bar locks can be used in conjunction with chain locks. This is one way you can secure your motorcycle to a light post, and a bar lock can be used with a wide variety of models.
A chain lock will certainly deter a motorcycle thief who does not carry bolt cutters, but it is also a heavy and less portable way to keep your bike secure.
Disc locks are an easy and portable way to keep a motorcycle secure, packing a lot of punch into a small package. The lock is inserted through the brake disc holes and can be used on either the front or the back wheel. When this type of lock is correctly inserted and fastened, the wheel can only move a few inches at most.
It would be extremely difficult for someone to steal your motorcycle without using a steel cutter to break this lock. One drawback of a motorcyle disc lock is that they do not always work with older, vintage-model motorcycles.
A grip lock, as you might guess, is used on the handlebars of the motorcycle. It works by clamping down on the clutch lever and the brake lever, making the motorcycle immobile. You will also see grip locks advertised as brake locks, handlebar locks, throttle locks, or clutch locks. Like a disc lock, the grip lock provides an option that is much lighter in weight and easier to keep up with than bar or security chain locking systems.
Buyer’s Guide: What to Look for in the Best Motorcycle Lock
Alarm: Some locks include an alarm sound that is activated if someone tries to tamper with the lock, which can startle and deter a motorcycle thief.
Portability and Ease of Use: Because your storage and carrying space is already limited when you ride a motorcycle, it is important for many riders that the locking system they use is lightweight and portable. Dragging a heavy bar or chain lock set around is impractical in most scenarios (though it may be a system you use when the bike is parked outside your apartment, for example). You also want a system that snaps or locks into place easily without a lot of hassle.
Material and Durability: A lightweight and portable motorcycle locking system does not mean you have to sacrifice high-quality material and durability. Ideally, the locking system will be made of an aluminum alloy or steel. It will be able to stand up to the elements without rust or corrosion and should not harm or scratch the surfaces of the motorcycle.
Reminder Cables: Some motorcycle owners do not lock their bikes at every stop. A quick coffee or lunch stop at a café with an outdoor patio may leave the rider feeling secure enough that she can see the bike from her seat, and there’s very little chance a thief will stumble upon it.
However, two stops later at dusk, she may decide to use the lock, and for that reason, it can be easy to forget on the occasion that the bike has been secured. Trying to ride a bike with a disc lock in place can do damage to it, so a handy reminder cable that you put over your handlebars will help to prevent you from making that mistake.
Our Top Seven Best Motorcycle Lock Options Reviewed
1. AGPTEK Disc Lock Alarm
While it may weigh less than a pound (14.1 ounces to be exact), the AGPTEK Disc Lock Alarm packs a whopping 110 dB of sound into its alarm, which should be more than enough to deter any thief. A built-in motion and vibration detector trigger the alarm, and the smart design of this system is also weatherproof to ensure it will stand up to even the harshest conditions.
The AGPTEK lock is constructed of aluminum alloy and comes with a reminder cable, carrying case, key, wrench, and user manual. Even the bright color of the lock (and the accompanying reminder cable) work to deter thieves, signaling that a secure lock system protects the motorcycle.
A low power reminder notification will let you know when it is time to replace the batteries, and the only note of caution for users is to handle the lock gingerly. It is easy to set off the (very loud) locking mechanism alarm by accident.
2. The Club UTL810
We love that the Club lock is adjustable, meaning it can perform double (or triple, etc.) duty as a lock, used on everything from your motorcycle to your lawn furniture. The length can expand from 8.5 inches up to 11 inches, and it is constructed to withstand more than 1,500 pounds of pressure. If you have a tendency to lose small items, you are in luck with the Club as it comes with four keys!
A vinyl coating over tempered steel means that the Club lock will not ding, scratch, or otherwise damage the finishes on your motorcycle. We love that the adjustable frame can work in sometimes awkward positioning, but the size and weight (3.48 pounds) make this one less than ideal when it comes to portability. It may be better for a home-based locking system than the one you would frequently carry as you ride.
3. Grip-Lock Handlebar Security Lock
Compact, lightweight, and incredibly easy to use, the Grip-Lock handlebar lock is a great choice for someone who wants a small lock to carry on the go. If your motorcycle handlebars can accommodate the size of the twist grip (27 to 38 millimeters), this is a reliable lock choice.
Once mounted on your handlebar, the Grip-Lock will lock both the brake lever and the throttle grip. Plus, there’s no need for a reminder cable when you get back on your bike, as you will feel the lock as soon as you try to grip your handlebars. It can also be seen easily by would-be thieves, thanks to the bright colors it comes in to deter those who recognize right away the bike will be difficult to steal.
Users report that the Grip-Lock handlebar lock is one of the easiest to engage and disengage, with the process taking just 10 seconds to complete. The main drawback with this locking system is that it is not a universal fit for handlebars, so be sure to measure before purchasing.
4. Kryptonite New York Chain & Disc Lock
We will go ahead and address the two “negatives” upfront: this system is not lightweight, and it is not inexpensive. However, it still makes our favorite list for those times when you want or need a chain lock (for example, if it is your preferred way to secure the bike at home if a garage is not available).
The durability of this system is outstanding: hardened manganese steel is incredibly strong, and it is also coupled with a disc lock for added protection. The kit comes with three stainless steel keys. One key in each kit has a light feature, making it easier to use the system when it is dark.
5. Kryptonite Keeper 5S
A less expensive option from Kryptonite is the Keeper, a disc lock that is easy to carry and boasts a waterproof lock for added durability. The lock operates in a stapler style, and it also comes with two stainless steel keys and a reminder cable in case you forget the system is in place. The bright yellow finish acts as another deterrent for thieves, and it is small enough to be carried in a jacket pocket for convenience.
Some users suggest that a chain lube application every few months will keep it operating smoothly and also be on the lookout for any paint that may come off and affect the finishes on your motorcycle. Despite a few flaws, this is still a solid choice for those on a budget.
6. Trimax Disc Lock
Another affordable option in disc locks is this model from Trimax. It includes three keys (one with a flashlight), a carrying case, and a handy reminder cable. A hardened metal finish means this lock can stand up to the elements and is also resistant to cutting and drilling, making it an absolute pain for any would-be motorcycle robbers.
Some users are frustrated by the keys sticking, and you may need to use a lubricant to prevent this. Overall this is a portable, affordable, and reliable lock that works well with most motorcycles.
7. Xena Motorcycle Disc Lock Alarm
Last on our list of favorite motorcycle locks, but by no means least, is the disc lock with alarm from Xena. This stainless steel lock stands up to weather with its robust and sturdy construction, and it also includes an impressive 120dB alarm with a movement sensor. This is a serious lock system for serious motorcycle owners, with a thick locking pin and a freeze spray-resistant barrel.
One of the best all-around choices, the Xena is a favorite lock among users, with only one complaint, which is a sensitive alarm. This seems to be the norm when it comes to disc locks that include alarms, and it may simply take time and practice to learn how to best handle the lock without setting off false and unnecessary alarms.
Which is the Best Type of Lock for Motorcycles?
With so many variables to consider, from the type of motorcycle to the location to the budget, there is no one “best” type. In fact, the best outcome is usually based on a combination of locking systems. Do not be afraid to try more than one!
How Does a Steering Lock Work?
A steering lock will be placed on your handlebars for added security. You can secure the bike by turning the handlebars to the right and then pushing the key on the lock and turning it. To engage the lock fully, you will then more the handlebars to the left and take the keys out.
What Else Can I Do to Prevent Motorcycle Theft?
Park your motorcycle in a secure garage wherever possible (especially one with security cameras) or an extremely well-lit area.