When you’ve invested a significant amount of your pay cheque in a new bicycle, you’ll want to keep it clean, safe and in top condition. Perhaps that means keeping it in your house or your flat – if you have room. Most people don’t have the luxury of extra space for bike storage so it ends up in the hallway, leading to the inevitable knocks and scrapes against the walls which take their toll on both your bike and your paintwork. If there’s more than one bike in your household? Forget it.
For people in flats or apartments, there’s the added complication of lugging the bike up several flights of stairs when the lifts are out of order. It would be tempting to leave the frame and wheels locked up outside – remember to lock up both wheels and frame, and take your seat with you as bike thieves are often frustratingly persistent. And if the criminals don’t get your bike, the British weather will. The best solution is definitely a bike store.
What sort of bike stores are available?
You can find a variety of bike storage options on the market and they range from metal sheds with five-point locking systems to wooden huts and even tents. All of them will offer significant protection from weather but the elements are not the only adversaries and thieves will make short work of the flimsier options.
Wooden bike stores
Wooden bike stores are more appropriate for back gardens or side passageways which are not accessible from the street. They are cheaper than metal bike stores but wood can be drilled or knocked through without the use of noisy power tools so it’s not advisable to use them in public areas.
However, they can look more rustic and appropriate for a back garden setting, and if access to the garden is limited then these are definitely worth considering.
Metal bike stores
Metal bike stores are the most solid and thief-resistant options, and although they can be pricey, there are bike storage solutions which will deter and frustrate most bike thieves. The most secure metal sheds are mounted on a concrete base, and are made from galvanised steel which would require an angle-grinder to cut through – difficult to do without attracting attention.
With integrated five-point locking systems and lock cylinders which are said to be resistant to both picking and drilling, a large metal bike store can securely hold three or four bikes as well as cycling paraphernalia like pumps, helmets and puncture repair kits. Some metal bike stores are even insurance compliant.
People who live in a block of flats will find a metal bike store the best option by far for storing their bicycles. A dedicated bike storage area can be shared with other cycling enthusiasts which will help spread the cost and the numbers of people involved may also help convince the freeholder or estate manager that proper secure bike storage is a necessity, not a luxury.
Practical bike storage is almost as important as your bike
If a car is just a means for travelling between two parking spaces, then something similar could be said for bikes. There’s little point in spending hundreds of pounds on your road racer or carbon fibre hybrid if it gets stolen or broken because there is no decent place to store it.