What to Look For
Bike alarms are meant to protect your bicycle from theft and vandalism. These alarms are different from the ones used on automobiles because your bike doesn’t have an electrical system. Most complex systems connect to the computer or electrical system in your car. One of the first things you should look for is an alarm that emits a high or loud frequency when someone tampers with either your bike or the alarm. You should also look for a bike alarm that contains a locking system, which connects the alarm to the bike’s frame. The best bike alarms operate on a battery, and the battery is easy to change out.
Using a bike alarm doesn’t guarantee that your bike won’t become broken, damaged or stolen. Always read the instructions on the bike alarm first, as some only emit an alarm when someone tampers with or moves the alarm. The best bike alarms are those that contain both a lock and an alarm on the same piece. You wrap the locking mechanism around a post, tree or other object and twist the lock shut. When you arm the alarm, it emits a noise whenever someone tries to remove the lock. Battery operated alarms also require that you change the battery and if you forget or the battery dies, the alarm won’t sound.
Where to Buy
Bike alarms are available from online retailers and some specialty shops. Ducharme Alarm Systems creates its own bike alarm, available through its website. The bike alarm features an electronic lock that relies on your own personal code, a thick casing to protect the alarm and works in all types of weather, including rain. The alarm also has its own motion sensor that gives one warning before going off, which prevents accidental alarms. Central Alarms also offers bike alarms and locks. Bike stores and bike repair shops also offer some bike alarms.
Bike alarms start around $30 and rise from there, based on 2010 prices. The Ducharme Alarm retails for $39 plus $7 shipping, when purchased directly from the official website. The Bike Watch from Safety Street retails for around $37. The Bike Watch is a dual system that has both a lock and an alarm. You may find a wider range of products and less expensive alarms from your local bike stores. This includes traditional bike locks, which are much less expensive, and larger electric systems, which can reach over $100.