Bikes are more than simple transportation tools. They are also an investment. This is why if you have a bike, you worry that it will get stolen when you leave it in public places. Well, this fear is justified because most people have gotten their bike stolen or know someone who's had their bike stolen.
In fact, over 188,500 bicycle thefts are reported in the US each year on average. That's why bike locks are so popular when parking your bike in public.
Most bike owners use a U-lock or a heavy lock to lock the bike frame to the parking rack and try to avoid parking in isolated and overcrowded areas for this reason. However, what they don't realize is that the probability of your bike being stolen at home is higher than when in public. This makes having a secure bike shed to lock your bike a priority.
What Is a Bike Shed?
A bike shed is typically a small building that you use to store your bike. The best thing about owning one is the amount of security it provides. It is the perfect place to store your bikes if you prefer keeping them outside your house.
A good bike storage shed protects your bike from theft and extreme weather elements that may damage it or lead to rusting or malfunctioning.
Why Do You Need a Bike Shed?
Bikes are easily stolen at home as opposed to in public. Studies show that two-thirds of bikes stolen are stolen when they are in or around the house. This is because most people feel safe at home, so they do not lock up their bikes and leave them outdoors. Thieves know that.
Most people also prefer not to park their bikes in the house because of the dirt & grime they bring inside and the fact that they ruin the home's aesthetic appeal. Additionally, bicycles are fragile and should not be parked in the main garage with other vehicles and heavy machinery, as they're at risk of getting damaged from being knocked around.
Bike sheds allow you to store your bike, biking equipment, and gear securely, making them necessary.
How Do You Choose the Right Bike Shed?
When it comes to choosing a suitable bike shed, there are multiple options, and they come in different shapes and forms. You should pick the one that best suits your needs and your home, depending on size, materials, security needs, and accessibility.
Here are the main factors you should consider:
Number of Bikes Being Stored
The number of bikes that are being stored will influence the size of the shed. For instance, it's not practical to have a large bike shed when you only have to store one bike unless you want to add another or build a collection. So, a small bike storage shed is ideal when you have one or two bikes.
The size of the bikes should also be taken into account. For example, if you're storing children's bikes, the bike shed doesn't have to be big compared to the one used to store adult bikes. So, consider the dimensions of each bicycle to effectively estimate the size you need for the bike storage shed.
Here's how you can measure the dimensions of a bicycle:
- Width: Do this by measuring the size from both handlebar ends.
- Length: Measure the distance from the end of the front tire to the rear tire.
- Height: Take measurements from the ground to the tallest point, which could be the saddle or handlebars.
Where You Are Keeping Your Bike?
You need a flat area that provides sufficient space for the shed. The best place to build your bike shed is in your backyard so that it's only accessible to members of your family and doesn't add clutter to the front of your house. Placing the shed in front of your house will only make it more visible and invite unwanted attention.
Ideally, the shed should be located close to the house with its door facing it. This deters the thieves for fear of being seen. A door facing away from the house gives burglars a chance to get in without being seen.
Bike Storage Shed Materials
After choosing the size of the bike shed and location, the next step is selecting the construction material. A bike storage shed can be made of plastic, wood, fabric, or metal. The type of material you should use should depend on price, level of maintenance needed, and functionality. It would help if you also considered the advantages and disadvantages of each material.
Here's a quick overview of the common bike materials:
Metal: Metal is a good choice for building a bike shed. It's popular because it protects your bikes from theft better than wood and other materials as it is hard to break into. It's also water-resistant and will endure heavy rainfall without suffering any damage. Additionally, metal is difficult to bend, crack, or get damaged by insects and rodents.
Steel is the most popular type of metal in the construction of metal bike sheds. Powder-coated steel is usually used in making bike sheds which makes it so attractive to most people because it needs no maintenance throughout its lifespan.
If the metal color does not suit your home aesthetic, you can paint it to your preference. Also, since humidity can easily corrode steel, ensure that you galvanize your metal so that it doesn't rust when exposed to humidity and rain.
Wood: Most bike sheds are made of wood because it has been the traditional building material for a long time. In addition, it is inexpensive and easy to work with. A wooden shed also blends in with your backyard and protects the bike and other equipment from elements if properly made. Ensure the spaces are sealed and the roof is made of water-resistant material such as iron sheets.
A wooden shed requires a lot of regular maintenance since it's susceptible to harsh weather and damage from insects and rodents. To reduce the risk of damage, choose good quality wood that won't degrade in a few years.
Plastic: Building a bike shed using plastic is still a relatively new concept, but it's steadily growing in popularity. This is mainly due to the fact that plastic has almost all the qualities offered by metal bike sheds and is affordable.
Like metal sheds, plastic bike sheds do not need any maintenance effort. Plastic is water-resistant, and depending on the type you choose to use, it can serve you for a long time without denting, chipping, or cracking.
The downside of using plastic as the material for your metal shed is that it looks very cheap, may ruin the entire house aesthetic, and is impossible to customize to your liking.
Fabric: A fabric bike shed is a portable storage shed that has a steel frame and a polyester cover. The front door of a fabric bike shed unzips and rolls up to allow easy access to your bike and anything else you want to store in it.
A fabric bike shed is designed to keep your bicycle safe from the elements and can stand up to harsh winter weather. It's also a great compact storage solution: These sheds are usually large enough to fit three adult bikes, but small enough to be used on a deck, balcony, or patio.
Accessibility of the Bike Shed
The process of getting the bike in and out of the bike shed ought to be relatively easy, so the bike shed should not be far from the house. Ideally, each bike should be removed without interfering with the other bikes in the shed. Bikes should go backward and forward instead of being stored sideways in the bike shed. Unfortunately, not too many sheds allow for this. The bike shed should also not be far from the house.
One of the purposes of your bike shed is to keep your bike safe from theft. Depending on the neighborhood you reside in, security concerns may vary. If you live in a secure neighborhood, then security might not be a big concern for you, although you still need to factor it in when building your bike shed.
If you live in an unsafe neighborhood, the security of your bike sheds needs to be top-notch. This largely depends on the material used in the construction. For instance, metal sheds are the most secure, followed by plastic sheds and then, lastly, wooden sheds. Metallic sheds are also the strongest and are usually designed with security as a priority.
A burglar is more likely to access the bikes in the bike shed by unscrewing the hinges and lock than by breaking the shed. This makes it easier to do if the hinges are on the outside, as is the case with wooden bike sheds. Ideally, the door hinges should be inside to deter this from happening.
The best way to ensure that the bike shed is secure is by getting one that is specially designed to offer high security.
Ease of Assembling
Wood is one of the easiest materials to work with, and it's easy to customize. All that is needed is nailing the different pieces together, and it can take less than a day. The most challenging bike storage shed to assemble is the metallic one. They come with a ton of small parts and pieces and heavy pieces that all need to be correctly screwed together. This might be daunting to people who've never put together anything before.
Plastic sheds, on the other hand, are easy to assemble. They come with few light parts, which can be taken apart and reassembled elsewhere.
Choose the Right Bike Storage Shed Today!
Choosing the right bike storage shed is critical to your bike's security. So, when picking out the ideal option, you should consider factors such as bike shed materials, ease of accessibility, ease of assembling, and accessibility. You should also consider the number and size of bikes you own.