It’s what keeps motorcycle owners up at night – theft.
The idea of having your bike stolen is heart wrenching. Not only would you miss riding the open road for a few months, but you’d lose the motorcycle you’ve invested so much into. The hassle and pain of reporting the theft only adds insult to the injury.
What can you do?
Here are a few tips to prevent your motorcycle from getting stolen, and what to do if you’re a victim of theft.
Preventing Your Motorcycle from Theft
Motorcycles are hot on the list of what to steal. Thieves can get a lot of money for the right parts or bike. To prevent your motorcycle from being stolen, follow these tips.
1. Keep it Conspicuous
When scoping out where to lock up your motorcycle, find places with a lot of light. The more people see your motorcycle, the less likely a thief is to want to risk stealing it.
2. Make it Difficult to Steal
This might sound obvious, but many bike motorcycle owners don’t use some of the most basic mechanisms to secure their bike. For example, locking the steering lock is an added security measure that will deter many thieves. Although it’s easy enough to break through, it’s still one more barrier the thief has to worry about. When given the choice between your bike with the steering lock in place and one without, the one without will get stolen more times than not.
3. Lock it Securely
When you lock up your bike, make sure you’re securing it to something that’s anchored into the ground. The stronger the anchor, the harder it’ll be to steal your motorcycle.
Note: When looking for an anchor, find one that still allows you to lock your motorcycle in the upright position. If not, you make it easier for the thief to break the lock by using the weight of the bike to pry the lock open.
4. Double Up
Make your bike even more difficult to steal by doubling up on the locks. Using two different locks will also make your bike less desirable of a target. This is especially important if you’re storing your bike in a crime-ridden area or locking it up for an extended period of time outside of your house.
5. Add the Bells and Whistles
Having an alarm on your bike can also act as a deterrent. Any time you can attract attention to the thief while he’s in the process of stealing your bike, the less likely he will be to continue the crime. Add a sticker to your bike that says, “Alarm Installed” so the thief knows what he’s up against, reducing the chances that he’ll begin his crusade for your motorcycle.
What to do if Your Bike Gets Stolen
No matter how hard you work to protect your bike, theft happens. If you’re one of the unfortunate victims of motorcycle theft, there are a few things you can do to protect yourself and recoup some of the damages lost.
Call the Police
The first thing you should do when you discover your motorcycle was stolen is let the police know. Although the police probably won’t come to your house or to the scene of the crime, they need to know about the theft. You might need to go down to the police station to complete the report. Have all of your documentation ready.
This might seem like a hassle but it’s worthwhile. You will need a police report to get a settlement from the insurance company. Call them as soon as you notice your motorcycle missing.
Report it to your Insurance Company
Right after you contact the police to report your bike stolen, contact your insurance company. Even though you might not have the police report in hand, your insurance company still wants to hear from you. Contacting them early on will set the wheels in motion and help you get your settlement faster.
If your motorcycle was stolen from your home or from a public area, chances are someone saw something.
Ask people in the area if they saw anything suspicious. You never know what kind of information you’ll pull out of witnesses that could lead to your motorcycle getting found and the thief getting caught.
Put Out an Alert
Many times, thieves will try to sell your motorcycle or parts. Put out a notice to local biker clubs, motorcycle shops and other areas of the motorcycle community. These people are often the first ones to hear about motorcycles or parts for sale. If you let them know that the bike was stolen, they can help catch the thief.
Motorcycles, especially ones with custom parts, are a hot commodity for thieves. It’s worth the effort to go the extra mile when securing your bike. If your motorcycle is still stolen, report it to as many people as possible to increase the chances of having it recovered and/or getting a fair settlement.