When looking for a good quality bike store there are several key things to look for:
Do you need regular access to your bikes?
If you are a regular biker (commuter) you will want easy access to your bike. This could be as simple as buying a simple bike rack for around £15 from Argos hanging in the garage. But, like a lot of people these days you may not have a garage or you may have a car in it! The answer would be a dedicated outside bike storage of some description.
Secure Bike Storage
There seems to have been an explosion of these bike stores in the last 12 months or so. Since the government launched their cycle to workscheme everybody seems to have a bike (Halfords reportedly sold 3 million bikes last year). This bike storage ranges from a piece of plastic sheeting to a fully dedicated secure bike store.
So, what are the options?
Nothing but a cheap lock:
A cheap chain can be cut in seconds with a simple bolt cutter. Lock your wheel to the wall and the thief will take the wheel off and take the rest. Lock the frame to the wall and the thief will take the wheels. If it can be seen it can be stolen.
Great if you have a secure back garden or yard. A couple of bungee ropes around it will help to keep the sheet on the bike in the wind! The sheet keeps the seat nice and dry. Not a lot of security though. If the budget is tight, try the plastic sheet with a ground anchor for around 50 quid.
Ground Anchors Are Secure - But Your Bike Will Get Wet!
You will ned to bolt a metal loop to a concrete base, then loop the heavy duty chain around your bike and through the metal loop (these are usually used for motorbikes but for some reason are often cheaper than the special cycle equivalent. Look for anchors that are sold secure standard, these are really strong and near impossible to cut through.
Wooden bike storage shed
Good for keeping your bike dry, though the level of security isn't high. Wooden sheds and wooden bike stores are very easy to break into. When looking at a wooden shed, 1st check the lock. A hasp and staple really offer very little deterrent to a thief. No matter how good your padlock is, most thieves will simply force the hasp of the door with out ever touching the padlock. Wooden sheds will also require regular maintenance, every 12 months or so you will need to apply wood preservative to the panelled sides, then every 5 years or so re-felt the roof. In the long term, you may find a cheap wooden shed has a high long term running cost. Wood burns, there could be nothing worse than seeing your prized 3 grand bikes burn inside a £100 shed because your teenage son has a sneaky cigarette in there!