Unlike cars, bikes don’t have doors to lock. The importance of securing your bicycle when not riding it is impossible to overstate if you want it to be there when you return. Not sure how to lock up a bike? Check out these infographics from the SF Bike Coalition.
If you lock your bike to a rack, be sure to lock through the front wheel and frame.
Bike Locker Rentals
The City of Santa Cruz has over 75 bicycle lockers available for rent in Downtown Santa Cruz. These bicycle lockers provide enclosed, secure storage and can be rented for just 5¢ per hour with the use of a smart card. Only a bicycle and its accessories may be stored in the locker.
To order a BikeLink card, visit BikeLink.org, call (888) 540-0546, or visit Spokesman Bicycles (231 Cathcart Street) or the Downtown Parking Office (124 Locust Street). ParkCards can no longer be used for bike locker rentals. BikeLink cards can also be used for smart bike lockers throughout the Bay Area and beyond. For a map of BikeLink locations, visit www.bikelink.org/map
Protect Your Bike From Theft
There are two distinct ways to protecting your bike: Documentation, and proper locking technique (as seen at the top of this page) and both are essential to proper bicycle security.
Recording and Licensing your Bike
It is absolutely essential that you document your bike. Far too many bike owners fail to record the serial numbers on their bikes or to document any other proof of ownership. If your bike is stolen, you want to be ready to provide a serial number and other proof of ownership to law enforcement.
Keep records of your serial number, a receipt for the bike (even if you are buying a used bike, ask for a receipt), and photographs of the bike, including any distinguishing characteristics. Make a digital copy of your records and keep with your other important documents. If you don’t have a receipt for a bike you already own, repair receipts may serve as evidence of ownership. If you change the appearance of the bike, document it with additional photographs.
If you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, you should also make sure that your bike and bicycle accessories (lights, equipment, trailers, etc) are included on your policy; be sure to specify that the bike and additional bicycle equipment are covered for its full replacement value.
It is extremely important to register or license each bike you own. Each jurisdiction in Santa Cruz County has a separate system for registering and licensing bicycles. Currently, the City of Santa Cruz provides bicycle licenses through their online system. The City of Scotts Valley Police Department, the City of Watsonville Police Department, and the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office have partnered with Project 529/National Bike Registry for bicycle licensing. Another option is to register your bike with the national Bike Index service.
Please contact your local jurisdiction to confirm the current process:
- City of Capitola
- City of Santa Cruz
- City of Scotts Valley
- City of Watsonville
- Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s office