How to Prevent Bike Lock Jamming


There might be a situation when a jammed bike lock can make your day very hard especially when you have parked your bike / bicycle on a hot roadside or otherwise when you are trying to unlock it during a rainfall. Bike locks often have this problem of jamming or freezing due to various reasons.


The most important reason for using a bike lock is to prevent your bike from getting stolen but if the same bike lock prevents you from riding it when you are in an urgency is like what Brutus did to Julius Caesar.

But there are certain things which you can do to prevent your bike lock from backstabbing you at difficult situations.

We have a few tips for you below to help you stop bike lock jamming and also several tips to help you de-freeze your bike lock which is Freezed already.

Tips To Stop Your Bike Lock Jamming

There are two reasons why your bike lock tends to jam.

  •  One is when you are unable to rotate the key within the bike lock. This is because there is a problem in the mechanism by which the bike lock works.
  •  Second is when you are able to rotate the key freely within the bike lock but the lock does not unlock. This is because your key is not able to separate both the joining parts of the lock apart from each other.

What causes your bike lock to freeze:

There are several reasons that can cause jamming.

  1. If you haven’t used the bike lock for a long period of time and then suddenly decide to use it without any quality check.
  2. Damage within the mechanism of the lock especially due to rough handling.
  3. Rust, dirt, Debris, frozen water or other stuffs which have corroded the parts of the lock.

So below are few steps using which you can make sure that you never experience such a situation with your bike lock.

Select the best bike lock

Saving a few pennies by buying a cheap lock will make you spend more money on a better lock sooner or later. Choosing low quality options can sometime cost you bike theft or lock jam very often. Any of these if happened, you will have to either buy a new bike along with a new bike (In case it is stolen) or have to buy a new bike lock if it is jammed. Check out the dangers of choosing a low quality locks for your bike from the embedded video below.

So I would recommend you to go with the best bike lock the first time you search for it. You must always consider the quality and long lasting capacity of a purchase you make. We have extensively reviewed many popular brands like Abus, kryptonite, onguard in our website. If you have to choose one out of the three, I’ll recommend Abus.

It will last on any condition and withstand any harsh climate as they are subjected to several quality checks before they come for sale.

It is also said that they abus locks are the best in resisting corrosion doesn’t matter what condition you use them in.

When buying a lock, always buy it along with a key cover. They will protect your lock from debris, dirt and other stuffs which can clog the lock.

Use Lubrication Often:

A well lubricated lock will have a better life span. It doesn’t matter which company you buy it from. Clean it and apply lubrication once in a while so that it remains in top quality.

Keeping the mechanism clean

The internal mechanism of the lock is very important for the proper functioning of the bike lock. You can use sprays such as WD-40 or other products sprays which are capable of removing water and any other rust causing agents within the mechanism.

Make sure the keyhole is upwards when you apply product maintenance sprays to them and then insert the key and turn the keyhole downwards or lock it and then unlock it.

Once you’re sure that there is no more water, dirt or debris left out in the lock, use a proper lubrication very often.

Cleaning the body of the lock

Cleaning the body of the lock doesn’t need so much time. You just need to clean the body using some rag often. Make sure there is no symptoms of rust or corrosion on any part of the lock.

Major reason for lock jamming

One of the most often reasons that cause bike lock jamming is that you turn the key before it is entered deep into the lock. You turn it midway before it reaches the bottom.

As you know, there are several set of disks in the internal locking mechanism. Only if the key reaches inside completely, all the disks will open at the same time. If you do it midway, few of the bottommost disc won’t rotate causing a misalignment in the lock mechanism.

This will later cause bike lock jamming.

What if your lock is already jammed?

Use a proper water displacing agent like WD-40 or any other product available in the market and clean the lock. This will remove any rust, water and any other agents causing the lock to be jammed.

If the mechanism is jammed, try adding WD-40 into it and leave the lock aside for some hours. After that try inserting the key and find out if the lock is jam free.

If you think the lock is freezed, then try warming up the lock with a lighter or candle are otherwise bring the lock indoor allow it there until the lock freezing clears up. Here is a video that helps you to unlock the jammed bike lock in a simple way.

Final words

Just keep your bike lock clean and maintained from day one to prevent your bike lock jamming.

In case it is jammed, follow the above methods and try to fix the problem.

If you are unable to do so, you will need a new lock. For that. Here is the list of best bike locks for your bicycle.