Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

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Richard_C
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Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Richard_C »

Back in the early 70's, no deadlocks, no built in steering locks, door locks made of putty, quarter lights you could push open as long as you were stronger than a hamster and ignition a 5 year old could hot wire with a paperclip, steering wheel locks were essential in some places. I remember Krookloks, time consuming clumsy things hooked round clutch pedal and steering wheel, easily defeated by brute force on the ocean liner sized steering wheel. I built my own lock for my Hillman Hunter when I street parked in Moss Side Manchester - an aluminium sleeve over the handbrake and locked to gearstick - like a handbrake condom that stopped you getting your thumb on the knob. Bright blue, visible deterrent.

Cars are tougher to steal, I live in a very low risk rural area and have been glad to be rid of accouterments like that for the last 35 years.

Coming to the present day, we are about to donate our 3 years old C3 to our daughter who has a new job in Greater Manchester. It will be her first car, parked mostly off road in a shared car park belonging to a block of flats. I still notice the occasional visible deterrent type steering wheel lock bar, and amazon is awash with different varieties. The C3 doesn't strike me as a boy racer favourite, but its shiny and black and might attract attention.

I'm 50/50 on whether she should have one or not.

So:
Does anybody use one?
Are they any use or are they more trouble than they are worth?
Does anyone know of any good or bad versions?

Thoughts welcome.

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GiveMeABreak
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by GiveMeABreak »

I wouldn't bother TBH - with modern cars the immobiliser and alarm should act as a deterrent enough. Just make sure she engages the steering lock after removing the key by turning the wheel a little until it clicks. Also, with deadlocking (activated on second press of the locking remote for vehicles fitted with it), will prevent the doors being opened from inside and outside the car. So if anyone got in through the window, they'd have to get out that way. :-D

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Michel
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Michel »

Richard_C wrote:
11 Apr 2018, 14:09
So:
Does anybody use one?
Are they any use or are they more trouble than they are worth?
Does anyone know of any good or bad versions?

Thoughts welcome.


Complete waste of time and money these days, The only way someone will nick a car like a C3 is if they have the key to disable the immobiliser these days. If scrotes are going to target it, it's going to be for it's contents rather than the car itself, and a wheel lock won't prevent that. It's Manchester, not the Bronx. As one who is from not far from Manchester, and who went to uni there.. it's really not that bad!

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Stickyfinger
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Stickyfinger »

Not that bad ?, unless you have a high powered Audi/VW/Range Rover etc on your drive :)

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van ordinaire
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by van ordinaire »

Those steering wheel locks that cover the whole wheel are recommended for cars with keyless ignition (just like those high risk models mentioned) AND they are visible - unlike steering locks & immobilisers!

Joyriders'll take anything!

Need a key, I don't think so, consider this: the Cadillac STS only has one door that unlocks from the outside, the parking brake is release by moving the gear lever out of park - which you can't do without the key in the ignition. I left mine outside the house, in park, steering lock & parking brake applied, all doors locked & battery disconnected. When I returned a week later it was 2 doors down the road, still locked, etc. Apparently some workman moved it 'cos it was in their way, that's why - how, I've no idea!!!

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Michel
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Michel »

van ordinaire wrote:
12 Apr 2018, 00:14
Those steering wheel locks that cover the whole wheel are recommended for cars with keyless ignition (just like those high risk models mentioned) AND they are visible - unlike steering locks & immobilisers!

Joyriders'll take anything!

Need a key, I don't think so


You do with any remotely modern car, with the immobiliser chip in the key. I have a key with no chip in it for the Picasso. It will unlock it, but there's no way in hell it'll start it.. A C3 comes under that "remotely modern" umbrella, so I'd really not concern myself about it getting nicked.

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Michel
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Michel »

Stickyfinger wrote:
11 Apr 2018, 23:43
Not that bad ?, unless you have a high powered Audi/VW/Range Rover etc on your drive :)


In which case, they'll break into your house and nick the keys, which is the preferred method these days.... Happened to two friends of mine just up the road from our house. Broken into at night, stole her Golf GTI and his Audi S4. Clearly impossible to do without keys, or they'd not have bothered breaking into the house, would they?

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van ordinaire
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by van ordinaire »

No, the preferred method these days is to use the available technology to fool the car into believing they have the "key". Keyless start: God's gift to the profesional car thief!

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van ordinaire
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by van ordinaire »

If some workman could move my Caddy, which they couldn't open, start, steer, take out of Park or release the parking brake on - in fairness - without doing any damage, I don't think an immobiliser would deter a professional/experienced car thief.

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Stickyfinger
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Stickyfinger »

Michel wrote:
12 Apr 2018, 00:27
Stickyfinger wrote:
11 Apr 2018, 23:43
Not that bad ?, unless you have a high powered Audi/VW/Range Rover etc on your drive :)


In which case, they'll break into your house and nick the keys, which is the preferred method these days.... Happened to two friends of mine just up the road from our house. Broken into at night, stole her Golf GTI and his Audi S4. Clearly impossible to do without keys, or they'd not have bothered breaking into the house, would they?


this is true :)

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Michel
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Michel »

van ordinaire wrote:
12 Apr 2018, 01:05
No, the preferred method these days is to use the available technology to fool the car into believing they have the "key". Keyless start: God's gift to the profesional car thief!


Yes, the professional car thief who's targeting a specific car. Not a joyrider...

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GiveMeABreak
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by GiveMeABreak »

Depending on model of course, but a lot of the PSA cars also incorporate a sensor to detect movement vertical movement, just as when the car is being 'lifted' off the ground - which is designed to trigger the alarm if it was being raised.

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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by Richard_C »

Thanks for all the input. Decision is NO.

There is no way to link parking space to flat number, and it would be a real numpty who broke into a a block of flats and then into 8 separate doors over 3 floors in search of C3 keys - it's not an Overfinch Range Rover after all. I rather like the C3 but joyriders won't seek it out for sheer joy, so the most likely TWOC is someone who's missed the last bus home. Not many of them pass by, not near any pubs or clubs.

(I have a friend who lives locally who obsesses about such things and keeps a great big yellow lock on his fairly recent Toyota Auris. That's what got me thinking. Never had his car stolen, but then again that elephant dust I sprinkled in the garden 10 years ago has been 100% effective at keeping elephants out)

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van ordinaire
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Re: Any thoughts on steering wheel locks and their ilk?

Post by van ordinaire »

Didn't know cars were still fitted with alarms, so irritating & socially unacceptable. Also counterproductive - because everybody ignores them, as best they can.

I always remember someone at college who was banned from taking his car - because the fibreglass whip aerial flexing triggered his alarm!