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Published May. 5, 2021

It’s hard to stop thieves who are determined to get inside your vehicle. Unless you’re parking in a secure garage, there’s always a way in (and it usually involves a broken window). If you’re hoping to keep your car not only secure but safe in your garage, parking lot, or at the curb, a steering-wheel lock can offer added peace of mind and protection. Simple and easy to place, you can stretch a steering-wheel lock into place right over your steering wheel to prevent thieves from driving off with your vehicle. 

Most of these handy security accessories are made out of durable metals and require keys, locks, and other obstacles to remove—meaning you can deter theft just by having one visible inside your car. We’ve rounded up our top picks for steering-wheel locks.

Our Methodology

When it comes to steering-wheel locks, all of the existing products kind of look identical at first glance. But just because a lock looks like another doesn’t mean it’s of the same quality or construction. In order to highlight the best steering-wheel locks available, we took a look at the most popular products from a variety of online retailers, considering and comparing the details and features of options from different brands. We looked at the material, quality of construction, locking mechanism, and ease of use for each lock. And we took users’ experiences into consideration via their reviews.

Best Steering-Wheel Lock Reviews & Recommendations

The Club Twin-Hook Steering-Wheel Lock is part classic prevention tool, part upgraded security measure. Made by one of the best-known names in steering-wheel locks, The Club offers a solution that’s strengthened, nicely durable, and able to survive some of the most common kinds of attacks. Made out of chromoly steel, this device features two hooks on each side that effectively wrap around your steering wheel to make it secure. It has a universal fit, so it can be used on cars, vans, SUVs, and any standard steering wheel. The Club reinforced the lock housing on this product for increased strength. Once in place, this lock can withstand everything from sawing to hammering to freon attacks.

The only slight drawback to this steering-wheel lock is its universal fit. Because it’s designed to fit almost any vehicle’s steering wheel, it may not offer a completely perfect fit on your wheel. However, the dual hooks and adjustable length should be enough to deter thieves alone.

Product Specification
  • Lock style Key
  • Fit Universal
  • Material Chromoly steel
PROS

Durable construction

Twin hooks

Strengthened lock housing

Resists sawing, prying, hammering, and freon

CONS

May not offer a flawless fit on all steering wheels

With a style that’s different from your typical bar and hook lock, the Zone Tech Car Steering-Wheel Lock delivers a bit more security and a nice amount of value. It’s affordable yet constructed with strong materials such as aluminum, steel, and copper. This lock offers a universal fit that should work with most steering wheels. The front component, with the lock itself, fits over the top of your steering wheel while wrapping around the grip of the wheel. The lock mechanism features a heavy-duty crescent cylinder, and it only works with the included key. It’s impossible to saw through and can be used in most vehicles, including those with front airbags.

The biggest disadvantage of this tough and affordable steering-wheel lock is its plastic components. The piece of the lock that fits over your steering wheel itself is vinyl-coated plastic, and that can be prone to cracking and breaking.

Product Specification
  • Lock style Key
  • Fit Universal
  • Material Aluminum alloy, steel, copper, and plastic
PROS

Heavy-duty locking mechanism

Steel bar impossible to saw through

Slim yet secure

Easy to install

CONS

Includes plastic components

Plastic may break

If there’s one way to sum up the Tevlaphee Steering-Wheel Lock, it’s well-built. This tough and capable locking device is a bar-and-hook-style product, and it extends to fit steering wheels with inner diameters of 6.6 to 12.5 inches. You can install it on the front of your wheel or back, depending on your preference and airbag location. The steering-wheel lock is made out of high-quality steel, aluminum alloy, and some chrome, all of which can resist prying, hammering, sawing, and freon attacks. It’s made secure with a double-spring crescent lock, and three keys are included. There’s even anti-wear tape to place under the lock to protect your steering wheel and prevent damage or marks.

This steering-wheel lock comes equipped with a sharp, pointed window breaker for emergencies. But if you don’t put the included cap over the window breaker or remove that component, it can scratch or rip your interior in no time at all.

Product Specification
  • Lock style Key
  • Fit 6.6- to 12.5-inch wheels
  • Material Alloy steel, aluminum, chrome
PROS

Easy to install

Durable construction

Tape protects steering wheel

Adjustable length

CONS

Window breaker can damage interior

Best Compact Lock

It may look small, but it extends and adjusts to fit steering wheels with inner diameters between 6.6 and 12.5 inches. Forget about trying to store long, pointy, or sizable locks. The Turnart Steering-Wheel Lock is compact and nicely portable. It may look small, but it extends and adjusts to fit steering wheels with inner diameters between 6.6 and 12.5 inches. Made out of alloy steel, this steering-wheel lock is designed to be durable enough to fend off would-be thieves and survive everything from changing temperatures to sun exposure to corrosion. It can also protect your steering wheel, thanks to the felt pads that stick inside the hook and are meant to prevent marks or damage. And the addition of a foam protective cover also helps cushion the locking rod.

The problem is with troublesome keys. The keys can be sticky or frustrating to twist. Getting your lock loosened when this happens may take more than five seconds.

Product Specification
  • Lock style Key
  • Fit 6.6 to 12.5 inches in diameter
  • Material Alloy steel
PROS

Five-second installation

Polished-steel construction

Works for most steering wheels

Includes three keys

CONS

Keys can be sticky

Keys may get stuck in lock

The Club Basic Steering-Wheel Lock is perhaps the most straightforward and classic version of a steering-wheel lock. It’s the original bar and hook design, featuring a solid chromoly-steel bar that can be adjusted depending on the inner width of your steering wheel and attached into place with a hook on either end of the bar. It’s easy to secure and should fit most standard wheels. With a familiar shape, it’s also a theft deterrent that’s easy to spot through your car window. And it’s not just secure enough to keep your steering wheel from moving; it’s resistant to hammering, prying, sawing, and freon attacks.

The only potential issue is with the spare keys. The included spares are actually blank keys, so you’ll have to take them to a store or locksmith to have copies made. It’s a bit of an added cost and effort.

Product Specification
  • Lock style Key
  • Fit Universal
  • Material Chromoly steel
PROS

Simple installation

Solid-steel hooks

Easy to see

Universal fit

CONS

Extra keys are blanks

Our Verdict

When it comes to a trustworthy product with good longevity and a long history of solid locks, The Club Twin-Hook Steering-Wheel Lock is one of the best options. If you’re looking for a combination of good value and reliable protection, the Zone Tech Car Steering-Wheel Lock is another solid option. 

What to Consider When a Buying Steering-Wheel Lock

If you’re wondering where to start when it comes to picking out a steering-wheel lock that fits your needs, we’ve got you.

Types of Steering-Wheel Locks

Bar and Hook Lock

This kind of steering-wheel lock is the most popular, and it’s one you likely know well. Bar and hook locks feature a bar that extends to fit the width of your steering wheel, with hooks to secure around its edges. They feature a locking mechanism to keep the wheel from moving, and they’re pretty visible once in place. Simple and easy enough to use in any vehicle, they’re a solid pick for any driver.

Whole-Wheel Lock

If you’re looking for even more protection, a whole-wheel lock is another option. These locks aren’t as common, but they completely cover up your steering wheel, fitting over top the wheel and locking it in place. They’re more challenging to break or get through, but they’re also a more expensive alternative.

Wheel-to-Pedal Lock

For an even higher level of security, you can opt for a wheel-to-pedal lock. This kind of steering-wheel lock will not only lock up your steering wheel, but it also prevents thieves from being able to use the pedals. It’s a less visible alternative to a bar and hook or whole-wheel lock, but it completely locks up your vehicle’s most critical components to prevent movement without great difficulty. 

Steering-Wheel Lock Key Features

Strong, Durable Material

In order to stop thieves, your lock has to be good at its primary job: preventing them from being able to remove the lock and steer your car freely. So, your steering-wheel lock needs to be made out of some seriously tough material. Well-built locks will be made out of metal, not plastic. And when it comes to metal, steel is the most durable choice. You should also look for points of potential weakness on any lock, like plastic at joining points or around the lock. If it’s easy to break, assume it will be broken. 

Bright Coloring

It might sound counterintuitive if you’re hoping to minimize the odds of your car standing out as a target, but you’ll notice that many steering-wheel locks are colorful. You’ll find products that are painted red, yellow, and other standout colors because you do want would-be thieves to see these devices inside your car. When someone can see your steering-wheel lock, they may rethink their plans. Thieves want to get inside a car and get away as quickly and smoothly as possible. A steering-wheel lock presents a potential struggle and challenge, and they may opt for a car that’s an easier target.

Secure Fit

No steering-wheel lock can do you any good if it doesn’t actually fit your wheel. To achieve just the right fit, take a close look at the lock’s size range and suitable steering-wheel fit. Few locks will suit every steering wheel. These products typically fit wheels within a certain size range. Make sure you know the size of your steering wheel so you can find a lock with the right length.

Pricing 

Most steering-wheel locks cost between $25 and $50, and that includes top-tier products from well-known brands such as The Club. If you’re looking for a more specialized lock or need one that’s seriously heavy duty, it may run you between $50 and $75.

FAQs 

You’ve got questions. Car Bibles has answers.

Can a car still be stolen with a steering-wheel lock?

Steering-wheel locks do have their weaknesses, and when a thief is determined to steal your car, they may come prepared with tools that can cut through even the most secure locks. These locks can be broken or cut off in some cases, but they do generally work as a theft deterrent for those looking for a quick getaway.

Does installing a steering-wheel lock reduce insurance?

Having a steering-wheel lock may lower your overall car insurance premium. Check with your insurance company, as the discounts each one offers for different anti-theft features varies. While it may not be a huge discount, you may see a slight change in your rate if your insurer offers this kind of savings.

How do you remove a steering-wheel lock if you lose the keys?

Before you grab your tools to disassemble or cut off your steering-wheel lock, ask yourself if your lock came with a spare key. Most do, and it’s a smart idea to stash the spare key somewhere you can easily access it. If you can’t find your spare key or don’t have one, you can alternatively call a locksmith who can help you free your steering wheel.

Sources:

  1. Anti-theft System – Wikipedia

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