When it comes to protecting your boat from theft and larceny, it’s hard to beat locks. As I indicated in the my Better Boating column in the January 2013 issue of Sport Fishing, while a determined thief might defeat or bust a lock, most crooks prefer a quick and easy mark, and a few well-placed locks will usually send them looking for other targets.
I have four favorite locks – two for the trailer and two for the boat itself.
Reese Universal Coupler Lock This lock is designed to secure your trailer when you’re not towing it, clamping around the coupler to prevent thieves from hitching up and towing the trailer and boat away. I really like the bright yellow finish – a warning to thieves that it’s going take a lot time to hack away at the lock if they attempt to hijack this trailer boat, and even then they might fail. The Reese Universal Coupler Lock retails for $24.98 at lowes.com.
Bully Locks Jaws Wheel Clamp Add this wheel immobilizer to a coupler lock, and would-be thieves will definitely think twice before trying to steal your trailer boat. You’ll need spoke wheels for this lock to work on your trailer. Once attached, its bright color is a warning flag that this heist might take more time than a thief is willing to risk. The Bull Locks Jaws Wheel Clamp retails for $67.99 at cruisercustomizing.com.
The Club Twin Hooks Steering Wheel Lock Steering wheel locks work well on cars. So why not on boats? This lock prevents the wheel from spinning, so a thief can’t even think about driving your boat away until he can defeat this bright yellow steel bar. That’s just too much hassle and time for most crooks. The Club Twin Hooks Steering Wheel Lock retails for $24.95 at amazon.com.
Perko Locking Battery Selector Switch Without battery power, a would-be thief can’t start the motor and steal your boat. That’s what the Perko Locking Battery Selector Switch is all about. When you leave, turn the switch to the “off” and remove the key. This will thwart any attempts at theft, even if a crook hot-wires the ignition. The Perko Locking Battery Selector Switch retails for 49.44 at westmarine.com.