LAST UPDATED: March 22, 2021
Best Steering Wheel Locks: Add Security to Your Car
Prevent vehicular theft with these steering wheel locks.
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PUBLISHED ON March 22, 2021
A steering wheel lock is an effective and inexpensive visual deterrent to vehicle theft. Of course, as with any security device, a steering wheel lock is not undefeatable. It's true that someone determined to take your vehicle can eventually find the means to do so, but a simple device like a steering wheel lock will compound the difficulty several fold, giving would-be thieves all the incentive to turn their attention elsewhere. This is why steering wheel locks are so effective as a deterrent, and why you should have one in your car.
If you're convinced you need one (as you should be), check out our buyer's guide below to learn more about the best steering wheel locks available on the market.
A tried-and-true design from a company that’s been specializing in steering wheel locks for decades.
- Patented, innovative design that works with most cars
- Offers a solid metal body with visually deterring color combo (red and black)
- Great guarantee
- Locking mechanism can get jammed during use in colder climates, which is not ideal if you live in frostier temperatures
This lock uses both the steering wheel and the brake pedal to secure your vehicle. It expands up to 27.5 inches.
- Lightweight and fits cars, vans, and SUVs
- Rubberized coating protects your steering wheel from damage
- Comes with two keys
- It may be challenging to unlock in the dark
- While it's compatible with most vehicles, it doesn't fit all of them
The classic enclosed steering wheel lock with a variety of security features to keep your car safe from theft.
- Incredibly high-quality build is heavy and bulky design to withstand physical attacks
- Features anti-drill and anti-pick lock design and spinning frame to make steering the car nearly impossible
- The only downside we found was the higher price point. However, you do get what you pay for, and this wheel lock is worth the investment in higher-end cars
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All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, or practical experience with most products we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
Benefits of a Steering Wheel Lock
- Physical barrier. A steering wheel lock is a heavy chunk of metal that stops your steering wheel from moving. This helps protect your vehicle from theft because it's extremely hard to crack.
- Visual theft deterrent. Not only do steering wheel locks prevent the wheel from moving, they’re also a great visual deterrent that will likely keep thieves away. They help make your car much more difficult to steal, causing would-be thieves to look elsewhere.
- Peace of mind. If you worry about your car every time you park it, a steering wheel lock will help put your mind at ease. Fewer worries and less stress equal a healthier you.
- Save money. Obviously, if your car gets stolen, you lose money on the replacement even if you’re insured. In that sense, a steering wheel lock can help you save money.
- Prevents turning. Even if a thief decides to jump into your car and drive away without cracking the wheel lock, the car will be impossible to properly maneuver. Simply put, the thief wouldn’t be able to turn the wheel far enough to make any turns or even keep the car safely in a lane.
Types of Steering Wheel Locks
An enclosed steering wheel lock looks just like it sounds — it completely covers the steering wheel, locking it from use. These locks provide a high level of security for obvious reasons, and they'll require a lot of effort to crack, which is bad news for any would-be thief. Their downside is they are bulky, heavy, and more difficult to stow away.
This is the most common design among steering wheel locks. They are basically bar-shaped and have hook ends that attach to opposite spokes of the steering wheel to prevent it from turning. The advantage of this design is that it gets the job done while having a manageable footprint.
These are designed to hook onto both the steering wheel and the brake or clutch pedal, preventing both from use. This makes them effective as a security measure since they offer double protection. The trade-off is that they are less visible from the outside and might serve as a deterrent only after the thief has already broken into your car.
Based in Sharon, Penn., Winner International makes the popular The Club steering wheel locks. Founded in 1986, the company is still going strong, making innovative new tweaks to the existing designs. The company’s most popular product is the Original Club.
An online-based manufacturer and retailer of car steering wheel locks, as well as a whole host of other automotive accessories, MONOJOY makes quality, affordable products. Many of the company’s wheel locks are popular, with the Heavy-Duty Car Anti-Theft Lock being the forerunner.
With head offices based in the United Kingdom, Disklok is behind the most popular full-enclosure steering wheel lock. Since 1993, Disklok has continued to innovate the design, making one of the most effective anti-theft devices for cars on the market. The Disklok Security Device is the company’s most popular product, and it’s Thatcham-approved.
Steering Wheel Lock Pricing
- Under $30: Steering wheel locks in this price range will vary in quality, with some being suitable enough to get the job done while others being flimsy enough for a thief to defeat. If this is your budget range, make sure to go for a reliable brand as it will make all the difference.
- $40-$100: Traditional bar-shaped locks will still be the most common at this price range, but you'll be able to get other designs too, including wheel-to-pedal ones, which offer double security. Also, the materials used for the construction of steering wheel locks at this price range will be better.
- $100 and up: If this is your budget range, then your options will include the toughest steering wheel locks available in the market. These locks will be made from more than just heavy-duty materials, to be sure, but suffice to say it's a lot to spend for a steering wheel lock.
Modern steering wheels tend to be very similar in size and design, but some makes and models have unique quirks that warrant a universal fit wheel lock. You’ll avoid guesswork and poorly closing latch points; both of which will result in better security for your car. If you’re driving an 18-wheeler or some other really big vehicle, you might have to look for a specialty lock.
One of the key deterrents to theft is a highly visible wheel lock. That means you want lots of bright color and bulk that can be spotted, even from across the street. Our favorites are red and bright yellow, but a bit of shiny silver helps the spotting, too. If would-be thieves can see what they need to deal with before even getting to your car, you’re that much better off.
You want a steering wheel lock that’s as resistant to physical attacks as possible. If a thief decides to break into your car, even after spotting that wheel lock, you’ve got to assume that they’ve got the toolbox to tackle it. Hardened steel or steel alloys will make it that much harder for a would-be thief to break the lock, making these the materials you need for top-notch security.
- Size. Although bigger is usually better when it comes to steering wheel locks, you have to keep in mind how much space it will take up when not in use. Make sure to choose a wheel lock that’s just right in size to work for your car so that you don’t have to deal with the inconvenience of more bulk than you need.
- Ease of Use. Some car security bars have more connection points than others, making them more secure but also more difficult to use. You’ll want a lock that balances convenience and security so that you’re never discouraged from using it.
- Guarantee. A number of manufacturers offer not only a great warranty for their wheel locks but also a guarantee that your car won’t be stolen. If you’re unlucky enough for it to be taken, then their guarantee pays for part or all of your insurance deductible.
- Locking Mechanism. Here’s a point where quality really matters. If the locking mechanism is poorly made, it can be easily broken by a professional thief. Make sure you invest in a good steering wheel lock that can’t just be sprayed, frozen, and broken.
- Padding, If you’re worried about potential damage to your car’s steering wheel from metal edges, you’ll want to look for a wheel lock that features rubber or plastic padding around the latch points.
Best Steering Wheel Locks Reviews & Recommendations 2021
Sometimes the old adage “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” rings true. That’s the case for the original Club steering wheel lock. It’s been around for decades, and it’s patented design continues to be one of the best on the market. Recent innovations have made it even more secure: solid steel hooks and chromoly steel construction make it resistant to sawing, prying, hammering, and Freon attacks. The patented self-locking feature makes the Club super easy to use: just one pull locks it into place, and you can rest easy knowing your car is better protected.
Red and black are highly deterring colors, and the fit is universal, making it ideal for cars, trucks, vans, and SUVs. It’s also available in a slightly less visible navy blue and black color combo, which might suit your needs better if you want your lock to blend in more. The Club also comes backed with a generous first year guarantee: If your car gets stolen while the Club is in use, the company will pay up to $1,800 against your insurance deductible.
Overall, the design is heavy-duty, the materials high in quality, and the performance is good. What is a little bothersome, though, is that the locking mechanism can get a little jammed in colder climates. Making sure that it’s always well-lubricated helps prevent that issue, but it’s definitely something to keep in mind if you live somewhere frosty.
The CARTMAN Anti-Theft Steering Wheel Lock to Brake Pedal Adjustable Lock uses both the steering wheel and brake pedal to secure your vehicle. Simply hook the device around the brake pedal and the bottom of the steering wheel and lock it in place. This steel steering club is hassle free and has a maximum span of 27.5 inches. When not in use, it collapses to 21 inches.
This lock is adjustable and fits most cars, vans, and SUVs. It is made of aluminum, steel, copper, and PVC and has a rubberized coating, so it shouldn't damage your steering wheel. Two keys are included. Users like that the lock is well-built and simple to install and remove. Plus, it's not too heavy.
One downside is that it's not suitable for all vehicles on the road, so make sure to check the size of your steering wheel before purchasing one. Also, it can be a little tough to unlock in the dark, and you may need to rotate the key a few times to unlock it.
One of the strongest wheel locks on the market, the Disklok works by completing encasing your car’s steering wheel. The design is patented to spin on attack, making it extremely difficult to remove and basically impossible to drive. Made from high-quality, hardened steel, this device weighs a solid 9 to 11 pounds, depending on the size selected. Not just a visual deterrent, the Disklok is designed to withstand any attack with manual tools.
A key feature of the design is the hardened anti-drill and anti-pick design. With more than 1 million possible combinations and 10 internal disks that spin when drilling or picking is attempted, this locking mechanism is one of the toughest to crack. It’s made in three different sizes for a guaranteed snug fit on your steering wheel and comes with three keys, in case one or two are misplaced or lost. The Disklok is a great pick if you’re looking for something extremely difficult to crack, and you don’t mind the weight and bulk of the design.
All that being said, the price point is where Disklok gets a little less attractive. Keep in mind that you do get what you paid for, and that’s definitely noticeable in steering wheel locks. The quality and specialty design features are definitely there, making this device is worth the investment if you want something durable that will do an A+ job at protecting your car from theft.
The Club 3000 features a twin-hook design and has a universal fit for cars, vans, and SUVs. It has a maximum opening of 14.4 inches, a self-locking feature, and a chromoly steel construction that protects against saws, hammers, and other types of attacks.
The device works very smoothly, and the bright yellow color makes it a good visual deterrent and very visible to passersby. It comes with two keys and is fairly lightweight for an anti-theft device. The twin hooks also make it a little tougher to cut the steering wheel.
However, there have been some complaints that the device has a tendency to jam. Also, the extended bar is a little on the thin side, and a determined thief may be able to bend it to remove the entire unit from the steering wheel.
This pedal-to-steering-wheel lock is another great option from The Club, so you can be assured of its quality. It attaches to either the brake or clutch pedal as well as the steering wheel, keeping both from being operated. It comes in a conspicuous red finish that should be highly visible from outside the vehicle to deter any would-be thief. It will fit most vehicles with 22.5 to 30 inches of distance between its steering wheel and pedal.
The lock is easy to use and is made of strong and sturdy tempered steel that even the most inveterate carnapper will find tedious to crack. Lastly, the package includes two keys.
If there's any drawback, it's that you will sometimes need to wiggle and yank the key out once you've locked it into place because the key has a tendency to get stuck in the housing.
The Club 1100 LX Series Steering Wheel Lock comes in a red metallic color that is highly visible from outside the window, which helps to deter thieves looking in to potentially steal the vehicle. The hook ends, as well as the length of the lock, is coated in rubber to prevent scuff marks and scratches on the steering wheel. It installs in three seconds and will fit most cars, SUVs, and vans.
Conveniently, the device self-locks, so you won't have to worry about forgetting to lock it in place. Just ratchet it into place with one pull and it will lock where you stop. Additionally, the manufacturer boasts that the lock and the key housing is strong enough to withstand sawing, picking, and Freon.
One drawback is that it's best stored in the trunk of your vehicle since it is bulkier and heavier than most and will rattle under the seat of your car.
The Tevlaphee Universal Steering Wheel Brake Lock attaches to both the steering wheel and the break of your car to provide double protection. The device will fit vehicles with 22 to 33 inches of distance between the steering wheel and brake pedal — which is virtually most vehicles.
It's made from a thick and hardened aluminum alloy that's practically impervious to cutting, sawing, and Freon, and the whole thing can be installed in a few seconds. Interestingly enough, the manufacturer boasts that the device won't just protect your vehicle but can also be used to break through your window or windshield if need be. The package includes three high-grade keys that can't be duplicated, as well as two pieces of adhesive tape to cover the end of the lock that touches the steering wheel and prevent scratching.
Unfortunately, the lock doesn't extend far enough to fit some vehicles, so it's best to measure the distance between your brake pedal and your steering wheel and make sure they fall within the allowable range before getting one.
The Zone Tech Car Steering Wheel Lock is another great option that's happily more affordable than most. The device, which can be set up within five seconds, is made from a thick alloy steel for maximum cut resistance, and is coated with vinyl to avoid scratching your steering wheel and other parts of your interior.
Its crescent lock cylinder design will fit most rounded steering wheels. Unlike more conventional steering wheel locks, this one attaches to the steering wheel and extends behind it above the dashboard to prevent turning. It weighs 2 pounds and is 14.2 inches on its longest side, making it easy to store and carry around if need be. Additionally, the package includes two keys that are nearly impossible to duplicate because of its unique cross design.
One downside is that the lock can be too tight for some steering wheels and leave marks. Also, some dashboards can be angled against a steering wheel in such a way that makes this device impossible to fit, so check your steering wheel and dashboard before purchasing one.
- Protect your steering wheel from any potential scuffing or tearing by always carefully placing and removing the steering wheel lock. If you’re especially concerned about possible damage, try using a piece of cloth or a rag between the lock and the wheel. Just make sure that it doesn’t get in the way of the locking mechanism.
- Some steering wheel lock manufacturers offer a guarantee that covers part or all of your insurance deductible, should your car get stolen while their device was in use.
- Steering wheel locks come in a number of different lengths. Make sure whichever model you choose is going to be long enough to properly do its job. As a good rule of thumb, newer compacts and sedans can take almost any lock on the market, whereas SUVs, trucks, and otherwise larger cars will need something longer.
- Many newer cars have steering wheels and pedals that adjust to a final position when the key is removed from the ignition. If your car has this feature, make sure to first turn off the vehicle and remove the key before you attach the steering wheel lock. You might cause damage to the vehicle otherwise.
- If you ever find yourself with a steering wheel lock that’s stuck, try spraying some dry graphite lubricant into the locking mechanism. This can help the lock release.
Q: Will steering wheel locks damage my steering wheel?
A lock that's improperly sized for your vehicle can leave scuff marks or scratches, but one with the right size shouldn't be a problem with proper care and use. In any case, you can always put a fabric scrap or cloth between the lock and your steering wheel to avoid leaving marks and scratches.
Q: How do I properly install a steering wheel lock?
This will largely depend on the steering wheel lock's design. For the conventional bar type, just extend the lock until both hook ends fix themselves on opposite spokes of the steering wheel, then lock it in place with the key.
Q: What do I do if I lose my lock’s key?
If you can locate your spare key, try that first. If you've managed to lose that too, then call a locksmith before attempting anything drastic like using a hacksaw.
Q: What kind of steering wheel lock works best?
Any steering wheel lock that's built strong enough to resist all kinds of tampering will work well, but we feel that a well-constructed wheel-to-pedal lock is particularly effective since it prevents both your steering wheel and pedal from being used.
Our top pick is the original The Club 1000 Steering Wheel Lock. It’s a tried-and-true design that’s been on the market for decades, so you know you can trust it.
If you’re looking for a more wallet-friendly option, check out our best value pick, the MONOJOY Heavy Duty Anti-Theft Lock. It’s extendable and works with many makes and models.