If the facility you store with is even halfway decent, there should be many different lines of defense before a potential infiltrator could even get near your locker. However, having worked as a storage manager I’ve seen cases of theft and break-ins even in well-maintained facilities. The fact of the matter is that’s its simply impossible for a single manager to keep tabs on what everyone on property is doing at a given time. Security cameras are in place to act as a deterrent to would-be thieves, but they can only offer after-the-fact assistance in the case of someone determined to get into your valuables; once your stuff is already long gone.
Security gates should only allow access to current tenants, but it’s possible to follow someone onto the property and some old facilities have fencing and perimeter systems that anyone can easily scale to gain access to the property after hours. When it really comes down to it, putting a serious fat padlock on your locker is the best thing you can do to provide that extra layer of protection that might force a burglar to choose your neighbor’s less defended locker over your own. This post will rundown the best storage locker padlocks you can buy today. Some of these bad boys get my personal recommendation for all the times they were a total pain in my ass to remove for customers who had misplaced their keys.
The Chateau Disc Lock
This disc lock offers a solid combination of security and ease-of-use. In fact, its just as fast for you to take on and off as the owner as any other simple padlock. Just one twist of the key will get you in and out. However, it’s a much different story for anyone hoping to tamper with your lock. These disc locks are an official pain in my ass to remove, hence I strongly recommend them for the average self storage customer.
See that rounded latch that’s only partially exposed at the top of the lock? That piece right there is specially hardened and impossible to cut with regular bolt cutters. It just can’t be done. I’ve tried multiple times and I’m a big guy. Meanwhile, there’s no where on the lock body itself for industrial bolt cutters to find purchase, meaning this lock will reliably defeat any pair of bolt cutters your average thug would have on hand. This means that anyone serious about getting through a disc lock is going to need to have an angle grinder on hand.
There are two reasons it’s not easy to let fly with an angle grinder on these locks to break into someone’s storage unit. For one thing, angle grinders make an ungodly amount of noise and take some degree of knowledge to operate correctly against a stationary rounded lock without severing your own femoral artery when the tool slips and kicks back at 7200 rpm. The amount of noise they make means that a decent manager is likely to hear someone trying to cut a lock, know that no maintenance is scheduled, and go to check out the scene.
The second reason it’s not really nice and easy for angle grinder wielding thieves to get through your disc lock to access your storage stuff is that most facilities don’t offer free electrical outlets all over the place. Inside the storage wings it’s unusual to see open and accessible outlets because the designers of most storage properties don’t want tenants just linking up their satellite equipment from inside their unit and starting to run a small business on the storage company’s utility bill. This means a thief with a corded angle grinder is going to need a gas powered generator and a lot of determination to break into your storage unit.
It is possible to “rake” these storage locks open with a combination of a professional pick and a homemade tool, but this takes an intermediate to advanced knowledge of lock-picking to do quickly and effectively. All in all, this chateau disc-lock is one of the most widely used locks on storage properties today.
Master Lock’s Brass Coupler Lock
Similar in theory to the disc lock is the Brass Coupler lock that also fits snugly over most storage locker doors, keeping the hardened bolt concealed beneath the shed door hardware itself. This coupler lock is also designed with anti-picking technology in mind to try to deter the crafty from simply popping it off. Its brass finish also allows it to better withstand the elements should you be using it to secure your externally facing storage shed.
Master Lock’s Titanium Shrouded Padlock
Check out this beasty boy with its Titanium shoulder’s hunched up over the bolt. Affordable and meaty, this stout little padlock is a good choice for storage tenants that have storage shed hasps that can accept the bolt going in and coming out.
Even if you can only fit it through one of the slots on your shed’s hasp, it will do a good job of securing your valuables. Again, there’s no place for a traditional lock-cutter to bite on this padlock.
For Combo Lock Lovers
Check out this similar take on the classic shrouded lock that features combo access for tenants good at remembering numbers but bad at remembering keys. Notice the specially hardened bolt. Combo access is at the bottom via four wheels.